Pixel 3 Review

- Introduction -
- Physical features -
- Audio -
- Display -
- Bootloader unlocking -
- Repairability -
- Custom ROM & Kernel Availability -
- Other issues -
- Conclusion -

Introduction

The Pixel 3 - my first foray at official GrapheneOS & CalyxOS.

Physical features

The Pixel 3 is one tiny PDA, when compared to most of the PDAs I've held & used.

On the top section, there's the secondary mic.

The single-SIM slot, USB-C charging port & primary mic are located on the bottom corner.

Left section is essentially blank.

Right section is home to the volume & power buttons. As per the Pixel design tradition, the power button is above the volume buttons.

Front side is reserved for the 5.5' 18:9 OLED, front cameras, & stereo speakers located on the top & bottom bezels. The top speaker also doubles as an earpiece.

The back is 2-toned, with rear camera & flash module on the glossy section & the fingerprint scanner on the matte section, which takes up most of the back.

For materials, the front & back are covered with Gorilla Glass 5, while aluminium is used for the frame. The power button uses plastic, while the volume button uses aluminium.

Audio Quality

The Pixel 3 only comes with front-facing stereo speakers which sounded pretty decent. However, as there's no headphone jack on the Pixel 3, good luck finding a dongle (or compatible USB-C headphones) for it if you either lost the one that came with it, or didn't get one when getting the Pixel 3.

Display

The 5.5' 18.9 OLED display is fine enough (turned-off blacks are good). Since it's an OLED, burn in will eventually happen. As it's a 18:9 display, games with blue-bar letterboxing (Fate/GO) is a burn-in incident waiting to happen if you're playing it.

Bootloader unlocking

The bootloader unlocking process is foolproof & simple : plug PDA to PC, enable OEM unlocking & USB debugging in stock OS' developer options, boot to fastboot & fastboot oem unlock in fastboot. No connecting to internet (if you have the adb/fastboot tools ready).

Repairability

Custom ROM & Kernel Availability (as of 22/9/2021)

When it comes to custom ROMs, there's 2 categories - with lockable bootloaders & without.

As for the custom kernels, there's only Elemental, & it probably won't work on locked bootloaders.

Other issues

Let's start out with the bad ones:

Then, the less bad ones

And, finally, the actually good ones:

Conclusion

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