Camera


Samsung really does care about its smartphones' performance among other things, so it’s no surprise that the Galaxy S6 & S6 edge are total camera champs. They both boast the same 16-megapixel Sony IMX240 sensor used in the Galaxy Note 4’s excellent camera, but Samsung wired an even wider f/1.9 aperture lens to it. This means the sensor draws in more light, which proves most useful for low light photography, among other usage scenarios. Additionally, this camera offers optical image stabilization, BSI, LED flash, and infrared white balance to best adjust the shot for the given lighting conditions.

Of note is that the camera app is extremely fast to launch on both devices – you can call it up by double-pressing the home button at any time, which takes less than a second to get running. The reason why the camera app is so quick to start is because it never gets cleared from the system memory, so it's always running in the background. With 3GB of LPDDR4 RAM in tow, it's safe to say this presents no problems.

Staying true to itself, Samsung retained TouchWiz's new design principles in the S6 & S6 edge's camera interface – it too has become refreshingly clean and minimalist. Most of it is dominated by the viewfinder, only to be flanked on the sides by its on-screen shutter key, mode change, and various settings/effects icons. Camera modes have been broken down to auto, selective focus, panorama, slow motion, fast motion, virtual shot, and pro. The latter gives full manual control – letting you adjust parameters for ISO, white balance, exposure compensation, and now focus as well. Best of all, you can save the settings for use later on. Aside from that, there are plenty of downloadable ones through the Galaxy App Store to further enhance the camera experience.

Image Quality


The Samsung Galaxy S6 & S6 edge's cameras make fantastic photos. The devices substitute for a practical point and shoot camera and come up with really impressive photos - especially taken in daylight, in automatic mode. Details are heavily emphasized, although not overly sharpened as one might be righteously afraid. Dynamic range decently – to the point that it casts a neutral exposure with most shots. Dynamic range is handled well, and the use of HDR mode adds a touch to shadows and highlights to reveal details that would otherwise be lost. Color reproduction is quite natural looking, so it’s neither too warm, nor too cold.

Outdoors and decent lighting is one thing, but smartphone cameras are unreliable for meeting the demands of low light photography. With the wider f/1.9 aperture lens, Samsung aimed to squash those concerns as well. And with optical image stabilization as part of the package, the GS6 & S6 edge are solid performers in this difficult department. Although there is a certain degree of diminished quality, details are still defined in night-time shots, and the white balance setting is adequate. The smartphones don’t exhibit too much noise either.

Where macro shots (close-ups) are concerned, the S6 & S6 edge are great at giving focus to the subject in the foreground, while softening the background in the process. But by using selective focus mode, the bokeh or out of focus effect is subsequently intensified. This leads to the ability to have the focus set to the foreground or background post shot, and frankly, the results are quite good!

The Galaxy S6 & S6 edge introduce a new mode as well - Virtual Shot. It offers a new experience in the form of a 360-degree capture. We find it more gimmicky than anything else, but feel free to have fun with it! By the way, the panoramic mode doesn't disappoint either, since the final production is at a very high resolution, and the software does a great job with stitching things together for a complete panoramic shot – there's minimal distortion or artifacting evident.


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 S6 2.2
2.4
No data
No data
Samsung Galaxy S6 edge 2.3
2.8
No data
No data

We have good things to say to those favoring video capture as well, because neither the Samsung Galaxy S6 nor the S6 edge disappoint in their abilities to record. Not only is there a wide degree of shooting modes, such a UHD, QHD, 1080p at 60 FPS, 1080p at 30 FPS, and 720p at 120 FPS to name a few, but the results from each are very good. The UHD video mode, in particular, records such an ample amount of detail that the digital zoom offered by the camera proves effective enough. Other qualities include smooth auto-focus, minimal artifacting when panning, gradual exposure adjustment, and clear audio recording.

In 1080p recording scenarios, we still can’t complain. 1080p at 60 FPS gives video that “extra” level of motion, but details become rather soft for some reason. The 1080p recording at 30 FPS gives much sharper visuals.

Overall, there are no differences between the Samsung Galaxy S6 & S6 edge's photographic performance. Both are excellent photo-making and video recording machines, especially in daylight conditions. And while there's a tangible level of diminished quality in low light situations, the two handle better than the majority of smartphones right now. Great job, Samsung!



Multimedia


Although the TouchWiz music player that comes as an alternative to Google Music Player doesn't look as dazzling as say, the new Sense 7.0 music player, the toned down approach definitely gives it that nice streamlined feel.

Of course, visuals alone aren't enough. The S6 edge pounds out 75.4 dB of power through the speaker on its bottom edge, which is higher than the 73.7 dB reach of the Galaxy S6. However, both speakers exhibit the same characteristics - strong in tone, but lacking bite and punch, making for a thin and subdued sound. That's the deal with most tiny smartphone speakers anyway, and it seems Samsung is okay with leaving HTC at the forefront of smartphone boomboxing for another year.

If you do your music listening with a pair of headphones, the 3.5mm jack on the GS6 outputs 0.544 V of power, while the one on the S6 edge is just a little less powerful at 0.536 V. You probably won't notice a significant difference, unless you have a pair of coveted “golden ears”.

