Camera Shootout: Nexus 6P vs Galaxy S7

The Nexus 6P and the more recently launched Galaxy S7 (and S7 Edge) are the two most talked about Android handsets right now. Why? Because the Nexus 6P is…a Nexus. And Samsung’s Galaxy series has the most Android market share, so its releases are always huge. Therefore, it’s only natural that we question how their performances compare.

Nexus cameras have historically been lackluster. Even when the Nexus 6 showed a lot of promise, it sort of fell flat with a hit or miss sensor. Google’s meh camera software implementation hasn’t really helped either. But the Nexus 6P (and Nexus 5X) set out to change that. Rather than just upping the megapixel count, Google put a big focus on the camera’s efficiency. The Sony IMX377 module has larger pixels than you would typically find, to counter those tricky low-light situations. The software also catches up, with a faster shutter and Auto HDR+.

The Galaxy S7 on the other hand continues Samsung’s excellence in the camera department. Samsung has consistently offered one of the best camera qualities in the Android space. So the question we’re asking today is, has the Nexus caught up with the best? Or does it still have plenty of work to do.

Let’s compare some samples! Note that I used auto mode, and left both cameras are their native aspect ratios and resolutions. The Galaxy S7 (I actually used the S7 Edge) has a 12MP camera while the 6P is at 12.3MP. Their native aspect ratios are 4:3.

[spacer color=”264C84″ icon=”fa-camera”]

Outdoors

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

So the S7 images are definitely more colorful…almost too much. While the images are generally more lively, I would say that the 6P’s capture is more realistic. Take a look at the S7’s saturation on this one:

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

However, although both sensors have about the same resolution, the S7 images look sharper to me (i.e. compare the fur on my dog on the third set).

Indoors

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

As we move indoors, I’m seeing the 6P struggle slightly, at least in comparison to the S7. All these images look sharper to me on the S7. I’m not sure if it’s the 6P’s focusing. The 6P’s auto-focus is hit or miss in my experience, and definitely not as fast as the S7.

Low-Light

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

[row][double_paragraph]

Nexus 6P
Nexus 6P

[/double_paragraph][double_paragraph]

Galaxy S7
Galaxy S7

[/double_paragraph] [/row]

The sensor on the Nexus 6P has a f/2.0 aperture and considerable 1.55μm pixel size. The S7’s pixels aren’t quite that large but still above average – 1.4μm. However, it’s aperture is f/1.7. This definitely makes for some interesting results.

The S7’s combo wins in the first pair – it’s brighter and clearer. When we remove even more light, things get more interesting. The 6P’s image is clearer, but the color is off. The S7 captured the real color better.

[spacer color=”264C84″ icon=”fa-camera”]

Final Thoughts

I think that this was a good standoff. To my eyes, the colors from the 6P’s sensor are more accurate (except in extreme low-light situations), but the S7’s camera is sharper and is blazing fast to focus and capture.

I discussed my observations, but by all means, you be the judge. We’d like to hear what you think and which camera you like better. Let us know in the comments below.

Loading...