Samsung introduced its Galaxy Note 20 series handsets quite recently. We’ve already released several comparisons, and now it’s time to focus on a rather major one. In this article, we’ll compare the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra. In other words, the company’s most powerful ‘Note’ and ‘S’ series devices.
These two smartphones do have quite a bit in common, actually, but they’re not exactly identical, not at all. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is basically an evolution of the Galaxy S20 Ultra, with the addition of the S Pen. Samsung really did its best to offer a ton of features with the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, and to improve the design.
Both of these phones are quite pricey, which is to be expected considering these are Samsung’s flagships. In any case, we’ll kick off this comparison by listing their specs, and then comparing their design, displays, performance, battery, and so on. There you have it, let’s kick off the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra vs Galaxy S20 Ultra comparison, shall we.
|Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra||Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra|
|Screen size||6.9-inch QHD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X display||6.9-inch WQHD+ Dynamic AMOLED display (120Hz)|
|Screen resolution||3088 x 1440||3200 x 1440|
|SoC||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus / Samsung Exynos 990||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 / Exynos 990|
|RAM||12GB (LPDDR5)||12GB/16GB (LPDDR5)|
|Storage||128GB/512GB; Expandable (up to 1TB)||128GB/512GB (UFS 3.0); Expandable up to 1TB|
|Rear cameras||108MP (f/1.8 aperture, 0.8um pixel size, PDAF, OIS, 79-degree FoV)
12MP (telephoto, 1.0um pixel size, 20-degree FoV, f/3.0 aperture) -> Space Zoom (50x), 5x optical
12MP (ultrawide, 1.4um pixel size, 120-degree FoV, f/2.2 aperture)
|108MP (f/1.8 aperture, 79-degree angle lens, wide-angle)
48MP (f/3.5 aperture, 24-degree angle lens)
12MP(f/2.2 aperture, 120-degree angle lens, ultrawide)
Depth Vision (ToF camera)
|Front cameras||10MP (f/2/2 aperture, 1.22um pixel size, 80-degree FoV)||40MP (f/2.2 aperture, 80-degree angle lens)|
|Battery||4,500mAh, Non-Removable, 25W Fast Battery Charging, Qi charging (15W), Reverse Wireless Charging (4.5W)||5,000mAh, non-removable, 45W fast battery charging, 15W fast wireless charging, 9W reverse charging|
|Dimensions||164.8 x 77.2 x 8.1mm||167 x 76 x 8.8mm|
|Weight||208 grams||221 grams|
|Connectivity||LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C||LTE, 5G, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi, USB Type-C|
|Security||In-display fingerprint scanner (ultrasonic)||In-display fingerprint scanner (ultrasonic)|
Samsung One UI 2
|Buy||Samsung (not yet available)||Samsung|
Both of these smartphones are made out of metal and glass. There is a difference, though. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra’s frame is made out of aluminum, while the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s out of stainless steel. This makes the S20 Ultra a heavier phone, even though its frame is stronger. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra’s aluminum is plenty strong, though.
You’ll find a glass panel on the back of both phones, by the way. Both devices offer curved displays, though the Galaxy S20 Ultra is generally a more rounded smartphone. The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra offers those sharp edges. The camera module on the back is also different on these two phones, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is wider, while the Note 20 Ultra is taller in comparison.
The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra is shorter than the Galaxy S20 Ultra, but it’s wider as well. It’s a bit thinner, and considerably lighter (208 grams vs 222 grams). Both phones offer curved backplates. So, even though they are similar to a degree, they offer a completely different in-hand feel. Both phones are quite slippery, though, so keep that in mind.
Both of these smartphones have huge displays. Each of them have a 6.9-inch QHD+ display. Those two displays are of the same generation, and they both come from Samsung Display. That being said, they do offer different resolution / aspect ratio, and the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra’s is adapted for the use of the S Pen.
The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra features a QHD+ (3088 x 1440) Dynamic AMOLED 2X display. The Galaxy S20 Ultra, on the other hand, comes with a QHD+ (3200 x 1440) Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel. The Gorilla Glass Victus protects the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra’s panel, while the Gorilla Glass 6 is included on the Galaxy S20 Ultra.
Both of these displays support HDR10+ content, by the way. Each of them also offers a 120Hz refresh rate, though do note that you won’t be able to use a 120Hz refresh rate and QHD+ resolution at the same time, at least not at the moment. Samsung is aiming to enable that, but it still hasn’t. So, you’ll have to rever to fullHD+ for a 120Hz refresh rate.
Both of these displays are brilliant, amongst the best in the market, if not the best ones. They’re vibrant, extremely sharp, offer great viewing angles, and great protection. Everything you could want from a display, you’ll get it here, pretty much. Just make sure you like curved displays, as they’re both curved.
The performance is at the top level on both of these devices. That is to be expected considering they’re the best Samsung has to offer at the moment, pretty much. Both of them come with a top of the line SoC, the Snapdragon 865 Plus, and Snapdragon 865, respectively. On top of that, they’re equipped with a top of the line RAM and flash storage. Samsung also got better at optimizing its UI, so… all that results in great performance.
No matter whether you’re doing a lot of multitasking, consuming multimedia, processing images / videos, or gaming, these two phones will be able to keep up. They’ll actually be able to do that in style, without breaking a sweat. It should stay that way for quite some time, so don’t worry about any major slowdowns in the near future… unless an update manages to mess things up.
The Galaxy Note 20 Ultra also has that factor of the S Pen that the S20 Ultra doesn’t have. That gives you a ton more options for productivity and whatnot. Using the S Pen is fairly easy, and it seems natural on the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. The performance is great with it as well. Do note that occasional hiccups are possible on both devices, that’s normal, though.
Both of these devices have fairly large battery packs. What’s interesting, though, is that the S20 Ultra comes with a larger battery on the inside. Does that result in it having a better battery life? Well, yes, a little bit. Its battery size is larger by 500mAh, so we’re looking at 4,500mAh and 5,000mAh batteries here, respectively.
Both of these phones can provide you with plenty of battery life, well, if you’re not killing the battery with gaming or something of the sort. You should be able to get 6+ hours of screen on time, though that will largely depend on what you’re doing here. The Galaxy S20 Ultra can provide a bit more battery juice, though.
Both phones support fast charging, though the Galaxy S20 Ultra’s is faster than the one enabled on the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. The Note 20 Ultra offers 25W fast wired charging vs 45W on the S20 Ultra. Do note that you won’t get a 45W charger in the box, though. 15W wireless charging is enabled on both phones. Both devices also support reverse wireless charging.
In terms of cameras, well, things are a bit different. That goes for both the setups, and performance The Galaxy S20 Ultra can zoom further, but everything over 50x is bad. That’s why the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra caps its periscope camera at 50x. Results at 50x zoom are actually quite good, presuming there’s plenty of light in a scene. You can get some really good shots.
The performance of the main camera is great on both, though Samsung did optimize things further on the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. The phone does a better job when it comes to balancing images, and the phone does a better job in low light. It manages to retain more detail, and it produces less noise in such shots.
Ultrawide cameras are good on both, but not that great, I’ve seen better. Shots from that camera are worse than the ones from the main sensor, but that was to be expected. Overall, the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and S20 Ultra offer great dynamic range, and even though they’re quite heavy on image processing, those images end up looking great in the end, in pretty much all scenarios.
First and foremost, let’s just say that neither of these two phones offer a 3.5mm headphone jack. Both devices do ship with stereo speakers, though, which are tuned by AKG. What’s interesting is that these two phones offer similar audio experience. It’s even possible that Samsung used the same audio components.
Those stereo speakers are plenty loud, and the distortion is barely noticeable at the highest of volumes. Audio is quite sharp out of those speakers as well, you won’t have much to complain here. Once you hook up a pair of headphones, you’ll be pleasantly surprised as well. Audio is well-balanced on both phones, across the spectrum. The bass is not too strong, but it’s present, while both devices shine most on mids and highs, even though lows are really good as well.