It was getting late quickly, but we still had time, will, and energy to snap a few more shots. Including this one – a scene that the OnePlus 3 captured rather well. Its image is nice and sharp, with pleasing colors. In contrast, the Xperia X Performance did a poor job, and you'll see why if you zoom in on its image slightly. The poor detail could be a result of us not having a hand steady enough and the phone not having optical image stabilization. Or it could be an image processing issue. In any case, the X Performance has a greater tendency to come up with low-light photos messed up this way.
Looking at the six images side by side, we'd say that the HTC 10 took the best shot. Both colors are detail are near-excellent, while the scene as a whole has been adequately exposed. The iPhone 6s Plus also did a great job, although it could have added a tad more exposure to its image.
Disappointingly, the Samsung Galaxy S7 has skewed colors quite a bit, which is why its image looks unnatural. The exaggerated contrast doesn't help. As for the LG G5, this could have been a fantastic image had the colors been more accurate. There's an excessive amount of green all over the shot.
And for our final scene, we've partnered up with our good ol' pal, Mr Statue. He's cool and all, but there's something creepy about how his face gets recognized by the phones' face recognition systems. Anyway, let's take a look at the photos.
The OnePlus 3 has performed commendably throughout this comparison, but its final shot leaves us wanting more. The image's overall tone is cold and lifeless, and it looks like the focus has been shifted onto the background, not on our buddy's face. The Sony Xperia X Performance can't impress us either. For starters, colors in its photo are a bit unnatural, with a weird greenish tone to them. Also, it looks like the focus hasn't been set correctly, even though we tapped multiple times on the statue's face (and retook the image several times). All we got were these confusing rectangles, supposedly indicating that an object is being tracked.
As a breath of fresh air, the LG G5 has captured a splendid image. Colors are accurate, focus is spot-on, and detail is plentiful. Moreover, the depth of field beautifully accentuates the statue's face. The same effect can be also observed in the image out of the Galaxy S7, which has also performed rather well in this scene. The contrast seems to be on the heavy side, but we'll let it pass this time.
The HTC 10 is treating us to a detailed image, but the overall color tone is slightly cold. Same can be said about the photo out of the iPhone 6s Plus. Also, fine details aren't as clear as they are in other phones' images.
One of the goals of this camera comparison was to show whether the OnePlus 3 – a $400 smartphone – could rival high-end handsets costing several hundred dollars more. It can, as the final score shows. The OnePlus 3 demonstrated mostly consistent camera performance throughout our testing, without revealing any serious or recurring flaws. Given the phone's price, we'd say that we're impressed.
The Sony Xperia X Performance, on the other hand, couldn't wow us with its mediocre photos. Sure, 23 megapixels sound awesome on paper, but the extra megapixels don't translate to greater level of details. They're not of much help when it comes to color accuracy either, and color accuracy turns out to be the Xperia's weak spot. Anyone paying an arm and a leg for a phone like the X Performance would expect more out of its camera. Moreover, we're still baffled by the fact that Sony can't deliver a killer smartphone camera even though its digital camera division delivers outstanding products.
As for the HTC 10, we already knew that its camera was potent and reliable, hence we're not surprised to see it in first place. And we're glad to see that the latest generation UltraPixel camera isn't an utter disappointment, as the case was in previous years. Good job, HTC!
The HTC 10, however, isn't leading by a mile. Close behind it is the LG G5, which would have easily grabbed the first spot if it wasn't for a few color-inaccurate pictures. Still, its 16MP snapper is definitely one we'd recommend.
And then there's the iPhone 6s Plus. Just think about it – this is a phone that's been around for almost a year, which is like a century in smartphone terms. Yet Apple's phone is still a worthy opponent, capable of rivaling 2016's best phones.
Lastly, we're having mixed feelings about the Samsung Galaxy S7 and its camera. Its photos look fine on their own, but the excessive processing they're treated to isn't always necessary. Sharpening, contrast, and saturation boosts could make or break an image, depending on how they're applied, and in the Galaxy S7's case, the "break" scenario happens more often than it should.