It was a short-lived reign for the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra. After wrestling the “best camera phone” crown from the Huawei P40 Pro in August, another Huawei device has taken the title from the company’s 10th-anniversary handset.
(Update, December 1: Finally, the Huawei Mate 40 Pro’s Philippine price and release date…)
(Update, November 11: Check out our unboxing and initial review of the Huawei Mate 40 Pro!)
The Huawei Mate 40 Pro from the newly launched Mate 40 series is now on top of the rankings on image-quality ratings site DxOMark. And this time, it’s actually No. 1 in the photo and video sub-categories for both the rear and front camera setups.
According to DxOMark, the Pro model has a particularly impressive dynamic range, “providing good highlight retention even in low light, something that even many flagship phones struggle with.”
The Huawei Mate 40 Pro is also said to offer a great balance between texture and noise in different lighting conditions, an excellent color rendering, a fast and accurate auto-focus system, and a natural-looking bokeh simulation in Portrait mode.
The smartphone is supposedly one of the best for tele-zoom. And while DxOMark says the ultra-wide-angle lens still has to make do with a narrower field of view than on many of the Pro’s rivals — just like on other premium Huawei units — it also reveals that image quality is generally excellent.
Shooting videos is a breeze, with captured 4K footage showing good detail and low noise levels in all situations. “Color is nice, too, and the auto white-balance system works well and adjusts smoothly to changes in illumination,” DxOMark adds.
The Mate 40 Pro likewise offers an auto-focus system that can adjust well when the distance of the subject changes and an effective video stabilization that helps in creating a cinematic effect. However, watch out for some highlight clipping in difficult high-contrast scenes, slight underexposure and limited dynamic range in challenging video scenes, and some color quantization and ghosting effects. You can read DxOMark’s review here.
Take note that this Huawei flagship features a 50-megapixel main shooter; a second-generation Cine camera with a 20-megapixel sensor and an f/1.8 ultra-wide-angle, free-form lens; a 12-megapixel sensor behind a 125mm periscope lens; and time-of-flight cameras.
Taking selfies — stills or clips — with the Huawei Mate 40 Pro isn’t a problem either. It has a simple setup: a 13-megapixel Cine selfie camera joined by a dedicated depth sensor. But don’t mistake simplicity for inferiority; DxOMark says the smartphone “delivers good face exposures down to low light levels and offers a wide dynamic range.”
Colors are supposedly nice; white balance is good in low light; focus is top-notch, especially in closeup shots and pictures captured at arm’s length; and image noise is well under control in all shooting conditions. The review of the Mate 40 Pro’s front-camera system can be read in full here.
Yes, DxOMark will always be “just” a guide, but we think it’s a helpful one — something whose sample pictures and videos you should check out when mobile photography and videography is your priority when choosing a smartphone.
Video highlights of the global launch of the Huawei Mate 40, Mate 40 Pro, and Mate 40 Pro Plus and Porsche Design Huawei Mate 40 RS
Huawei Mate 40 Pro specs
- 6.76-inch curved OLED display, 2,772 x 1,344 resolution, 90Hz refresh rate
- Octa-core 5nm Kirin 9000 processor with built-in 5G
- Mali-G78 MP24 GPU
- 8GB RAM
- 256GB storage
- Quad 50-megapixel, f/1.9 (main), 20-megapixel (Cine ultra-wide), 12-megapixel (periscope telephoto) with OIS, ToF 3D rear cameras
- 13-megapixel (Cine), f/2.4, ToF 3D front cameras
- Fingerprint reader (in-display)
- 4,400mAh battery with 66-watt USB-C charging, 50-watt wireless fast charging
- EMUI 11 based on Android 10
- IP68 rating
- Color options: Mystic Silver, Black, White, Yellow (leather), Green (leather)
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