Camera and Multimedia:

The Samsung Galaxy S II and the HTC Sensation both have feature-packed camera interfaces and very fast shot-to-shot times. The icons on the Galaxy S II are a tad larger and thus easier to press, but still the camera interface is kept minimalistic and pretty. The HTC Sensation, on the other hand, is more functional, offering a rich, visualized range of color effects to apply with the touch of a button, whereas the Galaxy S II strength is more scene modes, if anyone bothers with those before snapping a picture with their smaprtphones.

The camera lens on the Samsung Galaxy S II has a much wider field of view than the one on the HTC Sensation; it fits more scene in the frame, especially when the phones are held in portrait mode. Both handsets capture enough details, but the pictures from the HTC Sensation have more contrast applied to them, and thus look sharper and with punchier colors than the ones from the Samsung Galaxy S II, which, in their turn, are colder than the real deal.

If we get out of the bright sun, though, the software running the HTC Sensation’s camera starts to aggressively clear up the noise and oversharpen the photo, which takes its toll on some fine detail. Besides the more natural looks, the Samsung Galaxy S II also gets more pictures with wide dynamic range right. Moreover, it seems that the HTC Sensation’s software algorithms are always hard at work trying to sharpen this element or blur that background, with often mixed, unnatural results.

Both chipsets and 8MP camera sensors support 30fps Full HD 1080p video recording, so currently they are on top of the smartphone game in that respect. You can zoom in freely while recording Full HD 1080p video with the HTC Sensation, however, something that the Galaxy S II allows only in HD 720p mode. The Sensation also records stereo audio, which, while loud enough, is not very clean, most likely since the video gets recorded in the .3GP format, which is the worse choice, compared to the Galaxy S II .MP4 recording.

Moreover, the Sensation sports live tap-to-focus while filming, similar to the iPhone 4, which is quite a handy feature, and works when capturing 1080p videos, too. It sports autofocus only before you’ve started filming, so the tap-to-focus feat while shooting a video actually becomes very useful.

Videos captured with the Samsung Galaxy S II run slightly smoother. However, the ability to use tap-to-focus and digital zoom while shooting in Full HD 1080p with the HTC Sensation might offset the Galaxy S II's advantages for certain users.

Finally, the HTC Sensation's video seems sharper than what the Galaxy S II offers, which is fine in our books, although some may find it a bit too much..

HTC Sensation Sample Video:

Samsung Galaxy S II Sample Video:

HTC Sensation Indoor Sample Video:

Samsung Galaxy S II Indoor Sample Video:

When it comes to playing video, the Samsung Galaxy S II is the clear leader, with hardwired   support for most major codecs up to Full HD 1080p definition, and due to the sheer vivid brilliance of the Super AMOLED Plus display for watching movies. The Sensation plays 1080p MPEG-4 files with no issues, but for high-definition DivX/Xvid files, or the popular .MKV format you will have to hit Android Market. Full HD 1080P Divx/Xvid files are not even been indexed as playable in the All Videos section of the Gallery, and HD 720p ones are hit-or-miss.

The default HTC video player has some SRS surround sound perks in loudspeaker mode, which deepen the base a bit, but in terms of functionality it can’t match the excellent player on the Galaxy S II, which has been born with video playback in mind, and won’t make you look for alternatives in Android Market, except if you want to loop something.

When music playback is concerned, the Samsung Galaxy S II also has the upper hand, with its native support for the lossless FLAC format, and less wimpy speaker. The surround sound mode on the HTC Sensation can be used in speaker mode as well, unlike the Samsung Galaxy S II, which only allows its mock 5.1 channel surround when the supplied handset is plugged in. The Galaxy S II, however, lets you apply equalizer presets while listening through the speaker, whereas on the HTC Sensation they only work in headset mode. 



1. kae unregistered

Both of them are very good phones but what about the SAR levels. Which one is lower?

2. Cyborg unregistered

alas! no mention of iPhone 4. lol

6. Sevule unregistered

Alas Cyborg you are wrong. "and you can swipe to the respective app in charge directly from the lock screen itself, similar to what Apple will offer in its fall iOS 5 collection." Now I see why there are allegations that Phonearena is paid by Apple to promote their products. Pray tell what the relationship is between a feature available now in android and what would be available in ios 4/5 months from now? And what is the relevance of mentioning this unavailable ios feature in an article comparing the 2 top android phones(that have the feature)???

7. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

LOL i know its like they cant write an article without the word apple in it...they will mention apple regardless if its relevant in which this case its not. also iphonearena did not make a big fuss about accessing notifications such as messages and miss calls directly from the lockscreen on the galaxy s2 but now that iphone will get it in like 4/5 months time its all of a sudden a big deal..would not be surprised if there job is to promote apple and its products.

