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Best display for outdoor use comparison: Samsung Galaxy S5 vs HTC One M8 vs Apple iPhone 5s vs Note 3 vs the rest

0. phoneArena 02 May 2014, 08:25 posted on

Some phones are different than others: they can get brighter, they have anti-reflection filters, and it's generally much easier to see what's on their displays than on others…

This is a discussion for a news. To read the whole news, click here

posted on 02 May 2014, 11:55 2

77. SonyPS4 (Posts: 344; Member since: 21 May 2013)

s5 is the best but i think lumia is better

posted on 02 May 2014, 12:10 1

78. RandomUsername (Posts: 808; Member since: 29 Oct 2013)

I not really fancy Samsung smartphones, but DAMN that's a good screen....

posted on 02 May 2014, 12:24 2

81. Taters (banned) (Posts: 6474; Member since: 28 Jan 2013)

Judging from these pics and nothing completely irrelevant like a lumia 1520 the size of a truck beating a SUV sized note 3, the GS5 wins this hands down.

Not sure how the lumia 1520 would fare against the GS5 but regardless, nobody except Nokia fans care. If anything, if you make a phone that huge, the screen should be even brighter than it is. Lol

posted on 02 May 2014, 13:14 2

85. irfanil (Posts: 31; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)

you should include Nokia 1520 and Xperia Z2 for a better comparison with S5 and M8.

posted on 02 May 2014, 14:13

88. SIGPRO (Posts: 1435; Member since: 03 Oct 2012)

Lumia 925 600 Nits
Lumia 1020 600 Nits
Lumia 1520 660 Nits
Nokia 701 1000 yes 1000 Nits.

The Nokia 701 Symbian3 phone has 1000 Nits, no other phone comes close!

posted on 02 May 2014, 17:49

93. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

The real question is:
Why are you people still cheering on a corporation? Reminds me of those morons around election time cheering their Democratic or Republican candidate, who, in the end, will just screw the people over to help some big corporation...

posted on 02 May 2014, 18:21

96. papss (unregistered)

Wait which SS device. Is the S5 in the first pic?

posted on 02 May 2014, 19:02 1

102. maccess (Posts: 742; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)

I'll take that as sarcasm..

posted on 02 May 2014, 19:25

103. SemperFiV12 (Posts: 944; Member since: 09 Nov 2010)

LOL... My Nokia Lumia 925 is older than most these phones and has better OUTDOOR VISIBILITY than most phones.

Please, stupid people, re-read the comment... I am not claiming it is a "better" phone... But in the category of "outdoor screen visibility" it is a lot better than most of these phones (I say most, because I have not tested it against all of the devices.

posted on 02 May 2014, 21:26 1

107. maccess (Posts: 742; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)

Uhm.. No..

posted on 02 May 2014, 20:57

106. sniper1087 (Posts: 508; Member since: 31 Dec 2011)

Why the hell do a display test for outdoor visibility with all the displays dirty, why not clean them up first and set them so they dont time out.

posted on 02 May 2014, 21:29 1

108. maccess (Posts: 742; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)

So what?? The s5 and note3 still trash them all..

posted on 03 May 2014, 01:11 2

113. gigaraga (Posts: 1454; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)

Excellent Samsung displays. Nothing comes close.

posted on 03 May 2014, 02:51

114. ibrahim_nasser (Posts: 1; Member since: 20 Jul 2013)

I'm very happy with my brightest display sony xperia P ...... It's display always looks great outdoor

posted on 03 May 2014, 06:52

116. Altair (Posts: 367; Member since: 02 Feb 2012)

As usual, Victor is dissing Nokia handsets. Hes unprofessional noobie.

