Huawei P50 Pro Review: One of the Best Flagship of 2021

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the release time of the Huawei P50 series is much later, and it is about to coincide with the new product launch cycle of the Mate series under normal circumstances. At the same time, affected by a series of objective factors, the product path of this generation of P series has slightly changed. Huawei’s proud imaging capabilities have ushered in a new breakthrough, but the chip cannot once again become the most important fulcrum of the P series as before. Huawei P50 series includes two models, P50 and P50 Pro. The protagonist of this article is Huawei P50 Pro.

Friends who follow Geek’s Choice should still be impressed. After the press conference on July 29, we are in “Where is the next step for mobile imaging?” In the article “Huawei P50 series may be the best answer”, a more detailed analysis of the Huawei P50 series imaging system was made. At that time, since the real machine was not available at the time, the discussion was more based on the theoretical level.

The core of this article I want to share with you is how the actual shooting effect of Huawei P50 Pro is after a series of software and hardware upgrades. Before I started writing, I originally planned to skip the paper parameters and technical characteristics and skip directly to the proofs section. However, considering the readability, let’s first summarize the two parts (friends who already know more can choose to slide down to the proofs part).

Design & Appearance

The highly recognizable appearance, and good hand feel, let’s talk about the ID design again. The Huawei P50 series has a total of four regular color matching versions and a special dynamic color matching version. Among them, the regular color matching version includes Yaojin Black, Snow White, Cocoa Tea Gold, and Dawn Powder; the dynamic color matching version is called Lianyi Yunbo. The one we got in hand is a cocoa tea gold version.

Maybe the cocoa tea gold version of Huawei P50 Pro you see from official channels is the effect above. The color of the back cover is relatively low-saturated gold, and the surface feels like an AG process. But after all, the promotion pictures, shooting and post-production will choose a more complete processing method, and after you get your hands, you will find that the real machine and the promotion pictures are somewhat different.

First of all, the cocoa tea gold version of the Huawei P50 Pro back cover does not use the matte back cover that has been popular in the industry in the past two years, but a mirror surface. The reason is not difficult to understand, the mirror is easier to make a sense of grade. And Huawei has made some longitudinal textures on the back cover, after the light is hit, the front look is very dazzling.

In addition, the “golden” effect of the cocoa tea gold version is greatly affected by the intensity of the ambient light. Under the condition of relatively weak external light intensity, it seems that the golden color will be closer to the effect shown in the official propaganda map, but if it is placed in a sunny outdoor environment, it will actually be much lighter, and it may even give people a silver illusion. If you are not sure, it is recommended to go to the offline store to experience it for yourself.

The most eye-catching part of the appearance of this generation of P series is the rear camera part. The Vientiane double-ring design adopted by it is different from all previous Huawei mobile phones, and it also brings a high degree of recognition. But it still follows the symmetry that Huawei has always emphasized. The two rings are exactly the same size, although they are large, they are not obtrusive.

When I first saw the P50 Pro rear camera, like many people, I felt a little uncomfortable. But I feel pretty good with the time. After thinking about it carefully, whether the P series or the Mate series, it seems that every time Huawei makes a major change to the rear camera style, everyone will initially disagree, but as more and more users get the real machine, the positive evaluation But it always has the upper hand.

Therefore, regarding the topic of beauty or ugliness, we will put it aside for the time being, and there will naturally be an answer when the shipment is officially started later.

Without some other constraints, the grip of this generation of P series has returned to the familiar feeling. Its body length is 158.8 mm, width is 72.8 mm, thickness is 8.5 mm, and weighs 195 grams. Even the more complicated version of Ripple Yunbo has a thickness of only 8.65 mm, which still has not broken the 9 mm mark. Both sides are curved to a certain degree, which makes it easy to hold.

There is also a more detailed place. The middle frame of the Huawei P50 Pro wraps the sides of the screen better than before, and it has better protection. At the same time, in actual use, the fingers will not easily touch the screen. , There is also a real improvement in reducing the chance of false touches.

