The Razr 2022 has a couple of cameras on the outside, and another one shows up when you unfold it. The outer ones are a classic pair of a 'regular' wide primary one and an ultrawide - we're yet to see a proper tele on a small foldable. The selfie camera on the inside, meanwhile, is largely relegated to video call duty - the outer display makes the outer cameras double as higher-quality selfie cameras though there are certain caveats to that statement.
The primary camera is based on the OmniVision OV50A sensor - a 1/1.55" optical format imager with 1.0µm pixels and a 4-cell (Quad Bayer) color filter array. It's paired with a stabilized 23mm-equivalent focal length lens with an f/1.8 aperture.
The ultrawide camera uses a 13MP SK Hynix Hi-336 sensor with 1.12µm pixels. Motorola specs mention a field of view of 120 degrees, which should correspond to a 12.5mm equivalent focal length, but the EXIF data reports 16mm and the relatively narrow coverage (for an ultrawide smartphone camera) we're getting make the 16mm number a lot more plausible. So with a fairly wide main camera and a fairly narrow ultrawide, the Razr's camera system is somewhat limited in its native coverage. The autofocus capability of the ultrawide cam does add extra usefulness, though.
The inner camera relies on another OmniVision sensor, the OV32C4C. It has a 1/3.2" optical format and 32 million 0.7µm pixels. The fixed-focus lens has a 25mm equivalent focal length and an f/2.4 aperture.
The camera app on the Razr 2022 is custom despite the relatively stock-looking software package. When it comes to its implementation on the unfolded phone, it's largely identical to what you get on regular, bar-style Motos.
The basics are as usual - the camera modes are arranged in a customizable carousel formation, with the 'More' tab at the rightmost end of the carousel holding the more seldom-used shooting modes.
Pro mode gives you full control over the camera's settings like white balance, ISO, focus, shutter speed, and exposure compensation, and it works on both rear cameras but not the front-facing one. A tiny live histogram is provided, but there's no focus peaking or zebras.
Additional settings for each camera mode can be found by swiping down in the viewfinder. There's a tiny bar at the far end to indicate that, but if you miss it, you may be left wondering where some controls are, like the flash and self-timer settings in Photo mode and frame rate in Video mode.
The gear icon for the general settings menu houses even more settings, though there isn't a straightforward separation of what you're going to find where. For example, the 32MP mode for selfies is found in the settings menu, while full-res capture for the rear cameras is accessed from the 'Ultra-Res' mode on the carousel.
The one thing that sets the Razr's viewfinder apart from your regular Motos is the tiny icon in the top left corner that enables the outer display's live view when the phone is unfolded. That button cycles between three modes - outer screen off, outer screen on with live view, and outer screen on with a colorful animation meant to replace the 'say cheese' prompt.
With the outer screen having semi-full-fledged UI capabilities, it gets a camera app of its own too - for when you'd like to take pictures (or capture video) with the phone folded shut. You get a zoom level toggle and a mode selector (that you need to tap on to then pick between modes), plus an arrow button for further settings.
There are some limitations that apply when using the outer screen, and the most notable one is that you can't get the entire camera sensor's output. You get to pick between one of two crops - the default 1:1 or a 4:3 crop across the imager's shorter side.
The display's orientation is at a 90-degree angle with respect to the sensor, and getting the full coverage would mean letterboxing the live preview - so Motorola has decided to just not give you that option. Funnily enough, the letterboxing is allowed when you're shooting with the phone unfolded, and the outer display preview enabled.
The orientation mismatch and the resultant cropping also affects video recording - with the phone closed, you can only record in 1080p, be it at 30fps or 60fps. You can't enable the live preview on the outer display for video recording when the Razr is unfolded, either. All of these seemingly arbitrary limitations could very well end up being addressed, but as it stands at the time of reviewing, some things are just not possible.
In daylight, the Razr 2022 captures good images, albeit a bit too expressive. Contrast, in particular, is dialed up pretty high, which robs the images of some dynamic range at the extremes and makes for quite a midranger-y look. Color saturation can be over the top, too.
