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Realme 8 Pro Camera review: A balanced performance

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103
camera

The Realme 8 Pro is the top entry in the company’s mid-range 8-series lineup. It features a 6.4-inch FHD+ screen, Qualcomm’s mid-range 720 chipset, and either 6 or 8 GB of memory with 128 GB of storage. There are four cameras on the back. The main wide module uses a high-resolution sensor in a bid to improve zoom performance; there’s also an ultra-wide camera as well as a dedicated 2 MP macro module for extreme closeups.

Read on to find out how the Realme 8 Pro performs in our DXOMARK Camera tests.

Key camera specifications:

  • Standard-wide: 108 MP 1/1.52-inch sensor, f/1.88 lens, PDAF
  • Ultra-wide: 8 MP sensor, 119° field of view, f/2.25 lens
  • Macro: 2 MP sensor, 4 cm shooting distance
  • 2 MP B&W sensor, f/2.4 lens
  • LED flash
  • 4K at 30 fps, 1080p at 60/30 fps (1080p/30 fps tested)

About DXOMARK Camera tests: For scoring and analysis in our smartphone camera reviews, DXOMARK engineers capture and evaluate over 3000 test images and more than 2.5 hours of video both in controlled lab environments and in natural indoor and outdoor scenes, using the camera’s default settings. This article is designed to highlight the most important results of our testing. For more information about the DXOMARK Camera test protocol, click here. More details on how we score smartphone cameras are available here.

Test summary


Realme 8 Pro
103
camera
112
photo
50
zoom
86
video

Pros

  • Exposure mostly accurate outdoors and indoors
  • Wide dynamic range in strongly backlit scenes
  • Details high in bright to moderate light
  • Fast and accurate autofocus
  • Fairly accurate depth estimation in portrait mode
  • Video noise well-controlled in bright light
  • Video white balance mostly neutral outdoors and indoors
  • Pleasant skin tones in outdoor videos

Cons

  • Skin tones sometimes inaccurate in natural scenes
  • Strong warm cast sometimes visible in low-light photos
  • Coarse luminance noise in low-light photos, including on faces
  • Underexposure in night photos, clipping in dark and bright areas of scene
  • Zoom detail low
  • Video contrast too high, clipped dark areas under all conditions
  • Video autofocus instabilities
  • Fine detail usually missing from videos
  • Video color rendering inaccurate in low light

With an overall score of 103, the Realme 8 Pro lands towards the bottom of our general rankings, but when compared to other phones in the Advanced ($200-$399) price segment it’s more competitive, tying the more expensive Apple iPhone SE (2020) but lagging behind the class-leading Google Pixel 4a (111).

The Realme 8 Pro exposes this scene nicely, with wide dynamic range. Color is also pleasant.

The Realme 8 Pro’s main camera exposes photos well, with notably wide dynamic range that holds detail in highlights, even in heavily backlit scenes. The simulated bokeh portrait mode is very good for this price segment as well. On the other hand, color performance could be much better and exposure accuracy drops sharply in low light, with underexposure becoming a problem. The photo score of 112 squeezes past the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro (111) but again lags behind the Pixel 4a (122).

The Zoom composite score of 50 is respectable for the Advanced category (the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro manages a 52). Its tele performance is top in its segment, but does not hold a candle to more capable phones in higher-priced segments with dedicated tele-cameras. Wide performance is acceptable.

The Video score of 86 is not among the best even within the restrictions of the Advanced category: high contrast causes clipped shadows, and autofocus and stabilization issues don’t help.

The Realme 8 Pro is very competitive in its category overall, with a fairly balanced set of strengths and weaknesses that is typical of devices in its segment. Compared to one of its most direct competitors, the Samsung A52 5G, it offers better performance in the Photo categories, especially for texture and noise, but cannot quite keep up in Video.

Below you can find detailed analyses and image samples for all Photo, Zoom, and Video sub-attributes, along with comparisons with two of the Realme 8 Pro’s competitors, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos).

Editor’s Note: When evaluating image quality, the camera team thinks it is important to assess devices from other segments just to see how, for example, an Advanced device performs against an Ultra-Premium one.  (The reference devices have no influence on the final score of the tested device.)
Comparing the cameras of the Realme 8 Pro, the Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), and the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro might seem a bit unusual considering their different price segments, but the comparison provided some interesting and unexpected insights – particularly in exposure – when it came to image quality. Read the full Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G and Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Camera reviews.

Photo

The Realme 8 Pro achieves a Photo score of 112. In this section, we take a closer look at each sub-attribute and compare image quality against competitors.

Exposure and Contrast

Realme 8 Pro

84

109

Huawei Mate 40 Pro+
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro+ (109)

In these tests we analyze target exposure, contrast, and dynamic range, including repeatability across a series of images. Tests are undertaken in a wide range of light conditions, including backlit scenes and low light down to 1 lux. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s exposure performance in backlit conditions.

