Camera comparison: Sony Xperia Z vs Samsung Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note II, iPhone 5, Nokia Lumia 920
- 1 Introduction and Details
- 2 Color reproduction
- 3 Indoor
- 4 Night
- 5 Macro
- 6 Video
- 7 Interface and ease of use
- 8 Conclusion
- Sony Xperia Z specifications
- Samsung Galaxy S III specifications
- Samsung GALAXY Note II specifications
- Apple iPhone 5 specifications
- Nokia Lumia 920 specifications
Ladies and gents, it is time for another camera comparison between the top smartphones in existence. And without a doubt, all eyes are on the Sony Xperia Z, which is equipped with the company's new Exmor RS camera sensor. With 13 million pixels and perks like HDR video mode, Sony's top-of-the-line handset should be a great performer, but will it manage to beat the fierce competition?
Well, it won't be an easy battle. Today we're comparing the Sony Xperia Z with the Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy Note II, iPhone 5 and the Nokia Lumia 920, all of which have proven their photographic capabilities. We're also throwing a 12MP point-and-shoot camera as a reference - the Canon PowerShot SD780 IS, which is now a model several years old.
For the purposes of this testing, all smartphones are set to their maximum resolutions for both images and video. We have to let them show their best after all. Also, we have not altered their settings for any of the test scenes. All smartphones are shooting in automatic mode. Shall we begin?
With its 13MP camera, the Sony Xperia Z can capture photos at higher resolution than what the other competitors are capable of. However, despite that advantage, the details in its photos are smudged and a weird purple tint is present around edges. The Nokia Lumia 920 produces equally disappointing results as the details in its photos are too soft for our taste. The Samsung Galaxy S III and Samsung Galaxy Note 2 produce noticeably sharper, more detailed images, but the iPhone 5 captures even better photos, although it leads only by a hair.
Yeah, some digital noise is indeed present in the iPhone 5's photos, which isn't surprising considering the far-from-ideal lighting conditions. As a matter of fact, it was pretty gloomy when we took our outdoor sample shots. But the noise level is tolerable, just as it is on the images taken with the Galaxy S III and Note II. The Nokia Lumia 920 and Sony Xperia Z suppress noise through software algorithms, but the downside to it are the aforementioned muddy details seen in their photos.
1. iPhone 5
2. Samsung Galaxy S3 and Note 2
3. Nokia Lumia 920 and Sony Xperia Z
1. samsunggalaxylover (Posts: 37; Member since: 23 Jan 2013)
samsung phone cameras will stay the best.
35. GG_SHAH (Posts: 19; Member since: 13 Feb 2013)
Samsung.. Its screen is too much dim even when brightness is full
90. fahqman (Posts: 38; Member since: 06 Jan 2013)
I thought we're talking about cameras here. Did you feel threatened by Samsung and felt you needed to say something right away?
117. CanYouSeeTheLight (Posts: 1103; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
I feel threatened by the amount of bias in this "comparison", i wonder how much Samsung and Apple payed PhoneArena? Why is the Note 2 even here? I mean its results are almost the same as the S3, only with more noise, just use a diferent phone in the comparison no point in using 2 phones that have almost the same camera.
125. maccess (Posts: 739; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)
what bias?? let your eyes be the judge... if your eyes said the samsung or the apple has the worst quality.. then so be it.. everyone has their own opinion..
257. Emily1985 (Posts: 127; Member since: 08 Nov 2012)
"The Best Smartphone Camera"
1) Nokia Lumia 920
2) iphone 5
3) BlackBerry Z10 (Sony Xperia Z performance close to bb z10)
4) Galaxy SIII
5) Nexus 4
When you do not get money from Samsung and Apple you get different results ;)
274. Trex95 (Posts: 852; Member since: 03 Mar 2013)
True. even though i'm hard core fan of IOS and Android i still admit that again and again no phone including IPhone 5, Xperia Z, upcoming galaxy S4,Lumia 920, galaxy camera etc.... beat Nokia 808 Pure View camera yet. if you don't believe that just watch 1080p of 808 pure view on your pc/mac in full HD. I try out the 808 camera still the best.
275. pureviewuser (Posts: 449; Member since: 11 Nov 2012)
Mind you they will catch up making nokia bring up their standards which in turn make them bring up their standards even more its a win win for all consumers who will have better products,
276. hitman (Posts: 1; Member since: 05 Jun 2013)
Your correct. Bias not even mentioned Nokia has the only one with OIS and others use only digital image stabilization as well nokia Lumia has aperture of 2.0 which is widest among the rest. Did not even include HTC one. This article is one sided. Clearly it is between Iphone Lumia and HTC one and Samsung comes on top. How come?
208. dr_fajardo12 (Posts: 111; Member since: 26 Aug 2012)
Don't get it, before this camera comparition iphone 5 had the better cam ( like them im not including 808), now, the iphone5 cant win against note 2, or sammy 3?. dont get it phonearena...
