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Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra: Night mode and zoom shootout
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Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra: Night mode and zoom shootout

2023-03-27

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra represents what is arguably peak smartphone right now. Between the overclocked Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, QHD 120Hz screen, and deep S Pen integration, there’s a lot to like here.

Samsung has moreover upgraded the main camera hardware, going from the S22 Ultra’s 108MP shooter to a 200MP primary sensor. Otherwise, you still have a pair of 10MP zoom cameras (3x and 10x) and a 12MP ultrawide lens, making it one of the best camera phones on the market on paper.

We’ve once put Samsung’s 200MP camera through its paces. But how does the S23 Ultra fare versus its predecessor when it comes to low-light camera performance and zoomed-in snaps? To test, we pit Samsung’s latest S23 Ultra camera vs the S22 Ultra. (More specifically, we used the Exynos model of the latter.

Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Cameras in Low Light

Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Cameras in Low Light

Samsung is touting its “Nightography” capabilities once then with the Galaxy S23 Ultra. The 200MP main lens is capable of 16-cell pixel binning, combining data from 16 proximal pixels into one, therefore spitting out a 12MP shot. By comparison, the Galaxy S22 Ultra bins at a ratio of 9 to one, transforming its 108MP snaps into 12MP. The difference is that the resulting pixel size is 2.4μm for the S23 Ultra versus 2.0μm for the S22 ultra. Let’s take a squint at the shots unelevated to see if that makes much difference. You can find the full-res snaps at this Google Drive link.

Take a squint at these standard skyline photos first (no night mode). There’s no big difference without cropping in, but once you do, you’ll see a significant step up for the Galaxy S23 Ultra. The S22 Ultra’s shot shows far increasingly noise, particularly when looking at the sky. But this noise moreover creeps up when inspecting the buildings.

The situation is very variegated when we take a squint at the second set of images, which takes place in dimmer light. The S22 Ultra delivers a brighter image with increasingly realistic hues, while the S23 Ultra brings out sharper details, albeit with increasingly saturated colors and a darker exposure.

Image quality is a lot closer when we enable night mode on both phones, as the S22 Ultra delivers a notably brighter shot for the skyline scene. Brighter doesn’t unchangingly midpoint better, though, as the S22 Ultra’s noise reduction here gives us the Vaseline effect on some elements, which you can spot in the cropped image below. The S23 Ultra offers increasingly detail on a tropical inspection, but I’d say the splendor works in the older phone’s favor when looking at the scene overall.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra vs. Samsung Galaxy 22 Ultra


In any event, the two comparisons show that the S23 Ultra isn’t quite a slam-dunk upgrade over last year’s Ultra. Its biggest fault is a lack of exposure in dimly lit scenes.

Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Camera: Zoom Comparison

Galaxy S23 Ultra vs S22 Ultra Camera

The two phones have identical telephoto camera hardware, namely a 10MP 3x telephoto camera and a 10MP 10x periscope shooter. This ways that Samsung will be relying on the image signal processor and software to modernize matters.

There’s not much to segregate between these snaps at first blush, particularly the first comparison. But the street scene does requite us increasingly to go on when we pixel-peep.

For one, you’ll notice a increasingly contrasted squint from the S22 Ultra, resulting in darker shadows. Your mileage will vary in this regard. Otherwise, the Galaxy S23 Ultra delivers increasingly resolvable detail (noticeable on the street sign on the right-hand side), but we’ve moreover got some ugly grain in the preliminaries that’s simply not present in the S22 Ultra snap. Preliminaries grain isn’t necessarily a bad thing if you were taking a photo of the street sign itself, but this is a shot of the unstipulated scene. Check out the comparison unelevated for a largest idea of what we mean.

5x Zoom

Shooting at 5x is a major rencontre for the S22 Ultra and S23 Ultra. The phones don’t have a defended 5x camera, so they rely on image fusion between the 3x shooter and the 10x camera.

5x Zoom

Our first takeaway is that the S22 Ultra pumps the unrelatedness then while the S23 Ultra brings a restrictedly washed-out look. Take a closer peek and you’ll notice increasingly noise in the S22 Ultra image, particularly in the windows, and there’s a increasingly warlike sharpening pass too. Either way, both are quite soft and a phone with a defended 5x lens, like the Pixel 7 Pro, will unhook a much largest image.

10x and beyond

Of course, one of the most rememberable Ultra features is a 10x periscope camera, and we have the same 10MP shooter on both phones. Yes, right lanugo to the same f/3.4 vent and 1.12-micron pixel size. But is the Galaxy maker worldly-wise to wring out largest image quality at the native 10x or hybrid 30x levels?

Starting with 10x, the wordplay is “mostly.” Our first comparison shows that the Galaxy S23 Ultra delivers a major resurgence to white wastefulness verism and a sharper, less noisy image overall. The disparity in image clarity and noise is particularly noticeable when looking at the bricks at the top and marrow of the pictures.

Moving to the 10x cityscape comparison, the S23 Ultra does a good job of taming noise in the sky, while moreover lifting darker shades. Unfortunately, this sunup does have the side-effect of exposing increasingly noise in some places. The newer model does however offer largest white balance.

Switching to 30x hybrid zoom, there’s not much to segregate between the two phones either. There’s unobjectionable detail but both phones moreover exhibit noise in the sky if you yield in a little. Interestingly, the S23 Ultra dialed lanugo the unrelatedness to the point where the building’s shadows are lost, but this does make the subject towards increasingly lively.

Galaxy S23 Ultra vs. iPhone 14 Pro camera test

Going into this shootout, we thought the S23 Ultra would’ve been worldly-wise to unhook steady gains over the S22 Ultra. But Samsung’s processing on the new phone seems to be a summery upgrade at most, at least compared to the Exynos S22 Ultra we’re using.

We’re seeing increasingly well-judged white balance, improved hybrid zoom quality, and slightly increasingly detail retention in our zoom comparisons. But this all comes at the expense of increasingly noise at times, which can overpower any of these same gains. Meanwhile, our low-light shootout shows that while the S23 Ultra delivers a cleaner image, Samsung needs to work on improving exposure in darker parts of the image.

The good news is that the visitor should be worldly-wise to modernize matters via a software update, and it’s believed that a camera-focused update is indeed on the way. Nevertheless, you can’t go wrong with either handset if you value low-light snaps and zoomed shots.

Frequently Asked Questions!

Is there any difference between S22 Ultra and S23 Ultra?

While the two telephones offer a similar battery, that new chipset on the S23 Ultra will keep you controlled up for longer than on the S22 Ultra. Assuming cost is the main thought, remember that the S23 Ultra will cost somewhat more than the S22 Ultra in light of the many arrangements to be had on the more seasoned model.

What is the difference between the S22 and the S23?

Moreover, the S23 has a better than ever cooling framework set up. The S22 is somewhat close behind and intrigues its strong Exynos 2200 (4nm) processor and 8GB Smash, offering first in class gaming abilities. The S23 has a 3900 mAh battery and the S22 has a 3700 mAh battery.

Is S23 much better than S22?

The Samsung World S23 enhances the S22 in significant ways, including battery duration and power. Yet, it seems to be a little overhaul in general, and it comes at a more exorbitant cost in certain locales.

Is it worth buying S22 Ultra or wait for S23 Ultra?

I had the S22 Ultra and exchanged it for the 23 Ultra and don't think twice about it the slightest bit. The speed, battery duration and general feel is good and I will doubtlessly be saving this for somewhere around 2 years, likely more. On the off chance that you're content with your ongoing telephone, remain with that yet you will not be disheartened assuming you do update.

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