Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S Camera Comparison: The Battle of the 48-Megapixel Sensors

If cameras are your main priority, is the new Redmi Note 7S a great deal, our should you spend a bit extra and get the Redmi Note 7 Pro?

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Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S Camera Comparison: The Battle of the 48-Megapixel Sensors

Redmi Note Pro and Redmi Note 7s have similar camera specifications but different sensors

Highlights
  • Both phones sport 48-megapixel sensors, but from different manufacturers
  • The Redmi Note 7 Pro can shoot 4K video, while the Note 7S cannot
  • The Redmi Note 7S costs Rs. 3,000 less than the Redmi Note 7 Pro

The new Redmi Note 7S (Review) is Xiaomi's latest budget offering, and it joins the new Redmi Note 7 family of smartphones. The highlight of this new model is its 48-megapixel primary rear camera, and Xiaomi has managed to launch this phone this at a lower price than the Redmi Note 7 Pro (Review). With the base variant starting at Rs. 10,999, the Redmi Note 7S is essentially a Redmi Note 7 with an upgraded main rear camera. However, this isn't the same 48-megapixel sensor that you get with the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The Redmi Note 7S uses a Samsung GM1 sensor, similar to the Vivo V15 Pro (Review), while the Redmi Note 7 Pro uses a Sony IMX586 sensor, which is the same one used in the OnePlus 7 Pro (Review). But how does the performance of the two cameras compare? We decided to find out.

Both cameras have phase detection autofocus (PDAF) and 1.6 micron (4-in-1) pixels. The Redmi Note 7S has an f/1.8 aperture, while the Redmi Note 7 Pro has a similar f/1.79 aperture. You can see the rest of the camera details in the table below.

    Redmi Note 7S Redmi Note 7 Pro
Primary Sensor Resolution 48-megapixels 48-megapixels
Sensor Samsung GM1 Sony IMX586
Aperture f/1.8 f/1.79
Autofocus PDAF PDAF
Pixel size 1.6 micron
(4-in-1)
1.6 micron
(4-in-1)

Depth Sensor
Resolution 5-megapixels 5-megapixels


Selfie Camera
Resolution 13-megapixels 13-megapixels
  Aperture f/2 f/2

 

For this test, the phones were updated to the latest available firmware, AI was switched on for all tests, and HDR was set to ‘Auto.' Both phones use a 4-in-1 oversampling technique, which merges image data from four pixels into one, giving you a 12-megapixel image. This tends to offer better details and more manageable file sizes.

While the focus of our tests will primarily be the main 48-megapixel sensors of both phones, it wouldn't be a proper camera comparison without testing their selfie cameras too, so we've thrown that test in. So let's dive in and compare the cameras on the Redmi Note 7S and Redmi Note 7 Pro.

 

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Daylight landscape

In our first test, the AI in the Redmi Note 7 Pro aggressively boosts the colours of the sky, which looks striking but isn't too accurate. The Redmi Note 7S, on the other hand, produces a slightly brighter image, so objects in the shadows are more visible. However, in terms of pure image quality and detail, the Redmi Note 7 Pro is better. It gets the exposure right on the building, and details are better defined. The image from the Redmi Note 7S looks a bit washed out and colours are a bit paler. Looking at the trees and the objects at the side of the frame, the Redmi Note 7 Pro cleans up noise very well, which is not the case with the Redmi Note 7S.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

In our second daylight test, it's actually pretty neck-and-neck between the two, making it hard to pick a definitive winner. Both shots have equally good colour saturation and detail. If we were to nitpick, then the Redmi Note 7 Pro does a marginally better job in handling noise on objects at the sides of the frame.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Tie

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: 48-megapixel test

Both phones have the ability to shoot at the full 48-megapixel resolution too. We thought we'd put this to the test, to see which phone captures better detail at the native resolution. We revisit our first landscape test, only this time, it's at the full sensor resolution. The colour characteristics remain the same, and the 48-megapixel shot from the Redmi Note 7 Pro offers better detail when compared to the Redmi Note 7S.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

At night, the Redmi Note 7 Pro still produces a more realistic looking shot, while the Redmi Note 7S boosts the colour of the sky a bit too much. However, the Redmi Note 7S actually has a much cleaner image once you zoom in all the way, compared to the Redmi Note 7 Pro, which has a slightly noisier shot.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Daylight macro

In our first macro test, we have an assortment of colours and textures to challenge the sensors in these two phones. Here, the Redmi Note 7 Pro captures more accurate colours and the reds on the roses are more evident, compared to the pinkish hue on the Redmi Note 7S. The levels of detail produced by both phones are good though.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

In the second sample, the orange colour of the flower is once again more accurately represented by the Redmi Note 7 Pro, while the 7S captures a more yellowish shade. Both reproduce good details, but if you zoom in really close, you'll notice that the edges are better defined on the Redmi Note 7 Pro than the Redmi Note 7S.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Portrait

We begin with an ordinary portrait shot of a person, shot in daylight. The Redmi Note 7 Pro has noticeably better skin tones and exposure. The Redmi Note 7S on the other hand overexposes the shot, burning the highlights on our subject's t-shirt and face.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

In Portait mode, neither of the phones lets you adjust the background blur while shooting, but with the Redmi Note 7 Pro, you can adjust it from the gallery afterwards, which the Redmi Note 7S doesn't allow. The Redmi Note 7S also misses out extra features in this mode such as lighting effects and beautification filters.

