Oppo caught my eye because of the developer friendliness of the forums. And it is good that it comes recommended by various devs out at XDA. If anybody visits their forums, they would be shocked to see that the custom roms are allowed to be uploaded and discussed about equivalent to their own color os. Now, there are some glaring issues with the device
1. No unified memory(Yes, this is something many of the major brand phone users dont understand. This is becuase all their phones have unified memory). search the public network for more on this.
2. The color OS from oppo is still at JB in its stable version.
3. There is not ETA regarding the upgrade of the phone to KK or lolipop
So, what do we have here? We have a phone with excellent hardware specs(This is pretty relative since the specs area a moving target), Good build quality and QHD resulution. The display is crisp and clear.
As concerns cooking of custom roms, oppo helps the third party devs a lot and also showers them with free devices to aid them in development. Another plus is that your warranty is not void if you flash a custom rom until you dont damage a hardware component in the process
The roadblocks in development/cooking of custom roms are
1. No Kernel sources(were available, now removed)
2. No blob bundles(as provided by sony)
But, still devs have been succesful in cooking up custom roms and have succesfully built lolipop roms using jelly bean blobs and other pieces from one plus one. So the result is we have working Lolipop roms from Nameless(based on cm) and omni. Both the forums are very active and what rom is chosen is just based on personal preference. Nameless is a bit senior here.
Getting down to business let us see how to flash custom roms on the find 7. There are various roms based on KK for the find 7(CM, PA(official device status), Nameless and many more). The general procedure to be followed can be summarized as below
1. connect the phone with coloros. In windows it will prompt for installing software of the phone. Install it. This will install the necessary drivers.
2. Shut down the phone
3. Press the up volume and power button until the phone vibrates
4. The phone will display "fastboot..." exactly at the centre of the screen
5. Connect the phone to your computer
6. Wait for windows to install the necessary fastboot drivers(required only once, later phone will be recognized immediately)
7. Open terminal . Go to the folder where you have your adb and fastboot executables
8. Run "fastboot devices"
9. This should return a serial number
10. copy the twrp and coloros recovery and rename them aptly into the folder with fastboot and adb executables
11. flash the twrp recovery run "fastboot flash recovery twrp....img"
12. unmount the phone
13. shut down the phone
14. Hold the down volume button and press the power button together until the phone vibrates
15. You will boot to twrp
16. Backup the present coloros and reboot
17. Boot the phone into coloros
18. shut down the phone
19. Press the down volume button and the power button until the phone vibrates
20. if you boot into the coloros recovery it is fine. Otherwise follow the steps from 2 to 13. But use the coloros_recovery.img in the fastboot command
21. Flash coloros v1.2.5
22. This is the version with the modem which plays well with all the custom roms out there.
23. shut down the phone
24. follow the steps from 2 to 13 and flash twrp........img
25. step 14 and 15
26. From now on you know the drill of installing a custom rom(Before installing any custom rom or coming back to color os from custom rom, do a standard wipe(cache, data, dalvik cache))
27. For me paranoid android was of choice for the find 7. The major reason is it being maintained as the "official" device
28. The other major reason being that their releases are sedate and minimal.
29. As for other things on PA check out a video made available on the oppo forums regarding PA on find 7 QHD.
PS:- You can try out the cm12 from a chinese developer and he is making regular releases. It is a nice release and you can contine to use it until you like lolipop and CM starts making official nightlies. Be ready for gotchas when you install custom roms. Kernel sources are not available, all blobs are not available. There may be issues with your phone. But, then, you know the risks.
You are now finished with trying and playing with custom roms and now want to return to stock. Just restore the backup you earlier made. Flash back the color os recovery. You are now ready to recieve OTA's from oppo.