By the way, the next screen part. Compared with the previous generation, the biggest change on the front of the Huawei P50 Pro is that it did not continue to use the front dual-camera design, but instead used a 13-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera (f/2.4 aperture, support autofocus). Correspondingly, the screen opening has been replaced from the previous dual-hole control to the same center-mounted single opening as many other Android phones.

In addition, the iconic screen curvature of the Huawei P series and Mate series did not appear on this generation of products. As can be clearly seen from the above picture, the curvature of the left and right sides of the P50 Pro’s screen is larger than that of the previous generation, so when used outdoors, the common edge reflection problem of this type of screen cannot be completely avoided. But I have to say that the upper and lower border controls are indeed very narrow, and the openings are also very small.

In terms of specifications, Huawei P50 Pro is equipped with a 6.6-inch OLED screen with a resolution of 2700 x 1228 pixels (FHD+ level), 450ppi, support for 1.07 billion color display and P3 wide color gamut, screen refresh rate 120Hz, touch sampling rate 300Hz, using 1440Hz high frequency PWM dimming.

The screen fingerprint is still retained, and the actual unlocking speed and recognition accuracy are at the current industry mainstream level. However, it may be due to internal stacking problems. This time its screen fingerprint module is not in a relatively upper position like the previous generation. When you first use it, it will be more or less inconvenient to unlock with one-handed thumb. After getting used to it, it will be much better.

Cameras

The rear camera of Huawei P50 Pro uses a “super dual image unit” design, which consists of a super main camera unit and a super zoom unit. Among them, the super main camera unit includes a 50-megapixel primary color camera (color, f/1.8 aperture, supporting OIS optical image stabilization), and a 40-megapixel primary color camera (black and white, f/1.6 aperture).

The super zoom unit contains a 13-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera (f/2.2 aperture), and a 64-megapixel periscope telephoto camera (f/3.5 aperture, supports OIS optical image stabilization). These lenses are combined, Huawei P50 Pro can achieve 3.5x optical zoom, and up to 100x digital zoom.

Although it is called a dual image unit, the physical spatial positions of the two sets of lenses are not arranged based on the above logic. The ultra-wide-angle lens and the super main camera unit are placed in the upper ring, and the telephoto lens, spectral sensor, and flash are located in the lower ring. As for why this is done, it is mainly limited by the internal space. In addition, making the internal elements of the two rings have triangular symmetry should also be one of the reasons.

The real power of this imaging system is the use of new computational optics technology (XD Optics) and primary color engine technology. With the help of computational optics technology, the mobile phone can use algorithms to predict the aberration loss caused by the optical path, and then use the algorithm to restore the original imaging effect of the lens.

If the 50% loss of image information from entering optical components is used as the reference benchmark, it is only possible to recover 60% of the original information under the condition of relying solely on post-processing before, and the other lost light information cannot be retrieved at all; and With computational optics technology, the original image information can be restored to about 81%.

In this way, in addition to providing more maneuverable space for restoring the original appearance of the photographed object in the later stage, the more important point is that manufacturers no longer need to adjust the hardware itself, and can achieve that it can only be obtained on higher-specification hardware in the past. The high-quality image effect of the mobile phone is of great significance for mobile phone products where the internal space of the fuselage is extremely valuable.

The primary color engine technology combines the new XD Fusion Pro image engine and a more powerful multi-spectral sensor to allow the camera to obtain a more accurate white balance performance. With the new computational optics technology, XD Fusion Pro ultra-definition image engine, and the collaborative work of two primary color lenses, Huawei’s P50 Pro main camera has a 103% increase in light input compared to last year’s P40 Pro, and detail retention has also been improved by about 10%.

Let’s take a look at the actual imaging effect of Huawei P50 Pro in combination with the direct sample. In order to make it easier for everyone to read, we divided the proofs into two categories: daytime shooting and night scene shooting. Among them, daytime shooting mainly examines the picture performance during zoom shooting, while night scene shooting is divided into two aspects: regular night scenes and extreme night scenes. In this process, some other usage details will also be supplemented.

