• Our Nexus 5/LG G2/iPhone 5s/Lumia 1020/HTC One/GS4/Sony Z1/BB Z30 camera shootout


    We shot the clock at the center of Oakville Place Mall. To be honest itís not a very difficult scene to shoot. We expect all phones to do well here. You can download the original image files here.

    While the windows at the top may cause some issues with dynamic range, it wasnít very sunny the day we shot this scene. Inside itís well lit with limited shadows.

    The only difficult spots we could find are on the ground to the right of the escalator that goes up. That area is prone to noise so the noise reduction algorithms on some cameras may remove the grout lines. The other trouble area is the eatery sign to the left of the up escalator and the Timothyís sign to the right of the down escalator. Many phones over-saturate the eatery sign to the point that it glows. Ditto for the writing in the Timothyís logo - the writing on the lettering should be white but many phones turn it red.

    The Sony does well here. Thereís a lot of detail. Colour accuracy looks good and while there is some noise there isnít that much though it does look processed. Dynamic range looks good and the shutter speed of 1/250 is excellent.

    While the HTC One does well in low light situations Iíve noticed itís terrible when thereís plenty of light. From shooting many frames with my HTC One I get the feeling that itís tuned for low light ONLY. Once you have a lot of light anything bright tends to be blasted out. Since the Ultrapixel sensor only has 4 megapixels you can really see the difference between it and higher megapixel cameras here. Thereís a low level of detail. The picture is too contrasty - it just looks weird. The Whites are too white and the blacks are too black. Noise levels arenít that bad but the low resolution makes the noise more noticeable - it really struggles on the ground to the right of the up escalator. If you have a HTC One make sure you stay indoors.

    You get a ton of detail with the Lumia 1020. The scene could be warmed up a tad. Thereís very little noise. Oddly enough, the dynamic range could be a little greater here. Like the HTC One I suspect the Lumia 1020 is tuned for low light though itís much less noticeable than the One. The 1020 does have a habit of sometimes over-saturating.

    The GS4 captures a lot of detail here. Colour is very good. There is noise but itís unprocessed so it looks more natural. Dynamic range is good and more importantly, the scene is lit properly. I noticed that the GS4 was able to handle the Bay logo in the back. Many of the phones here make the ďBĒ in the logo look pixelated at 100%

    The G2 picture looks almost exactly like the GS4ís. The G2 has slightly less noise but it managed to screw up the Bay logo at the back. Itís pixelated looking on the G2 but you have to view the file at 100% to notice it so itís pretty minor.

    The Nexus 5 has a tiny bit more noise than the G2 - especially to the right of the up escalator. Detail is high, as is dynamic range. Itís captured the scene slightly warmer though itís still pretty close.

    White balance is slightly warm on the 5s here. Thereís a bit of loss of detail to the right of the up escalator.

    I wasnít impressed with the Blackberry Z30 here because the entire scene has a hazy look to it - and I assure you itís not grease on the lens. If you can see past the haze, the rest of the colour looks pretty good.

    No surprises here, the real camera does well. Noise is well controlled and colour and dynamic range look great. About the only surprise here is that the area to the right of the up escalator is screwed up pretty badly - I guess it might be an out of focus area issue. The Panasonicís sensor is many times bigger than the other phones here so it has a shallower depth of field. Or maybe softness in the corners of the lens here. I also noticed that the RG logo has some aberrations - again itís a function of the larger sensor which requires a larger lens.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Our Nexus 5/LG G2/iPhone 5s/Lumia 1020/HTC One/GS4/Sony Z1/BB Z30 camera shootout started by howard View original post
    Comments 1 Comment
    1. realjet's Avatar
      realjet -
      How does the HTC Rezound compare with these cameras? I currently have a Rezound and it seems to take good pictures (better than my Droid X or iphone 4) that I used to have.