Camera Shootouts

Samsung Galaxy S8 vs Google Pixel: Camera Shootout

Published

on

What happens when we have the two best single-lens camera phones in our possession? We take them out for a shootout, of course!

Since getting our hands on the Galaxy S8, we’ve been wondering why Samsung didn’t opt for a dual-camera setup like most flagship smartphones these days. After trying it out, we realized there wasn’t any need to, considering how well it performs without any added features.

This also brought up the question: How well would the Galaxy S8 fare against last year’s single-camera king, the Google Pixel? After comparing their photos side by side, we must say, calling a winner is a lot tougher than we imagined.

Each shot was taken with Auto settings turned on and using each phone’s default camera app. This best simulates what a casual user would do, which involves quick-launching the camera and shooting away.

Let’s begin:

We’ll start with a basic building shot in daylight. You can see how the Galaxy S8 illuminates the foreground better — notice the brighter exhaust pipe to the right and slightly clearer building in the middle. And yet, this causes the background to become overexposed. The Pixel nails the exposure for the sky and building in the background.

This situation tests how well the two cameras handle sharpness across the picture. The Galaxy S8 has a much warmer tone, but it noticeably sharper on the bottom floor. The Pixel, meanwhile does a better job of balancing each detail on the brick wall to the right.

Close-up portrait time! Both phones produced a sharp subject with a creamy background, but the Galaxy S8’s colors have much more pop! to them. The warm white balance of the S8 also added more life to our Creative Director’s face while the sun was gradually setting.

How do both phones handle macro shots? Quite well, actually! The two cameras managed to focus nicely on the flower and blur out all the unneeded background elements. We just found the Galaxy S8’s shot to be a tiny bit oversaturated, and the Pixel’s a little underexposed.

Here’s another instance that tests how the cameras handle sharpness when there’s less light. Like in earlier photos, the Galaxy S8 has a sharper image throughout and livened up the tree to the left a lot more. The Pixel’s edge is in the sharpness of the trees’ reflection in the puddle.

This is where things start getting tricky. The two phones shot virtually identical photos, with the only difference being the Pixel’s slightly higher exposure. Considering the nature of Auto settings, the results could just as easily be the other way around if taken a few minutes earlier or later.

We can now tell how well each phone’s auto white balance and image stabilization comes into play in this poorly lit scene. After zooming in, we’d say the Galaxy S8 has a sharper subject and more accurate colors. On the other hand, the Pixel’s camera didn’t wash out as much and retained more details on the building’s facade.

Bright lights in near darkness is a tough test for any camera. Both phones did a splendid job overall, but the Galaxy S8 ensured the sign’s brightness didn’t spill over to the background. You can see how the S8 effortlessly kept all colors in their place.

Now we check out how well the selfie camera does at night. Like with the dark shots earlier, the Galaxy S8 once again gets the colors right while keeping skin tones lively. We have to give the Pixel a point though for not turning the scarf and strands of hair into mush.

And we’ll end this shootout with a daytime selfie! This time, the Pixel wins with a rosier skin tone and sharper details on Michael Josh’s face. The Google phone also manages to produce a more accurately colored background with all the details and proper white balance retained.

When it comes down to it, all photos are absolutely superb. Never have we seen such a well-contested match between two high-end phones. Still, we have to hand out some awards.

The Pixel retains its crown as the leader in smartphone HDR photography with a distinct advantage when it comes to illuminating all parts of each photo. It also produced more pleasant selfies in daytime, as well as sharper details for things like hair and walls.

For everything else, the Galaxy S8 is a clear winner. We love how we look on the portraits it produces, whether they were taken with lots of light or barely any. No matter what situation, colors always have so much life in them without oversaturating the subjects. Samsung made the right choice of sticking to a single camera lens and simply improving on the Galaxy S7’s already awesome shooter.

With that, we want to hear from you which camera you think wins this shootout. Leave a comment below and let your opinions be heard!

SEE ALSO: 6 things the Samsung Galaxy S8 camera can do

[irp posts=”11721″ name=”6 things the Samsung Galaxy S8 camera can do”]

Camera Shootouts

vivo V25 vs V23 5G: Camera Shootout

Are there even significant improvements?

Published

on

By

vivo V25

It hasn’t even been a year but vivo has already revealed the successor to the V23 5G that was launched earlier this 2022. But is it actually worth upgrading to the new vivo V25? Or should you save yourself some money and buy the older V23 5G instead?

vivo V25

Don’t let that new camera bump with bigger circular cutouts on the vivo V25 fool you. On paper, the cameras are close to one another but the V25 has the advantage of having a slightly wider aperture and OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) that the V23 5G doesn’t have.

vivo V25 vivo V23 5G
Wide 64MP f/1.79
PDAF, OIS + EIS
64MP f/1.89
PDAF, EIS
Ultra-WIde 8MP 120º f/2.2
Macro 2MP f/2.4
Selfie 50MP f/2.0 wide

 

50MP f/2.0 wide
8MP f/2.28 ultra-wide
+ Dual-tone Spotlight

The sad news though is that, vivo has decided to remove the extra ultra-wide selfie camera and dual flash system on the new V25.

vivo V23 with the Dual-tone Spotlight Flash feature

But how do these phones perform side-by-side knowing the new V25 also has a slightly less-powerful MediaTek Dimensity 900 chipset over V23 5G’s Dimensity 920? Are there enough convincing differences or is the older model actually better? Feed yourself some photo sample comparisons below.

