Huawei P20 Pro Leica Triple Camera Review - Performance

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Huawei P20 Pro Performance

The performance section is where we look at the image quality performance of the camera. Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.


Huawei P20 Pro Sample Photos

Sample Photos - Photos from the camera have bright saturated colours, and exposure is reliable - some may find the colour saturation too much at times. The background blur / wide-aperture mode can produce some reasonable results, although they don't quite match a camera with a larger sensor. When using the portrait mode you can adjust the "Beauty level", switch "Artistic Bokeh" on and off, and adjust lighting modes. The dual LED flash performs well, as long as your subject isn't too far away from the camera. The night mode lets you shoot at shutter speeds up to 7 seconds without the use of a tripod! Digital Filters - There are 8 different filters built-in to the camera app, and you can adjust the strength of the filter before shooting.

Panorama mode - The camera features an automatic panoramic mode, where you simply press the shutter release button and pan the camera from one side to the other. Results are good and well stitched together, and the camera produces a high-resolution image, around 30mp.  


Huawei P20 Pro Lens test images

Lens Performance - Close focus is good, letting you get close to your subject for a smartphone camera. There is some distortion, but nothing too concerning, and detail is good using the main camera (in 10mp mode), with the camera producing images that have more detail than competing 12mp smartphones. Raw files are recorded as AdobeDNG files and stored in DCIM/Camera/RAW. Raw images taken with the main camera are 40mp images and are roughly 76MB in size.

There are minimal signs of vignetting, and images taken in good light show low levels of noise. Focus is generally quick and reliable, although sometimes struggled in low-light. Monochrome camera - the 20mp f/1.6 camera continues to impress with sharp detailed photos. 

Telephoto lens - The telephoto lens offers optical image stabilisation, and this tends to give a stable image, if you wait a second or two for the image to settle. The telephoto camera often gives a less saturated image, and can struggle to focus on closer subject. So you may need to take a few shots, and you'll most likely need to edit the photos to match the same colour saturation as the main camera. 

The selfie camera claims to be a 24mp camera, however, the selfie camera is fixed focus at a relatively close distance, so care needs to be taken to ensure that the subject(s) are at the optimum distance, as otherwise, they'll be out of focus due to being too close, or too far away from the camera. The selfie camera can use the screen as a flash if it's dark enough. Results look average and don't really look like they've been taken with a 24mp camera.


Huawei P20 Pro ISO test images

ISO Noise Performance - If you shoot at the 40mp image size, then the highest ISO speed you'll want to use is ISO400, as noise starts to become strong. Above this speed, images become softer, although ISO800 may still provide usable images. At 10mp, results are good up to ISO800 / ISO1600. At ISO3200 and above, colour saturation drops off. Shooting with the 20mp black and white camera, results are quite good even at the highest ISO speeds of ISO1600 and ISO3200 / ISO6400, making it a good option in low-light conditions.

You can switch between 40mp and 10mp photos, and in Pro mode, you can also shoot raw images. You can't shoot raw images with the 20mp monochrome camera, or the 3x telephoto camera. 


Huawei P20 Pro White-balance test images

White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well under a variety of shooting conditions, whether tungsten, fluorescent or mixed lighting. For most situations, you shouldn't need to use any of the presets, and the fluorescent preset gave a yellow colour cast. You can set the white balance manually, with the camera letting you set the Kelvin (K) from 2800K to 7000K.

In 10mp mode you can shoot with 1x, 3x or 5x zoom. Images taken with the telephoto lens were sometimes okay, but other times we were left disappointed with the colour and saturation in images when compared to photos taken with the wide-angle lens. The 5x zoom looks like digital zoom and rarely impressed. If you're simply going to be sharing the images on social media websites, then it may provide you with usable images. 


Video - The camera will record 4K UHD video at 30fps (37-39mbps), FullHD video at 60fps (25mbps), FullHD video at 120fps (slow-mo), and super slow-mo at 960fps at a reduced resolution of 720p. The video mode uses the main 40mp camera, and you can't select the other cameras.

If you want to switch on electronic image stabilisation, then you need to record at a reduced resolution and frame rate, of FullHD and 30fps. Video quality is good, although it's a shame that stabilisation isn't better when using the 4K video mode. The highest resolution video available using the selfie camera is FullHD+. Additional videos can be found on the ePHOTOzine YouTube Channel.


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27 Apr 2018 9:52PM
Great read as always Josh. Missed you at the awards last week.

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