First, zoom shots during the day. Huawei P50 Pro has a total of four zoom shooting anchor points, which are 0.5x, 1x, 3.5x, and 10x, respectively, and the zoom is 100x. (Note: The weather in Beijing was not ideal during the shooting, and the lighting conditions changed a lot. You only need to refer to the same set of samples for reference.)

0.6x

Standard Mode

The above set of samples were taken in standard mode and ultra-wide-angle mode. It can be seen from the proofs that after increasing the field of view of the ultra-wide-angle lens to 120°, the viewing range of the Huawei P50 Pro is indeed very wide, and the image information richness is obviously more than that of the standard mode. But what I want to talk about is the color and distortion control of the proofs in the ultra-wide-angle mode.

Generally, due to the difference in hardware specifications between the ultra-wide-angle lens and the main camera, the color look and feel of the two modes will be significantly different. The outstanding part of Huawei P50 Pro is that after the main camera is switched to the ultra-wide angle, the actual picture color There is still good consistency and clear enough.

In addition, although its ultra-wide-angle lens has the largest field of view among all Huawei mobile phones, the actual picture edge distortion processing is even better. This can be well verified by maintaining the shape of the building on the right side of the ultra-wide-angle proof. In addition to wide-angle shooting, the task of macro shooting also falls on the ultra-wide-angle lens.

Like many mobile phones, the macro shooting mode of Huawei P50 Pro also has two opening methods. One is to automatically recognize the object close to the subject, and it can also be manually selected on the camera interface. As far as the actual proofs are concerned, the focus details of the proofs output by the macro mode are better, and there is no sudden drop in picture quality after switching to macro shooting.

Standard Mode

3.5X

10X

The color consistency we mentioned in the ultra-wide-angle proofs section was verified again in the telephoto shooting. In the 1x, 3.5x, and 10x modes, the look and feel of the picture is basically in the same color dimension.

There are two main points in this part: First, the brightness of the picture taken by the 3.5x telephoto lens looks roughly the same as that of the main camera. In other words, there is no need to worry about the amount of light coming in this lens; in addition, the 10x zoom The imaging quality is satisfactory. It can be seen from the proofs that the shape of the rivets on the building is clearly visible, and the overall shape of the rust pattern is well preserved.

During the telephoto shooting, we also noticed some details: the anti-shake effect of Huawei P50 Pro is better than that of the previous generation. After the focus is completed, when you move the phone to switch to the next focus, you will feel a slight delay in the preview image, so even if you hold it in hand The shooting is not so stable, in fact, it will not easily fall out of focus.

When zooming continuously, the smoothness of this generation of P series is better than most other mobile phones except iPhone. However, it may be due to algorithm intervention. When the shooting mode is switched from standard to 3.5x telephoto, although the subject in the viewfinder is zoomed in for the first time, the actual picture can only be achieved after it stabilizes.

Standard Mode

100X Zoom

For the ultra-telephoto part, the “B9” that has appeared in our review articles many times before is still selected as an example. In the standard mode, it is actually difficult to see the building logo clearly. After pulling the Huawei P50 Pro to 100x zoom, the following picture is obtained. In terms of processing strategy, it is more towards clarity, and there are not too many smear marks on the edges of the picture.

At the same time, for ease of use considerations, over 15x zoom, a small preview box will appear in the upper left corner of the camera interface, which is convenient for you to find the subject you want to shoot in the first time. After further algorithm optimization, the difficulty of focusing during 100x telephoto shooting has once again been reduced. The focus “jumping around” problem that many mobile phones with ultra-long zoom capabilities have does not appear in them.

1X

2X

3X

The rear camera of Huawei P50 Pro supports 1x, 2x, and 3x portrait zoom shooting. Since the shooting that day was already in the afternoon, and we chose a relatively higher bridge, there will be more obvious winds. However, this has played a certain role in verifying the effect of portraits.

