My Quick Thoughts on the Nexus 6P
As a professional photographer and Android user I want to comment mostly on the Nexus 6P camera and camera app.
I am really happy we are at a place where flagship android phones offer some of the best image quality out there.
The Nexus 6p offers a 12.3 MP camera with an f/2.0 lens and laser-assisted autofocus. There is No Optical stabilization like we have from several of the other flagship android devices and the iPhone 6s plus. Google says this lack of OIS is offset by their larger pixels allowing for better low light gathering. The quick high ISO comparison I did between the Nexus 6P, Iphone 6S+ and the LG V10 shows the Nexus is a clear winner at the higher ISOs.
The LGV10 produces the largest resolution file here and, as a result looks a bit noisier. The detail in the LG V10 when you zoom is significantly greater than the other two.
Back to the Nexus 6P- I have been shooting with the camera all weekend and have been impressed with the results, especially in low-light conditions; However, I am disappointed in the very basic camera controls and feel spoiled by the awesome manual camera interface provided by the LG G4 and LG v10. With the Nexus you are limited to turning HDR on, off or automatic, flash on, off or automatic and setting a timer.
If you want greater control you will need to install a manual camera app. (Click to Subscribe to be notified when I publish an upcoming video on the best manual photo app)
You do have Photo Sphere, Panorama, and the gimmicky Lens Blur options.
Swipe across the screen in photo mode moves you to video – you have 120fps and 240fps for slow mo (limited to 720p) and the camera is capable of 4k video. Your standard 1080p is 30fps. Digital stabilization of video is an option and in my limited testing works decently well. With regards to the High ISO test, In some real world situations the optical image stabilization offered in the Iphone 6S+ and LG V10 can give those devices an advantage but overall I am really happy with the results from the Nexus 6P.
I will be back with more sample videos and you can see additional full resolution photos.
With the outdoor shots many of the Nexus 6P shots are more true to life than the LG v10 which often have a greenish cast when you compare the two. In the LG V10s defense, I often shoot manual mode and make quick adjustments to the White Balance and exposure compensation which gives me exactly the look I want.
Not camera related but I want to mention- the fingerprint sensor in this phone is excellent and I love the back center placement for the sensor, it’s a natural location for my finger when I pick up and hold the phone and it reads my print quickly every time.
Overall This feels like a solid step forward for the Nexus line and anyone wanting excellent image quality would be very happy with this phone. However the photographers that like a bit of control and or those that plan to shoot often should consider something like the LG G4 or LG v10 both offering that microSD card slot for loads more room (missing on the Nexus 6p) replaceable batteries and that excellent manual control built-in.
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