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Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison

Posted: , by John V.

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Outdoor Shots:

While capturing the beauty of the great outdoors, we are once again greeted to a similar performance between these three high-end handset contenders. Glancing at the photos with the fountains spewing water all around with people sitting idle nearby, there are barely any major advantages that can be seen with any of the shots by looking at it with the naked eye. The exposure is pretty on par with one another as the colors of the trees in the background are naturally green in tone, while the buildings further in the background aren't drastically different in appearance. Surprisingly though, the HDR image doesn't seem to push any serious improvements over the iPhone 4's original shot – granted though, the buildings in the background offer more detail at the expense of making the overall shot look darker.

100% Crop - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
100% Crop - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison

100% Crop



Samsung Epic 4G - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Apple iPhone 4 - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Apple iPhone 4 with HDR - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Motorola DROID X - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Panasonic Lumix FZ35 - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison

Samsung Epic 4G

Apple iPhone 4

Apple iPhone 4 with HDR

Motorola DROID X

Panasonic Lumix FZ35

Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Samsung Epic 4G - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Apple iPhone 4 - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Apple iPhone 4 with HDR - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Motorola DROID X - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison
Panasonic Lumix FZ35 - Samsung Epic 4G vs Apple iPhone 4 vs Motorola DROID X - the camera comparison

Samsung Epic 4G

Apple iPhone 4

Apple iPhone 4 with HDR

Motorola DROID X

Panasonic Lumix FZ35




Video:

As we all know, these three smartphones are able to shoot 720p; which of course will provide plenty of detail. But that's where the similarity ends as the iPhone 4 and Samsung Epic 4G are able to shoot videos at a rate of 29 fps in conditions with good lighting. As we tried to capture videos in low lighting situations, we soon found out later that it drops drastically to 23 fps. That's actually the same rate that the Motorola DROID X is capable of recording in all scenarios. Without a doubt, you can visibly see how the DROID X has a minor jerky movement to it as video is played back – while the iPhone 4 and Epic 4G looks comparably the same with their smooth movements. However, we did find that Epic 4G retains the same white balance and exposure throughout the recording process. Conversely, the iPhone 4 completely jumps around with its exposure as you move from one area with a specific level of lighting to another. Moreover, the iPhone 4 has one key advantage over its Android rivals – it has the ability to allow you to change focus level during a recording. Sure it's definitely a nice thing over the fixed focus mode of the Epic 4G and DROID X. Overall, we have to say that it's a close finish between the iPhone 4 and Epic 4G when it comes to supremacy in video recording, however, the DROID X's results are astounding in their own regards, but doesn't quite meet the level of the other two.

















Alternatively, we shot another video at dusk when natural light was beginning to become scarce, and we notice some dramatically different results between the three. Thanks to the iPhone 4's back-lit sensor, it shines once again as we're presented with a good looking visual, plenty of detail, and smoothness to make playback enjoyable. It easily takes the trophy in this category way ahead of the other two handsets. Now with the Epic 4G, its detail is on par with what the iPhone 4 is able to muster – like the buttery frame rate and good looking details. However, there is a moderate level of noise which is noticeable in playback. Sure it doesn't deter from the overall good quality, but it's blatantly discernible. Finally, there's the Motorola DROID X which unfortunately falls behind – way behind to tell you the truth. Of course it shoots in 720p, but that doesn't always dictate quality. Chugging along better than most phones at 23 fps, there is a considerate amount of noise to be found with its recorded videos – which clearly takes hold of its performance.
















