vivo has finally brought its X50 series of smartphones to India. Of the phones initially launched globally last month, vivo has brought two to India -- the vivo X50 and the more premium vivo X50 Pro. While both offer a premium design language and are equipped with flagship-grade specifications, some differences do exist between the two, with arguably the biggest difference being the presence of a gimbal camera system on the X50 Pro.
Gimbal what? Wait, we are going to explain.
Gimbal is a tech that we have seen earlier, but mostly in camera stands. Hollywood uses it to stabilise expensive video recording cameras so that they get great, clear, and well-focused footage. But vivo is now putting a sort of miniaturised version of the same technology in the X50 Pro camera.
Coupled with the rest of the hardware which is neat and makes the X50 Pro well-equipped, the Gimbal tech gives the X50 Pro an overall edge over the other phones in the market. No, it's not something based on specs. This assertion is based on the actual performance of the X50 Pro camera.
But first things first
vivo X50 Pro: What is a gimbal camera?
Smartphones have seen rapid development in the optics department over the last few years. While most modern-day phones offer above par photography performance, there still remains a number of key areas where there is scope for improvement. One of these is image stabilisation which, in turn, also impacts the overall camera performance, particularly in low light.
The vivo X50 Pro aims to improve the camera performance with the use of a tiny gimbal inside the camera module which also houses the phone's primary 48-megapixel Sony IMX598 sensor with a bright F1.6 lens. Once enabled from within the phone's camera settings, this gimbal mechanism calibrates itself and then helps the user by providing them with a better lens stabilisation than just current generation OIS and EIS systems present on other phones.
In other words, while clicking the photos or recording footage, the vivo X50 Pro almost eliminates the inevitable camera shake. In the vivo X50 Pro's camera app, the company has actually put in a nice little visual animation of the gimbal mechanism which shows the phone's movement in a visible manner and just how stable the frame is eventually helping the end result of the shots clicked by them.
Gimbal Stabilisation works as a screen animation in the photo preview interface. There's essentially an animated ball at the center which moves to reflect the gimbal's actual movement. When the ball is within the innermost circle, it means the frame is stable for better end result.
All this tech is powered by vivo's ingenious and tiny gimbal system that uses a "special magnetomotive frame". This tech puts the gimbal system into a "double ball suspension mount," which in turn ensures three-dimensional camera stabilisation in use.
vivo X50 Pro: Gimbal makes a difference
The use of a gimbal-like solution on the X50 Pro, as opposed to traditional methods of image stabilisation such as EIS and OIS, helps the X50 Pro achieve results that are far superior to what can be found on competing phones. This is because the X50 Pro's primary camera achieves flexible three-dimensional stabilisation with a maximum anti-shake angle of about 300 per cent of traditional OIS.
vivo also claims that the gimbal solution can increase the "safety shutter by 3.64 stops" on the main camera, producing stable and consistent frames for a very high percentage of usable night shots. For context, typical mobile phones usually have no more than 2 stops of image stabilization. This under low-light conditions means the percentage of usable shots taken with the X50 Pro is quite high, even with longer exposure.
It also helps that the rest of the camera system is quite capable. The phone's primary image sensor is a 48-megapixel piece from Sony. This sensor is paired with a very fast F1.6 lens whereas most of the other phones in this price bracket come with F1.8 lens. This primary camera also uses the gimbal tech. Then there is an 8-megapixel super-wide camera and another 8-megapixel camera with a 5x telephoto lens. There is one more camera with 13-megapixel, which is used to capture depth information for superior photos. When it comes to the front camera, the Vivo X50 Pro comes with a 32MP camera that takes some detailed and sharp selfies which will surely elevate your selfie game.
The cameras perform well in usage. We will have more detailed camera performance impressions in our review but our initial impression is that the camera system is incredibly capable. The cameras in the X50 Pro click photos that have tons of details and extremely vibrant colours. In low light, the camera is pretty good at getting blur-free photos. There is another mode called Extreme Night Vision for low-light photos which is just great for clicking photos when the light is very very low, for example a scene lit only by the light from a half-moon.
The biggest advantage of this gimbal-like stabilisation solution on the X50 Pro is in low light scenarios where the camera usually takes longer to feed itself more detail and light. With the shutter time longer, the presence of the gimbal stabilisation helps remove the effects of unwanted shaking of the user's hand and provide cleaner, blur-free images.
vivo X50 Pro: More than its gimbal camera
While the phone's Gimbal Camera System is quite unique, it is not the only feature that makes the vivo X50 seem like a better choice in the market.
The X50 Pro comes with a premium design language and a lightweight design that can take on the best in the business right now. It gets a 6.56-inch 3D curved 90Hz AMOLED display with HDR10+ support and a maximum resolution of 1080 x 2376 pixels. X50 Pro is protected by SCHOTT Xensation Up. 3D on both front and rear for protection. The display also houses a fingerprint scanner and flaunts a punch-hole.
Under the hood, the vivo X50 Pro gets a Snapdragon 765G chipset. The vivo X50 Pro is the first phone in India to come with this chipset. It supports 5G and makes the phone future-ready. This has been paired with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage. Keeping the lights on here is a 4,315 mAh battery with support for 33w Vivo Flash Charge fast charging. So, you can hope for not only long battery life but also an incredibly fast charging time.