If you carefully observe the edges of the model’s hair in the above sample, you can see that the hair and other details are well preserved, which also makes the actual picture look more natural. At the same time, Huawei seems to have made some adjustments to the portrait beauty algorithm this time. The beauty effect is more restrained, and the skin details and skin tone will be improved, but the overall is more real, similar to the contrast effect before and after makeup.

For the night scene, we took samples of the conventional and extreme environments respectively.

The above picture was taken in the 798 Art Zone in the night scene mode. As you can see, Huawei P50 Pro does not pursue the brightness of the picture too much, but on the basis of ensuring the brightness, the details of the dark parts are better presented. As for why this is said, you can tell by carefully observing the buildings appearing at the top of the picture.

Oh yes, at least from the real shot proofs, this time the P50 Pro did not have the color cast problem of previous generations of Huawei flagships. The specific reason is that the sensor or algorithm optimization has not given a positive response at present, and there have been various “guessings” on the Internet recently. After that, we will ask the official for verification, and if there is a result, we will explain it through Geek Choice Weibo and other channels as soon as possible.

For me personally, the most shocking part of Huawei P50 Pro is the extreme night shooting ability.

There are almost only screenshots of the camera control interface above, which is what the human eye can see. Because the surrounding environment is too dark, it is difficult for you to know what the subject is. The picture below is the actual sample effect after pressing the shutter button.

Yes, we actually placed a Kakarot’s anime model right in front of the phone. Comparing the scenes we can see before and after shooting, you will find that Huawei P50 Pro not only mentions the picture in a sufficiently bright state, but also has excellent noise control, so that the details of each part of the character’s body are well presented. And there is no deviation in color.

But it is necessary to explain that the above picture was taken in standard mode, not night scene mode. In fact, almost all mainstream manufacturers have added the night scene algorithm to the standard shooting mode, so when shooting at night, even if the night scene mode is not turned on, the quality of the sample output from the mobile phone is not bad, and in many cases the night shooting effect in the standard mode is better. In night scene mode.

According to past practices, the image part should almost end here, but for the Huawei P50 Pro, there is still one important link missing: the degree of true color reproduction. In this part, we used iPhone 12 Pro and Huawei P50 Pro to shoot the same object, with the background of a desk that is common in life.

Left/iPhone 12 Pro Right/Huawei P50 Pro

Since the desk we used for shooting is actually placed next to the floor-to-ceiling windows, the color of the desk is actually a “light in the top and dark in the bottom” effect. Comparing the above three sets of proofs, you can see that the color difference between the iPhone 12 Pro and Huawei P50 Pro proofs is quite obvious. In each group of proofs, the objects and desktop colors shot by the P50 Pro are relatively darker than the iPhone 12 Pro.

From a WYSIWYG perspective, the iPhone 12 Pro’s straight-out proofs are relatively closer to the real scene seen by the human eye at the time. But when it comes to the true color reproduction of objects, Huawei P50 Pro is even better. Both the subject and the desktop color are closer to the original color perception.

Speaking of this, it needs to be clear that in the past, mobile phone manufacturers also used algorithms to perform post-processing on image effects, but the results often generated were too “ideal”. Although they looked good, they lost some realism. For the color performance of Huawei P50 Pro’s proofs, it may be more appropriate to describe it as “close to, or even better than, the real effect of the human eye.”

In the past, people complained about the “slow camera” problem, which was finally solved on the Huawei P50 Pro. Huawei has added a “snapshot” function to its camera. The general effect is similar to the sports capture function of the vivo phone or the street photography function in the realme GT master version, which makes it easier for the phone to achieve the capture needs.

Its snapshot function is not only fast, but also faster to open. Like other Huawei terminal products equipped with the HarmonyOS system, Huawei has “extracted” the commonly used shooting modes of the camera, including the snapshot function, and swiped up on the camera icon to quickly click to call it.

In addition, during use, we also found that although the picture will still be processed before it appears in the preview screen after the shooting is completed, the waiting time is obviously shorter than that of the Huawei Mate40 Pro in my hand. From another angle, the overall experience of the camera is improved.

