Now that our podcast review of the OnePlus 5 phone is live, I thought it might be helpful also to those who are considering picking up the device to have some more info on the camera, one of the biggest concerns we had about the device. Below you will find some sample photos taken in identical situations with both the OnePlus 5 and our test camera, the Galaxy S8 Plus. Judge for yourself which picture(s) you think are best.
First up, macro shots:
As you can see, the subject is a bit in shadow, and the OnePlus seems to have blown out the image a bit, to me the flower looks a bit washed out, and the green color in the leaves seems not as deep as well. The “darker” image of the S8 Plus is actually more representative of the original image captured in reality.
Here, the leaf and concrete backdrop appear to have some kind of filter applied, though they were taken in almost direct sunlight. The glossy nature of the leaf in the S8 Plus photo is shiny from the sun, where the brown in the OnePlus 5 shot appears a bit muted and dull somehow. Not a bad shot by any stretch, and the detail is fine, but the dual camera seems to struggle when compared to a truly superior camera (like the S8 Plus)
Next up, still subjects:
This was one of my favorite test shots that Sean P took with both cameras. In a vacuum, the image the OnePlus 5 captured is quite good, but when compared to the S8 Plus, you can see that somewhat “washed out” effect that was present in the earlier macro shot of the yellow flower. The OnePlus 5 camera appears to struggle with the lower light/mixed light scenarios. This isn’t uncommon for mid-tier mobile phone cameras however.
This shot for both is actually about even in my book. The only real noticeable difference is in the background, where the color in the trampoline cover can be seen. Its a bit deeper in the S8 Plus shot, and the color of the wood in the table is also a touch darker. But this to me is an example of a quality photo that the OnePlus 5 was capable of taking.
In this shot, I actually tend to favor the OnePlus 5 image a bit. The only thing that appears off is the washed out green in the plumbing behind the milk can, otherwise while the brightness of the S8 Plus shot might be more accurate, in comparison it appears to be the one that is blown out (likely due to the very bright lighting conditions at the time the shot was taken)
Colors, colors everywhere! Here again, without a mixed lighting condition, I think the OnePlus 5 image is fine; the S8 Plus appears to be a bit brighter, and reproduces the color of the stucco in the walls a bit more accurately. But otherwise, this too is a solid image captured by the OnePlus camera compared to the Samsung produced image.
Last up, landscape full lighting:
Here the image once again appears to be blown out on the OnePlus camera. The color of the soil/wood materials on the ground is not accurate to the subject use for the image. Detail of the shot is quite good however, and again, in a vacuum, this image is probably fine for most purposes. Its only when compared to different (arguably better) cameras, that the differences start to stand out.
The last shot again shows up as if it had a filter applied to it, as the image appears to be darkened somehow. The color of the concrete is dull, and the brick is a darker shade of red than it should be. The subject wall is shot in full daylight, and somehow the green plants below it look dull, as if it were instead an overcast day.
As we talked about during the podcast, the camera of the OnePlus 5 is fine to solid in well lit situations, but struggles a bit more when lighting conditions are mixed or in full shadow. At a base price point of $479, the camera is one of the things that often times feels like a compromise, and in some cases it is. But if you reviewed the sample photos above, you can judge how much of a compromise it is for yourself. Feel free to ask questions you might have of the phone to us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org