Huawei has just announced its new P30 and P30 Pro flagship smartphones, and one of the biggest things Huawei focused on was smartphone quality. Both phones are low-light monsters, and the P30 Pro has a sensitivity that goes up to a staggering ISO 409600.
The back of the P30 Pro features a quad-camera setup with a 20MP 16mm f/2.2 ultra-wide camera, a 40MP 27mm f/1.6 OIS main camera, an 8MP 125mm f/3.4 OIS telephoto camera, and a time-of-flight (TOF) camera for depth sensing. The camera system uses a periscope design to provide 10x of near-lossless zoom. On the front of the phone is a 32MP selfie camera.
At its highly-anticipated unveiling event in Paris today, Huawei spent a considerable amount of time boasting that the P30 Pro has the highest light sensitivity found on the market today.
Huawei notes that while the P20 Pro unveiled in 2018 has a max ISO of 102400 that matches the Canon 5D Mark IV in sensitivity, the P30 Pro blows both of those devices out of the water with ISO 409600.
“It’s unbelievable,” says Huawei business group CEO Richard Yu, who says that the phone is able to capture photos in near darkness with just 1 lux of illumination — by comparison, DxOMark’s low light test only takes cameras down to 5 lux. Huawei says its 1/1.7-inch SuperSensing RYYB sensor that uses yellow instead of green can collect 40% more light than traditional RGB sensors.
At 1 lux, while the iPhone XS MAX and Samsung Galaxy S10+ both capture black frames and when the human eye can’t see anything, the P30 Pro can capture bright, vivid colors.
Yu says the P30 Pro can shoot photos of the starry night sky with a single non-long-exposure shot, showing an example of a f/1.6, 0.85s, ISO 102400 photo:
And the low-light capabilities are useful for parents who wish to capture precious moments of their kids at night — during bedtime, for example:
Turn on Handheld Night Mode, and you can shoot photos of auroras without a tripod:
And in Long Exposure mode, even more creative possibilities are opened up:
“The zoom on its own will make the new Huawei an extremely tempting option for many mobile photographers, but the camera performs very well in almost all other areas as well,” DxOMark writes in its review. “The bokeh mode is the best we have seen; image detail and noise levels are excellent across all light levels; and the camera records high-quality footage in video mode.
“There is still some room for improvement in terms of color and artifacts, but these are relatively minor shortcomings that most users will be able to easily live with. [T]he P30 Pro is easily the most versatile mobile imaging tool to date, allowing you to cover a wider range of photographic situations than any other smartphone.”
Other photography features include a 50x digital zoom (that combines OIS and AI), an LED flash, and HDR.
On the video front, the P30 Pro can shoot 2160p at 30fps, 1080p at 60fps, and 720p at 960fps.
Other non-imaging features and specs of the P30 Pro include a 6.47-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 2,340×1,080, Android 9.0 Pie, 128GB/256GB/512GB storage, a Kirin 980 processor, 8GB RAM, Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, an in-display fingerprint sensor, IP68 water resistance, and a 4,200mAh battery.
The Huawei P30 Pro is available today over in Europe (in blue, white, amber, aurora, and black) and costs €999 (~$1,127) for 128GB of storage, €1,099 (~$1,240) for 256GB, and €1,249 (~$1,409) for 512GB.