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Galaxy Note20 Ultra: Does the new lens make it the zoom master?

The Note20 Ultra now has a 5x optical zoom.
The Note20 Ultra now has a 5x optical zoom.
While the Galaxy S20 Ultra still relied on a hybrid optical zoom, the Galaxy Note20 Ultra now has real optical magnification on board. Our short comparison will reveal how big the differences are next to the competition and whether it offers enough to be on par with Huawei.
Daniel Schmidt (translated by Stephanie Chamberlain), 🇩🇪

Unlike the Galaxy S20 Ultra, the Note20 Ultra uses a true 5x optical zoom as the basis for magnification. The data from the main sensor and the periscope zoom is combined to achieve the clearest possible magnification. In addition to electronic image stabilizers, the two OIS also ensure a fairly steady hand at longer focal lengths. A maximum digital magnification of 50x is possible. 

In a short comparison, we let the Galaxy Note20 Ultra compete against the Huawei P40 Pro+ camera king, the iPhone 11 Pro, and its predecessor, the Note10+. In any case, only the P40 Pro can compete in this comparison field when it comes to magnification beyond 10x.

Even at a 5x zoom, the Note10+ and the iPhone already begin to show their weaknesses; the two devices with the better zoom solutions are immediately noticeable here, and the Note20 Ultra shows the highest level of detail in both the observation-tower subject and the castle.

Galaxy Note10+
Galaxy Note10+
iPhone 11 Pro
iPhone 11 Pro
Huawei P40 Pro+
Huawei P40 Pro+
Galaxy Note20 Ultra
Galaxy Note20 Ultra
Galaxy Note10+
iPhone 11 Pro
Huawei P40 Pro+
Galaxy Note20 Ultra

5x zoom

The 10x magnification also paints a similar picture, with the iPhone sitting in last place and showing strong fragments. In addition, the Huawei smartphone shows a visible red tint.

Galaxy Note10+
Galaxy Note10+
iPhone 11 Pro
iPhone 11 Pro
P40 Pro+
P40 Pro+
Galaxy Note20 Ultra
Galaxy Note20 Ultra

10x zoom

No photo looks good anymore at this zoom level. However, the Galaxy Note20 Ultra convinces with better color reproduction and more plasticity.

P40 Pro+
P40 Pro+
Galaxy Note20 Ultra
Galaxy Note20 Ultra
Galaxy Note20 Ultra

50x zoom

The Galaxy Note20 Ultra beats them all

Well done, Samsung. The Koreans have done a great job in reworking the zoom, and at every zoom level, they show better image performance than the super-strong competition from Huawei. However, the P40 Pro+ still has a little more zoom capacity up its sleeve, and we also liked it better when it came to stabilizing long focal lengths.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Galaxy Note20 Ultra: Does the new lens make it the zoom master?
Daniel Schmidt, 2020-09- 8 (Update: 2020-09- 7)
Daniel Schmidt
Editor of the original article: Daniel Schmidt - Managing Editor Mobile - @Tellheim
Already as a little dwarf I was fascinated by my Commodore 16 and ignited my enthusiasm for computers. With my first modem I surfed the Btx and later also the World Wide Web. The latest technology trends have always fascinated me and this is especially true for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. For Notebookcheck, I have been on the ball since 2013 and I am looking forward to the innovations that are still to come and that we will put to the acid test for you.