What difference does OIS make: Samsung Galaxy S6 vs HTC One M9

Optical image stabilization (OIS) made a splash in the smartphone world when the Nokia Lumia 1020, a camera centric phone with PureView technology and a whopping 41-megapixel shooter, incorporated it to make for sharper images and more stable video. It's been a while since then, and these days most high-end smartphones feature OIS to capture better images and videos.

There is one notable exception, though: the HTC One M9. So we were curious to see what difference the presence of optical stabilization makes and took the One M9 for a spin, comparing it against the Samsung Galaxy S6, the current Samsung flagship. The 20-megapixel main camera on the HTC One M9 is the one with no OIS, while the 16-megapixel shooter on the Galaxy S6 does feature optical stabilization.

Keep in mind that optical image stabilization is a physical mechanism that is built in the camera module allowing the whole module to 'float', counter-acting movements on various axes: yaw, raw, and pitch. This mechanism will make hundreds of miniature corrections, and this results in the footage looking more stable, but you can also notice a slight wobbliness around the edges of the recording.

Still, the difference in video recording between the no-OIS camera on the HTC One M9 and the optically stabilized one on the Galaxy S6 is really quite profound. Take a look at the video right below to see for yourself, and let us know how important having OIS on your phone's camera is to you.

Related phones

Galaxy S6
  • Display 5.1" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 16 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Samsung Exynos 7 Octa, Octa-core, 2100 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 2550 mAh(23h 3G talk time)
One M9
  • Display 5.0" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 20 MP / 4 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, Octa-core, 2000 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2840 mAh(21.7h 3G talk time)



1. bucky

Posts: 3784; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

does the m9 honestly take that crappy of a video? Thats potato quality.

6. shaineql

Posts: 522; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

HTC Camera always terribad, im surprised it didnt turn pink mid video.

15. lalalaman

Posts: 638; Member since: Aug 19, 2013

shouldnt have left OIS the were one of the first aside nokia with OIS on HTC one M7....M8 trashes S5....now its the other way around

10. waddup121 unregistered

HTC jesus. Messed up AGAIN.

18. rnagic

Posts: 215; Member since: Jul 13, 2014

Lol, I know. You would think maybe they would test the hardware before they decide to put it in their phones?

2. stardoche

Posts: 13; Member since: Oct 28, 2012

i think the guy shooting with the m9 has parkinson. never saw someone shaking that much frankly

5. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

Thanks for the free diagnosis! Just for the record, I was holding the Galaxy S6 and One M9 alongside while recording the videos simultaneously.

7. shaineql

Posts: 522; Member since: Apr 28, 2014

Obviously. Damn it really is crappy ,both stabilisation and lighting.

13. mrmessma

Posts: 271; Member since: Mar 28, 2012

Are these in different hands or are they held side by side in a single clamp? Thanks.

24. javy108

Posts: 1004; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

This is really mean, but I must admit this was funny at once, but guys, respect.

3. manojmcn

Posts: 633; Member since: Jul 16, 2015

HTC One M9 Camera is CRAP for flagship standards!

27. P-YWS

Posts: 144; Member since: Aug 12, 2011

Complete agreement. HTC has been making s**t (considering that taking good quality pictures and video is as important as taking and making phone calls. "Ultra Pixel" - what a boat load of s**t and lies! But then, many people were speaking for such crab. No wonder people keep paying Apple for the 2nd-class hardware!

4. Ordinary

Posts: 2454; Member since: Apr 23, 2015

OIS on S6 is much better

11. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

You don't say.

8. techneo

Posts: 8; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

would love to see s6 against OnePlus. just the 4k and 1080p video

9. Windswept7

Posts: 10; Member since: Aug 16, 2014

(Good quality) OIS is in my top 3 most important phone features, coming third only to screen quality and battery life.

12. frankg

Posts: 173; Member since: May 14, 2014

And this is why HTC is failing.

14. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

HTC is giving me so much headache right now..

16. Colombianmax

Posts: 52; Member since: Dec 29, 2014

Even video on my HTC One S (2012 device) has noticeably superior video quality. Something seems VERY fishy and biased about this video recording.... I've snapped pictures with an S6 and it takes nice pictures, the video is good too but dare I accuse PA of reducing the video quality settings on the M9? I might even attempt to make a video myself with both devices some day lol

19. Sale247

Posts: 72; Member since: May 08, 2014

I have M9 and that's my only complaint,about OIS. Why isn't there? Everything else on the phone works great.but this . You can make very good pictures,but camera shooting is very bad...

20. sin2365

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 19, 2015

I have m9 ,i know what i say so...about pictures and video from this post...if i want to take bad pictures and video i will take with every phone:)) with my m9 i don't have one single pictures and video like this(i don't have parkinson:))))) don't forget front camera,is the best,don't forget design ,boomsound ,sense and...etc:)) so...people without parkinson don't need ois:))))) hey peoples don't read speculation about htc,buy and try you will not be dissapointed!sorry for my eng.pace!

23. Sale247

Posts: 72; Member since: May 08, 2014

Spot on.

25. javy108

Posts: 1004; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

I went to a store and tried the camera, it isnt as bad as seem on reviews, but compared to LG or Sammy is not what you expect for.

21. alfieg40

Posts: 11; Member since: Jul 19, 2015

I call bull$h!t on that video. I have both phones and the M9 is not that bad, especially if you activate stabiliser. These sites get worse and worse with reviews. Anyone would think Samsung give back handers to these guys.....

22. alfieg40

Posts: 11; Member since: Jul 19, 2015

Also, do we know for sure the OIS even works on video with S6? If so, why does it have Stabiliser in settings? Lots of these handsets show OIS in the specs and everyones assumes that it's for pics and vid, but i think you'll be surprised how many handsets use digital stabilisation for video, but its not advertised!

26. javy108

Posts: 1004; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

I dont think HTC cameras are this bad but even so... HTC really has to improve on this area or they will finally be bankrupted.

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