Cool New Hardware Upgrades for iPhone 8 and iPhone 8
Every year, DxO release benchmarks of what they consider the best and worst smartphone cameras in the market. The new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus have endured the same treatment and blew all other smartphones they’ve tested right out of the water.
With a score of 94, the iPhone 8 Plus has reached the highest score ever rated on a smartphone camera, ever. It’s followed by the iPhone 8, which puts them a few points ahead Google Pixel and HTC U11’s 90 score achieved last year.
DxO concentrates its efforts on benchmarks by breaking down the whole thing into different sections for photos and videos.
Each category is then broken down into more categories to cater for different shooting scenarios. The two iPhone models performed in both areas but photography was where it thrived even more.
The biggest contributor to the iPhone’s successes is the overhaul of older benchmarking mechanisms for newer methods. These incorporated new tests designed to take care of specifics only found in dual-camera configurations like zoom and synthetic bokeh.
The 2016 model Pixel was a single lens camera model and was unable to compete with the new generation iPhones. Hardware-wise, there haven’t been any concrete changes from the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 plus. All the same, the new iPhone models provide better exposure, HDR processing and far improved face detection.
Photo and Video
Down to individual categories, i.e. photo and video, the iPhone 8 manages a score of 96 against the Pixel’s 90 in still photo action. But it is down to 89 against the Pixel’s 90 when it comes to video recording performance. Even so, they still feature the best video performance ever spotted on an iPhone.
Another change to the tests to accommodate for new smartphone camera features is taking into account zoom and depth-of-field effects on flagship devices. The most notable of these features is dual cameras. The iPhone 8 Plus scored particularly well in this regard thanks to new image processing algorithms that comes with Apple’s software.
This helped skyrocket the iPhone 8 Plus ahead of all its competitors. Both the bokeh (out-of-focus blur quality) and zoom of the iPhones performed a lot better in the current year’s models as compared to the iPhone 7 Plus.
The most noticeable and important upgrade so far is in the much-improved realistic blurring of foreground objects instead of just applying the same effect to objects in the background.
The tests also reveal improvements at estimating depth from the iPhone 7. It even manages to oust most dual-camera wielding flagship devices out there. This means fewer errors when adding the bokeh effect. These errors usually occur when a camera’s depth perception falls short, leaving areas of the image that should have been blurred sharp, or vice versa.
Some room for improvement
The iPhone’s camera has been pretty great, but there are still some places that could use some improvement. Autofocus, for instance, is accurate but doesn’t lock onto a subject fast enough.
This room for error is large enough to result in a missing shot. When it comes to shooting moving scenes, the iPhone cameras also fall short as they are prone to losing detail.
The iPhone X could be better
The iPhone 8 Plus’ reign shouldn’t be celebrated too early, though. The much-anticipated iPhone X isn’t out yet and is expected to be even better performing. It adds a wider aperture lens that adds image stabilization to both lenses. This is the factor that could contribute to even better picture quality.
It should be noted that the Pixel and Pixel XL achieved their scores with more modest hardware than the current iPhones and the Pixel 2 is said to have one monster camera. The jury isn’t out yet, and the tests are still underway, but it’s expected to give the iPhone a definite run for its money.
The Pixel 2 still manages to produce unprecedented results despite featuring a single-lens camera, something that was thought to be impossible to achieve. The new Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL also feature complex machine learning software that gives it quite the edge.