Samsung Galaxy S9 Has the Best Smartphone Camera, Too

Posted on March 1, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Mobile, Android with 16 Comments

Samsung Galaxy S9 Has the Best Smartphone Camera, Too

Samsung’s Galaxy S9 doesn’t just have the best display in the smartphone market. DxOMark says that it has the best camera in the market too.

Or, at least the larger Galaxy S9+, with its dual camera system, does. DxOMark hasn’t, to my knowledge, tested the single camera system in the normal S9. I assume it’s at least slightly less capable.

In any event, Samsung was able to beat out the Google Pixel 2 XL for the top spot, something it was not able to do a year earlier with its Galaxy S8+ vs. the original Pixel XL. As important, this is yet another area in which the Galaxy S9+, at least, bests Apple’s own flagship, the iPhone X.

“The Samsung Galaxy S9+ comes with a camera that hasn’t got any obvious weaknesses and performs very well across all photo and video test categories,” DxOMark notes. “The Photo score of 104 points is the best we’ve seen so far. At 91 points the video score is a little lower but still among the best, making the new Samsung an ideal choice for any mobile users who want the best possible still image quality without compromising on video.”

Well now. That is exactly what I am looking for. Nice.

According to DxOMark, the Galaxy S9+’s dual camera system is based on that of last year’s Note8, which still scores highly in the ratings with a 94 score and a 6th place finish. The difference is that innovative variable-aperture lens on the main camera, plus 2x optical zoom. (Both cameras sport optical image stabilization, of course.)

“The Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is a smartphone without any real weaknesses in the camera department,” DxOMark concludes. “In both still and video modes, it performs well across the board, delivering consistently good photo and video image quality in all light and shooting situations, thus earning itself our highest DxOMark Mobile score to date. Add one of the best smartphone zooms and a capable bokeh simulation mode to the mix, and the Galaxy S9 Plus is difficult to ignore for any photo-minded smartphone user. With the Galaxy S9 Plus, Samsung is setting the pace for 2018.”

This could be my next phone. I’m looking forward to testing it.


Tagged with

Join the discussion!


Don't have a login but want to join the conversation? Become a Thurrott Premium or Basic User to participate

Comments (16)

16 responses to “Samsung Galaxy S9 Has the Best Smartphone Camera, Too”

  1. ToddKlindt

    If only it worked with Fi. :(


  2. skborders

    I think I saw an article somewhere stating consumer reports gave that honor to the IPhone x

  3. dcdevito

    I think it's all due to its zoom capabilities, which makes sense. But...Samsung...ugh.

  4. Nicholas Kathrein

    I love it! Competition is great! My wife will want this. I like my Google Pixel 2XL and it's new and I only get one every 2 yrs. WIfe and I switch off.

  5. Winner

    Note that the benefits offered by the variable aperture (actually two fixed apertures, and I don't see huge benefit from this) and the dual camera are different than the strengths of the Pixel 2 XL camera. I'd expect the Pixel 2 XL to still be superior in low light due to the computational algorithms, but the Samsung is better for the zooming, and also would have greater depth of field at f2.4 aperture.

    • Nicholas Kathrein

      In reply to Winner:

      So from my basic knowledge it's that when it's bright like outside photos have a 1.5 or 1.6 or 1.7 aperture allows way to much light in that blinds the photo and causes artifacts. Not good. In the dark inviroments light is king so 1.5 or 1.6 aperture is great. So the basically when you are fixed at a specific aperture too low is bad in good light and to high is bad in low light. This allows for close to the the best in low and bright light conditions.

  6. IanYates82

    If you didn't do the Project Fi thing last year I think you would've ended up with a Note 8. My wife's got one and the camera on it is fantastic. Never fails to take a decent shot with minimal effort. Seeing as the S9+ builds upon it I think it'll be a winner.

    I'll wait until the S10 before upgrading unless some sweetheart deal is offered by my carrier to upgrade my S8 :)

  7. Skolvikings

    Too bad it runs Android.

    • SenorGravy

      In reply to Skolvikings: I would say "too bad it runs Samsung's version of Android". The version on the Pixel 2 is quite nice. Touchwiz, to me, has always been an impediment to buying Samsung. But I understand what you are saying. My experience with Android is it's never as good as it was the first day out of the box. Six months later it is much more jittery and slow. It's the difference between controlling the whole stack, like Apple, and being dependant on someone else for software. I use an iPhone because the apps seem to be a little higher quality, and everything "just works" and just works every time. I still have not been able to replicate that experience on Android. Just my two cents. YMMV.

  8. Bats

    LOL...this isn't surprising that the Galaxy S9 has the best camera rating by DxOMark. The S9 camera will be beat by the Pixel 3 later this year. Then the Galaxy S10 will beat that. Then the Pixel 4 will beat. Rinse and Repeat.

    It's always back and forth.

    The S9 will probably be Thurrott's next phone? LOL...Yeah, right. Just like the super fabulous One Plus 3, I believe? I super highly doubt it. LOL...can you just imagine Paul Thurrott, with all the stuff he has said in the past about Microsoft, Pure Android, etc..... is now going to buy an S9 and to the best of his ability Microsoftize it? Make no mistake, it's an Android Phone at it's base. Then you have Touchwiz on top of that. Then, Thurrott is going to Microsoftize...LOL.....He's clearly a NOOBIE in the Android space.

    Like I said. Yahhhh...right.

  9. dontbe evil

    I don't trust DxOMark ... I bough huawei p10 when was one of the best and it turns out is far far behind my Lumia 950 that's 2 years older :(