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Samsung launches Galaxy A7 triple-camera mid-range smartphone

Huawei's P20 Pro started the trend towards the end of last year and now triple-cameras are quickly becoming the norm. Samsung just launched the Galaxy A7, a mid-range device that features a triple-camera on its rear.

A 24MP / F1.7 main camera is joined by an 8MP / F2.4 super-wide-angle with a 120-degree field of view and a third 5MP module is reserved for creating the background-blurring fake bokeh effect in portrait mode. So, unfortunately the Samsung's triple-cam setup does not come with a tele lens but maybe that's too much to ask from a mid-ranger at this point.

The rear camera uses Samsung's Intelligent Scene Optimizer system, which uses scene recognition to automatically adjust contrast, brightness and color for optimized image output.

The front camera features a 24MP / F2.0 camera module, LED flash and bokeh mode, so should be good for decent selfies, even in low light conditions. The rest of the specifications look very respectable for a mid-range device as well. The 6-inch Super AMOLED display comes with a 1,080 x 2,220 resolution and the Android OS is powered by an 8-core Exynos chipset and, depending on region, 4 or 6GB of RAM.

Internal memory options go up to 128GB and a microSD slot is on board as well. A side fingerprint sensor and Dolby Atmos sound complete the package. The only unknown at this point is the price. However, Samsung has promised to provide more information at a Galaxy event on October 11th. We'll keep you posted.

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rallyfan
rallyfan

I'm enjoying smartphone releases that make the bokeh idiots with their multi-thousand-$$$ lenses even less relevant. Now all we need to do is wait until all the "35mm equivalency" idiots retire and/or move on to the big photo lab dark room in the sky and that's that.

Looking forward to images from multiple sensors increasingly sorted out in silico to make bazooka lenses and fisheyes a thing of the past.

1 month ago
Mac McCreery
Mac McCreery

My bokeh lens cost a tenner! Cheers Helios.

1 month ago
rallyfan
rallyfan

Cheers to that!

1 month ago
Raymond Cho

For the general market, the nicer phones with the better camera does make sense. No one of that market buys cameras anymore.

I was just comparing someone's iPhone 5S here with a much newer Huawei Nova 2i. The iPhone camera is better.

If I was on holiday with the family (snapshots etc) I take a Ricoh GR because I am a camera geek but really if I left it at home or it broke, I wouldn't have any concerns with a nice phone 1 or 2 generations old.

1 month ago
Ron Poelman
Ron Poelman

Wow, another phone.
Call me when they finally get around to using the entire screen as a sensor, maybe then we can zoom in to our heart's content.

1 month ago
Boss of Sony

So even the latest phones have affordable, small, light ultra wide angle prime lenses but Panasonic and Olympus are yet to release a single UWA prime for their increasingly expensive M43 system.

1 month ago
Thematic

Samsung at it again.

A7

Should sit well next to their Galaxy Alpha

https://www.cnet.com/reviews/samsung-galaxy-alpha-review/

If Apple and Sony make something or name something - Samsung will copy.

1 month ago*
dccdp

Are you for real? What did they copy from Sony? Letter A? The Samsung A series was launched many years ago, they have both phones and tablets in that range.

And, if they were copying from Apple, how come iphones didn't have OLED screens until recently, while Samsung uses OLED even in entry-level phones since a long time ago? (this is only an example, obviously)

1 month ago
Mike FL

In you are looking for copycat, looking no further than China, Take a look:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx5zdf-bG4c

In additional to the king of the copycat, China is also the king of the FAKE such as "10 FAKE Chinese Foods That May KILL You!" for example:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cgSIH8uuV8

Ok, not the last:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgvfKvl7zWA

1 month ago*
Mariano Pacifico

It is a camera that has three lenses ... I-do-not-even-know-I-Have-it-in-my-pocket, takes good smooth videos ... makes calls ... guides me home ... tells temperature, longitude, latitude and time ... bleeding-edge technology ... waterproof ... shock-proof and surf ... dSLRs and FF Mirrorless has none of these it just shoot pictures. SAD.

1 month ago*
badi

a swiss-army-knife... it has a knife, a file, a screw-driver, a can opener, a bottle opener, nail clipper, etc. It is so SAD that people still use kitchen knives when cooking...

1 month ago
Sophie Sarah

Have it's a fast charger?
Because, Nowadays, the first charger is the amazing invention in this time. and it makes the battery full within 2 munites.

1 month ago
MRWEC

2 mins? Are you living in 3018?

