A new update for the OnePlus 8 Pro is now rolling out, with a rather extensive changelog. But nestled unstated among the various improvements is a rather big one: OnePlus confirms to us that this new 10.5.8 update includes fixes for the crushed/clipped black issue.
The full changelog for this update is just below:
- Optimized touch and interaction experience
- Improved power consumption performance of the system
- Improved the video playing effect when in low brightness
- Improved system stability and fixed general issues
- Updated Android Security Patch to 2020.04
- Improved stability and compatibility of Bluetooth connection
- Optimized the HDR video effect
- Improved the shooting experience with Camera and improved stability
- Enable 5G for Telia Norway (EU Only)
- Improved the performance and stability of Wi-Fi transfer
- Improved the stability of communication
- Optimized network latency for online games and improved the smoothness
Most of these changes are the usual improvements we expect to see following a phone's release, and I'm happy to hear that Bluetooth stability fixes are included — I ran into an issue with stuttering playback on my own device just earlier today. Further power consumption improvements, system stability improvements, and touch improvements are also welcome, as are the camera tweaks.
But it was that "improved the video playing effect when in low brightness" that caught our attention — that's a circumstance in which crushed/clipped blacks would be especially noticeable, and OnePlus told us to expect a fix in May. Following our inquiry, the company confirmed that this is the update intended to address that issue.
Oxygen OS 10.5.8 update!
👈🏻Left = Green model on 10.5.6 vs Blue model on 10.5.8
👉🏻Right = Green model on 10.5.8 vs Blue model on 10.5.8
Difference between 10.5.6 & 10.5.8 on Glacial Green is crazy regarding green tint!
— Fox Tech (@FoxTechh) May 13, 2020
The so-called "green tint" problem, which caused gray colors at low brightness to — you guessed it — tint green, may also be fixed, following a partial fix in a previous update.
There also seems to be some confusion surrounding the term "black crush," with some people using it interchangeably with simple panel unevenness at low brightness, and that's incorrect. Crushed/clipped blacks are what happens when low gray values are "clipped" or "crushed" directly into black, ruining detail in shadows. If you don't follow, a more detailed explainer is here. Sometimes videos or movies will intentionally perform the effect to achieve a certain appearance, but it's not something you want your screen to do on its own, even though it's partially unavoidable on OLED panels simply because of how they work.
The update has since landed stateside, and I can report that the crushed blacks at the middle brightness levels have measurably improved. However, results at low brightness are about the same as they were before, and minimum brightness itself is now a much brighter setting.
Our own results
Now that the update has landed in the US, we've been able to add our own anecdotal claims regarding black crush improvements, which have been added above.