246. Hemlocke (unregistered)
My eyes must be screwed up, because the S3 and Note II only had one picture that appeared better (The first). Their horrible focal lengths really betray them.
252. stylinred (Posts: 50; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)
I wonder if the 920 was running the portico update which fixed the soft image issues?
either way nothing will beat the 808 pureview for awhile
265. gbpost (Posts: 3; Member since: 24 Nov 2012)
agred- that's the main problem I found with my S3- screen brightness. It's there for things like photos. But for emails, reading etc it's quite subdued.
But as we're talkgin about cameras, the Z is very good. Not as consistently good as the iphone 5, or nokia 920 (in low light) but I prefer the photos from the Z to those I used to take on the S3 (and for indoor shots I prefer the Z easily over the Note 2).
37. Muzhhur (Posts: 258; Member since: 14 Sep 2012)
just corean stuff, I dont think they are better than sony nor nokia
99. fahqman (Posts: 38; Member since: 06 Jan 2013)
That Corean stuff rules now. Numbers don't lie.
Enjoy your 2nd tier device and have a nice day :)
229. kclgphilsbsa (Posts: 765; Member since: 21 Jan 2013)
48. AamirSIII (banned) (Posts: 187; Member since: 04 Oct 2012)
Woah... something has gone really wrong with PA lately... 920 is night photography champ, S3 and Note 2 can not be beaten in day time photography, macro and details in video, and Z has best night time video...
68. OptimusOne (Posts: 694; Member since: 22 May 2012)
hey! the Iphone camera isn't that bad. It certainly isn't the best, but it still is pretty decent(probably the only decent thing on that phone)
It still might be last, but it doesn't deserve to be called "ishi*t" camera-wise
just my 2 nickels
105. fahqman (Posts: 38; Member since: 06 Jan 2013)
I own a note 2 and I feel like iphone 5's pic quality is just as good as Samsung's and Sony, too.
920 is pure joke. Pure'Gray'View's hype is just like what apple did & still doing with their retina BS which isn't even 720p in 2013.
247. Hemlocke (unregistered)
Look at the S3 or N2 side-by-side with the i5 and tell me how much better those 720p screens are. The iPhone 5's screen crushes them, and the tech industry agrees with that assessment.
51. RiseAgainst94 (Posts: 281; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)
IPhone or galaxy's best in day. Lumia 920 in low light. iPhone best overall I would say. This coming from someone who will never buy an iPhone.
64. amansingal14 (Posts: 309; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
1- Lumia 920
4-Sammy Big s**t2
5-Rotten Apple iCrap
And yeah try using a Nikon DSLR, Sony Alpha instead...
70. pkiran1996 (Posts: 166; Member since: 22 Oct 2011)
Another anti-samsung person. What is wrong with you? The Galaxy Note 2 is arguably in the top 3 smartphones right now and you call it sh*t?
As dedicated android user (Nexus 7 and 4), I would still never call the iPhone crap. You're just anti-samsung, and I have no idea why.
79. asingha94 (Posts: 295; Member since: 08 Apr 2012)
Samdogs are may be in the top 3 smartphones,but we are talking here about camera.Koreans know only adding core & adding ram. They need to born one more time to make good camera phone. So go get a life.
102. maccess (Posts: 739; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)
dude.. you can read tons of reviews on the internet.. no single reviewer ever said that the s3 or note 2 camera sucks.. they even always praise that those phones has one of the the best 8mp camera.. i knew that your ip5 camera is slightly better.. but doesn't mean the samsung's suck.. grow up boy..
195. amansingal14 (Posts: 309; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
Dude read any review, Nokia and Sony beats all others in the camera dept....
thats why I say that I shall no more view any camera comparisions on this site, iGalaxyArena
197. maccess (Posts: 739; Member since: 16 Jan 2013)
dude my response is not for yours but for asingha94..
160. iushnt (Posts: 1301; Member since: 06 Feb 2013)
I think you should read the above news once again and see the ranking.. They are better in camera than 920 and Z.. Iphone 5 us ahead only by a hair. Read the news again and again until you get the point.
78. asingha94 (Posts: 295; Member since: 08 Apr 2012)
almost right bro.but in my view iphone camera is better than note 2 & s3. So it would be at number 3.It gives a good daylight performence.
174. darkkjedii (Posts: 18381; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
I can tell by how childishly your post is written that you only want attention. There's no way that Samsungs flagship devices are s**t, and the iPhone is crap. The top devices on all the charts are made by Samsung and apple, do some research dude, cuz your knowledge is sorely lacking.
198. amansingal14 (Posts: 309; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
But iOS isn't customizable, so crap, and Samsung is cheap low quality plastic, so again s**t...
Nokia also uses plastic but high qualiy one...
