The fact that the S20+ shares the S20's hardware means it produces the same image and video quality. Having said that, we still took most of our usual samples on the S20+ and you'll find those below. We went into a lot of detail in our examination of the Galaxy S20's camera performance when we reviewed the base model a couple of weeks ago. We encourage you to head over there for more in-depth analyses and comparisons with the Galaxy Note10+ and the Galaxy S20 Ultra.
The Galaxy S20+ delivers very pleasing images in daylight, that should have been obvious. The main camera has very competent processing, Auto HDR is reliable if a little relaxed in terms of pulling up the shadows, and colors are satisfyingly vivid without going to over the top.
The ultrawide angle camera isn't quite up there in terms of per-pixel detail (none of the ultrawides on the market seem to be) but still captures enough. Colors are a nice match for the main cam and dynamic range is good, if not quite up there with the 1x module.
The telephoto cam that isn't. The Galaxy S20+'s zoom camera that optically offers just 1.07x magnification over the main unit takes properly impressive shots in its nominal 64MP resolution given plenty of light to work with.
At 2x and 3x magnification you can count on nicely detailed images. If a phone had an actual 2x or 3x telephoto camera and put out these photos, you'd be perfectly happy with those. Samsung's approach may be different, but the end result is what matters.
At 4x zoom, things are still looking good even on a per-pixel level, though the photos are starting to lose their sharpness.
10x zoom is pushing the limits of usability, and those shots are best not examined up close - at fit-to-screen they'll do.
As a wrap-up, here's the same scene shot at the available pre-set zoom levels to illustrate the zoom range of sorts of the Galaxy S20+. The highest 30x zoom level is only usable for checking out distant objects, not really for obtaining a 'photo' of them.
The S20+'s excellent performance continues into low-light shooting. Dynamic range is already great even before resorting to Night mode, detail is excellent and noise is kept reasonably in check.
Night mode improves the noise performance and gives a noticeable boost to shadow pulling up extra detail there.
The effects of the Night mode processing are particularly impressive in ultrawide angle images, where dark scenes are often underexposed in Photo mode, but become significantly better in Night mode.
Similar benefits in terms of noise reduction and shadow development can be seen in the Night mode shots taken a 3x zoom, though they do still look okay in Photo mode as well.
Once you're done with the real world samples, head over to our Photo compare tool to see how the Samsung Galaxy S20+ stacks up against the competition.
Live focus mode on the Galaxy S20+ benefits from the inclusion of a ToF module letting it more precisely gauge depth information in the scene than what the S20 can. Two zoom levels are available, the wide one being captured by the main cam, while the zoomed-in mode comes from a crop out of the 64MP shooter. Both offer proficient subject detection and portraits look really good out of the S20+.
One peculiarity we discovered due to the fact that shooting these was a one person affair, was that using the self timer locks focus at the time you press the shutter button, and not at the time of taking the picture. It was a trial and error procedure with focusing at the palm of one hand, stretched out to where the subject (himself also the photographer) would be 5 seconds later. Samsung could probably rethink the logic behind this.
Live focus mode is equally well suited to non-human subject when you want to emphasize your subject and make it stand out from the background. We think the S20+ did an axcellent job even with fairly complex subjects.
Selfies out of the S20+ should be the same you'd get from the S20. A similarly looking specsheet had us believing that the hardware is the same as on the Note10s from last year, but looking up the sensor designations proved otherwise.
In any case, the images look excellent and are nicely detailed when the light is right. In dimmer conditions, the phone prioritizes detail over noise reduction which we find to be a welcome approach. We did count more than the usual number of misfocused shots in darker light. Colors do have a slightly muted look in comparison to the primary cam's output, though we'd be happy with the selfies taken in isolation.
Selfie portraits will make you happy, as long as you understand the limitations of the single-camera approach. Alternatively, you can have your hair in check and you'll be fine.