This page answers the most frequently asked questions about our Uber-G Camera HW (hardware) score, which is driven by technical data and our proprietary algorithm.

Goal: the Camera HW’s assesses how strong a mobile camera system is in the following contexts: Day, Night, Ultrawide and Zoom photography. We call these the “pillars of mobile photography”.

What is a Camera HW (hardware) score?

A camera hardware score is an objective rating that is computed by an algorithm based on the technical data (specifications) of the rear camera system of a mobile phone with one or multiple cameras. The goal is to quantify how “powerful” the camera hardware is (sensors + optics).

Why do we need a Camera HW score?

There are 1000 new phones on the market every year. Most of them will never have their cameras thouroughly tested and rated. Our camera hardware score has been created to accurately rate more mobile cameras, faster. Ubergizmo’s Camera HW score saves time for both experts and novices alike.

When experts look at a mobile camera system, they use their knowledge and experience to gauge how powerful (“good”) they expect it to be. Similarly, people evaluating a car might look at Horsepower or Torque, or check the BTUs for a gas burner or furnace. They could influence whether or not you consider a product.

How do you compare different camera hardware?

Just like our Camera IQ score (image-quality), our Camera HW score boils down the hardware strength for typical use cases: Day+Night, Ultrawide, and Zoom photography. Day/Night photos are using the “Wide” primary camera.

Ubergizmo’s proprietary algorithm looks at the technical data we have gathered for all available cameras and computes how each contributes to the overall score.

Including Ultrawide and Zoom seems unfair to single-lens cameras

Dedicated Ultrawide and Zoom camera modules have been integrated for years, and their usable model is well understood. That’s how we know that both should be considered in any modern camera score.

Ultrawide in particular greatly extends the versatility of a camera system, and has been proven to be very popular with users.

As a result, missing dedicated capabilities will result in a lower overall score. People can still look at the individual sub-scores to focus on one particular hardware strenght they are interested in.

  • Wide camera: most important for Day/Night
  • Ultrawide camera: second most important
  • Zoom: least important

How do you compute Ubergizmo’s Camera HW overall score?

The overall score is built using a weighted aggregate of the sub-scores, and ALL listed camera systems go through the same algorithm. Each sub-score (wide, ultrawide, zoom) is built based on a technical analysis of the camera’s specifications.

But, isn’t software crucial in mobile photography?

Absolutely! Software is an essential component of mobile photography and photography in general. However, Software outcomes also depend on the quality of the underlying data, and better camera hardware will yield better data.

One cannot beat vastly superior camera hardware with software, but one can have a slight image-quality edge within the same category of hardware.

That’s why there is a camera hardware arms race. Hardware is, by far, the most important quality indicator.

Can you give us an example of Camera module comparison?

Let’s compare the Zoom Camera of the Huawei P40 Pro (score: 8.6/10) against the zoom camera of the iPhone 11 Pro (score: 5.2/10).

  • iPhone 11 Pro (5.2/10): 51mm focal, f/2.0, 12 mm² sensor, OIS
  • P40 Pro (8.6/10): 135mm focal, f/3.4, 17.8 mm² sensor, OIS

Based on the above specifications (and more data points), a camera expert could easily assert that P40 Pro should be better at high-powered zoom. For non-experts, our algorithm instantly comes to the same conclusion.

How do you know if the model works?

The Camera HW algorithmic model is based on data gathered by our Camera IQ (image-quality). As such, we continually verify and refine the algorithm. To illustrate the previous question, here is a crop of a 10X zoom image:

comparison image Acomparison image B

Our algorithm did correctly predicts that the S20 Ultra and Note 20 Ultra would yield comparable results, despite having a very different zoom camera hardware. The Note 20 Ultra Camera IQ review image analysis did confirm the algorithm’s prediction.

  • S20 Ultra (9.6/10): 103mm focal, 48MP sensor (~30 mm²), f/3.5 aperture
  • Note 20 Ultra (9.6/10): 123mm focal, 12MP sensor (~12 mm²), f/3 aperture
comparison image Acomparison image B

How accurate is this when compared to Ubergizmo’s image-quality test?

Our Camera IQ benchmark remains the most accurate way to gauge a camera’s quality, there’s no question about that.

However, little data or no reliable IQ test is available for most cameras (~1000 new phones launched per year). For these, our Camera HW score, becomes the second-best indicator of a camera’s potential and can save people a lot of time, or highlights new options.

Why do iPhone and Google Pixel phones hardware score so low?

Both Apple and Google seem to rely on better software to remain sufficiently competitive instead of investing more in hardware. Historically, they also have been neglecting Ultrawide, or Long-Zoom camera hardware.

Our Camera IQ tests show that the strategy works to a point, but also highlights some image-quality shortcomings of their choice. You can read our iPhone 11 Pro Camera IQ review for example. The older Pixel 3 camera review is also interesting as a reference.

If anything, the gap between the Camera HW and Camera IQ scores could be considered as the unofficial “software quality” score.

Can the scores change over time? Yes, and here’s why

All scores can change if we update the algorithm or if the camera data is updated/corrected.

The x/10 scores will change as the technology gets better. The iPhone 7 wide camera was once a 10/10 when launched, but today, it is a mere 5.4/10. (Internally, we keep a higher-precision version of these scores).

How to read the numbers in the table below?