17. medalaster1 unregistered

Guys guys know something the original apple iphone in 2007 was a revolution that everyone on earth wanted to get their hands on, back then android didn't even exist,its a legend and phone arena is really fans of what had happened in 2007 and android only matches ios from froyo or eclair may be, before that android had no chance and hundreds of android devices come out every year both Samsung, htc and others release hundreds of android mobiles before you are proud of your android device their will be an another android device with better specs and great benchmark scores, but iphone comes only onse a year and still the comparators try to keep up with hundreds of models

41. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

yes it was revolution back in 2007 and cant argue with you there and yes android probz would not exist in the way it is now but would have existed in some form but this is 2011 and apple is no longer and has not been for a while ''revolutionary'' as you like to say. have you seen ios5 lol you call the a revolution or is it kust catching up to android who has had most of those features for a AGES. yes android has plenty of hardware, it gives people CHOICE. with apple you have no choice, if you want ios and the latest hardware you have to get iphone 4 whether you like the design or not. but to be honest the iphone is one of the best looking handset if not the best lol thats why i got the iphone 4 for its look. you cannot say giving consumers a choice is a negative.

38. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

and just for reference, there has been an app on the market for months now that adds shortcuts to your lock screen. Also, beautiful widgets has had the weather changing background for like what.. a year or 2 now. :) give me power, battery life, viewing beauty, and extra connectivity over some use of tin and a highly animated overlay. SGS2 :)

3. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

glad to see this kinds of comparisons between phones, its really nice for a change... keep it up :D

4. Winny unregistered

Amazing comparison... Really cool.. Thanks to phonearena !!!

5. uzair unregistered

hey i wanted to ask you guys that if i download some other offline maps on galaxy s 2 would i be able to use as we can use it on sensation

8. AndroidTroll

Posts: 359; Member since: Mar 05, 2011

Great article that will be very helpful for many. I wish writers would pay more attention to storage read/write speeds. I want to know what class microsd card the Sensation ships with? I would imagine it would have to have a 6 in order to do 1080p video.

9. WirelessCon

Posts: 311; Member since: May 11, 2010

Phonearena needs more of these Arena Versus comparisons.

10. Johnabis

Posts: 61; Member since: Feb 17, 2011

where is your Evo 3D review? about 6 other sites has there review up already.

11. RushFan2112 unregistered

Will both phones have Swype capability? The current Galaxy S does and I imagine the Galaxy S II also does (can you confirm?)

15. ph00ny

Posts: 2025; Member since: May 26, 2011

I can confirm that swype is included in GS II

12. MIP unregistered

This comparison, though extensive, overcomplicates the matter; I think the choice is easier than that: -galaxy-s2-vs-htc-sensation-an-easy-decision/

13. Piotrek007

Posts: 119; Member since: Dec 07, 2010

GSM Arena also put new comparing between those two ! Its awesome !

14. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

2 days of light use is nice for the will get overshadowed by the 62 hours of light use in the GS2 tho.

16. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Like I mentioned in another article, the rated talk times give a good indication of overall battery life.The Sensation having 2 hours less talk time than the GS2...for some reason battery life isnt one of HTC's strong points.And I'm a function over form guy.....thats why I would pick Android again any day over other phones in the market...


Posts: 701; Member since: Jun 07, 2011

Nice comparison i like!! i may get the sensation for a bit untill the sgs2 comes out then move up!!

19. anirudhshirsat97

Posts: 408; Member since: May 24, 2011

i cudnt choose the winner until he said hat galaxy s2 was like a bmw z4 and sensation was more of merc going for the sportier one..


Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

I can see phonearena start having to do what phonedog does in all their videos. Instead of promoting best buy phonearena will promote apple.

21. T-imm unregistered

The text reflow can be adjusted in the browser's settings...

31. Junior in Jamaica unregistered

I wondered because the text on the Samsung looked way too small to be useful. But it is worth noting the Sensation does it out the box without need for tweaking so it still has the upper hand there. But good to note.

39. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

well i would not call it tweaking if its part of the phone. its the same as changing screen brightness but i know what you mean, that not everyone will know but once you go in the setting you cannot miss it to be honest. hopefully they bring automatic text reflow in an update.

22. luis_lopez_351

Posts: 951; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

Give it time and Motorola photon will slam the sgs2

24. Allday28

Posts: 335; Member since: Nov 19, 2010

Motorola phones are s**tty and laggy. Trust me i know I have one.


Posts: 701; Member since: Jun 07, 2011

yea the best android phones i have used are htc and samsung.. motorolas tend to be slow and glichy alot

28. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Change the launcher and lock screen and my Droid X before GB would disagree. My Droid X with GB definitely disagrees, even with stock launcher and lock screen. My Droid 1 with Froyo would disagree also, also after changing the stock launcher.That said, I think the GS2 will be the phone to beat. With some Motorola phone being a close 2nd, just like last year.

30. luis_lopez_351

Posts: 951; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

None of you havent even tried its new and improved UI so why all the hate and Bull sh_t

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