This is the best of Samsung the S21 ultra while it’s not a revolutionary product compared to the last year’s S20 ultra. Samsung made quite a few significant changes and improvements. Today I’ll talk about design, hardware performance, cameras, battery, and more.
The Samsung S21 ultra is the best designed Samsung phone especially the silver color. some may argue that the note 20 ultra looks better and while I don’t blame you because it’s also a looker, the S21 ultra is my personal choice.
Samsung S21 ultra Design
It’s a thing of beauty and an array of cameras is housed in the sturdy aluminum shell that’s an integral part of the frame. this may look a little bit weird design implementation but in practice, it looks really nice both the metal on the camera module and the gorilla glass victor’s covered backplate have this matte finish which is much better when it comes to dealing with fingerprints or at least camouflaging them also the aesthetics.
Matte finish just looks better than any glossy surface and it gives more of a premium look if Samsung made a matte metal frame that goes all around the device it would have been excellent but I can live with that. this IP68 water and dust resistant phone feels substantial and very premium in the hand. well, this is what you have to expect from a top of the line Samsung flagship. as the name implies the ultra is a big device but as it has become usual we also have S21 and the S21 plus that are more compact.
The Samsung S21 ultra has an upgraded 108 megapixels’ main camera, 12 megapixels ultra-wide, and two telephoto shooters. one has three times optical and another periscope lens has 10 times optical zoom. these cameras automatically switch depending on the distance to the subject you are shooting if you combine all of this with the software you can go up to 100 times zoom. there is also a laser AF system for faster and more accurate autofocus.
Samsung S21 ultra Display
If you want the best screen on a mobile device the Samsung S21 ultra has it it’s 6.8 inches and it can now reach a ridiculous 1500 nits of brightness meaning that you will never have outdoor visibility issues even on the sunniest days. the screen also has VQ HD plus resolution, it’s super sharp with the blacks punchy colors and most importantly a variable 120hz refresh rate works in the highest resolution setting which was not available on the previous generation model. one of the biggest upgrades the support of s-pen which is sold separately. I think it’s a welcome move by Samsung as the s-pen adds more features and functionality.
The fingerprint scanner has been performing well, I can see a significant improvement over last year’s S20 ultra as now the scanner is faster and more reliable, face unlocks feature is also fast and accurate just like last year’s model.
The Samsung S21 ultra does not have a headphone jack but most of us have got used to that. what is a bit frustrating is that Samsung took away a microSD card slot which may upset a good number of potential buyers.
Other key features include a good-sounding dual speaker setup and all of the connectivity options on the phone like call quality, signal reception, Wi-Fi, and GPS have been excellent.
As you may expect the ultra-ships with some serious flagship specs and some regions will get a SNAPDRAGON while others an EXYNOS variant. doesn’t matter which chipset powers the Samsung S21 ultra you should expect top-notch performance no matter what you do with the device from the latest 3D games to everyday tasks the phone is super-fast all of the most graphically intensive games run at the highest visual settings just fine. I played my favorite titles including Asphalt extreme, Call of duty PUBG, and all of them are buttery smooth.
as far as user interface goes the one UI 3.1 is built on top of android 11 and we have all of the usual features and customization options, while others prefer stock android Samsung’s UI has become one of my favorites in terms of look and feel and it also offers a variety of tweaks and settings to play with. to be honest with you I haven’t noticed a single lag of the UI yet as the phone feels smooth and responsive pretty much all the time.
Samsung S21 Ultra Cameras
When it comes to cameras the S21 ultra is all about versatility and zooms all of the images taken with a wide-angle regular three times optical and ten times optical zoom lens look great. the pictures are sharp detailed dynamic range is excellent and we see a signature Samsung’s color pop the thing that most of the users like because of an instant wow factor, this is not a complaint I like the look of the images because they are very nice out of the box without the need of further editing.
Samsung did a great job when it comes to uniformity across all of the camera lenses there are no severe color or white balance shifts which is usually the case in cheaper phones, having 3 and 10 times optical zoom lens literally changes the way you take pictures with your phone and I’m so glad to have such a versatile camera system right in my pocket naturally things get worse when you start using digital zoom even though Samsung introduced zoom lock a software feature that automatically stabilizes the image sometimes you might be able to take an ok looking image but don’t have high expectations for either 13 or 100 times zoom images this is digital zoom after all.
On the other hand, I’m still glad Samsung gave us this feature as it’s always nice to see companies push boundaries in mobile photography you can also take 108 megapixels pictures if you plan on cropping the image and you have a lot of resolution to play with if you don’t plan to do it just stick to the regular mode that produces near excellent looking 12 megapixels images when it comes to portraits the images have a bit of Zeiss lens 3d pop which basically means that the subject stands out from the background very well and the edge definition is great. really nice-looking portrait images that will look great on your Insta feed.
