Samsung recently announced the Galaxy S21 FE in India that comes as a premium flagship but not at a premium price (starting at Rs 49,999), exactly how Samsung wants Fan Edition smartphones to be. With a flagship, one expects good cameras that are an all-rounder and perform well despite how the ambient conditions are. Coming back to Galaxy S21 FE, the phone is equipped with a triple camera setup including a 12-megapixel f/1.8 main camera, a 12-megapixel f/2.2 ultrawide camera, and an 8-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto camera with 3X optical zoom and OIS support. On the front, there’s a 32-megapixel f/2.2 sensor.
This rear camera setup is almost identical to the Galaxy S21, except the telephoto sensor which is a 64-megapixel lens on the Galaxy S21 whereas its a 12-megapixel lens on S21 FE. So let’s put this trio of 12-megapixel sensors to the test and check out the Camera Review of Galaxy S21 FE.
1Normal/Point and Shoot
Shots clicked under well lit conditions look great with good level of dynamic range and natural colours. While zooming in, there was decent amount of detailing and no blur or smudge effect was noticeable. We liked that the colours weren’t over saturated while the exposure levels were also kept under control.
2Ultra-wide angle Shots
Compared to the regular shots, ultra-wide angle shot had a very wide 123-degree field of view that covers a lot of area. Shots clicked with the ultra-wide sensor again came out to be great. The fish eye effect was well contained while the colours were almost identical to the shots clicked with the 12-megapixel main camera. They looked very natural. However, the details were a bit on a lower level and a very slight smudge effect is noticeable when zooming in.
Portrait shots are something which the millennials focus a lot on these days to come up with a DSLR effect. Using the 8-megapixel telephoto sensor, the portrait shots were very well detailed. Even when you zoom in, every single element of the leaf is visible. The edge detection was on point and the focus speed was very quick. However, if you don’t switch to the portrait mode and shoot with the regular mode, the camera doesn’t identify the whole subject and also blurs out parts of the subject.
While clicking under artificial lighting, the Galaxy S21 FE camera did not struggle at all to click a detailed and great looking photo. When you zoom in, you can notice the details on the piece of the chocolate and even the colourful balls behind it. Moreover, the edge detection is also very accurate.
The Galaxy S21 FE was also able to pick up decent photos when you are under restricted lighting conditions. It could still identify the subject and blur the background without any issues with edge detection. The image was sharp and had good details which we appreciate.
Selfies were a mixed bag with Galaxy S21 FE as I couldn’t get a consistent shot with the 32MP selfie camera on the smartphone that has an f/2.2 aperture. When directly under sunlight, the front camera captured the exact same skin tone I have along with excellent details and colours. When changing my position, the camera didn’t play very well with the exposure and the photo had a very warm tone while sharpness and details were intact. The good thing is that the background wasn’t blown out even if it was very bright behind me.
Night mode shots are decent at best as the details take a big hit. You cannot expect a lot of colours but yes, they do remain intact to some extent. With the night mode ON, while the colours remain mostly the same, the photo gets slightly brighter with the details increasing by some amount.
Finally, we think that the Galaxy S21 FE has a good camera setup that allows for capturing great shots. While it may not be as good as a flagship, for example, the iPhone 13 Pro, it is as good as it gets at a price point of Rs 50,000. At this price, you also get a OnePlus 9 that has Hasselblad tuned cameras along with sensors that have a higher megapixel count. Despite that, the Galaxy S21 FE manages to click photos that can easily compete with a flagship in the same price range. Yes there are a few exceptions such as the Vivo X70 Pro that have slightly better cameras in our opinion.
Apart from that, you get an all-rounder setup that doesn’t miss out anywhere and doesn’t lack anything. We think the cameras are worth the price of the Galaxy S21 FE and is definitely recommendable. Stay tuned for our full review of the device where we’ll talk in detail about the performance of the Galaxy S21 FE along with how long does its battery last and if the 120Hz panel is good enough at its price.