Detail is very good, though, and there's a nicely natural rendition to it - leaves and grass benefit from it. Noise can be higher than most, however - these are some of the grainiest skies we've seen in a while.
The 50MP 'Ultra-res' mode does give you a modest detail benefit at the expense of still higher noise levels and some false color.
The Razr 2022 doesn't have a zoom camera, nor does it encourage you to zoom in with a 2x toggle in the viewfinder. Pinch to zoom does work, and we tried it at the 2x level, and we can see why Motorola doesn't actively push it in your hands - these are too soft for our liking. It's somewhat odd because the 50MP images above are sharper and more detailed while essentially offering the same subject magnification - so if you want a 2x zoom shot, take a full-res image and just crop the middle of it.
The ultrawide camera delivers okay results. Its images are a little soft but acceptable in the realm of ultrawides. The color rendition is more restrained than on the main camera, which is more of a good thing, but contrast is similarly high - too high, that is. It's worth repeating that the ultrawide here isn't all that ultra wide, and you're not getting dramatically different coverage compared to the already pretty wide primary camera.
The ultrawide does support autofocus, which enables the Razr's macro mode, accessed from the zoom selector. It's fitting because it does change the zoom level, in a way - it gets you the field of view of the main camera, even though it sources the images from the ultrawide. That does entail crop and upscale action, but the results are still very good in terms of detail and sharpness.
Motorola's night mode is called Night Vision, and it will kick in automatically in Photo mode unless you disable it in the quick settings. The main camera's low-light images are, in fact, very good and competitive for the class. You get nice detail and unobtrusive noise, exposures are bright but not artificially so, and dynamic range is very good to excellent. Colors hold up very well too.
The full-on Night Vision mode can nudge the shadows up a little, but it's not a dramatic difference. It can ensure that the phone engages the enhanced processing in relatively better lit scenarios, where the auto might not kick in, like the first scene.
Turn off the Night Vision, and you'd be looking at softer and noisier shots, with less detail in the shadows and narrower dynamic range. So perhaps just don't turn off the Night Vision.
The Auto doesn't work at 2x zoom, and you'd get the same images whether the toggle is on or off. We're inclined to argue that's better for your pictures, however - the Night Vision makes things look softer and oversharpened at the same time, while you get reasonable detail and sharpness without it. On the flip side, dynamic range is better with Night Vision on.
The ultrawide's behavior is the same as the main camera's at 1x zoom - Auto Night vision works and takes more or less the same photos as the standalone Night Vision mode. Only here, we didn't experience occasions where the Auto didn't engage - it worked in all our scenes.
That's good, really, as it ensures well-exposed shots with wide dynamic range - something the Night Vision-less images can't claim. There's a fair bit of noise in these, but detail is good too. Color rendition is also very likable. Overall, a pretty solid showing.
Once you're done with the real-world samples, head over to our Photo compare tool to see how the Motorola Razr 2022 stacks up against the competition.
The Portrait mode on the Razr 2022 does a fair job of separating your subject from the background but applies a very liberal amount of blur by default that outs the fake nature of the photo.
The Razr, being a foldable with a relatively large outer display, offers wide-ranging options for capturing selfies. You can default to the inner selfie camera, sure, but you can also put the higher-quality outer cameras to good use, be it with the phone closed, or unfolded.
The main camera takes good people shots, with generally likable (if sometimes overly saturated) skin tones, as already seen in the portrait mode samples above. The high contrast can be a bit detrimental to dynamic range, but even in backlit scenes the subjects are exposed very well.
Being able to capture ultrawide selfies with live preview is also among the biggest benefits of a foldable phone - whether it's for extra context or to get more people in the frame.
Main camera Portrait mode used on yourself? Sure.
In fact, there's even a Portrait mode on the ultrawide camera, but to get that, you need to fold the phone and use the rear display - it doesn't work in the unfolded state, for some reason.
