Camera

The 16-megapixel camera on the Note 4 captures some of the best images we’ve seen on a smartphone: very detailed, and with nice colors, plus it can record 4K. The Mate7 is no slouch with good image quality, but it’s not on par.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 comes with a 16-megapixel rear camera that supports optical image stabilization (OIS), while Huawei’s Ascend Mate7 ships with a 13-megapixel main shooter with no optical stabilization.

Samsung is using a large, 1/2.6” camera sensor on the Note 4, while the Ascend Mate7 comes with nearly 17% smaller, 1/3.06” Sony IMX214 sensor. In terms of optics, the Samsung phablet has a 31mm f/2.2 lens, while the Huawei phone features a slightly wider and faster, 28mm f/2.0 lens.

Looking at the camera app, Samsung has kept on improving the experience and in the Note 4 it is simplified, with less clutter, instead focusing on showing only the most commonly used features important to the common user. Advanced manual settings are also available, it just takes a couple of extra taps to access them. Huawei’s camera interface, on the other hand, is the most blatant clone of Apple’s iOS camera app we’ve seen so far: it features the same large, red, round key, and you swipe to switch between different modes. Admittedly, though, this interface is very convenient to use.



When it comes to image quality, the Galaxy Note 4 is in a league of its own with outstanding amount of captured detail, pleasing colors, and a very dynamic look to shots. The Mate7, on the other hand, has images that are also of very good quality, with decent amount of detail, but in comparison with the Note 4 they look mushier, and somewhat lacking in dynamics.

Indoors, the Note 4 has a more evident advantage with its consistently sharp detail and realistic color tones, while the Mate 7 - even though overall good - was comparatively noisier, and more prone to shooting slightly blurry images. It also captured images with a noticeable warm (yellow-ish) tonality and slightly overblown colors. The Note 4 has a fairly strong single LED flash that is capable of lighting up a scene well enough, while the Mate 7’s flash is underpowered.

The Samsung phablet also has a 3.7-megapixel front camera, and it can capture some good-looking selfies, while the Mate 7’s 5-megapixel camera captures decent selfies, but of lower quality.

In terms of video, the Note 4 can recording 4K at 30 frames per second (fps), or 1080p at either 60 fps or 30 fps, while the Mate 7 can only shoot 1080p at 30 fps. 4K is a nice extra but it comes with some limitations - you can record only 5-minute long clips, for instance. Comparing apples to apples, or 1080p at 30fps, the Note 4 has the more pleasing colors with plentiful detail, while the Mate 7 looks a bit underexposed and tends to be slower with exposure compensation. Optical image stabilization on the Note 4 contributes to smoother footage.



Taking a pic Lower is better Taking an HDR pic (sec) Lower is better CamSpeed score Higher is better CamSpeed score with flash Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy Note 4 2.8
2.8
353
273
Huawei Ascend Mate7 2.8
3.2
797
586

Although it’s a win for the Galaxy S5 when it comes to snapping still images, we don’t particularly find one better at shooting video, since they record some sharp looking videos. In fact, they boast similar qualities – like smooth continuous auto-focus, decent exposure adjustment, and mostly clear audio. Heck, they both also offer 4K video recording.


Multimedia

TouchWiz adds a bit more flair for media with more functional video, music and gallery apps, while the Mate7 gets the job done with no frills.

The large displays on both - the 6” one on the Mate 7 and the 5.7” on the Note 4, are the biggest reason why media consumption is a pleasure both phablets. Both are also well equipped in terms of software and can easily chew videos with various encodings. The video app on the Note 4 shows your collection of videos with a nice live animation, giving you a quick glance of the content of each video. The Mate 7, on its part, has a simpler, no frills video gallery that is basically just a list of all the recordings on the phone internal storage.

For images, the Note 4 gallery is a nice experience that gives you dual-panel view for easier navigation and comes bundled in with rich image editing options, while the Mate 7’s gallery app is a very simple affair that either shows you your pictures as a list, or in a timeline.



The music player on the Note 4 is rich in settings and offers all the options, and fine tuning that you might want, while the Mate7 has a simpler, but visually fairly clean and nice looking music player. The single speaker of the Galaxy Note 4 comes with a decent amount of volume output, but it lacks sorely in depth, contributing to its rather thin sound quality. The Mate7 is not among the best we’ve heard either - it has a bit more depth, but is lacking in loudness. Both also have their speakers on their back, meaning that if you lay them on it, sound appears quieter and muffled.

Loudspeaker loudness (dB) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy Note 4 85
Huawei Ascend Mate7 79

FEATURED VIDEO

14 Comments

1. kiza_88

Posts: 22; Member since: Feb 28, 2013

i like both phones

2. ancellim

Posts: 39; Member since: Mar 24, 2014

The teaser pic on the website is wrong, showing Alpha and Z3 Compact instead.

3. Jason2k13

Posts: 1466; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

the Samsung note series is pretty much on a league of its own.

4. hmd74

Posts: 540; Member since: Jan 31, 2013

Note 4 is the absolute winner... Even note 3 can beat Ascend mate 7

5. vuyonc

Posts: 1091; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

Huawei needs to work on improving battery life. The Mate 7's result is pretty bad considering the capacity.

6. SonyFindOneDroidple

Posts: 865; Member since: May 11, 2013

Note 4 is utterly beautiful :)

7. Duke19

Posts: 27; Member since: Oct 02, 2014

In my opinion, the Huawei looks like a cheap knock off. I still dont get the whole "its made from aluminum so its premium" fad

8. simpleas

Posts: 196; Member since: Apr 30, 2014

I think any honest and objective person can see how clearly the Note 4 destroys the rest. But if you're a simpleton, it probably won't matter what phone you have.

9. steodoreben

Posts: 379; Member since: Sep 26, 2013

I love the camera and multimdia UI of Huawei, very simple and clean. :3

10. yourpskumar

Posts: 3; Member since: Nov 20, 2014

I think both phone is quite smilier, now a better options if u don't like Samasung. Huawei is one of also good hardware.

11. mirexcool

Posts: 65; Member since: Feb 28, 2015

Bought at Aleixspress. Satisfied! s.click.aliexpress.com/e/eMNN7meaq

12. justmeagain

Posts: 1; Member since: Mar 13, 2015

NO mention of fast charging available on note 4....

13. udonyema

Posts: 4; Member since: Jan 17, 2014

Just purchased the gold edition 3GB RAM/ 32 GB Storage version of the Mate 7. It's running Android 4.4.2. Expected a lot from the device but i've still being pretty surprised by the smooth UI, usable and intuitive functionality and classy finish. Almost want to bring it out of its case everytime. Can't bear to hide the beauty. The interface seems like Lollipop's precursor. I also currently use a HTC OneMax, so i evidently like well designed phones. Had been waiting for a sequel to the OneMax but HTC hasn't been forthcoming. I also love screen real estate. 5.5 inches is as low as i'd go right now. I'm 6'2 and have fairly large hands. Got the Desire 816 for my wife last year and she loves it. I like it too, but glossy plastic isn't my thing. I was also one of those who initially felt the Mate 7 was a ripoff of the OneMax. But hello, it's that and more. It mixes a little bit of IOS in the UI and Fingerprint Scanner, HTC in the back and Asus in the finish. Love it. Can't stop staring at it

14. kamyar.80

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 27, 2015

I,am so happy Because my parents have both of that !!!!!!

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