Huawei’s P flagship line has always been about extending the envelope with mobile photography, that too, in combination with top class hardware and design. Starting with previous P20 Pro, Huawei started narrowing its focus on coming up with a camera experience that works amazingly in the dark. For years, in phone cameras, we saw amazing growth in sharpness, detail and color reproduction but, what lacked was, low-light photography. All phones disappointed when it came to capturing scenes which were poorly lit or were set at night time. That, however, has drastically changed now. Specifically for P30 Pro, its camera system performs extremely well in the night. Discussing its game-changing Night Mode and all other camera-related aspects, here is our complete P30 Pro Camera Guide!
Hardware, as brands have realized, is just one part to the overall camera experience. Further, in recent times, software has been the key differentiating factor that decides final photo quality. As for P30 Pro, it tries to combine the best of both. Utilizing Huawei’s software experience with EMUI, the camera app is just as robust as the Quad-camera Leica setup found at the back. Lucky enough to test the P30 Pro, we took numerous photos with it and here is what we think!
Huawei P30: In-Depth Camera Review
Before we jump in, its necessary we take a look at the hardware and the overall camera setup by Huawei on the P30 Pro. First, there are 4 Leica cameras, or rather lenses, to begin with. Leica, a name synonymous with high-end cameras, has worked with Huawei on the hardware. The primary lens is 40MP with Optical Image Stabiliztion and has fixed f/1.6 aperture. Next, there is a ultra-wide angle lens that is rated at 20MP with a f/2.2 aperture. More, there is a 8MP telephoto lens that also has OIS and has f/3.4 aperture. For the fourth and final module, it is a time-of-flight sensor for better portrait shots — not a complete camera on its own.
Starting with the experience, Huawei has developed a great camera app for the P30 Pro. As users will be utilizing this to interact with the hardware, this app has been built well and is easy to navigate. Refining from the version found on older P20 Pro, the app is fast and so is the shutter. For basic navigation, you have the shutter button on the bottom, camera flip button on the right and gallery button on the left. The main UI follows a black and white theme with yellow accents. To switch modes you can simply swipe over or tap on the mode itself. Speaking of modes, there are a lot of them and that’s what makes this camera so good and versatile.
While the normal ‘Photo’ mode is quite advanced and has built-in AI assistance, there are couple of other dedicated modes which make P30 Pro stand out. We will be going through each of the modes one by one along with sharing some of our shots which we took with that specific setting.
Aiming for the best point and shoot experience, Photo mode — default mode when you open up the camera — is quite diverse and really helps to get the perfect shot. Powering this, there is an AI system which can automatically detect the scene and set the processing and camera settings accordingly. This came in really handy as the phone automatically detected what is being shot and for us, we just had to press the shutter.
Here are some shots we took using this mode:
Normal (1x Zoom)
Ultra Wide (0.6x Zoom)
This is probably the mode that P30 Pro is best known for and why it has been rated as the best mobile camera for low-light situations. Working on hardware as well as software, Huawei has truly accomplished a great feat with P30 Pro’s night shooting capabilities. In terms of software, Huawei’s post-processing stitches together multiple photos taken at different exposures. For hardware, the sensor Huawei is using captures light in RYYB rather than standard RGGB. This, in cooperation with SuperSpectrum sensor, equates to 40% increased light. All in all, the end result is beautiful!
Here are shots we took:
Utilizing Time-of-flight sensor, P30 Pro comes with a dedicated Aperture mode that lets users manually set the aperture of photos. Ranging from f/0.95 that has an extreme blurry background to f/16 which has everything in focus, there’s a lot to choose from. Further, if you don’t like the end result, you can go back to photo library and modify the aperture from there and even choose a completely different focus point!
Here are our shots using Aperture Mode:
For advanced users who want to set all the settings themselves, P30 Pro comes with a Pro mode which lets you take control. From shutter speed and aperture to ISO and focus, there is great versatility with P30 Pro’s Pro mode.
Here are our sample shots:
Uniquely, Huawei has fitted a 8MP telephoto lens on the phone. Utilizing this and also, digital zoom, P30 Pro can zoom up-to a whopping 50x! While the quality of photos taken at 50x is noticeably low, the details are there and the end photo is usable. Further, for 50x, a tripod is recommended as the shake becomes quite noticeable and can blur the final photos.
The P30 Pro, in Super Macro mode, manages to get quite close to the subject while still being able to keep things in focus. This allows for stunning shots of small objects. The clarity is supreme and this adds, again, to the versatility of the phone’s camera.
Here are our sample shots:
More Camera Modes
While we have listed numerous modes in detail, they still aren’t complete. There are various others. However, these are pretty niche and wont be in use that much but still are worth mentioning.
This is a pretty cool trick. You can map your face directly to an animated character using AR Lens. P30 Pro maps facial expressions completely to the character in use.
Rather than having to apply a filter after a photo is taken, the P30 Pro camera app allows for filters to be applied directly to the viewfinder.