Both the Samsung Galaxy S6 and the HTC One M9 have excellent cameras on the back and on the front as well.
But when it comes to better quality, nuances decide the winner. We compare the two phones, and how they work in daylight, in low light conditions, how they capture selfies and which camera app gives the better experience.
Light is extremely important aspect of the quality of the photograph. The more light you get, the better the picture will be. In daylight conditions, with so much light available, the phones do not have to compromise a lot to get the best effect. In this case, the S6 is the winner, as the 16-MP camera with f/1.9 lens takes crisp photos, even when using the auto mode. With the Galaxy S6, it is enough to shoot pictures on auto mode, as the feature chooses when to turn HDR and when not to use (on the S6, HDR is on by default). The HTC One M9, on the other hand, requires work in order to get the best snap. The camera is powerful, no question there. However, on auto mode, the camera is limited and sometimes the picture come out low in contract, dull and without the proper exposure. If you like to tinker with the white balance, ISO and other options, the M9 can take almost as great photos as the S6. However, on auto mode, the S6 wins hands down.
In low light conditions, we get the same result as in daylight. Naturally, the photos are less consistent, but the S6 takes surprisingly good night shots. The Galaxy S6 is warm on white balance, but it is very accurate. The images look smooth, natural, and the addition of optical image stabilization helps a lot for noise and blurriness. The photos are very sharp as the OIS helps keep the exposure as low as possible. With the HTC One M9, the lack of OIS is evident. The camera opts for higher ISO and exposure when used on auto mode in order to brighten the scene. However, the result is a blurry photo in most cases, as the sensor fails to focus the picture properly. In many cases, you will get an out of focus snap. When you tweak the options, the One M9 can get good pictures. They are not on the level of the S6, but are very decent. The problem is that the S6 takes good pictures on auto mode.
This is the area where the HTC One M9 is the clear winner. The ultrapixel sensor on the front allows more light into the picture, resulting in sharper, crisper snaps with lot more details. The focus is sharp as well. The downside is that the view is very narrow, which is a problem for taking group selfies. The S6 has a 5-MP sensor on the front, but it doesn’t deliver the quality of the pictures as the One M9 does. It is the better option for group selfies due to the wide lens, but for individual selfies, the fixed focal length is too long. Another bonus of the S6 is the Wide-selfie mode which is excellent for front panoramas.
For quite some time, Samsung used a busy and confusing camera interface, with tons of customization and features. With the S6, Samsung has taken a different approach, opting for simplicity. Taking pictures with auto mode is good enough for casual users, and Samsung has added the “Pro Mode” for access to manual settings. The HTC One M9 has more customization options and does things differently than the S6. Once you delve into customization, the M9 is much better than the pro mode of the Galaxy phone.