Realme 8 Pro, wide dynamic range, good exposure
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), highlight clipping
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, strong highlight clipping

This graph shows the Realme 8 Pro’s average entropy (dynamic range) across a variety of light levels.

Average entropy (dynamic range) is high across all light levels, offering good highlight preservation. However, underexposure can lead to shadow clipping in low light.

This graph shows the Realme 8 Pro’s target exposure across a variety of light levels.

Target exposure is good in indoor and outdoor conditions, but is lower than the competition in low light, which can lead to shadow clipping. In addition, exposure instabilities lower the score.

Color

Realme 8 Pro

84

105

Huawei Mate 40 Pro+
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro+ (105)

In these tests we analyze color rendering, skin tones, white balance, and color shading, including repeatability across a series of images. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s color performance in low light. In portrait images we can sometimes also see inaccurate skin tone rendering.

Realme 8 Pro, strong orange cast in low light
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), very slight cast, pleasant color
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, slight orange cast, still pleasant rendering

Autofocus

Realme 8 Pro

97

109

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (109)

In these tests we analyze autofocus accuracy and shooting time, including repeatability, in the lab. We test focus failures, depth of field, and tracking of moving subjects using perceptual analysis of real-life images.

This graph shows autofocus performance of the Realme 8 Pro in the lab at 100 lux.

AF speed and accuracy at 100 lux, handheld: The Realme 8 Pro autofocus is generally fast and accurate outdoors and indoors for both HDR and non-HDR scenes. The maximum measured delay is about 300 ms (which is totally acceptable). In indoor and low-light conditions, autofocus remains very good with respect to direct competitors, but some slight discrepancies in acutance or shutter lag are still sometimes measured.

This graph shows autofocus performance of the Realme 8 Pro in the lab at 5 lux.

AF speed and accuracy at 5 lux, handheld: At 5 lux, the measured delay is around 500 ms, which could mean missing the decisive moment in a night scene.

Texture

Realme 8 Pro

92

111

Xiaomi Mi 11
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 (111)

In these tests we analyze texture on faces and objects, including objects in motion, in a range of light conditions, using several lab test setups and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

This graph shows the Realme 8 Pro’s texture measurements in the lab.

Texture comparison: Less detail than competitors for still scenes (“Landscape”), but prioritizing higher shutter speeds means better results in scenes with movement (“Family”).

Noise

Realme 8 Pro

64

99

Huawei P40 Pro
Best: Huawei P40 Pro (99)

In these tests we analyze noise on faces and objects, including objects in motion, in a range of light conditions, using several lab test setups and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s noise performance in low light.

Realme 8 Pro, low light noise
Realme 8 Pro, crop: high noise on face and background
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), low light noise
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), crop: less noise on face and background
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, low light noise
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, crop: high noise on face and background

This graph shows the Realme 8 Pro’s noise performance in the lab.

The Realme 8 Pro shows fairly low levels of noise in indoor and outdoor conditions, but measured noise increases dramatically in low light.

Bokeh

Realme 8 Pro

65

75

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (75)

For these tests we switch to the camera’s bokeh or portrait mode and analyze depth estimation, bokeh shape, blur gradient, and repeatability, as well as all other general image quality attributes mentioned above. The score is derived from perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s bokeh simulation indoors.

Realme 8 Pro, good subject separation, natural blur
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), good subject separation, natural blur
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, good subject separation, natural blur

Night

Realme 8 Pro

28

82

Huawei Mate 40 Pro+
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro+ (82)

In these tests we shoot a selection of images in pitch-black darkness as well as with city lights in the background providing some illumination. We shoot sample images with the camera at default settings in both flash-auto and flash-off modes. We analyze all image quality attributes but we pay particular attention to exposure, autofocus, and color. We do not test night modes that have to be activated manually.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s night performance in flash-auto mode.

Realme 8 Pro, flash-auto: accurate target exposure on face, natural skin tone, underexposed background
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), flash-auto: accurate target exposure on face, slight color cast, underexposed background
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, flash-auto: low target exposure on face, green color cast, underexposed background

Artifacts

Realme 8 Pro

66

75

Google Pixel 4
Best: Google Pixel 4 (75)

In these tests we check images for optical artifacts such as vignetting, flare, lens softness in the corner, distortion, and chromatic aberrations, as well as for processing artifacts such as ghosting and fusion errors, hue shift, and ringing.

These samples shows how ghosting and dark halo artifacts on the Realme 8 Pro. This is mostly visible in high-contrast scenes with subject motion, such as this one.