1 month ago
timbazi
timbazi

I've become rather uninterested in phones.
Only thing they are good for is communication and load your stupid selfies with a ton of crappy filters, if you're into that sort of thing. (And I guess remote control + extra screen :) )

But if they think it will sell, then why not, eh?

1 month ago
knappe duivel
knappe duivel

'I've become rather uninterested in phones.'

Good for you. Smartphones and timbazi are obvousily not a good fit.

1 month ago
Will Murray
Will Murray

Unless you ALWAYS carry a camera the image making capability of a phone is an important feature.

However, you can buy phones that simply make phone calls and send text.

1 month ago
J A C S
J A C S

Does it make calls?

1 month ago
knappe duivel
knappe duivel

Not unless you want it to

1 month ago
Mariano Pacifico

Yes, it does make calls even under 10m of water ... can you talk under water? I don't. I can text ...

1 month ago*
tangbunna

yes it will. even you are sleeping or working it will call home and copy your footprints to its boss. and tell your privacy to google, trump, ads, and samsung

1 month ago
AaronsLyfe
AaronsLyfe

Well one a positive note..... it doesn't have a curved screen

1 month ago
Decooler

The mistake is the wide-angle, which should have the very highest resolution, because landscapes and streetscapes and interiors NEED hi-res or the detail capture is no good. 8MP is fine for selfies and other portraits, but the superwide should be on the back at 24MP f.2.0, not 8MP.

The choice of a high-res selfie camera is a new one on me> possibly they want selfies recognized as an art form (they can be so!), but surely 12MP is the max needed there.

1 month ago
Vit Adamek
Vit Adamek

I too think 8mpix is bit low for the ultra-wide angle but I would be happy with 12mpix to allow for a bit of cropping for 4k screens. I have LG G6 where the ultra-wide is bit soft but usable.

1 month ago*
Wallybipster

I thought the same thing, but was also thinking that it would be doubtful a UWA lens in a smartphone format could capture enough detail to make a big difference with a higher-res sensor.

1 month ago
Alexramos
Alexramos

8mpx for the super wide should be enough.
If more details of crop is needed, the phone has the 24mpx.
The Super wide could replace the panorama mode.

1 month ago
rcl100

This is so boring. Yet another wide angle. Seems people want a decent telephoto, but smartphones continue to give us wide angle. I guess wide angle is cheap and more profitable. A decent telephoto must be just too much engineering/money for smartphones as yet.

1 month ago
dccdp

If you need a telephoto, use a camera. Almost any camera will do. Seriously, you shouldn't expect a general purpose device, such as a phone, to be that versatile while still working well. They are simply not built for that, and there is no reason for them to be built that way.

1 month ago
larkhon

yes, why don't they put a 14-1000mm f1.4 in a phone, after all...

1 month ago
rcl100

I was thinking maybe 50-75mm. Doesn't seem too unreasonable to me. Instead, we just get more lenses . Phone brands are going more is better, same annoying mindset in regular cameras where long zooms will sell more, and the buyers won't care about noise.

1 month ago
Vit Adamek
Vit Adamek

If I have to choose between tele and ultrawide I would choose ultrawide - more useful in my book as you can just move to get closer or crop to magnify but you cannot move further in tight spaces.

1 month ago*
arra

@rcl100: iphones have 25mm and 50mm equiv lenses (both stabilized)

1 month ago*
bloodycape

Galaxy S8, S9, Note 8, and Note 9 all come with second lens at 56mm and IS too.

Also, arra only the X line has OIS on the tele lens, the 7 Plus did not and I think 8 Plus only has EIS.

1 month ago
epambos
epambos

You are aware of the existense of Huawei P20 Pro, aren't you?

Usable 3X optical zoom, as you request... :)

1 month ago
CarpentersEye
CarpentersEye

BS. It's too easy to put a magnifying glass in front of a phone to get the rare wide angle close up (where you'll need lighting too) and so wide angle freaks (fine but rare) don't need to mess it up for most people. But it is correct a wide angle centric phone needs the res there too.

It would be far more beneficial to make a people-centric focal range; from normal to over 70mm (FF equiv) short tele. Even another lens for longer.

And I like the idea of a luminance hi-res separate camera also. Then also add pixel shifting too.

The lowly phone can be the overall better system BECAUSE they are not afraid to combine real world benefits! Phoes are just starting to be better; such as the pocket category/function. We'll see; but Canikon is sleeping.

1 month ago*
larkhon

guys, how many manufacturers released phones with lens with a >70mm focal length? we can complain all we want but you can't have long focal length and keep the camera very slim at the same time. At some point there has to be a physical limit to the optics.