39 Comments
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posted on 20 Oct 2010, 01:55

1. DontHateOnS60 (Posts: 867; Member since: 20 Apr 2009)


Are you kidding me? The simple fact that you have to use a special setting to capture decent images speaks volumes for the iPhone's camera. Every single image taken with the iPhone is over exposed until the user goes into HDR mode or whatever. Not that any other camera here was any better. Frankly, the Droid X's camera was the most disappointing thing here.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 13:25 1

2. mr. droid (Posts: 278; Member since: 21 Aug 2010)


and the iPhone is the most disappointing phone all the way around. its quite sad. honestly, i feel the droid x has the best camera. something is out of whack with this review.. 7 pages of stuff i read that took 25 minutes of my life i will never get back. go to the stores (like wal-mart where they sell all of these phones side-by-side) and see for yourself. i am not trying to be bias (because i have the droid x) personally, the BEST phone camera i have ever seen goes to the droid2.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 13:34 1

3. gunarrr (unregistered)


Your username speaks volumes for your bias.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 13:38

4. DontHateOnS60 (Posts: 867; Member since: 20 Apr 2009)


I'd have to test one out for myself and compare it to my N97, E72, and N95. My friend has one, and a few of the images I've seen didn't come out well at all when they were uploaded to Facebook. They were darker than they should have been, and details didn't look that good. Something I noticed in the images here as well. My friend may not know how to use the 2 stage shutter button though. Who knows.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 13:56

5. DontHateOnS60 (Posts: 867; Member since: 20 Apr 2009)


My user name will lead people to believe I am biased, but that is hardly the case. Take the N95 for example. Great camera, maybe even the best camera available in 2007 and 2008. It had one fatal flaw however. Every image taken, where there was a bright color, the color was made to look completely unreal. Yellows, reds, blues, didn’t matter. Everything looked like it was colored in with a marker. The images were still very sharp, but the colors made them look unreal. I see that with the iPhone 4 as well. When it comes to a camera phone, I want to see details, and I want images that look exactly as the scene was. No brightened colors, no black lines around blades of grass. I want realistic images. Whether it’s Apple, Moto, Samsung, HTC, or even Nokia, I’ll call anybody out if I see something to call them out on.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 17:12

6. lolipopjones (Posts: 51; Member since: 21 Jun 2009)


SO a phone that offers HDR is bad? Yeah you have no argument... you are just a tard.

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 21:37 1

10. DonkeyPunched (Posts: 321; Member since: 10 Jan 2010)


Yea, you are clearly being bias. Whether or not you like the iPhone for all it's features and what not, this review was extremely accurate and the pictures on the Droid X look like pictures from a flip phone. It showed how blurred each texture became. The colors blurred too much to the point I couldn't even tell if there were leaves on the tree rather than just seen green/brown. This had nothing to do with how the phone works, the calls, or the apps. It was all about the camera and I believe the iPhone did win in terms of quality. Btw, I have an Epic, so that might affect how people see my comment, but I'm actually trying to be honest.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 09:59

16. xq10xa (unregistered)


"i feel the droid x has the best camera." & "go to the stores (like wal-mart where they sell all of these phones side-by-side) and see for yourself. i am not trying to be bias (because i have the droid x) personally, the BEST phone camera i have ever seen goes to the droid2." you opinion became void right there buddy.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 11:07

17. PapaJay224 (Posts: 866; Member since: 08 Feb 2009)


ARE YOU PEOPLE KIDDING ME?!?!? First of all there is obviously some sort of stencil brush effect they keep using on the droid that makes it look PhtoShopped, Secondly this whole Article is basically about iPhone HDR. I have seriously never been so discusted with an article on this website as much as I am rightnow with the absolute BIAS this site has.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 19:32

24. remixfa (Posts: 14261; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


this site is so funny. it kept saying "there is clearly no difference between these pix" it doesnt take but 2 seconds to look at the daylight pix and compare them with the real camera to see that the Epic wins the pic contest in almost every situation. The iphone4's camera over saturates, over compensates, and exept for a few shots, looked the least like the control shot taken from the digital camera. Without HDR the iphone wouldnt have even been in the contest. Point is, all the cameras are fine,from what i can tell the Epic/galaxyS has the best pictures over all without retouching, HDR obviously makes a difference, but phone arena is so openly biased when it comes to iphone comparisons that they can never be taken seriously.

posted on 27 Sep 2010, 15:57

31. XxVerbalxX (unregistered)


awesome

posted on 03 Oct 2010, 13:55

34. deago78 (Posts: 160; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)


You misspelled "disgusted"...badly

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 17:13 1

7. am0795 (unregistered)


No offence but phone arena, you are way off...my droid x at the D1 Rate is 30 fps...excuse u but my droid x at that even surpasses the icrap 4......iv'e tested in the apple store...the epic 4g i have nothing to say to...a 5 mega pixle.....no it still loses, my photos look amazing and with the 2.2 update..which you obviously dont know i guess comes out rommorow...the gallery and the inetrface is and will be much improved...

