Features & Controls
The contoured sides of the display are very stylish, creating an effect similar to an infinity pool.
The rear-facing camera (shown above) records 16-megapixel images. Above the lens is the (left to right) flash, heart rate sensor and AF-assist lamp. The heart rate sensor measures your heart beat when used with the S Health app.
Picture size menu:
- 16M (5312x2988)
- 12M (3984x2988)
- 8.9M (2976x2976)
- 8M (3264x2448)
- 6M (3264x1836)
- 2.4M (2048x1152)
The front-facing ("selfie") camera (at top) records 5M images, and video resolution is limited to QHD (2560x1440). Below the earpiece is a proximity sensor and an LED indicator.
There is a Wide Selfie mode that allows you to pan the camera to record a wider angle (and, presumably, more people). I got nearly 180 degrees at just a few feet away. For talking self portraits, you can tap the screen, use the volume button, or turn on gesture control in the settings menu: A few seconds after you hold your hand palm-out facing the lens, the camera takes the shot. Alternatively you can use the heart rate sensor on the back of the chassis, next to the primary camera lens. I didn't find this easy to locate at first, and didn't like the idea of accidentally getting my fingerprints on the primary lens. Also, beware that because the body is thin and its edges contoured, you may find it difficult to hold with one hand without blocking the selfie lens with a finger or two.
On the opposite side of the body sits the power button.
On the bottom are the (left to right) earphone jack, microphone, USB/multiuse port, and speaker.
Tapping on the touch screen tells the camera where to focus and what area of the frame to use to set the auto exposure (indicated by the encircled area). You can adjust the exposure further by dragging up or down on the screen (note the faint vertical bar indicator on the right side of the screen, with a light bulb icon).
Camera settings menu:
- Video Size (rear): UHD, QHD, FHD (60fps), FHD, HD, VGA
- Tracking AF: On, off
- Video stabilization: On, off
- Grid lines: On, off
- Location tags: On, off
- Review pictures: On, off
- Quick launch: On, off
- Save as RAW file (Pro mode only): On, off
- Voice control: On, off
- Volume keys function: Take pictures, record video, zoom
The S6 Edge Plus offers just one screen of shooting modes, and really only three of typical still images: Auto, Pro, and Selective Focus. Pro mode offers a handful of adjustable settings (detailed below), while Selective Focus captures two frames: one with the foreground in focus, and a second focused on the background. In addition, there is a panorama mode.
As for video, there is the Video Collage mode, which records in 1:1 or 4:3 aspect ratios, and allows you to automatically combine two, three or four segments of your video in one frame. Slow motion and fast motion are self-explanatory, playing back your footage at a lethargic or quickened pace.
Live Broadcast puts your footage on YouTube as you record it, and requires a network connection, of course, and a YouTube account with live broadcasting enabled. Virtual shot is for creating a short video of an object so you can view it from multiple angles; you tilt the screen during playback to change the viewing angle. The download selection offers a number of filters you can add to the camera app.
Pro shooting mode adjustable settings:
- Metering: Center-weighted, matrix, spot
- Exposure compensation (+/- 2 steps)
- Shutter speed: Auto, 1/2400 - 10 seconds
- ISO: Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800
- White Balance: Auto, daylight, cloudy, incandescent, fluorescent, Kelvin (2300k - 10,000k)
- Focus: Auto, macro to infinity
Pro mode offers six filters and two customizable positions for saving settings for color
temperature, tint, contrast, saturation, highlight and shadow levels.
Filters in shooting mode:
- Tone 2
- Tone 1
In both Auto and Pro modes you can apply one of eight effects to your shots. On the right side of the screen is a download button for adding more photo effects.
- No effect
Video size menu:
- UHD (3840x2160)
- QHD (2560x1440)
- FHD (60fps, 1920x1080)
- FHD (1920x1080)
- HD (1280x720)
- VGA (640x480)
Finding your files can be difficult because there is no search function (such as by date or file type) or ability to add tags. You can assign favorites, though this does not add any function (such as album creation based on favorites) beyond displaying a gold star on the photo.
In the Gallery app (shown above) you use the "More" button at top right to launch the photo editor, share files, create an album, or play a slideshow. This thumbnail view must be accessed from the Gallery app, and is not launched by pinching your fingers together on the touch screen in standard playback mode, which only displays individual files.
For basic edits, the playback mode photo editor offers a tone menu with five parameters for tweaking exposure and color. All five settings use a sliding icon on a +/- 50 scale.
Photo editor tone edit menu:
There are 21 effects you can add to your images. And, you can add more using the download function, many of which are free. If having 21 filter offerings on screen cramps your style, you can thin out the display with the effects manager and hide filters you don't use regularly.
Still image edit effects:
- Soft glow
- Light flare
The trim function of the video editor works well using the touch screen. You simply drag the beginning and end points where you want them, and export the new trimmed file.
Video editor effect menu:
- Faded colors
The video editor selection (which is an app you will have to download to the phone) adds the ability to overlay text, and to increase the playback speed to 2X or slow down to half speed.
Visitors of Steves can visit the stores below for real-time pricing and availability. You can also find hot, soon to expire online offers on a variety of cameras and accessories at our very own Camera Deals page.