[Guide d’achat] The best high-end smartphones of 2021

Are you charging an exceptional Android smartphone, but don’t want to venture into the premium range, beyond 1000 euros? That’s good: here is our selection of the best so-called “high-end” smartphones.

Crédits: Mr. Phan

While most manufacturers now offer smartphones over 1000 euros (see our guide to best smartphones premium), there are also very safe values ​​on the side of high-end smartphones, sold from 600 euros and up to 1000 euros. The advantage is that these smartphones typically offer a much better value than their premium counterparts, and therefore allow enjoy the best of current technology without paying full price. We have unearthed for you the five smartphones that we consider to be the most interesting of the moment in the high-end sector!

OnePlus 8T: a good compromise

Succeeding the OnePlus OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro earlier this year, the OnePlus 8T itself up as both an update and a compromise. Update because it brings a number of new features including a new design, the arrival of a new photo module at the back, while incorporating the elements that made the success of its predecessors.

There is thus a Snapdragon SoC 865, a slab Fluid Full HD AMOLED + 6.55 inches, here clocked at 120 Hz, and of course the countless benefits of OxygenOS, the overlay software brand which ensures the best experiences of the Android world. Certainly, this model is a good choice. See our test the OnePlus 8T if you want more details.

Its strengths? Its power and OxygenOS, which offers one of the best software experiences on Android.

Where to buy the OnePlus 8T?

OnePlus 8T Lunar Silver | Écran 6.55″ 120Hz FHD+ Fluid Display | 8 Go de RAM + 128 Go de Stockage | Quad Caméra | 65W Warp Charge | Double SIM | 5G |



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Google Pixel 5: pure Android experience

After the Pixel 3 sensation and the Pixel 4 disappointment, Google decided with its Pixel 5 to focus on the essentials and eliminate the superfluous. So we end up with an extremely simple smartphone but also particularly pleasant to use. Above all, it is the smartphone that will offer the purest Android experience. The essential is there, with a beautiful OLED Full HD + panel of 6 inches with a refresh rate of 90 Hz and surrounded by completely symmetrical borders (a first in the Android world), as well as a clean back on which we find two sensors photo: a main wide-angle of 12.2 MP and an ultra-wide-angle of 16 MP.

That’s the whole point of Pixel: with little, Google is capable of much, and the company once again demonstrates its algorithmic expertise with bluffing picture capabilities. Only downside, the Snapdragon SoC 765g, not as upscale a Snadragon 865 or its equivalent boosted the 865+ Snapdragon. See our full return on this in our test the Pixel 5.

Its strengths? His its pure Android experience and capabilities bluffing pictures.

Where to buy the Google Pixel 5?

The Google pixels 5 at Fnac

The Google pixels 5 in Baker

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE: S20 at reasonable prices

The Galaxy S20 FE is a bit of a UFO in the range of Samsung. With this unprecedented strategy, the South Korean firm hopes to offer the novelties introduced with its premium range of Galaxy S20 to everyone by making some compromises and lowering its prices. It is clear that Samsung pulls it off: the smartphone is a real success.

6.5-inch Super AMOLED screen (Full HD +, 120 Hz), Snapdragon 865 (in its 5G version), triple back photo sensor… As we explained in our test du Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, this model is far from being a Galaxy S20 at a discount, and offers all the important additions of the last range of Galaxy S. Some barely noticeable compromises allow it to pass from the premium box to the high-end box, and therefore to be sold much cheaper than the Galaxy S20 the beginning of the year, while offering the same arguments.

Its strengths? All the advantages of the Samsung Galaxy S20 cheap.

Where to buy the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE?




659.00 €

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Asus Zenfone 7 Pro: power and originality

With the Zenfone 7 Pro, Asus is radically upmarket compared to the Zenfone 6. On the menu, we end up with a very original smartphone with real arguments, like its Flip Camera, a motorized photo block capable of orienting itself on 180 °, and therefore allowing the device to do without a front camera and adopt a full screen. This also allows the smartphone to offer a much higher photo (and video, up to 8K) quality since we will systematically benefit from the rear sensors and not from a front sensor at a discount.

