The Huawei’s P40 Pro anti-shake stabilisation could see the death of smartphone gimbals

Mar 31, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

The Huawei’s P40 Pro anti-shake stabilisation could see the death of smartphone gimbals

Mar 31, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Huawei announced the much anticipated P40 line of smartphones a couple of days ago. There’s the P40, the P40 Pro and the P40 Pro+. As usual, they contain “Leica” cameras and lenses which this time shoot 4K 60p video, 50-megapixel stills, ISO up to 51,200 and offer up to an insane 7,680fps for shooting slow-motion.

But what’s really impressive, as the above video posted by the YouTuber Mobiler shows, is its stabilisation. The P40 Pro features both optical image stabilisation as well as AI-powered image stabilisation and from watching the video, it looks like it might just make smartphone gimbals obsolete.

I do wish they’d held the phone still afterwards and played back some of the clips it recorded – if not just edit the actual footage they shot with the phone into the video. But they don’t. They only show the act of actually shaking the thing with the image on the screen seemingly and magically able to compensate for it almost perfectly.

You will, naturally, still see a perspective shift with close objects as the phone moves, but it is very impressive indeed if true – and a couple of people have, naturally, claimed that it’s fake in the comments of the video itself.

But, if you look closely at the second clip of the people walking in through the door, you can see that obvious perspective shift I mentioned of the foreground object as the phone is moved around.

I would suspect that even with optical stabilisation helping out the AI, there’s some pretty serious cropping involved to be able to shift the image around far enough to keep the whole thing in the frame.

I guess we’ll find out for sure if it’s genuine or not when they start getting into more peoples hands. For more information on the P40 phones, check out the previous announcement post.

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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5 responses to “The Huawei’s P40 Pro anti-shake stabilisation could see the death of smartphone gimbals”

  1. Joost Avatar
    Joost

    Can’t really tell from the video if this is any good. The amount of shake do not reflect the video result; let me adjust my shot a little, oh no wait I can’t.

  2. Freelance cameraman China/HK Avatar
    Freelance cameraman China/HK

    So strong that it look impossible to follow something in movement. A pan or tilt look impossible to acheive.
    I would love to see the final video quality anyways.

    1. Kaouthia Avatar
      Kaouthia

      Yeah, that will be interesting to see. I’ve spotted that issue on a couple of phone cameras before (and DSLR/mirrorless with stabilised lenses). Hopefully it can detect the difference between random shakes and a smooth pan/tilt or a whip pan.

  3. free at last (not) Avatar
    free at last (not)

    I suppose it beats… the death of smartphone users…

  4. Uzimon Avatar
    Uzimon

    April fool perhaps?