  • The “Camera Hardware score” is an absolute number, which means that it has no preset upper limit.
  • The sub-scores for Wide, Ultrawide and Zoom are in the x/10 format.
Uber-G Camera Hardware score Smartphone Wide U-Wide Zoom Year
238Huawei P40 Pro+9.8109.92020
236Huawei P40 Pro9.8108.62020
211Huawei Mate 30 Pro8.4106.22019
202Honor 30 Pro+9.55.8102020
201Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro10592020
200Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra9.85.19.62020
200Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra9.85.19.62020
198Xiaomi Mi Note 10 Pro (CC9 Pro)1057.32019
198Xiaomi Mi Note 10 (CC9)1057.32019
197Huawei P409.55.87.52020
185OnePlus 8 Pro9.34.962020
160Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G (SD)8.23.66.32020
157Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 28.23.652020
151Honor 20 Pro7.34.26.32019
143LG V50 ThinQ6.94.44.82019
142OnePlus 7T6.84.45.12019
140Samsung Galaxy Note 10+7.23.35.12019
140Samsung Galaxy Note 107.23.35.12019
139Motorola One Zoom6.54.36.32019
137LG V60 ThinQ7.63.42020
136ZTE Axon 10 Pro6.53.76.82019
136Huawei nova 56.45.82019
136Huawei nova 5 Pro6.45.82019
136TCL 10 Pro7.43.72020
128POCO F2 Pro6.83.82020
127POCO X3 NFC7.232020
123OnePlus 86.53.82020
121Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro7.22.22019
120Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max6.12.85.22019
120Apple iPhone 11 Pro6.12.85.22019
116Samsung Galaxy Z Flip6.33.12020
114LG Velvet 5G (SD 765G)6.42.82020
111Oppo Reno2 Z6.52.22019
110LG G8X ThinQ632019
107Xiaomi Black Shark 2 Pro6.75.12019
105Xiaomi Black Shark 26.55.12019
102Xiaomi Redmi K20 Pro6.44.62019
101Xiaomi Mi 9T6.34.62019
101Xiaomi Redmi K206.34.62019
101Xiaomi Mi 96.35.12019
101Google Pixel 46.34.52019
101Google Pixel 4 XL6.34.52019
98Google Pixel 4a6.82020
96Samsung Galaxy S86.62017
96Nokia 6.25.61.92019
95Motorola Moto Z46.52019
94Google Pixel 3a XL6.52019
94Google Pixel 3a6.52019
87Honor Honor 8x62018
84Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4s5.82019
74Motorola Moto G7 Power5.12019
67Samsung Galaxy A10s4.62019
65Samsung Galaxy A10e4.42019
62ASUS ZenFone Lite (L1)4.32018
62ASUS ZenFone Max (M1)4.32018
62Motorola Moto G7 Play4.22019
56Oppo A1k3.92019
161Huawei P30 Pro8.13.48.62019
159Huawei P307.64.86.42019
149Huawei Mate 20 Pro7.53.572018
149LG V407.14.84.32018
140Samsung Galaxy S10 5G7.23.34.92019
140Samsung Galaxy S107.23.34.92019
140Samsung Galaxy Fold7.23.34.92019
140LG G8 ThinQ7.14.82019
140Samsung Galaxy S10+7.23.34.92019
137Lenovo Legion Phone Duel7.24.32020
132OnePlus 7 Pro6.82.85.92019
130Samsung Galaxy S10e7.23.32019
127Huawei Mate 206.43.44.52018
126Samsung Galaxy A7 (2018)6.54.12018
124LG G7 ThinQ5.85.22018
115Samsung Galaxy S9+7.24.92018
115Samsung Galaxy Note 97.24.92018
114OnePlus 7 Pro 5G6.882019
106Samsung Galaxy Note 86.64.92017
105HTC U12+6.55.12018
105Samsung Galaxy S97.22018
104LG G65.33.52017
104LG V305.33.42017
102Honor Honor Magic 25.62.82018
98Apple iPhone XS6.14.92018
98Huawei P20 Pro5.95.92018
98Apple iPhone XS Max6.14.92018
97Samsung Galaxy A505.81.72019
96Google Pixel 36.62018
96Google Pixel 26.62017
96Samsung Galaxy S8+6.62017
96Google Pixel 3 XL6.62018
96OnePlus 6T6.62018
93Huawei P206.42018
93Xiaomi Mi Mix 36.42018
92Sony Xperia XZ26.32018
92Sony Xperia XZ36.32018
90Apple iPhone X5.55.22017
90Sony Xperia XA2 Plus6.22018
89Honor View 206.12018
88Apple iPhone XR6.12018
88Apple iPhone 8 Plus5.452017
88Apple iPhone 7 Plus5.452016
86Huawei Mate 105.92017
82Xiaomi Pocophone F15.72018
81Huawei nova 35.62018
81Honor 105.62018
79Apple iPhone 85.42017
79Apple iPhone 75.42016
75Xiaomi Mi 5X4.54.72017
70Samsung Galaxy On64.82018
67Honor Honor Play4.62018
66Xiaomi Redmi 54.52018
64Nokia 84.42017
59LG Q642017
57Huawei Y9 (2018)3.92018
52Samsung Galaxy J7 (SM-J727U, 2017)3.62017
40Xiaomi Redmi Go2.82019

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