Edit: looks like on the P20 Pro the sensor size is 1/4.4" so they had to shrink the sensor in order to fit a 80mm eq. lens in the phone...

1 month ago*
CarpentersEye
CarpentersEye

"With an equivalent focal length of 80mm, the P20 Pro’s optically-stabilized tele-camera offers a significantly longer reach than the 2x tele-modules in the latest iPhone or Samsung Galaxy devices." -DXO

I remember when they used to say DSLR's had reached many limits due to unchanging physics. Apparently other things change. These are areas of true innovation.

1 month ago*
larkhon

again, they didn't push the laws of physics, they simply put a much smaller sensor inside so that the lens could fit...

1 month ago
CarpentersEye
CarpentersEye

"Again" if the "laws of physics" weren't progressively being worked with and around then we would not have any camera. The point is what are we doing about it? Not stopping.

1 month ago*
Kiril Karaatanasov

Ultra wide is nice!

I hope they do 3 camera setup of ultra wide, normal (35mm on 35mm camera), telephoto (70mm or even 85mm on 35mm camera)

1 month ago
RedFox88

Nope, ultra wide on a phone is there for selfies. Give my longer focal lengths

1 month ago
Kiril Karaatanasov

I want all three focal lengths. Telephoto should be more like 85 that is great for portrait. Even 105 would be nice. Wide angle as I understand is more like 12mm on full frame - quite impressive. If they can combine wide angle with HDR that would be lovely for trips. A 24 or 35mm equivalent normal lens would be great for all other situations

There is a front camera for selfies.

1 month ago
larkhon

ultra wide for selfies? ridiculous, have you ever seen a portrait taken with an UWA lens? if you like big noses I guess it can be of use...

1 month ago
JatusVincere

Who the fock use ultra wide to take selfie (for example LG G and V series)
Not so sure if RedFox88 was trolling.

1 month ago
Federico Ianni

Do not worry, next phones will have all of them.

1 month ago
dccdp

So, this is the new thing after rounded corners and shiny glass backs. The number of cameras on the respective shiny gadget. A status metric, a bragging right.

Too bad those protuberances look like the phone was infected with smallpox.

1 month ago
tkbslc

Telephoto lens would be way better than UWA given the excellent Pano modes on just about every camera.

1 month ago
steviewa

Same here as i find anything wider than 35mm is way too wide, 40, 60, 80mm would be far more useful for me an maybe make me use my phone more for taking pics

1 month ago
Marty4650
Marty4650

Someone should invent a camera shaped like a cell phone that has 16 cameras and sells for $2,000.

Wait.... I think it was already tried.
https://light.co/camera

1 month ago
Mike FL

That company is developing a 10 cameras cam as 16 cameras' version does not work well.

1 month ago*
Magnus3D

If the depth sensor is a black and white one it will serve more than one purpose, it will for example add contrast and fine detail to the main sensor if they have the same FOV. It also aids when it comes to noise reduction in low light photography. Which means the device has to do less post sharpening to achieve that. In the end it results in a better cleaner output.

1 month ago
Mike FL

The said incoming NOKIA has BW sensor in additional to depth sensor + other 3 sensor in total of 5.

We will see.

1 month ago
Mike FL

This thing is not a replacement for my LG G5 as I do not care "fake bokeh effect".

Plus, the UWA may be not as wide as LG G5 if this Samsung's "120-degree field of view" is 16:9, but it will be wider than LG G5 in 4:3 mode if this Samsung's "120-degree field of view" is 4:3.

But, LG G5's UWA has bad distortion which can not be fixed by De-fish tools that I have.

BTW, Here is the LG G5's spec:

16 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/2.6", laser AF, 3-axis OIS
8 MP, f/2.4, 9mm, 1/3.6", no AF

1 month ago
noisephotographer

There are no official specs for the LG G5 ultra wide angle camera and I think it's likely a 1/4" sensor, not 1/3.6". So I would assume that the A7 has a 1/4" sensor as well.

1 month ago
Jo Lovell
Jo Lovell

@Mike FL - I have the G5 too. If you change your mind on the fake bokeh or want to try out the computational photography of the Pixel you can download the Google camera app - just search for "Google Camera port for LG G5 Normal & Wide Angle". It's really rather good, though needs some learning curve to tweak the parameters the ported app gives you (that Google don't otherwise let you change). In good light it is better than I ever thought a phone would be capable of recording.

1 month ago
Mike FL

I'll try it, and I have a question that after I install the google camera App, does the LG phone app still work as normal? Or the Google camera will overwrite the LG phone app?

