The iQOO 9 Pro brings a rather interesting triple camera on its back with a 50MP gimbal-featuring primary, a 50MP secondary with a fisheye lens for ultrawide photos, and a 16MP telephoto with OIS for 2.5x optical zoom.
The primary camera on the iQOO 9 Pro uses a 50MP Samsung (S5K)GN5 1/1.57" sensor with 1.0µm pixels and a Tetracell filter. This sensor is paired with a 6-element 23mm f/1.75 lens. There is 5-axis gimbal stabilization available on this camera, and it can be turned on/off in videos.
The ultrawide camera relies on a 50MP Samsung (S5K)JN1 1/2.76" sensor with 0.64µm pixels. It sits behind a 15mm f/2.27 lens. Autofocus is available here, and because of that, you can shoot closeups from about 3-4cm away. One particularly interesting feature for this camera is the option to turn the automatic distortion correction from within the viewfinder (the planet icon next to the 0.6x marker) and get the untouched 150-degree fisheye field of view. This should make for some interesting Instagram photos.
Last is the zoom camera with a 16MP Samsung S5K3P9 1/3.1" sensor with 1.0µm pixels. It uses a 60mm f/2.23 stabilized lens and allows for 2.5x optical zoom over the main camera. This camera is primarily used for portraits as the 2.5x marker on the viewfinder does digital zoom over the main camera. Video capturing, at the time of writing, is not available with the zoom lens. A tip from us - you can always force the tele camera from the Pro mode (leave everything at Auto in there).
The selfie camera also uses the same 16MP Samsung S5K3P9 1/3.1" sensor as the telephoto shooter. The lens is 27mm f/2.45, and the focus is fixed.
No major changes were made to the default Funtouch camera app since the vivo X70 series. There's a straightforward zoom selector with a planet (fisheye), 0.6x, 1x and 2.5x shortcuts. At the time of writing, the 2.5x zoom did not trigger the telephoto camera. Accessing the Super Macro mode is done from the flower icon next to the hamburger menu, but it has an auto-on option too that kicks in when you get very close to a subject.
The fisheye (planet) icon actually offers four different modes, but you can access those only if you ever think of tapping it twice! The default is fisheye, the untouched view from the ultrawide camera. But you can switch to Crystal Ball, Asteroid and Rabbit Hole warped views.
The main modes are arranged in carousel formation, and you can switch between them by swiping. The More tab lists the rest of the modes, and from there, you can also customize the modes you have available in the viewfinder.
The Pro mode gives you all the freedom to adjust the autofocus, white balance, shutter speed, ISO and exposure. You can do so on all of the three cameras too - indeed the telephoto works in here. There's helpful information explaining all of the options above in case you are just getting into photography. Shooting in RAW is also an option.
The 12.5MP default photos from the main camera are great. The resolved detail is high, the contrast is excellent, the noise has been cleaned rather well, and the colors are easily likable even if over-saturated a bit.
The dynamic range is adequate and not over the top. We used Auto HDR, but it rarely triggered. This doesn't mean there is no image stacking; the algorithm always stacks a few frames in Photo Auto mode.
Some of the intricate detail, especially one without a certain pattern, is often overprocessed and may give this unnatural look. Same goes for the foliage - sometimes it's great, other times smeared, and at some occasions - heavily processed and over-sharpened.
Overall, the photos are great for a high-end device, but they could have been a little bit better with a slightly more proficient processing. Then again, they look as good and as (over)processed as the ones coming from the recent Galaxy S22 phones, meaning iQOO did an excellent job (in making them the Samsung way).
There is an AI toggle on the screen. It's a scene recognition feature, and it mostly boosts colors and contrast. Given the punchy colors and the contrasty photos, we'd suggest keeping that off as it may go overboard.
The 2.5x zoom option on the viewfinder provides digital zoom over the main camera, and if the light is plenty, it's not a bad zoom - probably because of the multi-frame stacking. Per-pixel detail is nowhere near the main camera, but the rest of the features are on par, and these are some perfectly usable zoomed photos that you can post on social networks.
Shooting in 50MP is available for both the primary and ultrawide cameras, though we couldn't make it work on the latter. Anyway, the main camera saves good 50MP photos. The resolved detail is good enough, the contrast is great, and the colors are true to life - meaning the photos are not over-processed. In fact, if you don't like the iQOO processing, shooting in 50MP and then resizing down to 12.5MP for even better sharpness and adequate colors is an option, though one of a big hassle.
Noise is present on the 50MP photos, and some image artifacts due to the interpolation could be visible. But if you are going to resize those down to 12MP, you don't have to worry about either.
The standard 12.5MP photos from the ultrawide camera have automatic distortion correction, which is quite proficient. It crops a bit, sure, but does a good job at straightening the corners and with the barrel distortion correction around the center.
The 12.5MP default ultrawide photos are outstanding! The field of view is impressively wide even with the applied correction, the resolved detail is excellent for such type of camera, and the noise levels are impressively low.
