avatarby Nirave GondhiaSeptember 30, 201610 comments

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It’s the battle of the beasts, with the iPhone 7 Plus and the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 fighting over the title for the best over-sized smartphone in the market. But let’s put all other features and capabilities aside to focus on the camera, easily one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a good smartphone.

We have been playing around with both devices for some time and decided to put their shooters against each other in a feisty encounter in Sydney. Which will come out victorious? Let’s compare some images to find out.

In the galleries below, images captured by the Apple iPhone 7 Plus are on the left, while images from the Galaxy Note 7 are on the right. All images have been compressed to 1440 pixels wide and you can see the full, unedited images in our Flickr gallery.

Gallery 1

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is outputting warmer tones and more saturated colors, which some may argue gives this specific image a bit of a more dramatic look. It’s certainly a nice photo, but once we look closer we can see the iPhone 7 Plus image on the left does display crisper details on the rocks. The iPhone also seems to capture a much more realistic photo.


Gallery 2

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is definitely winning this round. Samsung’s photo shows improved exposure on the front, all while showing superior shadow handling in the background. The iPhone’s picture also seems to have duller colors, in general. Overall, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 appears to handle dynamic range much better.


Gallery 3

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Once again, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is displaying better handling of shadows and highlights. Furthermore, the image on the right shows more detail. The iPhone 7 Plus does capture a great image too, but the tint seems to be a bit too green.


Gallery 4

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 continues proving its camera performance with better shadows and highlights. Just take a look at the darker areas in the park and you will see how much more detail the Samsung phablet captures. Some prefer the way Samsung works with temperature, but those who prefer warmer images might like the iPhone 7 Plus image better.


Gallery 5

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The iPhone’s odd green tint is back, but that is not the only thing making its photo a bit inferior. We manage to see more details in the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 photo’s image. It is crisper, there’s more visibility in the shade and even the buildings in the background look clearer.


Gallery 6

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The iPhone 7 Plus image does show more detail in the background, but its colors seem a little duller. Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is producing a striking image with great shadow handling, but its colors seem to be over-saturated. Neither is perfect, but the Galaxy Note 7’s photo does look prettier.


Gallery 7

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What’s going on with the iPhone 7 Plus? It must not be great for shooting cities. The green hue is back and shadows seem much less visible. The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 may provide an image that seems a bit overly processed and almost looks like a filter was added, but at least it’s a good picture.


Gallery 8

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is on fire! OK… excuse the joke. But really, it just keeps producing better images than the iPhone 7 Plus. Just take a look at the crisp details in buildings and the shadowed areas. You can see much more of what’s going on. It does still show signs of over-processing, though.


Gallery 9

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I am a bit broken with this one. I happen to like the color reproduction and contrast in the iPhone’s photo, but the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 image does still handle shadows much better. Just take a look at the streets down below and see the difference in detail.


Gallery 10

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This is a very similar image to some of the ones we have seen above, so don’t be surprised to see similar results. The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 handles shadows and details better. And yes, both the green tint (iPhone) and the colder temperature (Samsung) are back.


Gallery 11

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The iPhone 7 Plus definitely wins this round, and I believe it is mostly because it knew how to work the exposure and processing better. The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is lighting up the building too much, as well as making it warmer (too warm for our liking). Therefore, the iPhone image shows less distractions and better details.


Gallery 12

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Great photograph, right? What a stunning city, and both did a great job capturing, but I feel like Samsung’s camera makes the city look more… alive. The way the lights and colors pop out really makes the image more enticing.


Gallery 13

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Except for their odd coloring tendencies, both images seem to be equally as good. The only main difference is that I feel the iPhone 7 Plus managed to capture a bit more details of the city in the background. But they both need to be able to handle the contrast and dynamic range a bit better. The bridge itself is too under-exposed in both instances.


Gallery 14

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Things start changing once we get a little closer to our subject. In these images there’s an interesting shift, as the iPhone 7 Plus now seems to show much better exposure and color reproduction. The sculpture is shown in more detail, the building in the back looks clearer and the trees display a lot more detail.

We do notice there is more detail in the sky with the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, though. The iPhone 7 Plus image displays no sky at all! It’s just white.


Gallery 15

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Exposure and details show better in the Samsung Galaxy Note 7-taken image this time around. We get a better view of the shadows in the sculpture, as well as under the fountain.


Gallery 16

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Both images here look great, but we can see a clear difference in processing. Samsung makes all the colors saturated and images crisper. We do notice its easier to see details in the iPhone image, though. Especially when looking at the people and the building’s outer side.


Wrap up

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You can’t go wrong with either camera, but it is true that they are very different. In terms of quality and detail, both devices have their specific strengths and weaknesses.

Mainly, I notice that the iPhone 7 Plus may be for those who want a more realistic photo experience. The colors can be dull and the shadows too harsh, but they do produce what seems like a more accurate representation of the scene. Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 may be for those who want images that really pop. They are good at dramatizing images in processing, but a few elements may make photos look a bit too artificial at times.

At the same time, each phone has a tendency to alter color, depending on the subject being photographed. We noticed warmer colors and a greenish tint in a few of the iPhone 7 Plus photographs, while shots coming from the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 looks colder and more saturated.

What do you make of these image comparisons though? Which photos do you think suit your preferences better? Vote in the poll and let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

  • user311

    That green tint…

  • Veronica

    This isn’t the first iPhone that had an added tint. My sister took the same pictures I took with the Note II and here’s were yellow and dim while mine were more natural colored. Also, I notice that in at least 2 of the photos angle and time had a detrimental effect on the Note 7. First, the first picture shows that time has passed and the shadows are longer, changing the lighting of the rocks. Plus the angle is slightly different, these allow the details to be less defined for even the naked eye. Then in Gallery 7, the angle I’d obviously detrimental. Any camera that allows that much sun into the picture end up with a ‘over-processed’ or whiteout of the picture. Not a fair comparison. And I suspect that the 2 pictures that didn’t show as good of detail in the foreground were focused on something in the background. Again, any camera would have had difficulty. Try again guys – and use a professional photographer!

    • So just to provide some clarity – all shots were taken within a minute or so of each other, essentially just the time it takes to change phones and align the shot. In Australia, the sun moves rather rapidly so this may have caused the slight shift between photos in Gallery 1. And on the other two, the focal points were manually set (this is actually the case in all photos).

  • lemaitre

    The iPhone 7 plus images are more natural and more real

    • The-Sailor-Man

      iBS

      • Docservlet

        Yes….you’re full of bs.

    • Gadgetonomy

      I have to totally disagree.

  • sausalito

    How can do this comparison ? The Note 7 does not exist anymore !

    • Gadgetonomy

      It does, I am holding one right now.

  • I think iPhone 7 Camera is batter then galaxy note 7…