Shooting with the folded Razr has further peculiarities, though - ones with more important consequences. Since the orientation of the outer display is at a 90-degree angle in relation to the camera sensors, you'd normally get large black bars on the sides if you choose to shoot in the sensors' native aspects. Motorola doesn't want that, so the phone defaults to a 1:1 aspect in this mode, getting you 9.4MP or 9.7MP images on the main and ultrawide cameras, respectively. Opting for a 4:3 aspect that fills the outer display results in a further crop to 6.8-7MP. You straight up can't shoot in the sensor's full resolution.
Another point worth mentioning is that there are separate settings for the camera when it's in this folded state - so even if you've disabled beautification for the 'unfolded' app, you'd need to do it once more on the outer display.
And here's the kicker - these have different processing than the ones we got with the screen unfolded. You'd think that you'd simply be getting a crop from the same image, but these have more restrained color rendition - and this one we like better.
Portrait mode delivers the same excessive blur level. As mentioned, there's Portrait mode for the ultrawide when you're shooting with the Razr folded, but between the ultrawide's fairly long focal length and the resulting crop from the sensor-display orientation discrepancy, these are only slightly wider than the portraits taken at 1x with the phone unfolded.
We then get to the selfies from the 'selfie' camera inside the Razr. These are saved at 8MP and have a good level of detail, but they're simply not as sharp as the ones from the 'rear' camera. White balance is often off, producing images with a yellowish-green tinge - you can live with it, but it's not the best. Exposures are generally brighter, and contrast is lower than the main camera's results, neither of which is strictly a bad thing. There's also an option in settings to enable shooting in the sensor's native 32MP resolution, to no practical benefit at all.
The Razr 2022 can record video up to 8K30 with the main camera, as well as 4K60 and 4K30. The ultrawide, on the other hand, is capped at 4K30. That's when using the handset as a 'conventional' smartphone in its unfolded state. However - if you choose to record with the phone folded shut, you're limited to 1080p.
That's a similar limitation to what we talked about in the selfie section above - because of the 90-degree discrepancy in the orientation of the sensor and the outer display, you're getting served a crop to match the display's aspect. The thing is, for stills, you do get the option to shoot with a live preview on the outer display when the phone is unfolded, letterboxed as it may be, but there's no provision for this for video recording. It could be that simply no one thought of that, and a firmware update could fix it, but as it stands right now, you can't record 4K with the rear cameras and get a live feed on the outer display.
Anyway, you get the usual choice of codecs - h.264 by default, h.265 as an option. Stabilization is available in 4K up to 60fps but not in 8K. Audio is recorded in stereo at 256kbps.
The 8K footage out of the Razr (131Mbps bitrate) is above average in terms of detail when it comes to smartphone 8K, though that's not a particularly high bar to clear. Another better-than-most trait in the Razr's 8K is that it uses the full width of the sensor - there's no crop compared to the 4K clips.
However, it suffers from some common issues along with the other modes.
We're talking mostly about the excessively high contrast, limited dynamic range and the warm oversaturated colors, though it could be argued that's just the Razr's 'look' - that's what we observed in stills, as well. But just because it's consistent between stills and video doesn't mean we're necessarily fans. In terms of detail, 4K30 (50-62Mbps depending on action and complexity) packs a lot of it and is practically noise-free. 4K60 (62Mbps) is just barely softer but essentially the same.
The ultrawide's video capture is okay to good. Again, as in stills, there's a visible difference in the color presentation. Even though this one isn't quite as high on saturation as the main camera's footage, it's just sort of off in a different direction. Contrast is a bit much as well, and dynamic range is below average. Detail is pretty good, though, as ultrawides go.
In low light, the Razr's main camera actually fares reasonably well. While there is a fair bit of nose, there's a good level of detail. And even if daylight dynamic range isn't the best, in the dark, we're getting a comparatively good performance.
The ultrawide, however, struggles in the dark and captures underexposed, soft and noisy footage in these conditions.
Stabilization works very well on the Razr's main camera. It irons out walking-induced shake, pans smoothly, and stays planted on a subject if you're just pointing the phone in one direction.
The ultrawide would match the above description, too, if it wasn't for its tendency to hunt for focus, which can make for some pretty annoying results.
Here's a glimpse of how the Motorola Razr 2022 compares to rivals in our Video compare tool. Head over there for the complete picture.