Oneplus 5 vs Iphone 7 plus: photos

August 04, 2017


I am testing a Oneplus 5 and writing about it (in Swedish) over on Macpro. As usual, I create more material than strictly needed. This, then, is the extended English version of my unprofessional camera comparison. Bonus material, if you will.

Shot on Oneplus 5

It is fun to take photos with the Oneplus 5; it reacts quickly, takes good photos and has more settings than I use. Iphone has a smoother interface for switching camera modes where you just swipe left and right whereas the Oneplus requires hitting a hamburger menu button in the top left and then tapping in the menu displayed. This is possibly the detail I miss most from the Iphone, because I have little to complain about when it comes to the results.

In all images, the Iphone 7 plus photo is on the left, the Oneplus 5 on the right.

Car in summer green surroundings Car in summer green surroundings

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

This simple point and click with both cameras gave a good example of how colours can differ. The grass is often greener with Oneplus 5. I percieve the Iphone colours as closer to reality, but the Oneplus colours appeal to me. The differences are often smaller than this, but a somewhat extreme example illustrates them clearly.

Speaking of colours, there is a clear difference in colour reproduction in the screens of the two phones. Here too, it feels mainly like a matter of taste what you prefer. Oneplus 5 has much more pop in its colours and somewhat lower colour temperature (is that the right expression?) - whites look somewhat more blue on Oneplus 5 and more yellow on Iphone 7 plus.

Portrait mode

I had expected the Iphone 7 plus portrait mode to be much better than Oneplus 5. It just seemed like the kind of area Apple would sink a lot of resources into and get proportionally better results out of. To my surprise the two feel very equal: when they work they work really well and when they have problems they have about the same level and type of problems with blurry edges and other miscalculations of what should be blurred.

French press outdoors French press outdoors

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

One interesting difference is that the lenses used make a clear difference: snapping a portrait mode photo from the same distance and position gives me a lot more of the surroundings with the Oneplus 5 than on the Iphone 7 plus.

Chesire cat figure Chesire cat figure

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

Light and darkness

Book case in low light Book case in low light

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5


Open window by night Open window by night

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

In dark situations the Iphone is better at catching light and details. Megapixels and file sizes are, as always, far from everything. The Oneplus-photo is over 50% larger in file size and 16 megapixels instead of the Iphone's 12, but it has little to show for all that data quality-wise.

Tea preparation Tea preparation

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

In this image I manually set focus on the knitted tea cosy, something which made the Iphone completely lose its grip on the brighter parts of the image. Otherwise I found focus to work better on the Iphone. The interfaces are identical but I percieve the Iphone as having a quicker and clearer response, and a few times the Oneplus 5 stopped reacting to my focus-selecting taps.

Tea preparation, auto focus Tea preparation, auto focus

*Full images: Iphone 7 plus, Oneplus 5.*

When I let the phones focus on their own the result was a lot more balanced.


If there are any large problems around shooting pictures with the Oneplus 5 I have not yet discovered them. Instead, I was very pleasantly surprised by both image quality and ease of use. My expectations was that lots of functions would exist on paper but work so-so in practise, but it feels like the phone does everything I want and also rests better in my hand than my Iphone 7 plus. There are differences, to be sure, but so far they feel either like matters of taste, or like things too small to affect the outcome for someone choosing between the two phones.

(I assume someone really into photography will be able to spot loads of differenes too great to ignore after just glancing at the photos. Personally, I have not reached that level, and I was not aiming for that type of comparison.)