Daylight

In any given circumstance, a valuable Android midranger should take at least a decent photo with natural light around — thus me taking lesser photos to compare.
Still, your judgment matters.

#1A (Ultra-wide)

vivo V25

#1B (Wide)

vivo V25

#2

#3A (Wide)

#3B (Zoom)

Food

Taking food shots (mostly with indoor lighting) is a better way to test which phone camera is capable of producing the better image output with the right amount of highlights, shadows, contrast, sharpness, temperature, as well as Dynamic Range.

#4

#5

#6

#7

#8

#9

#10

#11

*Left photo was taken multiple times with the focus tapped on the baked roll. Lens coating was also cleaned several times but still resulted to the same output.

#12

Night Mode

Low-light photos can either make or break the capabilities of a smartphone’s camera.
While it’s a mixed bag of outputs, it still depends on the user if Night Mode photos are important in a midranger or not.

#13A (Wide)

#13B (Ultra-wide)

#14

#15

#16

#17

#18

vivo V25

#19

vivo V25

#20

vivo V25

BONUS: Low-Light Selfie

For users who love taking selfies even in the dark, both phones can take fill-in flash (using the display) to brighten up your faces.

Without Flash

vivo V25

However, the ultra-wide selfie and Dual-tone Spotlight feature were removed completely from the vivo V25. You just have to guess and pick which is which.

With Flash (Aura Fill, Dual-Tone Dual Spotlight Flash)

vivo V25

Results

No more confusions, the results are consistent all throughout the board:

Photo A — vivo V23 5G

Photo B — vivo V25

Conclusion

vivo V25

While it’s barely a big camera quality improvement, the vivo V25 has rendered some of the scenes quite well such as in Photos 1A, 11, and 12 which the V23 5G failed to display at least an acceptable output. Other times, the vivo V23 5G delivered better results like in Photos 1B, 2, 3A, 4, and 13A. Those images delivered overall better photos with a sufficient amount of HDR (High Dynamic Range) and AWB (Auto White Balance).

Overall, the V25 produced better images with decent amount of highlights, shadows, contrast, sharpness. The newer model also has some slight edge on focusing and making shots brighter and more stable at night.

vivo V25

While only two selfies were provided, the V23 5G obviously has the edge — especially with its extra selfie lens and dual-flash feature.

vivo V25

If you’re coming from the V23 5G, you don’t need to upgrade to the vivo V25. Period. But, if you’re looking for a phone to replace your old vivo smartphone (or pretty much any old budget phone or midranger for that matter), buying the V25 won’t hurt.

vivo V25

Unless you’re looking for a used unit, a brand new vivo V23 5G is being sold at PhP 27,999. Whereas, a brand new V25 retails at a cheaper PhP 23,999 price tag.

vivo V25

Imho, choosing the V23 5G over the V25 is advantageous for some reasons: a more premium-looking design with metallic sides, slightly faster chipset, and the extra selfie camera.

vivo V25

But realizing how more capable the cameras of the V25 are, you can also choose it for its bigger battery and brighter display. Also, the OIS feature is very handy if you love taking photos in action or at night or just record stable-free videos without worrying about warping and jitters. At the end of the day, you should know what you value the most in buying a new smartphone.

SEE ALSO:

vivo V25 is a Night Portrait Master

Taking photos to the next level with the vivo V23 5G

Continue Reading

Camera Shootouts

iPhone 14 Pro Max vs 13 Pro Max vs S22 Ultra: Camera Shootout

A Very Different Camera Test

Published

on

The iPhone 14 Pro Max finally has an upgraded camera system — highlighted by its 48MP main camera sensor.

But does it really take better photos vs the iPhone 13 Pro Max and Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra?

Find out in our photo-walk style camera shootout with the pro-photographer and Apple’s #ShotoniPhone Macro Challenge Global Winner Tom Reeves.

Continue Reading

Camera Shootouts

iQOO 9T vs vivo X80 Pro: Camera Shootout

Smartphone camera clash between the parent company and its sub-brand

Published

on

By

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

The vivo X80 Pro continues to be the company’s champ especially in the camera department. Paired with a very capable four-camera setup, it’s a smartphone you’ll want to take with you if you’re into serious mobile photography.

On the other hand, the iQOO 9T is also a flagship phone you might not have heard ever. It has a better chipset, faster wired charging support, and a flat display over its vivo counterpart. Albeit, the camera performance is what intrigued me — especially since the camera layout is very similar to each another (they also have the same vivo V1+ dedicated imaging chip).

