Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra Review

May 28, 2020 | Amy Davies |

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this review were taken using the12 megapixel JPEG setting, which produces an average image size of around 6Mb.

On the whole, image quality from the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra is excellent, particularly if you don't examine the resulting images too closely on a computer screen. The AMOLED display of the S20 Ultra displays them beautifully and you should be more than pleased with the output for Instagram and the like.

You can feel satisfied that the general 'Photo' model is a good choice for most types of shots. It delivers bright and punchy images with vibrant colours that aren't generally over the top. You might find that colours can be a little excessively bright with the scene optimiser turned off, but that is largely due to personal preference - if you do find it going a little overboard, you can always switch it off.

Overall, images from the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra are well-balanced, with a good degree of dynamic range. The automatic white balance setting works very well too, producing accurate colours almost all of the time. The automatic settings are so good, that you might feel it unnecessary to switch to Pro mode.

Detail is rendered pretty well at the native resolution output at 12 megapixels, but it's worth switching to the 108MP setting if you're photographing something with fine detail. Otherwise, it's fine to leave it at this native setting for the majority of shooting scenarios.

Another factor which has been heavily marketed is the addition is the zoom capabilities of the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra. The 'optical' zoom provided by the telephoto zoom is flexible enough for many distant subjects, but of course the real selling point is both the 10x 'hybrid' optic zoom and the '100x space zoom'.

The former is a great option if you need to get closer to your subject, but it's safe to say that the latter works better as a marketing gimmick than as something you'll want to use with any frequency. While technically you can 'zoom' up to 100x, the resulting images are severely lacking in detail and it's hard to find any real practical use for these images - beyond showing off that your phone can do it in the first place.

Noise

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra has seven sensitivity settings at full resolution. Here are some 100% crops for both JPEG and RAW file formats.

JPEG RAW

ISO 50 (100% Crop)

ISO 50 (100% Crop)

iso100.jpg iso100.jpg

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

iso100.jpg iso100.jpg

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

iso200.jpg iso200.jpg

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

iso400.jpg iso400.jpg

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

iso800.jpg iso800.jpg

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

iso1600.jpg iso1600.jpg

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

iso1600.jpg iso1600.jpg

Focal Range

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra offers a number of focal lengths running from 13mm Super-wide to 100x Space Zoom.

Super-wide

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Standard

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Telephoto

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Hybrid Optic

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30x Zoom

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100x Space Zoom

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Macro

The closest focusing distance of the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra is 10cms.

macro.jpg

Flash

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra's flash only has two modes: On and Off.

Flash Off

flash_on.jpg

Flash On

flash_redeye.jpg

Flash Off

flash_on.jpg

Flash On

flash_redeye.jpg

Night

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra's maximum shutter speed is 30 seconds and there's a dedicated Night shooting mode.

night.jpg