Galaxy S21 Ultra Review – Samsung's Best Fix-up Job!
It’S well, ultra it’s, all the best that samsung could include in a modern smartphone with no limitations. But does it mean that you should just go out and spend 1 200 on this new phone without even thinking about it? Well, if you like phones and more specifically, if you like big phones, the answer is probably yes. This phone does all the things a demanding user would want. It’S fast it’s got 120 hertz screen. It’S got a huge battery and it’s got this amazing. Awesome camera check check check on paper. However, all those things are what samsung has already been doing for the past few years. Let me give you an example: the s20 owner already used 120 hertz screen last year right and then the note 20 ultra as well, but hear me out. The s2100 doesn’t just have any 120hz screen. It uses ltpl technology and it’s. Actually, the first phone with samsung’s new power, efficient screen deck and that’s big for battery life, and then you have the fingerprint scanner it’s under the screen and the s21 ultra uses ultrasonic technology like previous phones but again it’s improved it’s, bigger and 50 faster. So you no longer have that tiny bit of a lag every single time. You unlock the phone. Take a look at this direct comparison between the fingerprint scanner and the note 20 ultra and the s21 ultra. It might not seem like much, but for something you do. Hundreds of time every day it makes a big difference, see samsung might not tell you, but the s21 ultra is in many ways a fix up job rather than a revolution.
But there is nothing wrong with a good fix up job to a great idea and the one area where samsung has done the most fixing is the camera. Samsung already had a great idea, space zoom. It was last year, but if you’ve used the s20 ultra, you would know that the quality was just not up there with expectations. The s21 ultra adds zoom lock, which is a simple feature that you don’t see anywhere on the spec sheet by the way, but it’s a game changer see that kite up there in the sky. The video looks good right, but it can’t be that far away. Can it wait for it wait for it and zoom out that’s how far it really is? It’S, really incredible, i was able to track flying birds with nearly perfect autofocus, with just this phone. Take a look at the seagulls here or this boat, which was so far away. There’S, really no way you can capture this kind of a shot with any other phone, and i can already hear some people say. But how often would one even use the zoom on their phone? Well, folks, trust me, you would use it a lot more with this phone okay and for all the rest about the camera check out our detailed comparison of the ultra against the iphone 12 pro max and the pixel 5.. In a nutshell, the pixel and iphone still have a slight advantage in low light Music.
But for all else the galaxy is in the same league and it actually has a few features like 8k video, better slow motion, portrait videos, and so on that you cannot get on the others. Okay and then there is one other huge area where samsung needed to fix things up see if you live in the us. You don’t need to worry about that you’re getting the latest and greatest processor by qualcomm, the snapdragon 8, but for years samsung has treated users in the uk and europe to a different processor, one of its own, making the exynos and so far it has always been Slower and draining more battery to the tune of as much as 20 percent. Well this year, samsung says the new exynos fixes that we actually have the exynos version here and for the most part it does. The phone feels fast and battery life is solid. Now, speaking of battery life, the s21 ultra a star battery test which, by the way you can check somewhere on your screen right now spoiler. It beats a certain record on one of our tests and in real life i’m, getting around six to seven hours of screen. Time, which means this phone will last me a full day and maybe a bit more but it’s, definitely not a two day phone by the way. We’Re in the midst of comparing the exynos model that i have here to a snapdragon model hit that subscribe button to not miss that video last thing about the battery.
The s21 ultra scored 14 hours and 43 minutes on our web browsing test at the default 120. Hertz adaptive mode and when we switched to 60 hertz, we got a slightly higher score of 16 hours and seven minutes, which is among the best results we’ve gotten so far, but under heavier load the ultra lasts noticeably less in our youtube video streaming, it scored 8 Hours and 52 minutes, which is definitely good but it’s, not amazing, it’s, just a few minutes longer than the iphone 12 pro max and in our 3d gaming test, where the gpu works the hardest, it scored just five hours and three minutes at 120, hertz adaptive mode By the way, when switching to 60hz for gaming, the battery score improves a great deal and the phone lasts 8 hours and 40 minutes on the very same test. Now we have also done the following experiment: fire up call of duty mobile at very high graphics settings using the adaptive mode and started playing half an hour later. The phone got warm, but not hot, and the battery was down by 10 from the beginning of the test. We kept on playing this test by the way, was the most fun and did one final check exactly one hour after the beginning of the test, the phone had lost exactly 18 for the full hour of gaming. So if you play call of duty a lot, you can expect a fully charged phone here to last about five hours.
Keep in mind, though, that currently call of duty does not support 120hz refresh rate on mobile and it’s not draining the battery as fast as say. Minecraft, which does support 120 hertz okay, so that were the most important things. But here are the cool little details. The s21 ultra is made of the last generation corning gorilla glass, which is far more resistant to drops and scratches. You can also now use 120hz with the full wqhd resolution and you should we performed the same battery test at 1080p and at the higher wqhd resolution, and we found no meaningful difference in battery life at all. So just go ahead and treat yourself to the higher resolution. Now all of that is great, but if i had to pick a bone with the ultra, it would be about the software see some things are easy to fix. For example, the samsung keyboard is well for a lack of a better word it’s trash, but then google gboard is just a download away on the play store, but there are other things. For example: samsung. Can we please not get ads in the weather app when buying a phone that costs more than a thousand dollars, and then we have the emoji situation. Samsung has its own emoji, that don’t look quite as terrible as on stock android, but come on having good, looking emoji while texting shouldn’t be that hard and really there is not much else to complain about.
Let me tell you that i really didn’t want to like this phone as much as i do. First, because it’s big and bulky – and i prefer more compact phones in general – it’s – also a bit slippery in the hand and it’s expensive one thousand two hundred dollars and samsung – is removing options like the micro sd card slot and there’s, not even a charger in the Box, but at the end of the day, those are not the things that really matter and samsung has focused on getting the essentials right. Amazing display fast performance, great camera, good battery life, so yeah two big thumbs up for the ultra, get it if you can afford it by the way. Samsung also has the cheaper s21 and s21 plus models, and my colleague p has the scoop on those phones. Spoiler alert, he says: they’re just fine phones, but not quite as exciting, but you’d better watch the full video anyway, thanks for watching subscribe to the channel, if you haven’t already, my name is vic. This is phone arena and i’ll talk to you in the next one.