In the video part, Huawei P50 Pro supports 4K shooting (up to 4K@60fps) and AIS optical image stabilization at all focal lengths. It has other functions such as video beautification, dual-view recording, micro-movie, and AI micro-motion moments. It is worth mentioning that this time Huawei has made a “petal editing” application, which can be directly called through the gallery, and it is good to process some video clips that are not so demanding.

For the night scene, we took samples of the conventional and extreme environments respectively.

4G is not unforgivable, but after all

Battery

In other respects, Huawei P50 Pro is equipped with dual speakers, supports Bluetooth 5.2 connection, and has IP68 dust and water resistance. In terms of battery life, its battery capacity is 4360mAh. It still matches 66W wired fast charging and 50W wireless fast charging. Of course, the reverse charging function has not fallen.

According to actual measurement, the original wired charger can charge from 1% to 18% in 5 minutes, 33% in 10 minutes, 45% in 15 minutes, 56% in 20 minutes, and 67% in 25 minutes. , 30 minutes can be charged to 78%, 35 minutes can be charged to 86%, 40 minutes can be charged to 92%, and it takes about 52 minutes to charge to 100%.

One thing to note is that this time Huawei did not put a charger in the Huawei P50 Pro box. In other words, old users of Huawei mobile phones can use the previous chargers. If you are a new user and want to experience the convenience brought by 66W fast charging, you will need to buy an additional official later at a price of 199 yuan.

In the past, Huawei’s most proud chip has become the most regrettable part of this generation of P series. As everyone knows, Huawei P50 Pro does not support 5G, only the 4G full Netcom version, and the Snapdragon 888 version at the end of the year also cannot support 5G networks, but it can make the current Huawei “coreless available to a certain extent.” “The dilemma is heading for the better.

In fact, there are more or less differences in network performance between 4G and 5G mobile phones, but in most scenarios, this difference is not easy to perceive, so you don’t need to worry too much about the actual use of it.

Read Also: Huawei P50 Pro VS Honor 50 Pro: Difference Between 50MP and 100MP

Verdict

Huawei P50 Pro is a relatively easy to summarize mobile phone. It has top-level imaging capabilities, and the successful implementation of computational optics technology on mass-produced models is not only for Huawei itself, but also for the future development direction of mobile photography. It is also of great significance to solve the internal space and electronic components of mobile phones. The contradiction between device sizes provides a reasonable and feasible solution.

In addition to images, Huawei P50 Pro also performs well in other aspects such as design, feel, and fast charging. And the chip, or 4G, may be the only factor that affects whether everyone ultimately decides to pay for it.

Frankly speaking, in the 5G era, if you start a 4G mobile phone at a not-so cheap price, the most uncomfortable thing is not how you actually use it, but the hurdle in your heart. But Huawei P50 Pro is indeed an exception.

As a product released under the background of a special environment, we are destined to be unable to look at it too conventionally. When I had a dinner with my colleagues a few days ago, because I arrived earlier, I stopped by Huawei’s offline store and chatted with the clerk about the sales of his store.

I learned from the clerk that the most popular model is the Mate40 series, and Nova’s attention is also good. Even the earlier Mate30 series still has many customers inquiring, and when it comes to sales, he just smiled awkwardly. .

This is the status quo of Huawei mobile phones today. In fact, the number of shipments is no longer the most important thing for Huawei. Even if all the inventory is emptied, it may not be able to return to the previous market share, but if it can continue to maintain its voice, it has already won.

In the long run, when the industry has entered a mature stage, the disadvantages of the head “players” retiring from the venue will inevitably outweigh the benefits. For ordinary consumers like you and me, competition between manufacturers will become smaller, and it will not bring any benefits. In the end, the pricing power is no longer dominated by the market, but in the hands of a few oligarchs.

Regarding whether to start with Huawei P50 Pro, there is no need to force or blame others, just be rational and just follow your own ideas. For sales, the 8GB+256GB Huawei P50 Pro is 6488 yuan, and the 8GB+512GB version is 7488 yuan.

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