Like millions of people in the world, your smartphone has probably become your main camera. Here are the top 10 of the best models in 2017 ..
Are smartphones real cameras? The question does pose even more: it’s been a while since the most popular camera on Flickr platform is no longer signed Canon or Nikon. And while the photo market is refocusing on pro and expert models, as consumer computers have almost disappeared to the benefit of smartphones, they see their sales volumes – and their R & D budgets – exploding.
The photographic argument of a smartphone has become paramount, to the point that a brand like Huawei allied itself with German Leica at the beginning of the year to establish its credibility. A wedding that went from a first marketing logo on the Huawei P9 to the construction of a real joint R & D center on Leica land in Wetzlar, Germany.
Top 10: The Best Smartphones To Purchase in 2017
The quality of the photo module is now paramount for many buyers of medium and high-end smartphones.Since physics is what it is, manufacturers can not do everything they want with regard to innovation, particularly with regard to the bulk of the components. A limit imposed by the trend, competing with the photo, to produce smartphones more and more fine.
Since they can not integrate large sensors and imposing optics, manufacturers are looking for other ways of improvement: addition of a second image sensor, integration of stabilization techniques (optics, mechanics, electronics), optical Increasingly bright, increasingly fine signal processing, etc. But if all the brands progress, this does not mean that all are equal.Out of the ideal conditions in daylight, glaring differences appear even in devices over 600 euros.
Autofocus: an uneven picture
In broad daylight, all the smartphones quoted here – expensive high-end models – deliver beautiful shots. We have discriminated against them, but analyzing them with a magnifying glass: interpretation of colors, evaluation of the sharpness of the image at 100%, search for optical defects especially on the edges of the image, etc. We played The pinailleurs – it is our role – but it is clear that the photos produced by these devices are all satisfactory.
What is less is the speed of focus: from variable to daylight, the autofocus of these smartphones switches to very uneven low-light depending on the models. To these differences is added that of the ability to chain shots, some mobiles chain them without worry when others take the time to digest each image.
The challenge of the low lights
If the optics are more and more luminous, the devices are still obliged, depending on the situation, to push the sensitivity (ISO) to offer images properly exposed. This increase in ISO has the negative effect of degrading not only the details but also the colors. The way to interpret a degraded signal is a delicate science since each couple “sensor + image processor” reacts differently according to the models. And contrary to autofocus, objective in the measure of its performances – the faster it goes, the better it is – the colors are subject to interpretation since our perception depends not only on genetics but also on the culture of the ” individual.
The advantage of the dual sensor
The addition of a second camera module is one of the current improvement axes. For the time being, two philosophies clash: the second module acts as a “crutch” of the main module to add functions (fuzzy backgrounds, enhanced autofocus, black & white), or it brings a focal different.
The first approach is that of Huawei, which adds a monochrome sensor to its devices, Apple and LG having preferred the second way. The latter have in fact selected two different focal lengths: Apple a “normal” focal length, adapted to the details and portraits (equivalent 56 mm), LG an ultra wide angle that highlights the landscapes (equivalent 16 mm).
The addition of a second focal length as Apple and LG do is, in our opinion, the most relevant way. Because if the black and white aspect of Huawei is a small step higher than what its competitors can produce, not only the software of development of image make it possible to obtain results almost equivalent, but especially the second focal brings a Another field of vision that offers much more creative potential
Our method of evaluation
Unlike the previous rankings where we judged only the quality of the images, the classification of this time is based on 3 components: image quality, autofocus speed and software ergonomics. The pure quality of the images is good, but if the phone is slow as a snail and has convoluted menus, it is difficult to take full advantage of it.
We ranked the smartphones and awarded them points according to their ranking in each test: the first has 10 points, the second 9, and so on. Both image quality and AF speed were assessed in two scenarios, in daylight and low light – good daylight cameras may see their image quality or responsiveness collapse when The light is lacking.
Last precision: being equipped with the best smartphone of the competition will never make you a better photographer. Only count the eye, the timing and the work. So we listen to the wisdom of the ancients: “Photography is put on the same line of sight the head, the eye and the heart. (Henri-Cartier Bresson).
Here is the new selection of the top 10 best smartphones in photo of this end of year 2016. Good choice and happy holidays!
10. HTC 10, mediocre simply
Once considered as a brand looking to innovate in photo, HTC sinks into the limbo of the rankings and is with the HTC 10 in position of relegable – it is besides here only for the representativity of the mark, but May disappear the next time. The mediocrity of image quality is matched only by its autofocus, HTC paying the luxury of being the worst in both tests. The software interface does not really save the thing, nor the software processing and optical quality, unworthy of such a expensive terminal.
Manufacturer Price: € 699
09. Lenovo Moto Z, without panache
Suffering from a mediocre software ergonomics – the most stripped and least-rated of this competition – the Moto suffers mostly from a low-light autofocus in low light and mediocre optics. One senses a potential since the image processing and the colors are rather good in highlights. But it is necessary that Lenovo care for its AF, its ergonomics and change of supplier of optical blocks.
