OnePlus 7 Pro doesn’t have 3x optical zoom as advertised (Updated) - Android Authority
OnePlus 7 Pro doesn’t have 3x optical zoom as advertised (Updated) Android AuthorityThe OnePlus 7 Pro touts a 3x telephoto camera, but it's emerged that the company actually uses a 2.2x telephoto zoom camera on its latest flagship.
Update: May 24, 2019 at 4:25 p.m. ET: We’ve been back and forth with OnePlus about this camera topic today and it seems that a bit of a grey area in terms is getting in the way of understanding what’s really going on.
OnePlus is adamant that there’s no dishonesty on its part and that the 3x zoom provides full lossless quality. The quality part is true — there’s no digital zoom or quality degradation going on. What’s happening is that the 3x zoom reduces the field of view from the full 13MP sensor to give you an 8MP output. It’s also worth noting that OnePlus’ marketing material mentions 3x zoom at 8 megapixels, which is exactly what you get out of the camera, although the hardware is a little different.
In my opinion, the debate really comes down to what you consider an “optical” zoom and how this relates to focal length and field of view. Camera lenses are fixed in smartphones, which means that the focal length is set based on the sensor size, distance, and aperture of the lens. In the OnePlus 7 Pro, the telephoto camera used for portrait mode and zoom has a focal length appears to produce approximately a 2.2x zoom compared to the regular sensor. This focal length is dependant on the 13MP sensor size and cannot change if you switch to 8MP. However, you can make an image appear more zoomed in on a small screen, without degrading quality, by cropping or changing the field of view. This is what the OnePlus 7 Pro does.
Ultimately what you’re getting here is a crop, and that’s okay. However, I wouldn’t consider it a 3x optical zoom camera in the strictest sense. Why implement the camera this way rather than giving users a 13MP output at 2.2x and allowing them to crop in manually in photo as well as portrait mode? I’m not sure. We made a few tweaks to the original article below to better clarify these points.
Original article: May 24, 2019 at 5:58 a.m. ET: The has earned praise from reviewers, but we thought photo quality was one major weak spot in our . Now, it seems like OnePlus may have hit a bit of a grey around about its zoom capabilities.
Reddit user discovered that there were differences when switching from portrait mode to the 3x telephoto zoom camera. The user found that portrait mode shots were zoomed out (2.2x) and at 13MP, while the 3x zoom option was indeed showing 3x zoom and at 8MP.
We can confirm this by overlaying the different camera files over one another (see below).
It’s clear that there’s a reduction in the megapixel count and the 3x zoom picture is clearly a crop of the larger 2.2x zoomed image. However, note that it’s not perfectly aligned and sized, suggesting that there’s a little more than simple cropping going on here. More on that in a minute.