Best smartphone cameras compared: Samsung Galaxy S8+ vs iPhone 7 Plus, Galaxy S7 edge, LG G6

What do you call a turtle that's taking up photography classes? A snapping turtle!

*ba-dum tss* 

Yeah, coming up with great puns may not be my strongest skill, but that's fine. I'm pretty sure you're not here for the comedy. So let's get to the point, then. That Samsung Galaxy S8+ – is its camera any good? 

Of course it is. Samsung knows how to make a good smartphone camera. But so do Apple and LG. A question much more difficult to unknot is which of these three companies is best at the camera game. In search of an answer, we took a bunch of photos with the Galaxy S8+, iPhone 7 Plus, and the LG G6 for a little side-by-side comparison. We're also throwing in the Galaxy S7 edge from last year to see if Samsung's latest Galaxy S flagship is any better at taking photos (and it better be). Here's a quick look at these four phones' camera specs:

Camera Specs
Galaxy S8+iPhone 7
Plus
LG G6Galaxy
S7 edge
Resolution,
aspect ratio
12MP@4:3
4032x3024px
12MP@4:3
4032x3024px
13MP@4:3
4160x3120px
12MP@4:3
4032x3024px
Sensor and
pixel size
1/2.55"
1.4μm
1/3"
1.22μm
1/3"
1.12μm
1/2.55"
1.4μm
ApertureF1.7F1.8F1.8F1.7
Focus and
stabilization
Dual-pixel AF
OIS
PDAF
OIS
PDAF
OIS
Dual-pixel AF
OIS

One curious bit of information we can extract from the table above is that the cameras on the Galaxy S8+ and Galaxy S7 are identical when it comes to specs. The two cams have the same number of megapixels, as well the same sensor size with equally large pixels. Aperture is also a 1:1 match. However, what's new in the Galaxy S8 series is that the camera snaps three photos each time you press the shutter and blends them together to produce a superior, blur-free image. 

From a technical perspective, the iPhone and the LG G6 appear to be a step behind. Compared to both Galaxy phones, they have smaller sensors with smaller pixels and narrower apertures. In plain words, this means that the cameras on the iPhone and the G6 might perform worse in low-light scenarios, as they're both less sensitive to light and potentially more susceptible to digital noise. 

And that's what theory looks like. Now let's examine some actual photos.

Note: the images in the galleries have been scaled down from their original resolution to make them load faster. Full-resolution versions of all images are available at page 3, at the very end of this article. 

Scene 1: By the river


Best smartphone cameras compared: Samsung Galaxy S8+ vs iPhone 7 Plus, Galaxy S7 edge, LG G6

And the Galaxy S8+ is off to a good start. The image it presents us with here is vivid, detailed, and overall pleasant to look at. Same can be said about the photo out of the Galaxy S7 edge. The LG G6 has also done a good job, although the trees look pale in comparison. And the iPhone, well, it seems to have gone overboard with the contrast dial. The image looks fine, but also has an overly processed look to it.

Scene 1: score
Galaxy S8+8.5
Galaxy S7 edge8.5
LG G68.0
iPhone 7 Plus7.0


Scene 2: Cliffhanger


Best smartphone cameras compared: Samsung Galaxy S8+ vs iPhone 7 Plus, Galaxy S7 edge, LG G6

Wow, look at that fearless gentleman on top of that giant boulder! Charming, isn't he? Anyway, all of the images here look mighty impressive, although it is easy to spot some differences between the four. The sky, for example, looks nice and pretty in the photos out of the two Galaxies. It looks bland and gray-ish in the iPhone's photo, while the LG G6 has given it a bit too much of a saturation boost. Overall, it's another win for Samsung, but the competition isn't far behind in this race.

Scene 2: score
Galaxy S8+8.0
Galaxy S7 edge8.0
LG G67.0
iPhone 7 Plus7.0


Scene 3: She rocks!


Best smartphone cameras compared: Samsung Galaxy S8+ vs iPhone 7 Plus, Galaxy S7 edge, LG G6

This one goes to the iPhone and the LG G6. I took this set of photos about an hour before sunset, and only these two managed to capture the warm, soothing sunlight in its beauty. Don't get me wrong – the photos from the Galaxy S8+ and S7 edge also look great. But if I had to pick a favorite, my vote would go for the iPhone and/or the G6. As an added bonus, in the gallery below I've also included a 2X zoom photo from the iPhone and a wide-angle shot from the G6. Without a doubt, their secondary lenses are a valuable asset in the right situation. 

Scene 3: score
LG G68.0
iPhone 7 Plus8.0
Galaxy S8+7.0
Galaxy S7 edge7.0

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67 Comments

1. shaineql

Posts: 521; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

As always Sammy is overall winner in camera department, can't wait to see what they do with dual cameras... I just know they will be the only ones actually using dual camera to improve quality and not just offer "zoom" or "wider lens" gimmicks

3. adecvat

Posts: 626; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

But S8 video record sucks.

5. kumar1234 unregistered

LOL, man. It is hardly a upgrade from S7 family. Even PA's camera comparison prove it. Last year Pixel phone easily beat S8 camera in pretty much every situation. Samsung should have tried harder to improve this camera. Phone camera game change after the Pixel appearance. This year Pixel's camera will destroy S8.