1 month ago
Horshack

@Jo Lovell, thanks for the heads up! Just tried the app on my G5 and it works great.

1 month ago
JatusVincere

LG G5 - 135° in 16:9
LG V20 - 135° in 16:9
LG G6 - 125° in 4:3
LG V30 - 120° in 4:3
LG G7 - 107° in 4:3

1 month ago
Mike FL

Right, in 4:3 mode, LG G6 is wider than LG G5.

1 month ago
Jo Lovell
Jo Lovell

It installs as a new app. Two, actually, one for the wide angle and one for the 'normal'.

1 month ago
steviewa

If you get the google app, you can choose which app to use as it's a separate app, it's your choice which to use, flick from one to the other, it seems to be far better with noise on low light shots on my nokia 7 plus but not really done any testing other than a quick side by side comparison indoors

1 month ago
Mike FL

@Jo Lovell, I saw different version of the APPs. can you please post a link for the latest Google camera app working for LG G5?

1 month ago
Mike FL

I have install both APPs from https://forum.xda-developers.com/lg-g5/themes/help-google-camera-port-cstark27-google-t3751224

Here is what I see:
1. It has less noise in low light which is good.

2. The google HDR seems does not increase the DR noticeably over LG G5's APP's DR. As far as I know, the LG G5 uses SONY HDR on sensor, but I do not know if Google APPs utilize the "SONY HDR on sensor"?

3. It seems slow/having lag for taking a picture,

I will try more.

1 month ago*
noisephotographer

Ok, I was wrong. LG G5 fisheye/ultra wide angle camera has a 1/3.6" sensor according to LG. But this was a 16:9 sensor, therefore the sensor area should be similar to the area of a 4:3 1/4" sensor.

3 weeks ago
jimrpdx
jimrpdx

So I'm thinking "mid range" phones are $299? If it's over $125 it's all noise to me. So much for "the norm". Nice that they are FF cameras though!

1 month ago*
blackcoffee17
blackcoffee17

I think the price is around $250.

1 month ago*
Mark Banas
Mark Banas

If you follow Apple's pricing guide, "mid range" is $400-600, and from the specs I'd think this Samsung will be closer to $400.

1 month ago
badi

Full price on the samsung's A6 is around $340 and A8 is $480. Both can be bought now for cheaper.
So i guess the A7 will be priced around $400-450. Considering the naming and the current prices, it doesn't look like there is too much room for a surprise.

1 month ago
blackcoffee17
blackcoffee17

24 MP on a 1/2.3 sensor. That is going to be just great waterpaint effect.

1 month ago
noisephotographer

Very likely not a 1/2.3" sensor. My guess would be a 20mm² sensor. Nonetheless many pixels are no disadvantage for low dynamic range scenes in good light conditions.

1 month ago
tkbslc

Depends how big you display it. Smaller sensor just means you have to view it smaller for same image quality.

1 month ago
Fly18
Fly18

Gillette Mach 3.

1 month ago
dccdp

Actually, those work pretty well, although your point is valid. This one is more like those "improved" versions with 5 blades. ;)

1 month ago
steviewa

Or the new heated one

1 month ago
Josh Leavitt
Josh Leavitt

Meh... I'm going to wait for an Octa-sensor phone. A tandem monochrome + Bayer CFA sensor arrangement for 14mm, 28mm, 50mm, and 100mm FF-equivalent focal lengths.

1 month ago
D_Gunman

Why is everyone on board with the fake-DoF effect? It's so ugly and laughable when Apple tried to compared it to bokeh achieved from a DSLR.

1 month ago
WillWeaverRVA

It's a gimmick. People want cool features that make their phone cameras seem like they take the pictures that regular cameras take without having to learn how to use a regular camera. I use my phone camera for random snapshots, if I want to do anything more refined, I get out my DSLR.

1 month ago
coreyweb

Honestly it's the future of photography though. I think you're naive if you think it's not. Once the computational tech they put in cameras gets strong enough and fast enough to do continuous and fast depth mapping and things of that nature it'll honestly make fancy lenses almost obsolete. We're a long ways away from that still....but it's definitely gonna be the future of it.

1 month ago
Fly18
Fly18

@D_Gunman

I agree. I have the iPhone X and tried the Bokeh. It does look fake to me. Specially with hair and light contrast.

I like having the tele lens for using it as, you know, a tele lens!