Manufacturer Price: € 699
08. OnePlus 3T, stack or face
As in previous comparisons, the new terminal of OnePlus signs very beautiful images in broad daylight, with this image sharpness so impressive. But lack of luck for this 3T, we now also evaluate autofocus performance as well as ergonomics. Domains in which it is shown to be mediocre and null: the interface is not simple, it is simplistic and impractical. Just like the terminal of Asus, the OnePlus 3T has reserved a surprise … but it is bad: the quality of image in low lights is deplorable and places last good in this test. The fault to artifacts that sabotage details and colors. To reserve in the days of fine weather in sum.
Manufacturer Price: € 439
07. Huawei Mate 9, promises …
Yes, the second black & white image sensor makes nice monochrome photos and yes, the Leica font of the interface has the stamp. But if the quality of photos and ergonomics are average, the delays of this big phone are annoying. Slowness in the interface but especially slow autofocus that loses many images. Hope that Huawei will upgrade its high-end smartphone software … On the level of the details that annoy, note that the interface, admittedly pretty, is poorly thought: impossible to change mode or change the options in horizontal framing, Hold the unit vertically to reveal the menus by scanning the screen. Why ?
Manufacturer Price: € 699
06. LG G5, recessed image processing
The dual sensor of this G5 offers, like the iPhone 7 Plus, a creative bonus all the more appreciable as the ultra wide angle is ideal for landscapes. Too bad that this second sensor is of such poor quality – we have the image, but better to avoid zooming in the picture under penalty of seeing big pixels. Damage also that the correct performance of the main module are sabotaged by poor image processing and a tendency to over-exposure unpleasant. LG has acquired many skills and is one of the few to offer a 16/9 sensor e but the image processing still fails him, and number of images produced have a tan that comes to spoil the party.
Manufacturer Price: € 499
05. Sony Xperia XZ, slow
RAW mode, physical trigger on the slice, generous 23 Mpix sensor: Sony’s new high-end terminal has arguments for it. The quality of the image makes real progress with colors more natural than those of the terminals previously tested – the digital processing is in real progress, although it remains always a little too aggressive. Good photo results, good software ergonomics, the XZ stumbles especially for its soft side of the knee: no it is not the fastest out of standby and its AF is always a notch below the tenors. While the picture is better than in the past, we still wonder why Sony, the world’s largest producer of CMOS sensors, is the only brand in telephony to produce cameras – Sony is No. 1 in the hybrid segment, Full-format sensors, leader of high-end expert compacts, etc. – Only 5 th of this comparison …
Manufacturer Price: € 699
04. Apple iPhone SE, small but sturdy
Small thumb lost in the horde of terminals more than 5 inches diagonal, the iPhone SE hides its game well: heir of the iPhone 6S, it still remains relevant and offers very homogeneous performance. As for the colors, they are a notch above the iPhone 7/7 Plus since here we find again what made the success of the iPhone from generation 4 to generation 6S: warm and natural tones, more pleasant than The new Apple Tambouille. The choice of all allergic to large screens.
Manufacturer Price: € 549
03. Apple iPhone 7 Plus, king of portraits
Apple remains in the lead with good performance in all situations and reactive autofocus. But the strength of this 7 Plus version is its second sensor equipped with a “normal” focal length of 56 mm f / 2.8, a single focal length in the world of smartphones and which offers both a zoom X2 (opto-digital) but above all a focal length adapted to portraits and tighter frames. Although smaller than the OLED screens, the smartphone’s LCD panel is much brighter than the 6S Plus and the software interface is still so simple. Or simplistic: the options are poor, the parameter changes almost zero, the manual mode absent and you have to go through a third-party application to retrieve the RAW file.
Manufacturer Price: € 1 019
02. Asus ZenFone 3, the huge surprise
In the past, Asus has been very skilled in photography … without ever convincing. But that was before: huge surprise of this comparative, the ZenFone 3 Deluxe is simply amazing because it is the champion of image quality in broad daylight – you doubt it? Go download the pictures !
Asus has taken full advantage of the Sony MX318 sensor of 23 Mpix, much better than Sony who nevertheless the product – a crown! And unlike OnePlus, the ZenPhone 3 Deluxe has no weaknesses and is as complete as versatile – good AF, good performance in low lights, careful software ergonomics, etc. Our only regret is the absence of RAW mode in photo, an absence that could be quickly corrected by a simple software update.
Manufacturer Price: € 699
01. Samsung Galaxy S7, fast and furious
The Galaxy S7 is the best photophone of the moment, thanks to its killer autofocus, unstoppable in daylight and much more effective than competition in low lights. Its screen is both responsive and readable in all situations, and if its 12 Mpix sensor does not offer the most detailed shots of the competition, image processing is good and software ergonomics is complete And effective. You can quickly access the various options – RAW, video modes, etc. – and all the more so as the interface of the Galaxy S7 is like its autofocus: ultra fast. Super-efficient, it’s the camera of choice to make sharp children’s photos, which is undoubtedly the most demanding photographic discipline!