212. pkiran1996 (Posts: 166; Member since: 22 Oct 2011)
"Samsung is cheap low quality plastic".
This has no effect on performance or the camera. And the sad truth is that plastic is way more durable than glass.
231. amansingal14 (Posts: 309; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)
But plastic does not look or feel premium... And it is not about camera that I prefer calling Samsung as s**t, but about the feel of it. It almost feels like your holding a super slim phone from 2006 or 2007...
The quality of these phones are rubbish. In fact, in terms of build quality, I do not like Sony either. But at least it feels premium...
262. bigdawg23 (Posts: 436; Member since: 25 May 2011)
Wow SGS3 down there and iPhone 5 further, Really?!?!? Nokie and Sony are good but the other two are up there. I have a Note 1 and iPhone 5. My Note 1 has its +/-.
71. akki20892 (Posts: 3872; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
hopefully in your dream dude not in real life.......!!! nokia lumia 920 all the way......!!! and wait for nokia 41mp camera wp phone
139. HDShatter (Posts: 1021; Member since: 17 Jan 2013)
Samsung just uses average cameras. The Z camera isn't perfect but its still better than Samsung.
184. kclgphilsbsa (Posts: 765; Member since: 21 Jan 2013)
what average camera? hahaha
SAmsung uses sony's lens but samsung knows how to optimize it and make excellent pictures :D
167. kobainez (Posts: 413; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
In other sites xperia Z is superior to all of them. Pa is just a samdung and apple fans and this proves it. Many other sites showed amazing shots taken with xperia Z
192. timaustin2000 (Posts: 39; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)
Just hold your horses people: Once again PA seem to have overlooked that pesky focal length. Check out the amount that all the devices crop with the zoom tool. Notice a difference?
Because of the focal length of the Galaxy devices, as well as the lower MP count, the zoom crop is focusing in far shallower than it does on the XZ. Don't take my word for it, measure it yourself - it's right there.
I'm not saying that the XZ isn't a little softer BUT if you zoom all devices to the SAME crop, the Galaxy and iPhone images would PIXELATE, looking equally bad.
I'm not saying that this is intentional from PA but it certainly skews the results. The XZ images are looking softer because they're zoomed in further.
225. AnukulVcool (unregistered)
u mean " the sony camera sensors that samsung uses in sgs3" will stay the best.
261. bigdawg23 (Posts: 436; Member since: 25 May 2011)
My iPhone 5 camera far exceeds my Note 1, or previously owned SGS2 and SGSSR. My friends SGS3 is not any better then an iPhone camera. Nokia's Lumia and Sony's are very niece and many times better than iPhone 5.
2. emadshiny (Posts: 1144; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
Xperia Z and Lumia are the best. they're even better than Canon.LOL
7. p5yb0rg (unregistered)
Not according to this comparison
29. pwnarena (Posts: 1128; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)
not as presented. though i doubt if that's what the xz and lumia are really capable of doing. too dubious when you spend some good amount of time going over the samples featured by other sites.
38. Muzhhur (Posts: 258; Member since: 14 Sep 2012)
indeed, the problem is not about the lumia and sony, is that f**** photographer he is probably samsung fanboy
103. RiseAgainst94 (Posts: 281; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)
You're an idiot. You sound like a child and know nothing about image quality.
115. kclgphilsbsa (Posts: 765; Member since: 21 Jan 2013)
the one that doesnt stop praising Sony :D
he keeps on teeling that XZ is d best
140. HDShatter (Posts: 1021; Member since: 17 Jan 2013)
The Z is currently the best phone. I would say the runner up is the Droid DNA then Galaxy note 2 takes 3rd.
186. kclgphilsbsa (Posts: 765; Member since: 21 Jan 2013)
coz its d latest :D
when it comes to hardware, thats a fact coz XZ used whats latest.. but camera, with that 13mp, dey must learn how to optimize their lens well.. i wouldnt say PA is right that s3 and note2 are better in camera..
when it comes to features, note2 is still no1 and only galaxy s4 and note3 can beat it unless the upcoming Sony's 6incher w/ stylus can render us more exciting capabilities.. In screen, for oversaturated and more vivid colors w/ wow factor, SuperAmoled will rock but whites arent perfect (hoping a perfect display for the s4 and note3), so if u want brighter display with good whites and good contrast then HTC's display or LG is the top choices whc are better than Bravia...
XZ will somewhat steal d show w/ water and dustproof , elegant design(but not ergonomic, battery nonremovable) and their playstation compatibility(still can use playstation w/o XZ)
161. iushnt (Posts: 1301; Member since: 06 Feb 2013)
Dude, not lumia please.. Have you personally checked it? Don't be biased but ip5 and galaxy's camera are far better than lumias. Dark shots are not that great either on lumia compared to ip5..I dunno why people say lumia has good camera.. It's just a fake hype..