All the brand new digital camera expertise explained- Android Authority


The Huawei P series is consistently state of the art in smartphone photography, and the Huawei P40 camera is no different. The latest flagship series from Huawei promises the known improvements in image quality as well as improvements in AI processing and the simplicity of the point-and-shoot software.

There's a lot of imaging technology in this latest series. With that in mind, we'll break down everything you need to know about the Huawei P40 camera setup.

Huawei P40 camera setups versus

This year's series contains three entries: the Huawei P40, P40 Pro and P40 Plus. Each offers slightly different camera functions, from three cameras in the Huawei P40 to a Penta camera configuration in the Huawei P40 Pro Plus. While all three share a number of common characteristics, there are some notable differences. This is how each configuration stacks in relation to the raw data of the camera (the complete specifications of the Huawei P40 series can be found here):

Huawei P40 Pro Plus Huawei P40 Pro Huawei P40
Main camera 50 Megapixel (RYYB)
1 / 1.28 inch Sensor
1: 1.9 aperture
23 mm focal length
50 megapixel
1 / 1.28-inch RYYB sensor
1: 1, 9-aperture
23 mm focal length
50 megapixels
1 / 1.28-inch RYYB sensor
aperture 1.9
23 mm focal length
Secondary Camera 40 Megapixel
Wide Angle Lens
1: 1.8 Aperture
18 mm Focal Length
40 Megapixel
Wide-angle lens
1: 1.8 aperture
18 mm focal length
16 megapixels
Wide-angle lens
1: 2.2 aperture
17 mm focal length
Third camera 8 megapixels
10x periscope lens
1: 4.4 aperture
240 mm focal length
12 megapixels ( RYYB)
5x telephoto lens
1: 3.4 aperture
125 mm focal length
8 megapixel
3x telephoto lens
1: 2.4 aperture
125 mm focal length
Fourth camera 8 megapixels (RYYB)
3x telephoto lens
1: 2.4 aperture
125 mm focal length
Flight time sensor? Yes Yes No

Larger, brighter image sensors

At The heart of the Huawei P40 camera is a new 50-m egapixel RYYB main sensor. For starters, it contains more megapixels than the previous generation 40MP sensor. The camera produces 12.5 MP pixel binned images compared to 10 MP in recent years. You need to enable 50MP mode in the camera app to view the high-resolution recordings.

Large sensors result in a higher dynamic range and cleaner images.

The RYYB (instead of RGGB)) The sub-pixel layout remains after the extensive revision of the camera subsystem and the algorithms from Huawei last year. RYYB uses yellow pixels to capture 40% more light than traditional RGGB sensors, resulting in better detail and improved low light performance. This time Huawei is expanding its RYYB technology to include some of its telephoto zoom lenses. In theory, this should help reduce noise and improve detail, even when zooming in low light.

The actual headline of the Huawei P40, however, is the larger 1 / 1.28-inch sensor size. Larger sensors capture more light and produce sharper images with a superior dynamic range. For comparison, the P30 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S20 each offer a 1 / 1.7-inch sensor. Other flagships are usually only 1 / 2.55-inch sensors, including the Galaxy Note 10 Plus and the iPhone 11 Pro Max. Larger is definitely better here, especially in low-light conditions, as you can see in the example image below.

 Google Pixel 4 extremely weak light - ISO 1600, 0.2 s, OpenCamera app Huawei P40 extremely weak light – ISO 1600, 0.2 s, OpenCamera app Google Pixel 4 extremely weak light – ISO 1600, 0.2 s, OpenCamera app  Huawei P40 extremely weak light - ISO 1600, 0.2 s, OpenCamera App  Huawei P40 extremely weak light - ISO 1600, 0.2 s, OpenCamera App

Huawei's closest competition for the sensor size is the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with a slightly smaller diameter of 1 / 1.33 inches. However, this sensor is divided into 108 megapixels for individual pixel sizes of 0.8 µm or 2.4 µm when grouped. Samsung uses 9: 1 pixel binning to produce 12 megapixel images, while the P40 uses 4: 1 binning for 12.5 megapixel results. The Huawei P40 offers slightly larger 2.44 µm pixel sizes, but it's a fairly close competition between the two.

Of course, sensor and pixel size are only part of the equation. Lens quality and image processing also play an important role in the end product.

