Sony made a headline splash with the Xperia XZ2 last week but samples of the slow motion or HDR were not widely available to really see what the phone could do. Even today they are few and far between but we were able to find some to make a pretty good assessment of the quality offered in video mode.
We were quite impressed to find a resolution gain that it is quantifiable in 1080p 960fps Full HD mode slow motion that is greater than previously thought. It is still not true 1080p quality but it is slightly higher from 720p which in turn makes this XZ2 Phone the best 960fps phone out there for quality. The Galaxy S9 is close behind but with a severe aliasing increase by reducing the data captured.
By now between the Oscars Galaxy sponsorship & a lot of tech Vloggers going wild about the Samsung handset you should be pretty well informed on the Galaxy S9 capabilities. We covered it last week and went into the particulars of the super slow Motion feature which allows for 0.2 seconds of recording at 720p in 960fps frame rate. Needless to say, we were unimpressed with the quality initially based on early tests and we called it out for not really delivering 720p but some low-res aliased abstraction.
But with the new crop of video samples, we were impressed by some footage and let down by other attempts. There is a lot to like in this phone but also something to keep in mind is that a dedicated slow-motion camera will keep the edge over a phone at least for the next few years in quality and detail retention. Dig in for the samples and judge for yourself…
The new Sony Xperia XZ2 from Sony is their flagship phone for early 2018. It has a lot going for it like 4k HDR movie mode which is a first for a phone and from what we can see it really makes a difference in dynamic range and color on the footage. It also has the latest Snapdragon 845 SoC for increased performance with the battery savings to boot.
What we are interested however is the slow motion high frame rate capabilities which after the Galaxy S9 with 960fps HD 720p announcement, Sony needed to respond accordingly. Well, Sony has done so and they now claim 1080p 960fps slow-motion video on their XZ2 phone which is a one up on the Galaxy with more resolution. However, it is not all that rosy as companies seem to equate a frame size with video quality which in many cases is not even close to spec.
Samsung has unveiled the heavily leaked and rumored Galaxy S9 at MWC Barcelona 2018. It is now a reality and the rumors got most of it right but the frame rate mostly expected which was 480fps at full HD has now morphed into 960fps at HD 720p. You would be heavily excited about the new frame rate options except for the fact that the resolution is not really 720p but a heavily soft and aliased version.
Camera companies are too loose to call video formats HD and Full HD when they are really just upscaling lower resolution video up to save in an overly compressed format. The inclusion of now 1080p 240fps has to be the better spec here as the 960fps mode tops out at 0.2 seconds for a 6-second playback at 30fps. Hardly ideal and much like what we saw in the Sony Xperia XZ phones of 2017.
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