This can be said for the smartphones in mid-range that they are quite accurate when it comes to offering value for money (VFM) features. Well, of course, it’s not true for all smartphones in this range but a certain set of them do offer some interesting VFM stuff. But the part consumers are mostly looking for is a good camera. If you want to spend around 12-15K on a smartphone, then that would be one of the highest priorities for you. One such handset that was recently launched in India was Obi Worldphone SF1; it has got an interesting pair of camera modules that we are going to talk in detail.
Sporting a 13-megapixel image sensor on the rear, the SF1 smartphone from the California-based company might just be the camera phone you were hoping to buy this holiday season. See, one thing you can assume here is that this rear camera module has the potential to be quite good. The Sony IMX214 sensor here is the same that was present on the OnePlus One and Xiaomi Mi4, so you can see why we are more inclined to recommend this camera module. But before we d that let’s talk about this with some camera samples. So, that you also get the idea of what you’re getting into.
Artificial Light – Gallery
Accompanied by the f/2.0 lens, the rear module is a delight when it comes the talk of natural light captures. The interface of the camera is quite interesting as well. It would remind you of a stock camera app of Android Lollipop. But don’t you worry about it being too simple; there are tons of modes available to play around here. The UI offers tons of modes other than automatic while mostly are about different scenarios such as night, sunset, beach, and snow.
But the one interesting mode, IQ Camera houses three sub-modes; ReFocus, Chroma Flash, and OptiZoom. From these three modes, my favorite is OptiZoom, which mimics the optical zoom capabilities by increasing the image resolution and reducing noise in captures. While other modes are also fun to play with, Refocus especially have an interesting take on focusing, which takes all focus captures and then allows you to change focus points in images.
Natural Light – Gallery
Coming to the talk of the natural light captures, it does pretty well job in respect to color reproduction and white balance. You certainly don’t notice an oversaturation either. The point is you can argue that it is the best 13MP image sensor out there in the market. In fact, the demands of this module would also tell you it is quite popular among the mobile manufacturers as well. At one period earlier this year, Sony was only able to fulfill 50% of the supply needed and thus by delaying the launch of smartphone shipments. There’s no doubt Sony is a pioneer in image sensing business and now taking over Toshiba’s image sensor business, the company would be increasing its grasp. Aside that point, the artificial light captures of the device are pretty good too.
In terms of the low light capabilities, the device is pretty much average performing. Even with the help of night mode it was hardly able to do anything good under the dark light, but in dim light the details were enough to make the content visible. Moreover, it wasn’t grainy captures unlike most of the handsets in this range would show you.
Low Light – Gallery
The camera module offers a video recording of up to 1080p quality, which is on par with the mid-range handsets. The fact that there is no OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) or EIS (Electronic Image Stabilization) is bad. Maybe the company has built in some stabilization after processing, but from a consumer point of view there is no button to enable that option. But I would still say that without any kind of stabilization the somewhat stable video quality can be achieved. Talking about the video clarity, it was quite good as well.
The front camera module is of 5-megapixel and accompanying it is the LED flash. I would say it’s on par with other handsets in this range but isn’t as quite good as I thought it would be. Although, I would say that it yielded natural outputs unlike other cameras, which just over do the beautification. On that note, there is no beauty on the camera interface. The LED Flash on the front is certainly an added advantage for selfie buffs. It is not the widest lens, but you can fit enough members to capture a group selfie as well.
This device can easily be the poster boy of mid-range handsets by replacing the current Xiaomi Mi 4i. I might even give it an award for the best camera phone in this segment. Although, only if you’re not taking low light performance into the note because Xiaomi’s handset might be better in that field. But again how many of you really take a night captures. If you’re looking for a camera phone in 12-15K, then this might be your best option if you’re not inclined to the Xiaomi device.