5 years of camera evolution: S7 Edge vs S21+

Have you ever thought of how a lot telephone cameras have improved over the past 5 years? We know we did. 

We not too long ago used a 5 yr previous gadget, the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, which is amongst one of the vital spectacular telephones from again within the day. So we grabbed Samsung’s model new telephone from 2021, the Samsung Galaxy S21+ to see the way it compares.


Starting with our previous champ, it comes geared up with 2 cameras. One rear and one entrance shooter, easy as that.

So the rear digital camera is a 12MP sensor which was thought-about among the finest if not one of the best on the time of its launch.

On the opposite facet of the ring we have now the model new S21+. It comes geared up with 3 cameras on the again. You get a daily 12MP principal sensor, then you may have a 12MP ultrawide digital camera and a telephoto lens which is round 64MP because it does a hybrid zoom.

Deep dive

So we determined to go sightseeing and take a couple of photographs whereas we’re at it. Not that this was one of the best concept because the solar was out for us, however we nonetheless managed to take some good photographs.

As quickly as we began although, we instantly seen the distinction in photograph processing that every telephone delivers. The S7 Edge tends to look extra pure whereas the S21+ is kind of closely processed. 

You can see that notably within the inky blue shade of the skies that seems extra saturated than in actual life on the newer telephone. It’s not dangerous or good per se, it’s okay.

For the common individual, that’s okay because it’s extra of a desire, however if you wish to squeeze extra out of the model new sensor, we’ve discovered that taking pictures in professional mode is extra lifelike, that means that you simply seize what the sensor sees precisely, after which you possibly can edit your RAW file to your liking. Like so:

Of course the heavy processing does convey a bonus and that’s higher HDR. Skies not often look overexposed on the S21+ whereas the S7 Edge does fairly worse in that regard. Pro mode doesn’t actually protect you from such points so that you’ll need to manually compensate and edit for that.

One factor to notice although. The S7 Edge is kind of good when it comes to sharpness, even 5 years later. It was once criticized for that, however we predict it seems good. You can see it within the properly outlined traces of the constructing proper right here.

The previous timer can also be not too far behind the S21+ right here once you take a look at a pic of our colleague Vic. 

We’ve seen that statues additionally basically come out fairly properly.

But there may be one new function that each one new gadgets sport and that’s portrait mode. Now, the S7 Edge does include one thing comparable. It’s known as selective focus, nevertheless it was principally meant for flowers and the like because it prompts you to shoot an object from lower than 20 inches away. So with shut objects, it does superb, however should you give it a human face or one thing farther away, it fails.

It merely can’t stand as much as what the trendy portrait mode on the S21 sequence can do. Look a bit nearer and also you’ll see that the bokeh sort was additionally modified for a smoother one in newer gadgets whereas the previous flagship tries to imitate a extra imperfect lens. 

We’re undecided if that was finished deliberately or if it’s brought on by accident.

One further huge element right here. Almost all new gadgets, together with the S21+, include greater than a single digital camera sensor. In this case We’ve managed to take some good zoomed photographs and whereas the S7 Edge can zoom in too, it’s merely not as sharp because the 64MP devoted sensor on the trendy flagship.

You can clearly see how the physique form on this sculpture shouldn’t be precisely as much as snuff on the Edge.

Also, if that wasn’t sufficient, we are able to do ultrawide photographs on new gadgets. The ultrawide digital camera shouldn’t be precisely as sharp as the opposite lenses, nevertheless it does make for fascinating compositions.

By the way in which, whereas taking photographs out and about, we’d generally by accident press the report button and begin making a video because it’s positioned actually intently to the one for photographs. 

That is likely to be helpful should you’re in a rush to take a video, however most new gadgets additionally allow you to maintain down the shutter button for taking a video if you wish to. And basically, the UI on the S21+ additionally seems a bit extra spherical and polished and, because of the telephone being newer, is barely extra snappy.

Speaking of by accident recording movies although, when it comes to video efficiency, the S7 Edge was once thought-about among the finest in that regard and it definitely holds up extraordinarily nicely, nevertheless it’s not as steady as what the S21+ gives. There have additionally been some enhancements within the microphone high quality which helps once you wish to report a extra distant individual talking.

Video stabilization, by the way in which, has additionally improved by a superb margin. Here, on the S21+, we get a cross between optical and digital picture stabilization which does a tremendous job. And when taking pictures at 4K 30fps on each gadgets, they do comparably in high quality, however HDR is type of worse on the S7 Edge and its stabilization is solely worse.

And simply so we don’t overlook, we did strive the entrance going through cameras on each gadgets. And that is the place we have been most stunned. The S21+ is miles higher than the S7 Edge. You can truly focus in your selfies and they’re manner sharper though a bit extra zoomed in too.

The S7 lineup can also be type of weaker when it comes to HDR on the subject of selfies. Video recording can also be not nice. It’s not dangerous, however you don’t get any type of stabilization or something. We tried even reducing down the video high quality to 1080p, however that was a bust.

One factor we must always point out although. Changing from the entrance to the rear digital camera was fairly annoying on the previous flagship since we needed to prolong a finger all the way in which to the highest of the show whereas most new gadgets have that choice within the snug backside.

So lastly, let’s take a look at a spot the place telephones have finished the second greatest enchancment over time. That’s night time mode guys. And it’s phenomenal right here.

If you wanted something remotely usable in the course of the night time, we’d, arms down, go together with a model new gadget such because the Galaxy S21+. 

It merely manages to seize extra mild or, on the very least, much less noise.

The vast and zoomed digital camera additionally do a terrific job and to prime it off, video high quality within the night may not be one thing superb on each the S7 Edge and S21+, but when we had to decide on, the S21+ does a greater job, even when it does herald some bizarre artifacting.

So then what do you guys suppose?

Does the S7 Edge’s digital camera nonetheless maintain up astonishingly nicely or is it a relic of the previous? We personally suppose it did nicely for a 5 yr previous telephone, however we’re fairly positive that there are some fashionable mid vary gadgets which do as nicely or higher than it.

The S21+ is definitely the S7 Edge’s grandson and future as a result of a minimum of to us, it managed to do higher on nearly each key level, even when it was a bit edgy with its photograph processing.