Let’s start with the specifications first. The rear camera has a f2.2 28mm 5-element lens and a 8 megapixel sensor while the front facing camera has a 2 megapixel sensor. Although the cameras are not bad at all on paper, we naturally do not place high hopes on the camera found on low end devices. Luckily the camera on the Redmi 2 managed to exceed my expectation.
The camera viewfinder is simple yet powerful. Capturing pictures, taking video, checking camera roll, control flashlight and toggle between the two cameras are straight forward. You can swipe to access the filters and different capturing modes. You can tap on the screen to set the point of focus. After the focus point is set and a green circle appears, you can rotate the circle to adjust the exposure manually. This is really useful if you have a hard time getting the exposure level you want.
In places with good lighting, the photos are quite decent. The colours are quite accurate and adequately saturated. The 8MP sensor does provide some details to the picture and you do have enough megapixels to perform some cropping and editing. If you are looking at 100% crop, the pictures are grainy, which is actually normal, but I guess not many people will look at the photos this way.
A problem here is that the focus can be little slow and sometimes it can be inaccurate even though the object is obvious. For example, the ice cream is right in the middle but the camera fails to register the correct focus even though I have tapped on it. A little patience will be much useful in this case. If you are trying to do close-up shoot, using the macro mode will let you to achieve a much shorter focus range. The other thing is that the shutter speed is not fast and it is almost impossible to capture moving objects or people. The situation is quite common with low end phones and Redmi 2 is just one of them. You might miss a few precious moment too.
When the brightness goes down, the picture quality starts to drop and this is totally expected. The photos will turn out yellowish. One thing worth mentioning is that the camera tends to decrease the shutter speed even more so that more light can be captured by exposing for a longer time. The result is that you might be able to get some usable low light pictures if your hands are steady. Understanding this piece of tip might help you to get a better picture in low light. This can be challenging and you might need a few tries before you get a picture that is not blurred due to motion.
You can record 1080p video with the Redmi 2. However, the quality of the video is not as good as the still images. The video can be quite dark at night, even though there are lights around and I can see things around me clearly. The stabilization is there but not great. In short, don’t have high hopes for high-quality videos.
The front facing camera, on the other hand, is quite good for what it is. You can choose between a few levels of beautification to let the software to perform some touch-up. The result is quite natural if you are using a low level of software beautification. I can see some traces of over-sharpening in the pictures but it is not very serious. There is no wide-angle lens over here but the field of view is just as wide as what you have on other phones normally. I guess most people will have no trouble to take selfies with this phone.
It is not exaggerating to say that the camera is one of the best in its price range.
We are dealing with a phone which costs less than RM500 here. The still images turns out to be decent enough for me to share it on social medias. Even though the video quality is quite bad, I still find the camera quite enjoyable. It is not exaggerating to say that the camera is one of the best in its price range. Here’s some photos taken by the camera found on the Redmi 2.