10x optical zoom

 Huawei P40 Pro rear camera housing "width =" 1200 "height =" 675  Huawei P40 Pro rear camera housing "width =" 1200 " height = "675" data - /> 

<p> If you thought the 5x periscope camera with optical zoom was impressive last year, the Huawei P40 Pro Plus model with an improved model is back 10x optical zoom camera thanks to 240mm focal length. The handset can zoom even further by using the zoom upscaling with "Super Resolution", even though there are quality losses that exceed 10 times. </p>
<p> The key to achieving such long focal and optical zoom lengths is the use of a periscope camera design. A longer focal length essentially means a larger distance between the lens and the sensor. This would require a very large camera burst in a smartphone, which is why Hu awei turns to a periscope design. The camera sensor and lens are at an angle of 90 degrees inside the phone and the light is reflected on it by a mirror. It's a compact design that just wouldn't be possible with a telephoto setup. </p>
<p> <img class=  Huawei 10x periscope zoom "width =" 1200 "height =" 563 "data - /> 

<p> Huawei achieves its 10x zoom factor by redesigning its previous generation 5x zoom technology. The focal length of the camera depends on the distance between the lens and the sensor. Increasing this distance increases the focal length, creating a longer zoom Huawei uses light reflecting prisms to increase the distance the light has to travel between the lens and the sensor, bending the light at right angles takes up less space than simply expanding linearly, saving space inside the handset and that Camera body is kept as small as possible. It's pretty awesome. However, we can't help but wonder if all of these reflections compromise the picture have quality. </p>
<p style= More information: Why the size of the camera sensor is so important

To ensure that the Huawei P40 Pro Plus still takes decent pictures between maximum and minimum zoom levels the handset via a triple telephoto lens with a RYYB sensor. The handset automatically switches between these sensors when zooming in and out.

Okta phase detection autofocus

Recording the perfect action shot is an art, and it really helps to have a super fast car focusing solution in your camera. Fortunately, the main sensor of the Huawei P40 series has auto focus technology to detect "octa phases".

Each individual pixel in the image sensor contains a phase detection photodiode in addition to the light-sensing photo side. This means that each of the 50 megapixels in the camera is used to focus the camera. The end result is much faster auto focus than ever. An example of how fast and accurate autofocusing is can be found in the following GIF.

 Huawei P30 Pro periscope camera macro (11 of 60) "width =" 944 "height =" 515  Huawei P30 Pro periscope camera macro (11 of 60) "width =" 944 "height = "515 Huawei has a focus speed of milliseconds, so you're always in focus when you need to whip out your phone for a quick snapshot. This feature also ensures that autofocus works correctly when shooting in low light and at night.

BM3D Noise Reduction

The Kirin 990 SoC and its integrated image signal processor (ISP) form the heart of the processing of the Huawei images from P40. Huawei's latest image processing pipeline includes the mobile industry's first block matching and 3D filtering (BM3D) solution for noise reduction. This technique is usually associated with DSLR cameras and is a powerful noise removal algorithm that can be run in near real time.

BM3D is based on the idea of ​​sparsity and “wavelet transformations”, in which pixel groups are converted the transformation domain and 3D data arrays. Sounds complicated? In short, this technique enables smoothing of similar colors to suppress noise while maintaining fine details and unique features that are present in each group.

Here is a comparison of the crop between P30 Pro and P40 Pro in low light conditions demonstrating the improvement in detail capture:

 Huawei P30 Pro 100% crop  Huawei P30 Pro 100% Harvest Huawei P40 Pro 100% Harvest Huawei P30 Pro 100% Harvest  Huawei P40 Pro 100% Harvest  Huawei P40 Pro 100% Harvest

This is not a purely new feature for Huawei devices. The Kirin 990 and its BM3D noise reduction technology were first introduced in the Huawei Mate 30 Pro.

XD Fusion Engine

 Huawei P40 Pro Take pictures with the camera app with the settings "width =" 1200 "height =" 675 "/> <img class=

108MP sensor vs. Computer photography: which one wins?

Update January 8: Xiaomi has provided additional information on how the bokeh detection works in the Mi Note 10. We updated the article to include these details. Smartphone photography experienced two major trends in 2019: the introduction of …

Huawei also uses its AI technology to improve images in certain scenarios. For example, to improve skin structures, tone and facial lighting for portrait shots and to provide the desired soft bokeh blur. The handset's multi-frame super-resolution hybrid zoom technology is also part of this engine and enables superior quality compared to standard digital zoom.

The Huawei P40 also features a multi-spectrum color temperature sensor powered by a new AI car white balance algorithm as part of its AI photography suite. In addition, the phone's NPU supports Huawei's Best Moment feature, which suggests the best 3 of 12 pictures for live action shots, eliminates annoying glass reflections, and even removes annoying photo bombers from your pictures. Part of Huawei's mission in this generation is to make photography easier, and it seems that AI is the main part of the company to achieve this.

With a combination of state-of-the-art hardware and machine learning skills under the hood, the Huawei P40 camera is more powerful than ever. We will be putting these camera settings through their paces very soon against the best shooters on the market. For now, let us know your thoughts on Huawei P40 camera technology in the comments.

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