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Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra Review: Attack of the Numbers!

Mar 04, 2020
hey guys mkbhd here and this is the

samsung

galaxy

s20

ultra

and it's

samsung

's

numbers

attack

so this huge phone here is samsung's tallest and most expensive flagship phone and there's a lot of words samsung could have chosen use here they could have gone more or max they could have gone pro but they went

ultra

ultra ultra radical extremists yeah i think that's pretty accurate so if the question is how you can justify such an expensive new phone samsung answer is to throw all the hardware at you all the specs every big number you can possibly think of going into this phone looks on paper like a great idea how could a phone with snapdragon 865 16 gigs of ram 512 gigs of ufs 3.0 108 100x Megapixels 8K Zoom 5,000 Milliamp Hours 120 Hertz 1440p 5G How could this phone be anything but the best?
samsung galaxy s20 ultra review attack of the numbers
Well I'll tell you, but let's start with the design, if only because I think it's actually the least ultr. one thing about this phone and it's pretty simple it's actually a huge phone glass sandwich with a recognizable gigantic dual camera expandable storage on the top speaker on the bottom headphone jack you know for one thing it's Mix with today's smartphones, especially Samsung's lineup, but on the other hand, there's no doubt that it actually reminds you of when smartphone screens got bigger and bigger and then crossed five inches as the average. and then they leveled out at 5.3 inches and people thought that was nice. of going crazy and then samsung because who else came out with the mega

galaxy

which is really a phone they came out with and named it had a 6.3 inch screen it was just funny like no one else tried but this phone was the size of a tablet in the form factor of a phone it really was the mega phone but here we are now with the galaxy s20 ultra bigger than any galaxy mega or any galaxy note ever with a 6.9 inch screen it's huge to me , it still fits in my pocket and is useful for me but it may not be for everyone clearly giant phones are not for everyone but i have to say for an ultra phone the color options from glossy black to glossy grays are a little disappointing of course channel sponsor dbrand will gladly step up and customize the look of the back and you can go as wild as this ro camo skin bot, but don't let that be a cop.
samsung galaxy s20 ultra review attack of the numbers

More Interesting Facts About,

samsung galaxy s20 ultra review attack of the numbers...

Samsung I'm hoping for a bit more variety next time until then I'll link that skin under one thing you get from a huge phone though it's a huge screen so just to give you the

