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Camera Shootout: ASUS Zenfone 3 vs Zenfone 2

Since the Zenfone 3 is already in our hands, why not take it for a spin against its predecessor? Here’s a camera shootout for you guys especially for those who are thinking of upgrading to the latest Zenfone 3’s shooter. It’s a 16MP Sony IMX298 versus the 13MP Toshiba sensor of the Zenfone 2. But, the ZF3 has a 4-axis optical image stabilization feature as an advantage. Here are a number of samples and we’ll let you be the judge.

Note: The images were taken with the same composition and framing as much as possible using Zenfone 3 (ZE552KL) and Zenfone 2 Deluxe (ZE551ML). They were resized to 1920×1440 pixels for uploading.


In broad daylight, the Zenfone 3 produces a colder image and a more natural looking scenery than its older version. The Zenfone 2 may have a brighter and punchier image but it doesn’t look as natural as we like it to be.


High dynamic range mode for the two phones, based on the images above, slightly helps to capture details in the shadows. We noticed that the Zenfone 3 is a bit aggressive on the highlights with using HDR mode thus resulting to a bit flat image. The Zenfone 2, on the other hand, captures a brighter but playful looking image.


Heading inside with a mix of natural light and artificial house fixtures, the Zenfone 3 shows that it’s the better camera phone of the two. Thanks to the optical image stabilization (OIS) built-in to the new Zenfone 3, it was able to bring in more light to the sensor without the blur.


Again, the Zenfone 3 shines when it comes to the macro shots. The images above were shot indoors with a lot of lighting coming from the window but the Zenfone 3, again, captures more details and better saturation, thus resulting to a sharper close-up.


This is where we knew the 2nd-generation Zenfone will have a hard time. As expected, the Zenfone 2 captures a dimmer still compared to the Zenfone 3 which takes advantage of its OIS. Also, the Zenfone 2 struggles to focus properly on the subject in dim environments. We’re using the non-Laser variant of the Zenfone 2, so that might explain why.


Turning on the flash to help with the dark environment does light up the subject enough for both phones. Although, in this round, the Zenfone 3 misses to focus properly on Bob. Just like in daylight, the Zenfone 3 still produces colder tones while the Zenfone 2 really likes to keep things warm.


And for selfie lovers, the Zenfone 3 will give you better justice. It’s sharper, more natural, and just has a better front-facing camera overall.



As for video, the Zenfone 3 is just the better camcorder of the two. It has a wider FOV and more natural tones. It also has 4K option if you have a 4K monitor around to enjoy it with. Audio recording is also richer with the Zenfone 3 but it’s not near Nokia Lumias’ quality that we greatly miss.


Turning on the stabilization feature of the two helps keep things steady but we already know who’s the winner here. The Zenfone 2’s electronic stabilization is also a bit quirky at times.

And that’s pretty much it. What are your thoughts about the Zenfone 3’s improved camera? Hit the comments section below and share with other readers.

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Avatar for Daniel Morial

This article was contributed by Daniel Morial, a film school graduate and technology enthusiast. He's the geeky encyclopedia and salesman among his friends for anything tech.

11 Responses

  1. Avatar for Coco Patrick Coco Patrick says:

    Very nice review, though I was distracted by theselfie… hihihihihihi..more selfie please.. hahaha

  2. Avatar for Talee (@ataliabaltazar) Talee (@ataliabaltazar) says:

    tinde ng zf3 pati yung dust sa polluted air ng pilipinas nakukuhanan nya. (foggy tingnan yung kalye sa daylight shot ng zf3)

  3. Avatar for Big G Big G says:

    mas maganda saturation ng ZF3

  4. Avatar for Gerald A. Gerald A. says:

    How to be yours po. ?

  5. Avatar for jaygal jaygal says:

    mas maganda ang kuha ng zf2

  6. Avatar for Boybawang Boybawang says:

    Nice review! Next time please compare it camera against the flagships such as s7 or g4. I know its optics is inferior but it’s still interesting to see how this mid end closes the gap. Take more indoor shot comparison. No need outdoors because even cheap phones capture decent outdoor shots.

  7. Avatar for RCB RCB says:

    mas maliwanag ang Zenphone 2.. nag suffer lang sa low-light..

  8. Avatar for EGGO EGGO says:

    it appears that zenfone 2 is brighter but lack of color punch. it is a bit washed-out. on the other hand zenfone 3 quite lack of brightness but much acceptable true color of object. zen2 suffers in low light while this is the strongest part of the zen3 same with the stabilization. For the aesthetics and ergonomic i will prefer zen3. but when you are tight and want a camera phone for the budget.. i recommend zen2

  9. Avatar for kabebegirl kabebegirl says:

    Cute din naman yong isa pero mukhang pabebe. Hehehe.

  10. Avatar for kabebegirl kabebegirl says:

    OMG…that smile!

  11. Avatar for HungHang SPOTTED HungHang SPOTTED says:

    bakit parang mas OK ang zenfone 2 ? luhhh…..

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