When it comes to multimedia editing and consumption, photo retouching tools are diverse through the Gallery app, even though there’s nothing exclusive or unique about the tools at our disposal. Watching videos, though? Both the GS6 & GS6 edge are seriously impressive at that. When the display is set to adaptive mode, it’ll automatically adjust the color saturation of videos to make them even juicier, while the Pop Up Play option still lets you have a video continue playing in its own window. Great stuff!

Loudspeaker loudness (dB) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy S6 73.7
Samsung Galaxy S6 edge 75.4

FEATURED VIDEO

23 Comments

25. ruffhowzin

Posts: 5; Member since: Dec 10, 2012

Say if these two phones had the same type of case, would there be any differences in ergonomics or usability?

21. vanessasyno

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 27, 2015

I have had both the GS6 as well as an IPhone 6 and I personally enjoyed the IPhone's ability to conform to multiple other people's phones (because IPhone's and Apple software on mobile devices is much more common and sought after) because with a Galaxy, or any other phone besides an IPhone it is much more of a hassle to communicate and participate in things such as group texts without having the iMessage software available.

20. Rajkamal

Posts: 12; Member since: Dec 29, 2014

hii guys, i am hoping to buy a GS6 or GS6 EDGE soon, but i am confused which one to buy. I like the EDGE look not the feel.Its a new tech and i wish to have it, but it felt more comfortable using the GS6 than the edge version and it feels little different watching video on GS6 EDGE. I am hoping to use this devise for a couple of years. so my question is will the EDGE version be more useful in the future or will it end up the same way the galaxy Round did ? And which one should i opt for fresh tech and long lasting performance? i know both are almost similar in all ways but the curved display makes lots of difference.

19. kreemer

Posts: 28; Member since: Apr 26, 2013

Finally got to play with the edge. Its an excellent display and the camera is very impressive. The review is right though-its sharper edge takes getting Used to in the hand

15. baldilocks

Posts: 1562; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

How many times do we have to post that your AnTuTu scores are screwy? The phones are basically identical and EVERY OTHER tech site has them benchmarking the same. Just makes you guys look less that truthful.

14. xfire99

Posts: 1207; Member since: Mar 14, 2012

Looks really a hit this time for Samsung. Out of stock almost everywhere on release date here in Sweden. WTF! Wanna test out 64GB Green S6 Edge before decide, but delayed until May/June!!! Come on Samsung, take mine freaking money and find a way to improve the yield for S6 Edge display.

13. SZCZUN

Posts: 2; Member since: Apr 09, 2015

It makes me annoying, since both phones release I was sure about buying s6 cause edges are not so important to me, now we get information that the specs are the same but s6 are much slower than edge..... In this price level when both phone are flagships performance should be identical. Whole this situation lead to to think more about s5 g901f than about s6.

9. TheAsh

Posts: 43; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

S6 edge is slightly better performer in camera department. S6 washes out a lot while S6 edge retains solid colors.

12. Plaxy

Posts: 2; Member since: Apr 09, 2015

Everyone says they have the same specs, but the benchmarks say differently. the slightly larger battery shouldn't have this much effect, and while everyone touts they have exact same internals, they are overlooking one thing. The Edge's Amoled Screen is made of a Plastic Substrate, while the Standard S6 is a Glass Substrate. Makes me wonder if the difference in material is impacting the overall performance of the phone.

17. baldilocks

Posts: 1562; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

If you look at other tech sites, they score pretty much the same on benchmarks.

8. SZCZUN

Posts: 2; Member since: Apr 09, 2015

Why there is so huge difference in antutu (10k points) ?

10. TheAsh

Posts: 43; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

There's difference in almost every department. Camera, performance and speed, battery life etc. S6 edge is slightly better than S6.

16. baldilocks

Posts: 1562; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

Not according to other tech sites. They are identical except for the curved screen and slight software differences.

22. TheAsh

Posts: 43; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Yes ur right. But I compared photos taken from both phones side by side in Photoshop @ 100% crop. I saw difference and S6 Edge was better in all photos.

18. baldilocks

Posts: 1562; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlV0naJ3ZHo There isn't. The editors here just don't bother to fact check.

7. gaming64 unregistered

Is there even a difference? I mean, the edge is just the S6...with gimmicky edges!

11. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

Apparently technobuffalo says the swipes and gestures feel smoother on the edge but the gs6 also has a slight curve so it's really not much. Either way, looks go a long ways and no one should have a problem with them using a half glass frame vs a full metal frame. Durability seems improved from it.

4. Japultra

Posts: 133; Member since: May 16, 2014

Mistake. Comment deleted.

3. ihavenoname

Posts: 1693; Member since: Aug 18, 2013

Edge is cool, but I'd probably take normal one and use the extra money for something useful.

2. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

PA just said that S6 is less gimmicky, S6 Edge is gimmicky. PA just said that S6 is more ergonomic, S6 Edge is more harder to hold.

6. drunkenjay

Posts: 1705; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

i have the edge. it isnt too bad. (i only left people edge and removed the rest) the edge is abit harder to hold compared to the s6 but if you use a slim case, boy it does wonders. still, the design is sexy.

1. SamsungEU

Posts: 147; Member since: Dec 29, 2014

is the S6 on final software ???

5. TyrionLannister unregistered

It's the T-mobile variant, which has some battery bugs. But elsewhere, the software is final. So expect the endurance to be a little bit better on other US carriers and international models but otherwise, it's as final as it gets until the android 5.1 arrives and fixes the lollipop issues.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless