Motorola One series has focused typically on one aspect of the phone. The Motorola One Power, for instance, put the focus squarely on the battery. The Motorola One Vision launched with a focus on the camera and delivered quite nicely on that front, while the Motorola One Action had a dedicated action video camera in ultra-wide mode. With the Motorola One Macro, the company is adding a new element to the camera: a dedicated macro lens at the back.
The Motorola One Macro is also the first phone in the lineup to come with a quad or four sensor camera setup at the back, but this one is even more affordable compared to the One Vision or the One Action. Motorola One Macro is priced at Rs 9,999 and comes with the MediaTek Helio P70 processor. Here’s our review.
Specifications: 6.2-inch HD+ (1520*720), Max Vision display, 270ppi | MediaTek Helio P70 processor with 2.0GHz octa-core CPU | 4GB RAM + 64GB storage (expandable to 512GB) | 13MP+2MP+2MP (Macro) camera with time of flight depth sensor | 8MP front camera | 4000 mAh battery | Water repellent design with IPX2 rating | Android Pie
Motorola One Macro Price in India: Rs 9,999
Motorola One Macro review: Macro camera, how it performs
Let’s talk about the camera’s macro sensor first, since this is the USP of this phone. The camera setup on the Motorola One Macro is as follows: it has a 13 MP main sensor with f/2.0 aperture, and 1.12μm pixel size coupled with Laser Autofocus. Then there’s a 2 MP depth sensor with f/2.2 aperture and 1.75μm pixel size.
There’s also another dedicated time of flight sensor, which is again to aid with depth-sensing in photos. The camera also comes with LED flash right at the bottom of the camera module.
The 2MP dedicated macro lens is on top, separate from the other three sensors. The 2MP macro lens has a f/2.2 aperture and 1.75μm pixel size. Motorola claims you can get as close as 2 cms with the macro sensor. It will also let you shoot videos with the dedicated macro sensor on as well. In the camera app, there’s a dedicated macro mode, which has the dedicated flower symbol. If you get very close to an object, the camera does prompt you to switch to the macro mode.
The macro mode is a bit of a hit and miss, and I would call it an exercise in patience. It does require ample lighting, and I would not say the results are the sharpest when you are shooting in the evening or even indoors. It also works better with fixed still objects, more than flowers in my experience, because one needs to stay completely still for the focus to latch on. Even the slightest of wind can mar the macro experience.
When I took pictures of flowers, small chillies, etc outside in the evening, the results were mixed. Some photos turned out nice, in some instances the camera would not focus at all. However, photos of objects, such as the one of the pencils taken indoors in a brightly lit room (with extra lighting turned on) were sharp with excellent focus.
The photo of Superman’s S symbol has also come out quite nice with ample details. Another photo managed to capture details of the stamen inside of the pink lilies and looked very sharp. But it took quite a few tries to get the steady image, especially with the flowers, so keep that in mind with macro photos.
Of course, when you zoom in on the still pictures, even a little, the details are not as impressive as one would like them to be, and look a little smudged. Video with the macro mode can be challenging because if you move too much, getting the focus right will be an issue. But then this is a budget smartphone at Rs 9,999 and this 2MP macro sensor has its hardware limitations. Still, Motorola’s addition of Macro will certainly give users a new mode to tinker with, which is not too common at this price point.
Motorola One Macro: Camera review
I quite liked the Portrait mode, which is mostly accurate when it comes to edges, though it struggled a little bit with hair. The Portrait mode also works on objects, which is good to see. Selfies on the Motorola One Macro are also pleasing without any unnecessary skin processing, and look quite natural. The details are preserved provided the lighting is good enough.
Regarding regular photos taken with the main 13MP sensor, they do come out quite pleasing in the Motorola One Macro, provided you have good lighting. In some photos, I could see that the camera had left some parts overexposed, which is not ideal. The colours could be brighter in my view.
In low-light, the Moto One Macro does struggle and there’s a noticeable shutter lag as well. The details are also lost in low-light photos. The phone also does not come with a dedicated Night Mode, like some other phones priced in the under Rs 15,000 category.
Motorola One Macro: Design, Display
Motorola One Macro sports a plastic body, and has a gradient ‘Space Blue’ finish. The plastic body is reassuring because you won’t break the phone when you drop it, but the glossy finish at the back means you need a cover, especially to keep the smudges under control. The phone also has IPX2 water-resistance rating, which means some protection against water damage.
Motorola One Macro has a 6.2-inch display with a 19:9 aspect ratio, but this is an HD+ resolution display, which is 1520 x 720 pixels. The display is a bit reflective, especially when using under bright sunlight. The HD+ resolution though is good enough for regular video consumption on social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, etc. Games like Badland, Alto’s Odyssey look sharp on the Motorola One Macro.
Motorola One Macro: Performance, battery
Motorola One Macro runs the MediaTek Helio P70 octa-core processor, and can handle your daily tasks with ease. Running multiple apps on Motorola One Macro is not a problem nor was opening too many tabs on Chrome. On Antutu, the phone scores 135,678 which puts it below phones like Redmi Note 7S, Realme 5, etc which would be the competition going by the price.
Games like Badland, Alto’s Odyssey ran fine on this, but once you start pushing with Asphalt 9 Legends, you can see the phone does struggle and there’s a noticeable lag while gaming. The phone comes with a 4000 mAh battery and 10W charging.
The size of the battery means it will easily last a day for heavy-duty usage, while with moderate to heavy usage, you can extend it further to one and a half days. It takes a good two hours plus to get to a full charge. Motorola has gone for a Type-C USB port at the bottom.
Motorola One Macro: Verdict
The Motorola One Macro is the cheapest option in this year’s One series from the brand so far. The focus is on the macro camera, which lets users take closeup photos by moving really close to the object. The price is also affordable at Rs 9,999. But the results in the Macro mode are a hit and miss in my view.
The phone’s overall performance is decent, but when one keeps the competition of Realme and Redmi in mind, the Motorola One Macro might find it tough to really stand out. If you want to buy a stock Android phone with the option for macro photos, then the Motorola One Macro is worth considering. But other wise Realme 5 or the Redmi Note 7S offer better overall performance considering they are priced closely.