LG has upgraded cameras on LG G7 ThinQ as phone now comes with dual 16 MP sensors having an f/1.6 and f/1.9 aperture respectively. One of those sensors is an ultra-wide field of view for wider shots and the other is a regular sensor, having Optical Image Stabilization,
What LG G7 ThinQ is bringing on table is an impressive camera hardware and it combines it with Artificial Intelligence in an effort to actually understand what's in front of you. Machine learning tech categorizes subjects into 19 different shooting modes, tweaking colors and brightness along the way. At times, scene detection is right and AI adjusts camera settings accordingly, while other times it's way off. There have been times when AI wrongfully labeled food as dogs and toys as plants.
LG is introducing 'Super Bright Camera' which is more precise, automatically detects low-light situations and amps up brightness by four times compared to conventional pictures, and even twice as bright as LG V30S ThinQ 'Bright Mode'. Trade-off here is that photos are going to be 4MP, and 4K video is cut down to 1080p. Huawei P20 Pro does something similar too with its 40MP camera, outputting 10MP photos. Photos turn out to be brighter in those mode, but also grainy. You won't regret 4MP pictures over shadow-filled dark photos, though, but you won't be impressed either.
Photos from main camera setup are very good with pleasant colors that aren't overly saturated and crisp details. Dynamic range is well above average, preserving a good amount of detail in shadows and highlights. In low light situations, camera maintains plenty of detail and color, keeping noise to a minimum, at least on main sensor. Results from wide-angle lens tend to be more washed out with excessive noise. Its narrower aperture and lack of OIS means it has to rely on higher ISOs to create a brighter image.
An interesting thing about LG G7 ThinQ's cameras is that sensor size is smaller than ones found on Samsung Galaxy S9 and Google Pixel 2. LG says it doesn't need larger sensors to achieve impressive results, but when you test phone side-by-side its competitors, results beg to differ. LG has a really great camera, but it's just not as good as its primary competitors. At fault is the thinner design and lack of a significant camera bump on back. It came down to a battle between LG's design team and camera team. In the end, design team won with an elegant, smoother look to phone, but everyone else lost with photos that are poorer than they had to be.
However, what I really liked about this phone's camera is that it can do something no other recommended phone can do right now: take wide-angle photos. I am able to capture more of what's in front of me, thanks to 107-degree field of view (FoV) of second rear lens (a typical camera lens has a field of view of 71 degrees). I only wish this wider camera also had optical image stabilization that is on main camera.
LG also added portrait mode into LG G7 ThinQ, first for LG phones. It's a great addition if you want that artificial background blur for a more professional look, but it isn't perfect. There are times where it inaccurately blurs foreground, blurring out parts of hair, glasses, or ears. In most situations, though, blur is convincing. Portrait mode results on rear camera feels more consistent, as it does a better job separating complex subjects from background. This is likely due to two cameras being used to achieve this effect instead of relying on software with front camera.
On front, you will find an 8 MP selfie camera with an f/1.9 aperture, and honestly, this is a much needed upgrade from previous 5 MP selfie shooter. It is a new sensor, Hynix SF846, instead of usual Sony sensors. Colors and skin tones appear accurate in photos taken from front camera, though lack of Super Bright Mode on front-facing camera means you need ample light. When there is enough light, details in photos are on par with what you get out of Samsung Galaxy S9's front-facing camera.
Video recording is another small highlight on this phone as it's able to record 4K at 30 fps, this time with HDR video capture to absorb more color and use LG's cinematic tools. It was a treat testing LG G7 ThinQ's ability to slowly and smoothly zoom into any part of screen, not just center in a jerky motion like on every other phone. Super Bright Mode is present here as well, if you're okay with 1080p. You'll also find that you can record video at 240fps in 720p for slow motion. It's not super slow mo that I've seen on newer Samsung and Sony phones, but videos look fine here in HD as well.
What LG G7 ThinQ provides in camera department is everything we've seen in other phones, plus a little more. Even with all these features, it lags behind Google Pixel 2 or Huawei P20 Pro's cameras, and that's something LG needs to work on in future.