Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge vs LG V10
Mind-bogglingly fast auto-focus, cool new shooting modes (yay for Motion Photos) and excellent low-light performance on the S7 Edge, but the slower V10 camera captures more natural colors that we like a bit better.
The Galaxy S7 Edge and LG V10 come with huge ambitions: these are lauded to be two of the best phone cameras on the market currently.
Let’s quickly go over the specs: a 12MP camera on the S7 Edge, that’s down from 16-megapixels before, but you should not really worry about this, as it means larger individual pixels and improvements to low-light image quality. The S7 Edge features a super wide, f/1.7 lens that lets more light in and that’s a huge deal for images in dim conditions (on the flip side, some noise and aberrations appear at the edges of the image). There’s optical stabilization (OIS) on board as well.
The LG V10 sports a 16MP camera with an f/1.8 lens and OIS as well. The Samsung shoots in 4:3 by default, while the V10 goes for 16:9 for images.
Both have amazing camera apps: the auto mode is great, with separate buttons for stills and video, quick and easy access to essential features like HDR. Both also have full manual shooting modes with control over ISO, shutter speed, white balance and focus, and the V10 has manual control for video as well. These manual modes will be appreciated by a handful of enthusiasts, but it’s not something that the common user should care too much about.
In terms of video quality, both are doing an excellent job. You can record at 4K UHD resolution and 30 fps on both phones, but in that mode you only get the optical image stabilization and no visible software stabilization, which results in very visible wobbly, jello effect to videos, especially closer to the edges. If you want more stable video, you can switch to 1080p at either 30fps or 60fps, where the added software stabilization makes footage appear smoother. Speaking of the actual quality of video recording, both record very sharp-looking video, with very good dynamics, but there is a slight difference in the color representation: colors are a bit warmer and slightly oversaturated on the S7 Edge, while on the V10 they look a bit more natural. We also notice a slight motion blur especially visible on the S7 Edge.
Multimedia and sound quality
When it comes to media and watching videos or browsing through images on your S7 Edge or V10, both do a similarly great job with their large screens. The slightly curved screen on the S7 Edge is a bit of an inconvenience for watching videos as the content towards the edges gets warped, but this is a rather minor thing.
The S7 Edge ships with a single bottom-firing speaker that is not particularly loud or impressive. This could be due to the waterproofing of the handset, but in an ideal world we would like to see a better speaker. The one on the V10 is a bit louder and more capable, with some depth to the lows.