The recently released Google Pixel 8a has been put through its paces by the camera experts at DxOMark, with the mid-range device impressing in some areas while falling short in others when compared to Google’s flagship Pixel 8 and other top-tier smartphones.

In DxOMark’s rigorous camera testing, the Pixel 8a achieved an overall camera score of 136, comfortably outperforming Samsung’s latest Galaxy S24 but lagging behind the premium Pixel 8 and Apple’s iPhone 15 devices.

The Pixel 8a earned praise for its accurate auto-exposure capabilities, high contrast shots with good detail preservation, and pleasant color rendering with neutral white balancing in video recording. DxOMark’s testers highlighted the effective video stabilization and accurate, stable autofocus performance as other positives.

However, the lack of a dedicated telephoto camera was a limitation, resulting in subpar image quality at medium and long zoom ranges compared to class-leaders. Skin tone rendering for indoor portraits was sometimes inaccurate, and noise levels were elevated, especially in video.

Other drawbacks noted included depth estimation artifacts in bokeh simulation shots, low texture/noise tradeoff for video portraits, and occasional issues with exposure adaptation. Frequent autofocus stepping, frame shifting, color fringing and judder in video were also criticisms.

google-pixel-8a-dxomark-comparison

While the Pixel 8a excelled in some still photo scenarios, its overall video performance lagged behind premium devices like the Pixel 8 series and latest iPhones from Apple. DxOMark currently ranks the Pixel 8a 33rd in its global camera rankings and 2nd among high-end smartphone cameras. The phone’s newer SoC seems to have given it an advantage over the Pixel 7a, which sits at the 3rd spot. Another thing worth noting is that a majority of the phones that rank above the Pixel 8a in the camera department are almost twice as expensive.

For mobile photographers on a tighter budget, the Pixel 8a represents a capable option with some excellent still photo capabilities. But those prioritizing premier video recording and zoom performance would be better served by splurging on Google’s Pixel 8 or other leading flagship camera phones. That said, it’s worth noting that the Pixel 7a came out on top in MKBHD’s blind smartphone camera test. So if you’re primarily going to share images on social media, the Pixel 8a will get the job done.

Dwayne Cubbins
1122 Posts

My fascination with Android phones began the moment I got my hands on one. Since then, I've been on a journey to decode the ever-evolving tech landscape, fueled by a passion for both the "how" and the "why." Since 2018, I've been crafting content that empowers users and demystifies the tech world. From in-depth how-to guides that unlock your phone's potential to breaking news based on original research, I strive to make tech accessible and engaging.

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