In Samsung S21 ultra, Low light camera performance is really impressive night mode is available on all camera lenses and you can take one of the best 9 shots on the phone, really good night image quality. a 40 megapixels’ front-firing shooter takes nice and sharp-looking images in both auto and portrait modes the latter mode does a great job with edge detection. night mode is available on a selfie camera too and you can achieve incredible quality selfies this is probably the best selfie image quality phone. you can get selfie portraits that look softer but the background is blurred nicely and overall the pictures look nice. when it comes to video the Samsung S21 ultra packs a ton of features different shooting modes and resolutions one of the most advertised is 8k 24 fps it does give you a ton of detail which is especially useful for cropping and taking snapshots.
I love that Samsung improved stabilization when shooting handheld but that is at the expense of a significant crop factor further I found video playback to be choppy on my 2017 MacBook pro which might be starting to show its age if you have a powerful pc to edit and in tripod you can definitely get really sharp and detailed footage the Samsung S21 ultra can finally record 4k videos at 60 frames per second with all camera lenses but there is a catch you need to choose the lens before you hit the record button as you cannot switch between them while you are recording the video it may not be a big deal for you but I hope Samsung can give this feature with future software updates.
The overall 4k 60fps video quality is pretty good in Samsung S21 ultra especially using the wide-angle and the main lens if you plan to use 3 and 10 times zoom lens I suggest you use a tripod to reduce the shakiness at the time of this review I recommend you using 4k 30 fps mode which allows you to use all of the camera lenses and you can switch between them while you are recording the video handheld footage is very stable and smooth but if you plan to use a 10 times telephoto camera I recommend you use a tripod it’s actually quite amazing that this phone provides good quality 10 times optical zoom 4k video. the overall 4k video quality using all of the camera lenses is one of the best in the business and you can definitely use this phone for creating online content.
One of the new features the wide-angle lens now has autofocus which is useful both in the photo and video departments, if you need near excellent stabilization the phone now supports 60 fps in super steady video mode and 1080p resolution you can also switch between the wide-angle and the main lens while you are recording the video the stabilization is really good but I will still use a gimbal and record videos in 4k resolution for better quality. the phone also has slow motion and super slow-motion video if you want to add a bit of dramatic feel to your footage but don’t expect amazing quality in comparison to 4k video.
The new director’s view mode allows you to record with a selfie and one of the back cameras at the same time no you can’t record with all of the back shooters simultaneously but you can switch between the wide-angle main and telephoto cameras quite seamlessly. 4k 60fps selfie video quality is really good and pretty stable even when shot handheld stabilization is not on par with the main camera but the footage still comes out pretty smooth, when I compared 4k 60fps to 4k 30fps video I found both the quality and stabilization to be similar if you put the phone on a tripod you can use the device for content creation not only because of the good video but also because of excellent sound recording quality.
Samsung S21 ultra Battery
You’re interested a 5000 mAh battery has been quite good to put it in perspective i used the phone at the highest resolution and refresh rate setting at about 50 of screen brightness i browsed the web scrolled through social media and took about 100 pictures per day the result of this type of usage about 6 hours of screen on time if you use the phone mainly for watching YouTube videos you should expect to get over 10 hours of charging time really depends on what kind of charger you use i charged my s21 ultra with a super-fast 45 watts Samsung brick but all of the new galaxies support only 25 watts of charging speed well it’s not the fastest speed in android world but you can still fully charge the phone in just about 1 hour there is also wireless charging rated at 15 watts and 4.5 watts reverse wireless charging technology overall i absolutely love the Samsung S21 ultra it’s one of the nicest looking phones with a beautiful and massive screen it’s got all the power you would ever need on a phone.
It also ships with versatile cameras that provide excellent image and video and the battery life is quite good the main shortcoming of the phone no microSD card slot, the lack of a charger in the retail box. I can’t call it a shortcoming as this is a new kind of trend that we need to get used to one flaw that bothers me but may not bother you.
You cannot switch between different camera lenses while you are recording the video in 4k 60fps mode you need to choose the lens before you hit the record button this is the feature that I really want Samsung to bring to this phone and hopefully, it will be brought with future software updates I try to be very picky in this review but I honestly can’t think of any other flaws which make the Samsung Galaxy S21 ultra a near-flawless device that now has become my new daily driver sure it could be cheaper but if you want the best all-around smartphone the Samsung S21 ultra should definitely be on your list what do you think about the Samsung Galaxy S21 ultra would you buy this phone or would you choose another device.