Truth is, that Nokia Lumia 1520, Lumia Icon and Lumia 930 have the best displays over any of these "another row of icon" phones.

posted on 03 May 2014, 07:25 1

117. proto (Posts: 59; Member since: 12 Sep 2012)


when i read this review of S5 display it was always strange when phonearena call S5 display not so bright and have inaccurate colors ..this realy proffesional review tells something different. + pictures ihere hust shows us how bright samsung made their oled displays..it is very immpresive.

posted on 03 May 2014, 09:52

119. Daytonadave17 (Posts: 54; Member since: 26 Oct 2013)

First of all the gs5 is newer then the 1520. And its still just as good! Wait till the next Nokia flagship and then talk smack. Lol enough of this Samsung fan boy crap. I'm off to the beach! You know why!? Cause I live in Daytona beach! Hahaha. Boom!

posted on 03 May 2014, 09:53

120. ashouhdy (Posts: 55; Member since: 31 Oct 2013)

S5 then note3 others are ok.

posted on 03 May 2014, 09:54

121. Daytonadave17 (Posts: 54; Member since: 26 Oct 2013)

925 Lumia here! Best design by Nokia so far in my opinion! :-) 4-5 bars LTE ALL the time in Florida! LTE is awesome here

posted on 03 May 2014, 10:15

122. gmracer (Posts: 24; Member since: 09 May 2013)

my question is ? where is the z2, why only those devices.. I dont understand, should be better if they put Z2, one m8, and s5 the newest 2014...(

posted on 03 May 2014, 15:29

127. FanBoyNot (Posts: 6; Member since: 03 May 2014)

What are you people talking about...how many angels can sit on the head of a pin? ALL these phones SUCK in sunlight. If you really want to talk abount sunlight visibility, put an e-ink display on the back (does anybody care about color in the sun?). Perfect visibility, minimal-to-zero battery load, wasted real estate on the back is put to use. Or you can continue to split hairs about which phone has the most "squintable" display and which sucks the least.

posted on 04 May 2014, 04:16

130. saiki4116 (Posts: 379; Member since: 31 Mar 2011)

Of course you are right

posted on 04 May 2014, 04:16

129. saiki4116 (Posts: 379; Member since: 31 Mar 2011)

Surprisingly AMOLED phones outdoor visibility is good.

posted on 04 May 2014, 10:35 1

132. nihad (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 May 2014)

i think u should include nokia lumia 1520 for this comparison.

posted on 04 May 2014, 11:27

133. NOSrawesome (Posts: 48; Member since: 25 Mar 2013)


posted on 04 May 2014, 20:37

136. zachattack (Posts: 621; Member since: 31 Jul 2013)

The fact that phonearena kisses samsungs butt along with the well known fact amoled are not better in the sun, leads me to believe they turned the brightness not all the way up on the HTC devices. This is so fail it's redonk. That said S5 might be good since it's 2014 and all but meh

posted on 06 May 2014, 15:45

143. Eclectech (Posts: 217; Member since: 01 May 2013)

Was there no money in the budget to clean the screens before testing? o_O

posted on 06 May 2014, 19:57

144. attagent (Posts: 4; Member since: 09 Sep 2013)


posted on 08 Jun 2014, 23:10

149. kevin91202 (Posts: 558; Member since: 08 Jun 2014)

I've been following this website for a bit and resisted posting. But, I feel ike I have to at this point to question PA's testing methodologies. Let's cut to the chase with my first post.

PhoneArena's maximum brightness (nits) results:
Samsung Note 3: 360
Samsung S5: 442
iPhone 5S: 587

DisplayMate's maximum brightness (nits) results:
Samsung Note 3: 660
Samsung S5: 698
iPhone 5: 556 (5S not tested but both displays are similar)

Reviewing the photos from PA's own testing, it's CLEAR that the Samsung S5 is the brightest, with the Note 3 not far behind, and the iPhone 5S rounding out third place. That would coincide with the conclusions made by DisplayMate and contradict PA's results. Additionally, if PA is trying to conduct an obejctive test on the display's brightness, it wouldn't hurt to clean the screens and use a neutral background. Fingerprints and grass reflections do not help the cause.

posted on 11 Jun 2014, 09:33

150. Victor.H (Posts: 658; Member since: 27 May 2011)

Appreciate your remarks, and we've certainly taken all this into consideration.

Without trying to defend anything, let's just say that our display tests are carried out in nearly perfectly equal conditions for all phones. The high brightness that Samsung phones can achieve (and reflected in tests like DisplayMate's) are only achieved in a certain screen mode and under certain extreme conditions like a very bright day. It's like an overdrive mode for the displays, something that they certainly don't achieve in more neutral environments (where our tests are carried out). That's meant to clarify where the difference comes from. Some context, I think, is always useful.

As for the fingerprints, I personally think they are a realistic portrayal of how a phone looks in real life. And yes, next time we'll test on a mowed lawn!

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