The R11 features a dual camera on the back with one 16MP IMX398 regular sensor with f/1.7 lens and a 20MP IMX376 sensor with f/2.6 telephoto lens. Those two are set up to provide 2x optical zoom with image processing handled by the Qualcomm Spectra ISP.
Besides zoom, the dual camera offers Portrait mode where you can blur the background behind the subject. Even if you have to take your own photo, the R11 has a solid 20MP selfie camera on the front, which is also capable of similar simulated bokeh effect (or even better) thanks to the Qualcomm's powerful processing.
Here is the kicker though - you should forget about the resolution of the camera sensors. The R11 outputs 16MP regular stills, 16MP telephoto samples, and 8MP Portrait shots. We are not sure why the portrait shots in particular are downscaled in the post-processing, but we guess it might something to do with processing speed even though the chipset is plenty powerful.
The regular samples turned out great with lots of detail, excellent contrast, and lively colors. The dynamic range is quite high, too. There is little to no oversharpening and the only thing we can mention is the somewhat high noise levels in the sky.
The telephoto camera does an excellent job at providing 2x optical zoom without any loss in quality. It is as good as the default one, though the samples are a bit sharper and this can probably be contributed to a stronger sharpening applied in the camera processing.
The telephoto camera is used only in good light conditions, just like the other dual-camera solutions by other manufacturers. If it's a low-light photo, the R11 will instead crop and upscale the image from the normal f/1.7 camera, which is better suited for low-light shooting thanks to the wider aperture.
The portrait shots are taken at 8MP resolution, and the bokeh effect is as good as it can get. There are minor artefacts here and there, but those are definitely on par with what we've seen so far from other makers.
You can also take Portrait samples with the 20MP selfie camera. Surprisingly, here the bokeh effect sometimes turned out even better than what we got from the rear dual camera - especially when it comes to the edge detection of your subject's hair, sunglasses, clothes, among other stuff.
The f/1.7 lens are great for low-light shooting and even though the Oppo R11 doesn't offer any kind of stabilization the night shots turned out great.
As we said, the telephoto camera is not used for low-light images, but the crop&upsize from the main camera works pretty well.
Slow-shutter shooting is available in manual (Pro mode) on both cameras. Using Pro mode we were able to force the use of the telephoto camera in low-light conditions. This turned out a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate the differences between the light captured through the f/1.7 and the f/2.6 lens. Both samples below were shot at ISO 100 with 16 second shutter speed.
Finally, the 180-degree panoramic images are flagship-worthy. They are about 2,500px tall and can continue for up to 25MP. The quality is on par with the still images with plenty of detail, excellent colors and contrast, and good sharpness.
The Oppo R11 is capable of capturing 4K, 1080p, and 720p videos at 30 fps. You can use the regular or the telephoto camera for those. The 4K videos turned out a bit softer than we'd have liked, but with enough detail and great contrast.
And here is another 4K video shot with the telephoto camera. The image processing looks as good as with the regular camera.
Oppo R11 is a great example of how a 2017 upper mid-range smartphone should be built. It has a nice AMOLED screen, premium metal design, excellent camera package both for regular and selfie photography, and blazing-fast performance for the class.
We have spent just a few days with the R11 and we already like it a lot. We are yet to test its battery life, screen performance, audio capabilities, among other musts from our review routine, but things are looking promising.
It's been a while since Oppo has impressed us that much with a smartphone - probably since the Find 7 era. With the R11 the company is back on track of making memorable phones. Fingers crossed, Oppo will keep up the momentum and will deliver even more surprises later this year. Meanwhile, stay tuned for our full R11 review - it's already in the works.