Galaxy S21 Ultra versus iPhone 12 camera comparison: unexpected results


The iPhone 12 is regarded as one of the best smartphones on the market for capturing photos and videos. Its setup is pretty simple with three 12MP sensors capable of capturing 4K video at up to 60fps. If we’re simply comparing specs, the new Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra definitely has it beat with its 108MP main camera, 12MP macro camera, and two 10MP cameras paired with 3x and 10x zoom lenses. For its front-facing camera, the S21 Ultra also has a 40MP sensor. Samsung’s phone is also capable of recording 40K video at 60fps from all of its sensors, but the main 108MP sensor can take the resolution all the way up to 8K at 24fps.

While the Galaxy S21 Ultra’s specs are impressive, the only way to know if the device captures better photos than the iPhone 12 is to do a side-by-side comparison in a variety of different lighting conditions. And that’s exactly what we’ve done.

One thing to keep in mind is that the iPhone 12 is roughly $400 cheaper than the Galaxy S21 Ultra. Take a look at the video and image gallery to see how the Samsung Galaxy S21 and iPhone 12 compare in everyday use.

Galaxy S21 Ultra versus iPhone 12 camera specs

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

  • 108MP Phase Detection AF, OIS, F1.8, 0.8µm (main)
  • 12MP Dual Pixel AF, FOV 120°, F2.2, 1.4µm (ultrawide)
  • 10MP Dual Pixel AF, Optical 3x, OIS, F2.4, 1.22µm (3x telephoto)
  • 10MP Dual Pixel AF, Optical 10x, OIS, F4.9, 1.22µm (10x telephoto)
  • 40MP Phase Detection AF, FOV 80°, F2.2, 0.7 µm (selfie)
  • Video: 4K@60fps from all cameras, 8K@24fps from main

Galaxy S21 Ultra versus Pixel 5 camera comparison: Dethroning the King

Apple iPhone 12

  • 12 MP, f/1.6, 26mm (wide), 1.4µm, dual pixel PDAF, OIS (main)
  • 12 MP, f/2.4, 120˚, 13mm (ultrawide), 1/3.6″ (ultrawide)
  • 12 MP, f/2.2, 23mm (wide), 1/3.6″ (selfie)
  • Video: 4K@/60fps

Galaxy S21 Ultra versus iPhone 12

Nick Gray
I'm a life-long tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC. After writing about tech for more than a decade, I jumped at the opportunity to take on the role of Editor in Chief at Phandroid. Please contact me at [email protected].

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