Besides this particular design, the Zenfone 7 Pro is not short of arguments we find a Qualcomm Snapdragon SoC 865+ or Android smart strongest market, and a gorgeous Full HD + Super AMOLED from Samsung, which offers a refresh rate of 90 Hz. Its value for money finally convinces us to include it in this guide. If this model tempts you, do not hesitate to take a look at our test Asus Zenfone 7 Pro.

Its strengths? Its photo quality, identical to the rear and the front thanks to its motorized photo unit.

Where to buy the Asus Zenfone 7 Pro?


ASUS AsusZenFone 7 Pro,Smartphone Double SIM 4G256 GB,6.67 Pouces,16.9 cm() Double SIMAndroid™ 10noir


799.00 €

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Vivo X51 5G: the foremost stabilization

This is the first step in Vivo on the sector of high-end smartphones in France, and one must admit that, for its launch in our country, the Chinese firm was strong with its X51 5G Vivo! The smartphone has a decidedly high-end look, with its frosted glass back and punched 6.56-inch AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate.

It is in particular on its photo part that it marks its difference with its main camera stabilized mechanically, and not optically as is the case on most of our smartphones. As we explained in our test of the Vivo X51 5G, this results in a stabilization three times more effective, and therefore perfectly stable plans, in all circumstances. Only downside: the smartphone has “only” a Snapdragon 765g, which remains nonetheless swift enough to ensure the most current uses.

Its strengths? Its mechanical stabilization system, unmatched on the market.

Where to buy it?

The Vivo X51 5G at Fnac

The Vivi X51 5G at Darty

The Vivo X51 5G at CDiscount

Vivo X51 5G in Boulanger



Among the smartphones that we have selected, there is not one that is particularly bad in terms of autonomy. However, if we had to elect a winner, we would probably take the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, which has an excellent autonomy and will keep you perfectly during the day. The least autonomous smartphones this selection are the OnePlus 8T, which can sometimes be fairly tough, and the Asus Zenfone 7 Pro.

What overlay?

Most smartphones in this selection are provided with a clean overlay software to their manufacturers, with the exception of Google Android offering pixels 5 Stock. Otherwise, we find One UI at Samsung, OxygenOS at OnePlus, or Funtouch at Vivo and ZenUI at Asus, which are rather close to Android Stock. Google’s proprietary solution is certainly excellent, but it still has a soft spot for OxygenOS, the overcoat house OnePlus proposed on OnePlus 8T and which offers an ultra-satisfying everyday experience.

The picture ?

As for the photo, the Asus Zenfone 7 Pro stands out from its companions with its motorized unit capable of orienting itself at 180 °, and therefore of enjoying an equivalent quality in selfie. On the video side, the Vivo X51 also stands out clearly from its competitors by adding a mechanical stabilizer to its main camera, and therefore offers much more stable videos than its competitors. The Galaxy S20 FE offers excellent, relatively balanced photo performance, and the OnePlus 8T is arguably the worst of this selection. The winner, it remains on the Google Pixel 5, and the extensive expertise of the Mountain View firm in terms of software improvement of snapshots.

Performances ?

As for performance, virtually all smartphones we have cited in this selection are equipped SoC Snapdragon 865 from Qualcomm, and offer thereby performance worthy of a premium smartphone. We will have an advantage on the side of Zenfone 7 Pro from Asus, which has the boosted version of this SoC, the Snapdragon 865+. Small flat on the side of the Google Pixel 5 and Vivo X51, which have a Snapdragon 765G, a rather efficient processor in practice, but which remains much less swift than the top of the range from Qualcomm.

What de iPhone 12?

We deliberately set aside the iPhone 12 Apple from this selection, not because they don’t belong there, but above all because they run on iOS and not Android. However, the iPhone 12 and the iPhone 12 Mini are also excellent contenders in this sector, and offer rather solid arguments as to the quality of the proposed display, the performances in photo and video, and their astounding power thanks to to the A14 Bionic chip, making it the most powerful smartphone of this selection. On the other hand, it will be necessary to be done in the closed environment of Apple to benefit from it, and a rather salty price.

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