Just like the main camera photos, the ultrawide images offer high contrast, good (natural-looking) dynamic, and lively even if over-saturated colors.
Sometimes, the sharpening is a bit excessive, especially in areas that require more distortion correction than others. But even with this in mind - the ultrawide photos from the iQOO 9 Pro are among the better ones on the market. Once again, if iQOO tones down its processing, these could easily rival the best in the class.
If you fancy the original fisheye-look of the ultrawide photos, you can do that. These are sharper than the straightened photos, over-sharpened even. You may spot a lot of purple fringing around the corners, too.
Overall, the fisheye photos have the same over-processed look as the default ones, but if you are a fan of the warped buildings, this is the way.
Thanks to the autofocus for the ultrawide camera, macro photos are an option. We've kept the Super Macro mode at auto, and it's proficient enough to recognize when we are trying to shoot closeups and switch the focus.
The 12.5MP macro shots we took with the ultrawide camera are impressive. They have plenty of detail offer excellent contrast, colors and impressive bokeh. The processing once again could take it a notch down, but it is what it is.
You can shoot the closeups with the default or the fisheye FoV, and both will look pretty great.
As we said, it's impossible to make the telephoto camera work from within the Photo Auto mode. The 2.5x shortcut offers digital zoom over the main camera, and while not bad, it's not that great either.
If you switch to Pro mode, you can use the telephoto camera. It doesn't offer any sort of multi-stacking and image processing, so you are getting a single frame. The photos offer good sharpness and acceptable resolved detail, but they are also quite noisy. The contrast is good, and the colors are perfectly accurate.
We hope iQOO pushes a firmware update, which will enable shooting with the telephoto camera in Photo Auto mode - this way, we can get better photos, less noisy, even if it's at the expense of some extra saturation.
Finally, you can shoot portraits with either the main or the telephoto (actual) camera. Whichever zoom level you choose, the portraits will come out excellent. The subjects are detailed, sharp and well exposed, the background looks good (HDR is involved in there often), and the colors are excellent across the board.
The subject separation is fine, though not flagship-grade. There is no depth sensor or advanced scanning, and the separation relies solely on computations. That's why sometimes it may do a good job, but other times it could be a mixed bag.
The 12.5MP low-light photos from the main camera are nicely balanced and natural-looking. They present enough detail and good sharpness, the colors are accurate and well preserved, contrast is good, too. The noise is kept quite low.
Thanks to the Auto HDR, which often decides on using HDR, clipped highlights are rare if any.
The standard low-light photos from the main camera are solid for the flagship class and thanks to the stabilization, they are rarely blurred.
We do recommend using the Night Mode on the main camera. It makes the already good night photos excellent. The Night Mode images are sharp and incredibly detailed, with outstanding exposure, contrast, and color saturation. Noise is almost non-existent. We loved every bit of them and the extra 1-2s for the Night Mode are definitely worth the wait.
The regular low-light ultrawide photos are pretty good all things considered. The detail is okay for such a camera, the images turned out a bit brighter than expected, and the colors are very well preserved. The noise reduction is a bit harsh and smears fine detail, something iQOO should consider tweaking better for the next firmware update. If you really need to shoot such wide-angle photos at night, the ultrawide camera will do an acceptable job.
You bet the Night Mode does an outstanding job with the ultrawide camera, just as it did on the main shooter. The ultrawide Night Mode samples are pushing the limits of how good a night photo from such a camera can be - the ones we shot are very detailed, with superb sharpness and a balanced look. The noise is cleaned proficiently.
The dynamic range is impressive on these photos, the colors are great though sometimes the images may look somewhat greenish.
You may notice we have only four Night Mode images for you - that's because the camera had issues saving photos that took 2s or more simulated exposure (called Super Night Mode). We hope this gets fixed with the next firmware update.
The low-light 2.5x zoomed images from the main camera are alright - they share the same good quality as the regular ones, but their detail is halved, of course.
We are not sure if we'd recommend using the telephoto camera through the Pro mode unless you have a tripod. While the photos look good on the phone's screen, pixel peeping at these reveals they are overrun by noise and the sharpness isn't that good. They are also dark and often underexposed.
As we said, this camera would work well with a tripod and in Pro mode, but maybe stick with the main camera for zooming and just don't use the photos in their full 12.5MP resolution.
And here are photos of our usual posters taken with the iQOO 9 Pro. You can see how it stacks up against the competition. Feel free to browse around and pit it against other phones from our extensive database.
The 16MP selfies from the front camera are commendable. They have an excellent color presentation, outstanding dynamic range (thanks to Auto HDR), and well-exposed subjects. The detail is average when HDR has fired, and good when HDR was not involved.
The selfie portraits are alright, provided your clothing and haircut are straightforward. Otherwise, clipped or blurred parts are expected.
The selfie portraits are good, better if HDR was not involved, and should do for the social networks. Just don't expect perfection and you will be fine.