GPU Performance

Along with the 10% increase in peak CPU clock speeds, the version of Snapdragon 821 in the OnePlus 3T also increases the peak GPU frequency to 653MHz, up from 624MHz in the OnePlus 3. This is a relatively modest improvement, so the corresponding increase in performance will also be rather modest as well. In the interest of merely verifying that performance has improved as expected, I've run 3DMark Sling Shot and GFXBench Car Chase on the OnePlus 3T.

3DMark Sling Shot 3.1 Extreme Unlimited - Graphics

3DMark Sling Shot 3.1 Extreme Unlimited - Physics

3DMark Sling Shot 3.1 Extreme Unlimited - Overall

The 3DMark graphics test actually doesn't see much of an improvement on the OnePlus 3T. It may be that I simply got an exceptionally good score on the OnePlus 3, but it is interesting to see such a large gap in the physics test, which should favor the OnePlus 3T with its higher-clocked CPU cores.

GFXBench Car Chase ES 3.1 / Metal (On Screen)

GFXBench Car Chase ES 3.1 / Metal (Off Screen 1080p)

In GFXBench Car Chase the OnePlus 3T shows a performance uplift of around 10% compared to the OnePlus 3. This is slightly higher than expected, but due to the truncation of results in the latest GFXBench this may be slightly exaggerated, which tends to happen when comparing devices that differ in performance by only one or two frames per second.

NAND Performance

In our recent review of the Pixel XL one of the problems we ran into was that AndroBench had been broken by the adoption of file-based encryption (FBE) in Android Nougat. AndroBench is the benchmark we use to measure storage performance, and since that time it has been updated with a new version that works on devices that use FBE. However, the results are not comparable to results from AndroBench 4, so going forward we will be using the AndroBench 5 test with a new data set for device results.

As always, our storage test examines the performance for random reads and writes using a 4KB transfer size, and sequential reads and writes using a 256KB transfer size. These settings are chosen to match what actually occurs when an application performs IO operations. Only one IO thread is used, which again mirrors how applications are actually designed in order to reflect the performance that will be seen in real usage instead of reflecting potentially higher speeds that the hardware may be capable of, but that will almost never be encountered in an actual use case.

AndroBench 5.0 - Random Read

AndroBench 5.0 - Random Write

AndroBench 5.0 - Sequential Read

AndroBench 5.0 - Sequential Write

In Androbench 5 the OnePlus 3T tops the charts. However, it's important to recognize why this is, particularly where write speeds are concerned. Most smartphones we review have either 16GB or 32GB of internal memory. The OnePlus 3 has 64GB, and this OnePlus 3T unit is the flagship 128GB model. With flash memory, assuming that you have some density for a chip, increasing capacity is accomplished by increasing the number of chips. Because SSDs and other flash memory devices utilize parallel writes to improve performance, increasing the number of dies can allow for greater performance by increasing the number of writes that can happen in parallel.

In addition to the larger amount of internal storage, OnePlus has also adopted F2FS for the filesystem, which is another source of performance improvements, particularly in the case of random write speeds.

With that in mind, the results from AndroBench actually aren't that shocking. In the write tests the 128GB model of the OnePlus 3T is well ahead of every other device, including the 64GB OnePlus 3. Read performance is also improved compared to the OnePlus 3, but not to the same extent.

System Performance Battery Life and Charge Time


View All Comments

  • leexgx - Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - link

    i just wish they keep most of the buttons near the top left and right side of the phone (some phones have the buttons to low so can use them in phone holder as it presses them) Reply
  • leexgx - Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - link

    ""can't use phone holder when are all on one side (power button right side, volume on left side is the preferable way, might not be ideal for left handed people but this is how they are norm setup) Reply
  • Pino - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    ZTE Axon 7 for $ 349 on cyber Monday, with a free Bluetooth beats phone is a much better deal. Reply
  • JoeyJoJo123 - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    I prefer having the ability to load the most common and popular open-source Android-based OS, Cyanogenmod. Cyanogenmod continues to issue updates to my (apparently ancient, despite only being 2 years old and still very functional) Nexus 4, which Google no longer provides updates for.

    ZTE Axon 7 has no Cyanogenmod support, and like many other Android phones, it will cease to have manufacturer support (planned obsolescence) after a year, if you're lucky.

    I'm looking into a Oneplus 3T now, as Google no longer provides affordable Nexus phones, but mostly because my current Nexus 4 has a degraded battery life over 2 years of charge cycles. Despite lowering the brightness, barely using it, and blocking many applications, my Nexus 4 only tends to last me 12 hours of very light use, and sometimes it fails to last the work day, from when I remove the phone from the charger in the morning, by the time I get back home to charge it again. The upgraded 3400 mAh battery on the OnePlus 3T is a solid selling point, as I'm looking for better longevity of battery life 2 ~ 3 years down the line.
  • negusp - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    The Axon 7 has a CM13 port, and everything seems to work so far.

    For the price the Axon is unbeatable.

    And the Nexus 4 always had sh*t battery life. No way around it. Replacing the battery isn't too difficult either.
  • JoeyJoJo123 - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    I'll have to concede, there does appear to be a port, but apparently you have to get it directly from XDA forums, and it's an unofficial port; it's not listed on the CyanogenMod website at all.

    The following are the only official ZTE Cyanogenmod builds listed on Cyanogenmod's site:
    Blade (blade)
    Nubia Z9 Max (nx510j)
    Skate (skate)
    V9 (v9)

    Meanwhile OnePlus's section includes every major phone they've released thus far, save for the 3T which was just released (and sure to get official support in the coming weeks).

    2 (oneplus2)
    3 (oneplus3)
    One (bacon)
    X (onyx)

    Given ZTE's poor support record on CyanogenMod, I hope that changes for the better in the future. It's the poot CyanogenMod support for manufacturers like Xiaomi, Honor, and Huawei (and now ZTE) that prevent me from buying into the platform. When I buy a phone, a buy something sensibly priced and I intend for it to last me longer than even typical 2 year upgrade plans.
  • negusp - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    Your last point is the most important. People who value a Nexus-like phone should get an Axon 7. In that way, we drive demand for ports and releases of custom ROMs.

    The 3T also won't get very much support, and hasn't been received kindly by the dev community. One of the most notable was flar2 who has said he won't be porting his elementalx kernel to it.
  • FlyBri - Monday, November 28, 2016 - link

    It has already changed for the better ZTE has already confirmed it is working with Cyanogen mod as we speak, and so the Axon 7 is getting official CyanogenMod support. So while the ROM isn't out yet, one will be coming. Looks like your concern about poor support from ZTE regarding Cyangenmod has been eliminated. Reply
  • pierrot - Tuesday, November 29, 2016 - link

    CM support official or not is a huge feature. It even makes that cheapo Amazon Fire halfway usable Reply
  • realbabilu - Tuesday, November 29, 2016 - link

    I disagree. CM support or Rom continuity always needed. Software bug , and security hole always there. There are not plenty mobile phone that keep it run long enough to patch every bug, as far i owned and experiences, those one with cm support like oneplus, those one with iOS, and those one with miui rom for Xiaomi phones, that updated regularly.

    And one thing others is availability hardware spare part, especially the battery and the screen replacement as those are fast moving sparepart for mobilephones. It can be replaced by third party repairman. iPhone always have a big numbers spare part availability on market, Xiaomi phones also have a lot. Oneplus not so many, ZTE even little.

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