When shooting people, the Redmi Note 7 Pro has the most balanced shot, with good exposure, accurate skin tones, and a natural-looking background blur. The Redmi Note 7S overexposes the shot, blowing out the highlights in the background. The blur effect also looks a little forced. Colours are a little washed out, and our subjects's face is somewhat oversharpened.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

When shooting objects, it takes a while for the portrait effect to successfully kick in. This is why the perspective of the two samples looks slightly different, as were constantly adjusting our hand position. In the final shots, the Redmi Note 7 Pro clearly has a lead, as it produces a sharper image with better colours.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Selfie

For selfies, beatification was left at the default setting and AI was kept on. Both phones capture good colours and detail, but upon zooming in to the image, we notice that the Redmi Note 7 Pro delivers a cleaner image with less grain in background objects. As far as skin tones go, we prefer the shot captured by the Redmi Note 7S and this is the one we'd pick, since we have to choose a winner.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

When shooting outdoors at night, both phones produce grainy images, but the Redmi Note 7S produces a more usable one as the size of grain isn't very distracting, unlike the Redmi Note 7 Pro.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

With the screen flash enabled, the Redmi Note 7 Pro captures better skin tones since it has a brighter screen flash than the Redmi Note 7S.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

In Portrait mode, both phones do a decent job blurring out the edges around our subject's face, but once again, we have to hand it to the Redmi Note 7S for getting the skin tones better.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Night landscape

We shot our first low-light sample at dusk, and here, the Redmi Note 7S produces a better looking image compared to the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The warmer colour tone really brings out the colour of the sky and the surrounding buildings, making the image pop a little. The Redmi Note 7 Pro has a more neutral tone in comparison. Details are roughly the same with both phones.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

At night, the Redmi Note 7S manages to capture slightly better detail in distant objects. The difference is not huge and it's only noticeable if you compare the two shots side by side. The image is also a bit brighter compared to the Redmi Note 7 Pro, which brings out the detail in the shadow regions.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7S

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Night Macro

We see similar performance when shooting macros under low light. Both phones produce similar details but the Redmi Note 7S once again has a slightly warmer tone, compared to the more neutral tone on the Redmi Note 7 Pro.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Tie

 

It's the same story in our second sample too. The Redmi Note 7S has a slightly warmer tone and a bit less noise compared to the Redmi Note 7 Pro , but in this case, it does blow the highlights a bit, which the other phone handles better.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Night mode

Both phones have a 'Night' mode, which takes a couple of seconds longer to save a shot, but the final image does have a much better exposure. In our landscape test, the Redmi Note 7S produces a relatively noisy image but the exposure is a little higher, so details in the shadows are better visible. Details and colours are very similar but if we have to pick one, we'd go with the Redmi Note 7 Pro.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Redmi Note 7 Pro

 

Shooting a close-up image, the Redmi Note 7 Pro produces a sharper result but at the cost of a little noise. The Redmi Note 7S has a comparatively softer image but it's cleaner, with less noise.

Tap to see full-sized image

Winner - Tie

 

Redmi Note 7 Pro vs Redmi Note 7S: Video

We performed our video tests at 1080p resolution only since the Redmi Note 7S doesn't support 4K. Electronic stabilisation is present on both phones and it works very well when shooting in the daylight. Audio is crisp, and image quality is good.

In low light, the Redmi Note 7 Pro delivers much better image quality. Footage is mostly clean with very little visible noise. The stabilisation works well too but it also creates some distortions when shooting under artificial light sources. The Redmi Note 7S produces relatively noisier video, and image quality and colours aren't as good.

We also tested the slow-motion modes on both phones, which let you shoot 1080p video at 120fps. Once again, image quality is decent and the slow-motion effect is pretty good.

Verdict
We can safely conclude that the Redmi Note 7 Pro (Review) has the better 48-megapixel camera compared to the Redmi Note 7S (Review). It won the majority of our tests, and several others ended in ties. If we were to summarise the characteristics of both models' primary cameras, then the Redmi Note 7 Pro tends to capture a neutral colour tone, with better noise reduction and detail in daylight. Low-light shots tend to be slightly noisy, compared to those taken by the Redmi Note 7S, but this phone does deliver better video quality in low-light.

The Redmi Note 7S on the other hand generally defaults to higher exposures and produces warmer colours. This works in its favour when shooting in low light, but in the daytime, we often encountered overblown highlights, and colours weren't always accurate.

Overall, the Redmi Note 7S still has a very capable 48-megapixel camera considering the price of this phone, but it's just not as good as the camera on its slightly more expensive cousin, the Redmi Note 7 Pro.


Vivo Z1 Pro, Redmi Note 7 Pro, Samsung Galaxy M40, or Realme 3 Pro: Which is the best phone under Rs. 20,000? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Premium design
  • Good cameras
  • Long battery life
  • Smooth performance
  • Bad
  • Heats up quickly
  • Bloatware and ads in MIUI
  • Shared slot for second SIM/ microSD card
Display6.30-inch
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 675
Front Camera13-megapixel
Rear Camera48-megapixel + 5-megapixel
RAM4GB
Storage64GB
Battery Capacity4000mAh
OSAndroid Pie
Resolution1080x2340 pixels
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Premium design
  • Decent battery life
  • Good cameras
  • Smooth performance
  • Bad
  • MIUI has spammy ads
  • Hybrid dual-SIM slot
  • Fast charger isn’t bundled
Display6.30-inch
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 660
Front Camera13-megapixel
Rear Camera48-megapixel + 5-megapixel
RAM3GB
Storage32GB
Battery Capacity4000mAh
OSAndroid Pie
Resolution1080x2340 pixels
Comments

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Roydon Cerejo

Roydon has written about technology and gadgets for more than a decade now and began his career reviewing PC components. He found his calling with laptops, smartphones, and cameras and is the go-to guy at Gadgets 360 for this technology trifecta. In his spare time, he likes watching horror films, obsessively organising his cable management pouch and plotting world dominion one pixel at a time.

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