How the Samsung Galaxy S8’s Camera Compares to the iPhone 7 Plus

3 minute read

Smartphone cameras have become so advanced over the past several years that tech experts at times compare them to DSLR setups. Both Samsung and Apple, being the most popular smartphone makers in the world, are leading the pack.

Samsung will begin shipping its new Galaxy S8 smartphone on April 21, which includes a 12-megapixel camera like last year’s model and a sharper 8-megapixel front shooter. Samsung says it has also improved the phone’s image processing technology, which it claims will enable the S8 to capture better low-light photos and reduce blur compared to its predecessor, the S7.

That should give Apple’s iPhone, which is currently the most popular camera being used on Flickr, some tough competition. The iPhone 7 also includes a 12-megapixel sensor but a 7-megapixel front camera. The larger Plus model has a second lens that allows the phone to offer unmatched quality when zooming and an effect that blurs the background known as Portrait Mode.

Check out the photos below to see exactly how the Galaxy S8’s camera stacks up against Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus.

Head to Head Comparison

Josh Raab for TIME

Both cameras have similar sensors resulting in similar image quality. The Samsung S8 camera however appeared to add more contrast and saturation to the images.

Portrait Comparison

Josh Raab for TIME

The Samsung camera lens is slightly wider than the iPhone. While this allows the user to fit more in the frame, the iPhone achieves better bokeh (background blur) as a result.

Selfie Comparison

Josh Raab for TIME

The front facing camera on the S8 is much clearer, and the wider lens keeps users from needing abnormally long arms to take pictures of themselves.

Zoom Comparison

Josh Raab for TIME

The Samsung camera appears to be a lower quality when both are fully zoomed in, despite having a slightly lower maximum zoom at 8x versus the iPhone camera’s 10x zoom.

Image Quality Comparison

Josh Raab for TIME

In low light pictures, both phones offer very similar image quality. And while the iPhone appeared to produce a wider range of colors, the Galaxy S8 offered a slightly better dynamic range, meaning it can capture lower darks and brighter highs. It’s also worth noting that the Samsung image files were two to three times the size of the iPhone photos, however this is not necessarily an indicator of image quality.

Video Comparison

Both cameras did a nice job stabilizing video. However the iPhone had truer colors and the video was overall far superior.

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