1 month ago
D_Gunman

@coreyweb It doesn’t really matter how advance or fast the phone chipset is in creating the shallow DoF effect, a phone camera simply can’t generate the same quality of bokeh as a camera lens due to tiny entrance pupil of phone camera and its lack of aperture blades. You can’t cheat physics.

1 month ago
badi

@Gunnman - actually it matters. And the whole point is to actually cheat the physics. If you manage to fully understand the image (know exactly which pixel belongs to what, and it's position in space) you can simulate any kind of bokeh and other effects you want. The problem, as coreyweb said, is that we are far from that. But, eventually technology will hit that point.

1 month ago
Horshack

Seems kind of a waste to have one of the cameras dedicated to facilitate the portrait/background blur mode when Google has already demonstrated it can be done so well algorithmically with a single camera.

1 month ago
Rensol

Google is not going to give those codes to others for free I think.

1 month ago
Horshack

@Rensol, understood, but Samsung is not without means. Consider the cost of that extra camera multiplied by the number of units they expect to sell - that's a pretty large budget to develop or buy the software.

1 month ago
HosseinG
HosseinG

Or consider how it would sell if it is the first 3 camera phone rather than a 2 camera among others.

1 month ago
tkbslc

Having been in on some software projects in my career, I would not be so quick to assume it is cheaper than hardware.

1 month ago
Horshack

@tkbslc, based on available figures for the additional cost of a second camera on previous Samsung phones, the third camera likely adds between $7 and $15. Multiply that by the millions of unit they will sell.

1 month ago
dccdp

Yes, but those 7-15 dollars are paid by customers, not by Samsung.

1 month ago
Horshack

And those dollars would be kept by Samsung if they didn't have to use them to pay for the extra camera module.

1 month ago
tkbslc

@Horshack - As I said, based on some software projects I've been around..... :)

1 month ago
badi

@tkbslc - it is not that easy. I was involved at some point in development of the OS for some routers used by a big telecom company. The manufacturer made some huge stretches to reduce some memory, and the hardware cost difference was 2$. And, being a professional equipment, it couldn't have sold that many as a n A7 phone :)

Usually price points are targets. The marketing doesn't go... well we'll sell it for whatever price it gets. We have A6 - $340. We have A8 - $480. The A7 must be $420, and include this cool features while still being at least as good as the A6 in all regards, but keep this and this better in the A8.

1 month ago*
virtualkyr
virtualkyr

4 cameras seem to be ideal then.

UWA
Normal
Tele
Depth

1 month ago
cosinaphile

just as cellphones redefine what passes for a photograph
the lenses sometimes redefine what is understood by telephoto...56mm???

according to some makers point of view

1 month ago
WillWeaverRVA

Well, on a sensor as tiny as the one that's likely in this phone, 56mm is *definitely* well within telephoto range. A 1/2.5" sensor (slightly larger than the one in the Galaxy S9) has a crop factor of 6, so 56mm on that would be equal to 336mm on full frame.

1 month ago*
cosinaphile

56mm fov equiv isnt tele anything on any sensor from the smallest to the largest

also 56 is 56 is 56

also the "actual" focal length isnt 56

i believe the actual focal length of the wider iphone camera is 4mm
28 equiv
and the longer is 8mm 56mm uquiv

1 month ago*
RedFox88

Nope. Have no need for ultra wide. Give me 100 and 200 mm equivalent lenses

1 month ago
cosinaphile

so it continues .... the sensor arms race ................ why not a pair of 1 1.7 sensors
a 21mm equiv and a 35mm equiv ... with a monochrome sensor thrown i for good measure and the benefit of non bayers image info

43 sq mm +43 sq mm plus maybe 12 mp monochrome ?

.......12 mp
.......43 mp
.....+ 43 mp
-------------------
........98 mp

.... almost a 1 inch sensor size but with computational possibility
and the dense resolution info of a monochrome sensor

.... why not a sensiblle approach? not a poor mans model L16
https://light.co/camera

because if they keep this up this is what a cellphone will look like in a few years

1 month ago*
supeyugin1

It will end at some point, when the manufactures understand that you can't defy laws of physics with computational BS. They do it just to save money on hardware. After that we will see sensor size race.

1 month ago
technotic

I need 4 cameras.

1 month ago
cosinaphile

ill see your 4 and raise you 1.....

1 month ago
tomface
tomface

4 cameras? 5 cameras? You guys must be new here............any real enthusiast already owns at least 10 of them.....plus whatever the phone gives you. LOL

1 month ago
cosinaphile

ive got way more than 10 tom.... i was specifically talking about the increasingly overpopulated back of a cellphone

1 month ago