Realme 8 Pro, artifacts
Realme 8 Pro, crop: ghosting and dark halo
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), artifacts
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), crop: no ghosting
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, artifacts
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, crop: ghosting

Preview

Realme 8 Pro

49

77

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max (77)

In these tests we analyze the image quality of the preview image and the differences between preview images and captured images, particularly in terms of exposure, dynamic range, and bokeh effect. We also check the smoothness of the field-of-view changes in the preview image when zooming with both buttons or when using the pinch-zoom gesture.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s preview performance in bokeh mode.

Realme 8 Pro, preview: only roughly shows what blur will look like in the final image.
Realme 8 Pro, final image

Zoom

The Realme 8 Pro achieves a Zoom score of 50. The Zoom score includes the tele and wide sub-scores. In this section, we take a closer look at how these sub-scores were achieved and compare zoom image quality against competitors.

Wide

Realme 8 Pro

31

54

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (54)

In these tests we analyze the performance of the ultra-wide camera at several focal lengths from 12 to 20 mm. We look at all image quality attributes, but we pay particular attention to such artifacts as chromatic aberrations, lens softness, and distortion.

These samples show the performance of the Realme 8 Pro’s ultra-wide camera in outdoor conditions compared to the competition.

Realme 8 Pro, ultra-wide
Realme 8 Pro, crop: strong color fringing
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), ultra-wide
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), crop: some color fringing
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, ultra-wide
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, crop: no color fringing

Tele

Realme 8 Pro

63

133

Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra (133)

In these tests we analyze all image quality attributes at focal lengths from approximately 40 to 300 mm, paying particular attention to texture and detail. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Realme 8 Pro’s tele performance outdoors at a 170 mm-equivalent zoom setting.

Realme 8 Pro, 170 mm zoom
Realme 8 Pro, crop: reduced detail
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), 170 mm zoom
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), crop: reduced detail
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, 170 mm zoom
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, crop: very low detail

Video

The Realme 8 Pro achieves a Video score of 86. A device’s overall Video score is derived from its performance and results across a range of attributes in the same way as the Photo score. In this section, we take a closer look at these sub-scores and compare video quality against competitors.

In our Video tests we analyze the same image quality attributes as for still images, such as white balance and color rendering, but we also include such temporal aspects as speed, and smoothness and stability of exposure, and autofocus.

NOTE: The sample video clips in this section are best viewed at 4K resolution. 

Exposure and Contrast

Realme 8 Pro

71

103

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (103)

These video stills show the Realme 8 Pro’s video exposure characteristics in bright light.

Realme 8 Pro, video still: excessive contrast, shadow and highlight clipping
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), video still: much better highlight preservation but shadow clipping still visible
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, video still: more shadow detail but strong highlight clipping

Color

Realme 8 Pro

77

105

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (105)

These video stills show the Realme 8 Pro’s video color in indoor light.

Realme 8 Pro, video still: neutral white balance, acceptable skin tones
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), video still: neutral white balance
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, video still: neutral white balance, pleasant skin tones

Autofocus

Realme 8 Pro

62

105

Huawei Mate 40 Pro
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro (105)

These sample clips show the Realme 8 Pro’s video autofocus performance.

Realme 8 Pro, focus instabilities under all tested conditions

Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), accurate, stable autofocus

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, generally accurate autofocus but some instabilities

Texture

Realme 8 Pro

54

97

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (97)

These video stills show the Realme 8 Pro’s video texture in bright light (1000 lux) compared.

Realme 8 Pro, video still
Realme 8 Pro, crop: fine detail lost
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), video still
Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), crop: good detail
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, video still
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, crop: slightly more detail than Realme

Noise

Realme 8 Pro

88

105

Huawei Mate 40 Pro
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro (105)

This graph shows the Realme 8 Pro’s video noise performance in the lab.

Realme 8 Pro video noise: Noise is fairly well controlled in bright light.

 

Artifacts

Realme 8 Pro

71

94

Oppo Find X2 Pro
Best: Oppo Find X2 Pro (94)

For video artifacts, we check for the same kinds of artifacts mentioned in the Photo section, along with such video-specific artifacts as frame rate variation in different light conditions, judder effect, and moving artifacts (artifacts such as aliasing, color quantization, and flare can often be more intrusive when moving than in a still image).

This video still shows some of the Realme 8 Pro’s video artifacts.

Realme 8 Pro, video still
Realme 8 Pro, crop: This image shows ringing along edges, but artifacts such as aliasing, hue shifts, and color fringing can also be visible in other scenes.

 

Stabilization

Realme 8 Pro

85

102

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (102)

In these tests we analyze residual motion when handholding the camera during recording, as well as when walking and running with the camera. We also look for stabilization artifacts such as jello effect, sharpness differences between frames, and frame shift (abrupt changes of framing).

These sample clips show the Realme 8 Pro’s video stabilization while walking.

Realme 8 Pro, residual motion, especially low-frequency movements, visible while walking

Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G (Exynos), better stabilization

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, better stabilization

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