numbers

6.9 inches diagonal 120 hertz 1440p and stop me if you've heard this before but samsung has once again made the best display on any smartphone the best brightness the colors the contrast the best viewing angles of any smartphone display i have ever seen i feel like i am starting to sound like a screen mate it is the highest a-plus i've ever given you'll only know it when you see it and it's not just the high end specs and big numbers they've also flattened the edges of the screen so it doesn't spill over the sides anymore and i appreciate that since a usability perspective and i hope they keep that trend for the rest of their lineup loves that and if i have any complaint it really is that the ultrasonic reader under screen fingerprint is basically the same as last year no real substantive improvements and that's ok it's still pretty fast and responsive and once you learn where it is with muscle memory it's a little quick but I was hoping that got bigger and faster from generation to generation and that hasn't happened yet, now it's worth noting that you don't get all the big numbers straight out of the box. this phone is actually 1080p 60 hertz pretty basic and you can bump it up to 120 hertz or 1440p but not both at the same time personally I'm picking 120 hertz every time I was hoping or asking for the benchmark high refresh rate from Samsung and we finally got it and it's great the difference between 60 hertz and 120 hertz at like 90 what you're doing on your phone that's scrolling is fantastic and then the screen also has 240hz touch refresh so it doesn't matter what resolution you're at makes it feel fast and responsive as expected which is just what we've seen in these gaming phones that came before now i wish they would let us run this phone at 120hertz and full resolution 1440p at the same time yeah , I wish they would allow it now that it's disabled.
samsung galaxy s20 ultra review attack of the numbers
Originally I thought it might be a limitation of Snapdragon 865 but it turns out it's not they just don't enable it because they probably think it would crush the battery but I say if you're paying 1400 bucks for this phone and you know what you're getting into , you can still put it at 60 hertz 1080p out of the box but let us enable it if we really want to maybe they can enable it with a software update and you know just put a little disclaimer hey if you turn these two on it'll crush your battery but you paid for the phone so you can power it up fine so let's talk about that 5,000 milliamp hour battery on the s20 ultra and this is one of those specs that usually translates pretty well from paper to real life how much the bigger the battery the better and this one is getting two big cheers from me we know 5,000 milliamp hours is huge but i was a little worried about how well it would work It would sound powering a giant, glossy 6.9-inch 120-hertz screen turns out to be perfectly fine.
samsung galaxy s20 ultra review attack of the numbers
I've been consistently getting over six hours of screen time at the end of each day. Easy on the battery to save heavy stuff. i killed it in a single day so i dont worry about it anymore, to be honest i was thinking i would have to take a few more days of testing to get it down to 60 hertz and see how much battery it saves. me but yeah I don't have to this is an all-day phone at 120 hertz which is great but okay let's face it the big numbers you're probably most interested in and how well they translate are in the part back of this phone and that's the cameras so that's 108 megapixels that's 8k video and that's even printed on the back of this phone the 100x space zoom but as we've already learned the numbers on the Camera spec sheets don't always translate very well to real world performance, I've seen about a million 64 megapixel cameras that are worse than 12 megapixel cameras on the Pixel and iPhone, so to me, Seeing how much Samsung was leaning into this camera upgrade for the s20 ultra, my real question at the start of this was: can Samsung really make the best camera? on any smartphone huh i have a lot of thoughts on this camera so up front i'm going to say it's better in some ways than their previous cameras but worse in other ways which is why it still falls solidly into 3rd place f o Me, I still prefer the photos from the pixel and the iPhone more often than the images that come from Samsung, but that doesn't mean that the numbers mean nothing by default, this main camera is doing a binning that takes a 12 megapixel photo and it's the sharpest detailed 12 megapixel photo I love that's one of the things I like the most and these are the classic Samsung bright and colorful usually bring out shadows and soften faces all of that hasn't changed there's also the ultra wide camera which is the smoothest of the three cameras but I'm still glad it's there it's giving us that fun first person perspective and it even has night mode very Samsung's improved ultra-wide angle which some others just don't and then there's of course the full 108-megapixel mode which can be turned on and yes, that produced a bit more detail which is helpful especially if you plan on zooming in and crop after taking that big photo but for the difference in file size and the inconvenience of always having to turn it on I ended up not feeling like I needed it most of the time I was happy with the 12 megapixel shots but if you lend a little more attention to that main camera especially with close-up subjects, there's a little more to notice there so keep this in mind: the 108-megapixel main camera is huge, as if it's physically much larger than most other smartphone camera sensors and for the most part it's a general rule of thumb the bigger the sensor the better you are letting in more light you'll get bigger pixels, it's just a nice thing to have a bigger sensor and that's fine but for those of us familiar with big sensor photography and video bigger sensors look like that's when you start to get this close up and naturally blurred backgrounds and this shallow depth of field in this case the sensor on this phone is so big and that dual aperture feature that shipped in a couple previous samsu ng flagships is now gone so it's wide open on f 1.8 all the time these things combine to make a very thin plane of focus and so things that are not in that plane of focus by even a couple of inches are out so when i took pictures of closer subjects which I guess is more than normal but enough to notice this you would not only see the background was naturally blurred without portrait mode but actually only part of the subject it's really in focus and you can see the rest is blurring but in this smudged stripe uh bad looking bokeh normally isn't such a weird thing because with a big high quality sensor and glass that's just the background blurring naturally but on these tiny smartphone optics the bokeh just isn't that beautiful and you really start to notice the unnatural looking background blur now and I also think this may have contributed to any autofocus issues you may have heard of on the s20 ultra autofocus on this phone for me has been unusually twitchy and a bit hit and miss and actually lost focus a few times especially with close focus and close subjects and i just haven't had a flagship phone have problems like that in a long time and was trying to figure it out. why i think the razer slim focus plane has no dual aperture mode and probably some not perfectly optimized software has made the autofocus on the s20 ultra feel a bit buggy now that samsung has already promised some software updates which they should fix these issues and I think they will.
You can probably mitigate a lot of these autofocus issues with software, but at the end of the day you can't beat the physics of having a larger sensor and not-so-great optics, so I think that the fringe and that very sharp drop of the slim razor depth of field will continue ok galaxy s20 ultra will shoot 8k video too that's a new feature these snapdragon 865 phones are getting and that should be right up my alley as well which of course I'm going to try it out and I'm very impressed with the images you can get from the smartphone's sensor the steels you can take ar the video at 33 megapixels there are some test clips out there i shot some of my own just for fun and its fun but its not just a higher resolution version of 4k video which is already pretty good theres a long list of trade offs here , the number one 8k is locked to 24 frames per second max it can't beat that and as we all know 30fps is the right frame rate huh that's just a limitation of the snapdragon 865 it just can't output 30 fps number two it goes in a lot so at 4k in normal video mode you could shoot quite a bit without binning for 8k but they use an 8k window in the middle of the sensor so when you switch to 8k mode you see it punch through a ton which really limits what you can frame with it follow focus number three goes off with 8k video again this is a processing limitation you get with the snapdragon e65 but it was bad enough without dual autofocus of pixels to begin with so now it's uh let's be real very very bad for me is if you don't have a clear subject or far enough away it's going to be hunting all the time and that's really distracting and it just doesn't know looks good on video so number four because of the amount of data being processed the amount of time it takes to process from top line to bottom on that chip takes a little bit of time and that creates rolling blinds and to me it's super obvious and any images you move or rotate on just turn to jelly.
I have never seen such a bad blind on a smartphone video in my life and then five file sizes. It is an 8k video. It's going to be huge. if you take a 60 second video you're looking at about 600 megabytes which is kind of hardof charging so all of that comes together so 8k video on this phone is great it's really great for standing still and maybe capturing some slow motion or not so much turning subject ects in high resolution and if you look around , that's what most people are shooting their test clips of, but other than that, as soon as you start moving or have to chase focus, I'll pass, I think I'll have another year. or two of measly 4k video on my smartphone and ok I didn't think I'd be the one to say that but that's the truth oh and you almost let me forget to mention zoom what's printed on the back of the phone 100x space zoom comes from the 48 megapixel periscope camera on the side of this phone ok just because it's 100x zoom doesn't mean you have to use 100x zoom all the time so my typical smartphone photo taking behavior is almost never zoom i zoom with my feet or just switch ultra wide angle but the s20 ultra with this periscope zoom has made it easier than ever to touch subjects farther away and take sharp pictures that's definitely true this phone takes these sharpest pictures at 30x zoom I've ever seen from a phone next to huawei really awesome stuff everyone really wants to focus on the 100x like when You do zoom in all the way and it's a cool demo, but photos clearly don't look good at 100x, you're not supposed to zoom in all the way. way to 100 every time honestly you'd have better luck just taking a photo at 30x zoom and cropping it later no seriously just zoom in later it's basically the same thing but then of course there's just people trashing the 100x zoom because hey you don't I don't need 100x it looks bad why did they even put this on the phone? a new speaker comes out that goes up to a hundred decibels because it sounds bad at 100 decibels and nobody needs it that loud but you are forgetting that the speaker will sound better at 50 decibels because it is in the middle of its range than the others that are reaching a maximum out of 50. so th Here you can appreciate good technology when it's there.
I didn't mean to turn this whole video into a camera