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

BTW to those unaware, iQOO is vivo’s sub-brand. But even if both of these phones came from the same parent company, we still wanted to do a two-way camera battle. This is also for you to know if the cameras perform differently — and if the ZEISS partnership has any significance over iQOO’s regular lens coating and processing.

Disclaimer: All samples were taken in Auto Mode (except for Night and Portrait Mode). Photos were collaged, resized, and labeled for faster loading and preview. No other manipulations were applied.

Ultra-wide

These phones have similar yet different ultra-wide cameras. While both lenses have an aperture of f/2.2, there’s actually a big gap between the megapixel count — vivo’s X80 Pro features a 48MP shooter with a 114º Field of View (FoV). On the contrary, the iQOO 9T only has 120º 13MP super wide-angle camera. Is there any breakthrough in output though?

#1

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#2

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#3

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#4

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#5

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#6

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

Wide

Unlike the ultra-wide cameras, both the vivo X80 Pro and iQOO 9T are equipped with 50MP shooters. But there’s a catch: The iQOO 9T uses a Samsung GN5 sensor similar to that of the Galaxy S22 and S22+ series. Meanwhile, the X80 Pro has a custom-made Samsung GNV sensor exclusive to vivo’s X80 line. Lens diaphragms are also far alike: f/1.88 vs f/1.57 respectively — but you’ll still be the judge.

#7

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#8

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#9

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#10

#11

#12

#13

Telephoto Zoom

The vivo X80 Pro and iQOO 9T may have a similar 12MP telephoto camera with 2x optical zoom (f/1.85 and f/1.98 lens opening respectively), but the X80 Pro still has the clear advantage of having Gimbal OIS (Optical Image Stabilization). It also has an extra 8MP periscope telephoto lens for 5x optical zoom (and farther 60x digital zoom over 9T’s 30x). However, can you tell which phone is which in the samples below?

#14

#15

#16

#17

#18

Night Mode

Daytime shots are one thing. But it’s also crucial to know if these phones can capture a subject or scenery well even when there’s hardly any natural light available.

#19 (Ultra-wide)

#20 (Ultra-wide)

#21 (Ultra-wide)

#22 (Ultra-wide)

#23

#24

#25

#26

#27

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#28 (2x zoom)

#29 (5x zoom)

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

#30 (2x zoom)

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

BONUS

Portrait Mode

Unlike the iQOO 9T, vivo’s X80 Pro has the ZEISS perks. That includes the ability to shoot like you are using ZEISS’ classic lenses (such as Biotar, Distagon, Planar, and Sonnar) in Portrait Mode.

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

Selfie

The iQOO 9T has a 16MP front camera while the vivo X80 Pro has a bigger 32MP selfie shooter. Similar enough, both phones have an f/2.45 lens opening.

Results

Some of you may have noticed but the results are consistent across the board:

Photo A – vivo X80 Pro

Photo B – iQOO 9T

Conclusion

If you have read our previous camera shootouts featuring the vivo X80 Pro, you might have already observed the nitty-gritty of the images above. The X80 Pro produced images that are overall cooler and less vibrant. That’s of course, over a course of software updates that vivo gave the X80 Pro over time.

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

Although admittedly some samples looked similar (that you can barely tell which phone is which), the iQOO 9T still has an overall warmer and more saturated output than the vivo X80 Pro.

iQOO 9T vivo X80 Pro

When it comes to zoomed shots, the vivo X80 Pro had an obvious advantage (especially in low-light scenarios) with its gimbal OIS support in the 2x zoom lens (less shaky images) and an extra 8MP periscope telephoto lens (clearer at 5x zoom). Still, the post-processing and AI algorithm of both phones are consistent all throughout with the iQOO 9T standing out more — warm and vibrant — which might have enticed more readers.

Shockingly, the X80 Pro displayed different results when photos are taken in night mode. If we’ll count, 10 out of 12 samples taken with the vivo were far warmer compared to the iQOO. While it comes to personal preferences (where I like warmer shots more), some of the images taken with the 9T are more color-accurate.

Generally speaking, you can’t go wrong any of these flagship smartphones. The biggest dealbreaker has got to be the amount you’re willing to spend for a flagship-grade smartphone camera.

With a difference of INR 30,000 (roughly US$ 375 / S$ 522 / ₱21,066) — the vivo X80 Pro having a discounted Indian SRP of INR 79,999 while the iQOO 9T now being sold at INR 49,999 — you can choose the latter minus all the bells and whistles of the X80 Pro.

Now if you’ll ask my personal take, I would still choose the X80 Pro because of these factors: wider FoV, an extra periscope telephoto lens, gimbal OIS, and the ever-fancy ZEISS partnership extras including the T* lens coating, Natural Color processing, Cinematic Mode when shooting videos, and the mimic of its lenses through Portrait Mode.

SEE ALSO:

vivo X80 Pro vs iPhone 13 Pro Max: Camera Shootout

vivo X80 Pro vs Huawei P50 Pro: Camera Shootout

Continue Reading

Trending