5 best camera features on the Galaxy S20 Ultra

Samsung finally exposed its latest flagship phones: Galaxy S20, S20 Plus, and the S20 Ultra.

The S20 Ultra is the hero of them all. It has boosted specs and features that you can't find in the other two. But what grabs your attention is the camera. It contains some of the biggest upgrades and it's not being subtle at all; the camera bump is absolutely immense.

And as weird as it may look, it does have a couple of cool tricks up its sleeve.

The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with the S20 and S20 Plus.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with the S20 and S20 Plus.

Let's take a look at five new camera features found on Samsung's Galaxy S20 Ultra. While there are a lot of them, we'll try to narrow them down.

The 5 best camera features on the Galaxy S20 Ultra are the:

  • 100X Zoom
  • Night Mode
  • Single capture
  • 8K video
  • Pro Video

100X Zoom

Much like it's ancestor, the Galaxy S10, there are three main cameras on the Galaxy S20 Ultra too. The camera consists of a standard zoom lens, an ultra-wide-angle lens, and a telephoto zoom lens. The last zoom lens is what makes the difference and has been seriously beefed up here. It's placed at the bottom of the camera module, next to the text “space zoom”.

When you take a closer look, the lens looks obviously weird because of the new optics that enable it to have such a huge amount of zoom. With those optics and its 48 MegaPixel resolution, you can zoom up to 100X! That's absolutely astonishing level of zooming. And as far as I'm concerned, that makes this phone the lovechild of a Galaxy S10 and the Hubble telescope.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 100X zoom in a GIF
Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 100X zoom in a GIF

We were able to zoom in on a bottle all the way across the room and could read the label pretty clearly. That's pretty impressive considering that when it's your naked eye you can't even see there is a bottle at all. But you shouldn't really expect it to be pin-sharp with clarity. While we could see the bottle's logo, there was indeed some image noise and other artifacts. But this only really means that the image you've just taken doesn't end up printed on a gallery wall. And, also at the 30x zoom, the quality looked way better.

But, the 100X zoom is a feature only reserved for the S20 Ultra. So if you think that this feature doesn't make a difference to you whatsoever, maybe the S20 or the S20 Plus is the right choice for you.

The 100X zoom definitely tops the “5 best camera features on the Galaxy S20 Ultra” list.

Night Mode

The main camera sensor has an amazing 108 MegaPixel resolution. But it's not just for needlessly-detailed images, though. It can combine nine pixels into one single, which captures more light that way. The result? A 12 MegaPixel image that, even in the darkest conditions, comes out well-exposed.

While we haven't gotten around using that feature that much yet, we did get a glimpse of it. Night-time shooting skills have been a focus on a lot of new phones. For example, the iPhone 11 and Pixel 4 take amazing shots in the dark. But, with the new Galaxy S20 Ultra specs, it's really interesting to find out what Samsung's new technology can offer to compete.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Night Mode
Samsung Galaxy S20 Night Mode

If this new feature is not something you're keen on, you can always turn it off by going to Settings and shoot at the full 108 MegaPixel. This way, you'll get bigger and more detailed images. Having the extra resolution gives you way more scope for cropping the image later should you need to. Even though, how well these high-res images can look from a tiny phone camera sensor is yet to be seen…


Single Capture

Single Capture is a new mode that allows you to shoot a 10-seconds video and then show it to you as a whole variety of photos and smaller video clips. All of them are shot with different zoom levels and some are with different effects such as black and while already applied.

The main idea behind all this is that you shoot a little scene, say blowing the candles of a birthday cake. Now, instead of having to decide in advance to just take one image, the Single Capture does it for you. It takes a whole bunch of different images for you to choose from.

Then, you can select the shots you want to save as they are. Or, you can also use the software to automatically combine them into a little highlight reel. This is a very nice way to share them with your friends or family that really captures the moment.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Single Capture feature
Samsung Galaxy S20 Single Capture feature

This is probably the least fun feature, but it's something new and cool too. It's very appealing when it comes to people with young families who're looking to share the fun things they do with their kids.

8K Video

The video skills have taken a lot of focus on the new Galaxy S20. And this comes around the time when we were just getting the grips on shooting with 4K.

Why 8K? You can, of course, shoot in the maximum resolution of bragging rights if you want to. Even though the display is not sharp enough to show the video off, there are alternatives. You can shoot it with your phone, upload it to YouTube (which supports 8K), then play the video on a TV that supports 8K. Not too much, right?

The other benefit is that you can crop the footage or take 33 MegaPixel still images from your video footage. The image would appear as if it was shot with a 33 MegaPixel camera.

Samsung's Galaxy S20 can pull 33MP stills out of 8K video
Samsung's Galaxy S20 can pull 33MP stills out of 8K video

The downside of the 8K video is that it takes a lot, a lot of your storage space. A 20-second-8K-video takes up almost 200MB of space, while a 20-second-Full-HD video takes up some 40MB.

So, if you're planning to use this feature a lot, you'll probably be better off with a 512GB storage option.

Pro Video

Samsung is not just for still pictures anymore. It added a pro mode for videos that allows you to manually control over the settings like:

  • ISO
  • Shutter speed
  • Focus
  • White balance

It also has a niche appeal, and if you're looking to create cinematic-looking footage for YouTube, you'll get some use out of this model. But, you have to keep in mind that you can't use the 8K Video resolution in this mode, unfortunately.

Samsung also boosted the video stabilization feature by improving the hardware, as well as the software. It looks like it did a solid job during the time we tried it.

In addition to all these rear camera features, the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra also cares about the front-facing camera. It has a 40 MegaPixel front-face camera, which is tucked into a little cut-out hole in the front. It also has a whopping 6.9-inch display, 16GB of RAM and 5G connectivity for ultrafast data speeds. This, of course, comes in handy with the uploading of the 8K video files.

Take a look at Marques Brownlee and his review of the new Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra features:


If we forgot to add something to the “5 best camera features on the Galaxy S20 Ultra” list contact us and let us know.