LG V30 • Camera Advantage
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F1.6 aperture lens, LG V30

Now this is a big advantage that the LG V30 has over its competitors, it's standard-angle lens features a staggering F1.6 aperture lens. Usually when a new smartphone is out you don't see it featured on many photography websites, but the V30 got the attention of all those website. Steve's Digicams, Peta Pixel, Dpreview and many others, all gave a good article talking that very bright aperture lens.

So what is F1.6 aperture on the LG V30 camera that everyone is so excited about? The aperture f-number (e.g. f/1.6, f/2.0, f/2.4) signified the space through which light passes through the lens. Of course, the larger that opening is, the larger the amount of light that can pass through it, make sense right?

Now I know it might sound confusing at first, but the small the f-number, 1.6 in our case, the larger that opening is. This is why an f/1.8 aperture is said to be "slower" compared to an f/1.6 lens or you can say that an f/1.6 lens is "brighter" than an f/2.0 one. More light is better of course, because it gives the sensor more light data (photons of light) to process the color information from. Usually, considering the same image sensor and image processing unit, the lower the f-number, the better the low-light capabilities of the camera would be. Of course camera's specs vary between one phone and another and the aperture isn't the only thing that affects image quality. Even with a faster aperture, a 5-year old camera sensor with a faster lens might fall behind a modern sensor-based camera with a slower lens.

We've already seen how good a fast aperture like f/1.7 performs on the S7. Having said that, the S7 has 12MP with a large 1/2.5" sensor size and 1.4-micron pixel size. Of course having OIS on that camera will help to improve the low light performance even further. Keep in mind that only the standard-angle lens, the one with the f/1.7 aperture lens has an OIS, the secondary ultra wide angle lens does not. I'm quite disappointed to see that LG has opted to increase the resolution compared to the LG G6 and go with a 16MP sensor.

The reason I don't like that resolution is because the V30 uses the 16 megapixel Sony IMX351 Exmor RS sensor (according to ubergizmo) which has 1 ┬Ám pixels compared to the V20 that has larger 1.12-micron pixels. This lives me wondering how amazing that camera could have been if it features a 12MP sensor with large pixels. This is why I don't like when phone manufacturers try to impress us with numbers, because honestly, a 16MP is really not necessary and maybe requires by a few. A 12MP would be adequate for most users and I'm sure people would appreciate the better low-light performance it would have brought with it.

Having said all that, a faster aperture is a very welcome feature and I'm sure that combined with a super-sensitive Sony sensor and OIS it can lead to great image quality, especially in low light. The bokeh should also be better, but it also depends on the focal length, but I don't have that information available.

Overall, a prominent advantage for the V30 in the camera section.

importance ranking: #2 in the 'Camera' category and #2 among all categories for LG V30 device

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