9. PapaJi

Posts: 60; Member since: May 15, 2016

Noting can't beat this true legend.... S8.....

16. Bankz

Posts: 2491; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

Theres a reason they avoided comparing it to the pixel on the day of review articles.

41. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2260; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

s8 is not legend never release yet.

60. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

S7, or S6 or S5 or S4, The Galaxy S has taken the best overall photos since the S4. Samsung continues to be the best and dominant. Once again iPhone fans are continuing to see they keep spending money on Apple and getting lack luster results.

17. Bankz

Posts: 2491; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

The pixel will remain king of the camera game till the pixel 2 at least on the quality front. While the iphone seem to be bringing it with revolutionary features like AR capabilities and ff 3d cameras.

24. WGACA

Posts: 121; Member since: May 08, 2015

Remember, this is iPhoneArena (biased) and on top, this is probably the worst review made by the most amateur reviewer out there. Also, Pixel better than S8? https://youtu.be/NCAz7JE_8fA I think not.

34. Kibzara

Posts: 120; Member since: Feb 24, 2016

loooool, isheeptard spotted!!!

53. iushnt

Posts: 3062; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

Do u need a butthurt cream?

59. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Really? Well here is a video of the Google Pixel vs the S8. You can like whichever. But in the very first photo, the Pixel's photo was terrible and the colors were way off. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbh__BhPi8U

65. Emacs244

Posts: 9; Member since: Oct 29, 2015

Except low light.

8. adi90

Posts: 554; Member since: Dec 21, 2015

Where is pixel vs s8 ?

14. Bankz

Posts: 2491; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

They're all on thesame level tbh. Btw, seems like the s8 is barely an upgrade from the s7. That being said, i'd rather have additional feaures than a neglegable quality increment, like the monochrome lens of the p10, the telephoto, slow mo and portrait feature of the 7+ and the manual mode (for video/picture) and user interface of the g6 as opposed to a barely noticeable camera increment.

40. L0n3n1nja

Posts: 1521; Member since: Jul 12, 2016

You're obviously not a photographer, wide angle and telephoto are far from gimmicks and very useful. I'm disappointed Samsung did neither.

55. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Very well said!

2. adecvat

Posts: 626; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

Practically same results. In the year 2017 we finally get the same cameras.

13. peace247 unregistered

Damn iphone with its overwarm ugly colours

29. cmdacos

Posts: 3889; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

The world looks friendly through yellow colored glasses!

42. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

yellowis photo in blueish phone screen... it will cancel out eachother, lol..

4. piyath

Posts: 2445; Member since: Mar 23, 2012

These scores are pre-calculated fraudulent and fake. These are made to please S8 fanboys. If not how come 0.2 point difference every time a new Samsung or Apple phone comes out...?

15. Bankz

Posts: 2491; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

My thoughts exactly. How did they arrive at the 0.2 difference. Never expected samsung to drop the ball on camera quality tbh. Imo, the gs6 still remains samsungs best smartphone camera.

56. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

You both are idiots. You're just mad because the piss poor iPhone has had a terrible camera since the Galaxy S4. When you get use to using something that does something badly, as a human you just adjust an deal with it. Right? The vast majority of peopel don't compare photos. For them, whatever photos comes out the camera loks fine to them. But ig you give those photos to a professional photographer or a person who works with graphics, theyu will tell you which photos are of great quality. But how about an unbiased opinion? DXOMark has rated the Galaxy camera the best since the S4. So I guess they are there to make fanboys happy too...right? They hold no alliegence to any OEM or camera maker. So what about their scores? The iPhone isn't good at everything. In fact no phone is. So what is their to get mad about. We all know that factually the Galaxy is better than the iPhone at nearly everything. I can list 100 things that both phones are capable of, and the Galaxy will bet better at it in more than 90% of them.

57. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

All i heard was, my phone didn't win...AGAIN! And more wahhhh wahhh wahhh...you need a bottle baby? They all take good pictures. The iPhone yellowish over saturated white balanced pictures always look color washed. The Galaxy takes over-saturated eye popping colors. On Youtube when both cameras are mounted to a stick and viewing things like trees and grass. The Galaxy makes them to green, and the iPhone makes them less green. In some cases either one makes the seen look natural to what your eyes actually see. I rather have punchy colors than bland dried dead looking photos.

18. tedkord

Posts: 17133; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

FAKE NEWS! Yes, you sound just as dumb as Trump.

25. WGACA

Posts: 121; Member since: May 08, 2015

Pre-calculated in the S8 disadvantage, yes. S8 is miles better than the iPhone, not just a little like here everytime.

63. yalokiy

Posts: 903; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

@WGACA, true. Iphone should've got a much lower score here.

43. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

obviously pre-calculated, and badly distributed.. (and their lame photo analysist still can't help it) scene #3 : how can G6 get 1st place? it's oversharpening is just hurt.. and iPhone looks soo dull and blurry scene #4 : ugly yellowish photo get 1st and 2nd place? seriously? scene #6 : blurriest photo get 1st place, great..

50. sissy246

Posts: 7006; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

Go out on your glasses

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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