Samsung Galaxy Fold review

GSMArena team, 26 April 2019.

Same cameras as on Galaxy S10+, plus one extra

Nobody will be buying the Galaxy Fold for its camera prowess, and yet it's among the best equipped mobile devices for shooting photos and videos on the go. The cameras of the Galaxy Fold are almost entirely identical to those on the S10+ save for the slightly dimmer lenses on the two 10MP selfie shooters.

Samsung Galaxy Fold review

Both the rear camera and the inside selfie shooter benefit from the larger viewfinder that the 7.3-inch display provides, though the flipside of this is that you're getting dangerously close to the ultimate faux pas of taking photos with an actual tablet. If you need to be more discreet, you can always take pictures with the same rear cameras in the phone's folded state, of course, albeit framing on a smaller 4.6-inch display.

Samsung Galaxy Fold review

The triple camera at the back is virtually identical to Galaxy S10+ one - a 12MP primary shooter, a 12MP telephoto snapper, and a 16MP ultra-wide one.

The primary sensor has 1.4µm pixels, OIS, and dual pixel phase detect autofocus. It's got a dual aperture lens in front which can switch between f/1.5 to capture more light in dark scenarios and f/2.4 for improved sharpness in good light.

The telephoto snapper uses a 12MP sensor behind an f/2.4 lens with 1.0µm pixels, OIS and regular phase-detection autofocus.

Finally, the 16MP ultra-wide-angle cam is behind an f/2.2 lens but there is no autofocus here.

The Galaxy Fold has three selfie cameras - two above the big display and one above the cover display. The 10MP snapper from the Galaxy S10 and S10+ is on both sides of the Fold, but behind a darker f/2.2 lens. On the inside, there is another 8MP depth detection module for better Live focus portrait selfies. Note that Live focus is available with both selfie snappers, the inner one makes them more accurate though.

On the software side of things, the camera app is absolutely the same as on the S10 series. Samsung's expanded the range of scenes its Scene Optimizer will recognize and optimize for by 10 for a total of 30. Auto HDR is available, too.

Camera app - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Camera app - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Camera app - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Camera app - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Camera app

That would be the tree designation is here to stay - '3 trees' means ultra wide-angle cam, '2 trees' denote the regular camera, and '1 tree' means the telephoto. Pinch to zoom is also available and it switches seamlessly between the three cams.

Basic operation is straightforward with side swipes for cycling through modes and an up/down action for toggling between the rear and front cameras. You can add, remove and rearrange the modes in settings. The HDR (Rich tone) setting is not only in the menu but it's even more convoluted as it has an on/off toggle, and then when it's on, you can choose whether to kick in automatically or be always on. This one we keep in auto.

For the Live focus mode Samsung has switched to using the primary camera for capturing the photo and the telephoto for gathering depth data, as opposed to the other way around.

Image quality

The photos from the main 12MP shooter are excellent - there is a great amount of detail and overall a clean, noise-free image. Colors are lively but not over the top, and dynamic range is excellent. The photos are one bit sharper than what we usually got with the S10 phones, but not over-sharpened though.

Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/3001s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1657s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/2367s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1433s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
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Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/2359s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1972s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1325s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/2199s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP camera samples

The telephoto camera captures images with very similar quality to ones from the main cam in broad daylight.

Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1422s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1093s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1453s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/952s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1533s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/692s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/2565s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/603s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/1167s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/906s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/883s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples - f/2.4, ISO 50, 1/792s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 12MP telephoto camera samples

The images we took with the 16MP ultra-wide camera are pretty great for their class. They can't be a match for the regular or telephoto images in terms of pixel quality, of course, but for their exaggerated perspective purposes - you'd be very pleased.

At fit to screen magnifications the images look pretty nice with pleasing colors and very good dynamic range as far as these types of cameras go - due to the extreme coverage you're inevitably going to get a wider margin between the lightest and the darkest area in the frame, and the HDR algorithms can only do so much.

Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1488s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1347s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1429s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/880s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1372s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1546s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1286s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1232s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1453s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1501s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1013s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples - f/2.2, ISO 50, 1/1592s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Samsung Galaxy Fold 16MP ultra-wide-angle camera samples

In low light, the main camera captures very good images with well-defined detail and little noise. Dynamic range is also excellent.

Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 500, 1/14s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/9s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/12s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/14s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/33s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/100s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Main camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/14s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Main camera, 12MP low-light samples

The Fold, just like the S10+, is more inclined to use its telephoto camera for '2x' zoomed in shots (second and third photo) - previous models straight up defaulted to a digitally zoomed in shot from the primary cam. Even so, it still resorts to the main module under a certain light threshold. However, neither approach produces stunning results, and telephoto shots are just usable, but little more.

Telephoto camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/19s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Telephoto camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/2.4, ISO 1250, 1/16s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Telephoto camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/2.4, ISO 500, 1/16s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Telephoto camera, 12MP low-light samples - f/1.5, ISO 640, 1/14s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Telephoto camera, 12MP low-light samples

The low-light shots from the ultra-wide camera are quite good, although not as good as the regular ones. Still, for their purpose - those will do pretty fine.

Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 1600, 1/10s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 2500, 1/10s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 2000, 1/9s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 2500, 1/9s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 1000, 1/16s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 800, 1/20s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples - f/2.2, ISO 1600, 1/9s - Samsung Galaxy Fold review
Ultra wide camera, 16MP low-light samples

And here you can see how the Galaxy Fold compares against other snappers in our extensive pixel-peeking database.

Photo Compare Tool Photo Compare Tool Photo Compare Tool
Samsung Galaxy Fold vs. Galaxy S10+ vs. iPhone XS Max in our Photo compare tool

Reader comments

  • shain

return your device to the place to got the fold

  • Anonymous

Email Samsung, this isnt GSMArenas issue.

  • Yakolo

I am using Samsung gallaxy 5g fold and it is not charging, please can rectify the problem