review

, but hey, it's one of the most important parts of the phone, so the more you know, the better in terms of numbers. go for the 108 megapixel number it's there but not quite there but it helps the 100x number it's not really there all the time though I guess it's printed there all the time and the 8k number actually I recommend against using it so despite all this hype samsung i think it's in the same place where they left it last year with their camera in third and maybe a software update far from closing the gap but in third and then the rest of this phone is really samsung doing samsung stuff if you've used the galaxy s before you won't be surprised at anything here one handed user interface and its optimizations are more important than ever because of how big this phone is but it's actually still the super familiar release in everything but strategy kitchen sync and there's a ton there's a million features on this phone the only new feature I found really cool was the ability to pin to Applications to massive amount of ram so in multitasking if you tap on the icon at the top you can keep the app open for a quick launch which loads it into ram permanently and I messed with this a bit what i tried it with spotify i tried it with the camera app i tried it with my task app which i launch all the time i really didn't see much of a big difference in battery so that's good and the app really is open forever in seconds flat, ready to boot instantly, so having a lot more RAM in the phone is quite useful.
I also feel compelled to mention that yes this is a 5g phone but you shouldn't buy this phone just for the 5g I'm on 18t I haven't had a single second of 5g experience on this phone but you know if you're on t-mobile or whatever from mid band or millimeter wave using carriers your mileage may vary so the strategy of throwing all numb ers on the phone worked well i think it worked mostly i mean this is a great phone the best in class in many ways the screen is the most amazing and with the battery dropping right behind it but as we have learned the numbers are not everything and the question a lot of people like to ask is do you need it and no of course most people will do fine with a phone half the price you don't need this phone but as a tech geek I'm happy when things on the higher end are driving things and they're on the vang uardia and for a lot of those things i really like the s20 ultra huh and some people who use their phone a lot won't have a big problem is spending a lot more on it now Shouldn't that be a pretty perfect 1400 phone right out of the box? until further notice um and i guess i'll cross my fingers for any software or updates along the way that's all thanks for watching catch them in the next peace

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