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 21:41

11. DonkeyPunched (Posts: 321; Member since: 10 Jan 2010)


Lol, you make it sound like as if phone arena doesn't know the specs of the phone. They clearly do research on the phones and inform you about these updates, such as your Droid X 2.2 update. You're just a pissed off user because your phone did the worst. The pictures show it clearly. Stop bitching or stop coming back to the site. Its that simple.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 11:10

18. PapaJay224 (Posts: 866; Member since: 08 Feb 2009)


Clearly not.

posted on 03 Oct 2010, 13:57

35. deago78 (Posts: 160; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)


You misspelled "offense"...come on many...this is fourth grade vocabulary test material...

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 19:31

8. mr. droid (Posts: 278; Member since: 21 Aug 2010)


there is a way to get the 2.2 update now on the droid x. people have been complaining that it is making their phone run/work like crap compared to what it used to. although thats what they are telling me. nothing more nothing less. some people are afraid of change..

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 19:56

9. bummy (unregistered)


So iphone4 shots are all overexposed until you turn HDR on, which is THEN comparable to the other camera's regular shoots. Only bonus is in dim light situations where HDR is a bonus.... but this is just software right? are there apps out there for android to do HDR type imaging?

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 22:40

12. Legacystar (Posts: 131; Member since: 31 Dec 2009)


does anyone else notice that every shot taken by the droid X looks like it's zoomed in closer then the other cameras? i think there is something wrong with your settings Phone arena.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 11:12

19. PapaJay224 (Posts: 866; Member since: 08 Feb 2009)


LegacSTar THANK YOU!!!! It looks like they have a pencil effect or some sort of effect added to them. Thats why this review is BS! -1 PhoneArena

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 11:14

21. bl@cksleep (unregistered)


The Droid X is 8mp vs. 5mp of the other two, which means it's pic sizes are different ie: different image dimensions. 100% crop of a smaller image means you don't "zoom" in as close as on a larger image. You'll notice the Droid X and Panasonic FZ35 camera have a similar crop factor given they are the closest in mp count and image dimension, so their image sizes are the most similar. Likewise the Epic and iPhone will have a near identical crop factor because of their similar 5mp sized sensor. A little digital photography basics.

posted on 03 Oct 2010, 13:59

36. deago78 (Posts: 160; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)


-1 for being too over excited

posted on 21 Sep 2010, 22:45

13. bucky (Posts: 2805; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)


The review is accurate. Each phone has things over the other. The camera in this case is definitely better on the iphone. Stop hating.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 01:32

14. lolateveryone (unregistered)


phone arena really needs to take out the HDR photos as it is unfair to manipulate the settings. If you are going to keep them in the review, you might as well either adjust the settings for the other phones or just download a photo app since the android phones actually allow for apps like that to be used. The DroidX took the best indoor shots IMO. The HDR on the iPhone had some noticeable ghosting effects. the iphone did take the best outdoor shots though. The Epic took the best night shots. Nice try also on saying that the phones produce better overall photos than that dedicated camera too

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 11:14

20. PapaJay224 (Posts: 866; Member since: 08 Feb 2009)


+1 Exactly, but thats the thing with iPhone it always has to have 1 little tweak to compete with leading phones. They tweak the Droid X camera to some stupid blur brush effect in photoshop and then write a whole article on HDR on the iPhone... Its like they are trying to prove it isnt a piece of trash...Well PhoneArena YOU AND the IPHONE are TRASH!

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 14:13

23. bucky (Posts: 2805; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)


why you taking it soo personally? Also, is there even anyone arguing with you guys anymore? Dont like the topic...dont read it! Hardcore fanboys are no longer with teh iphone but seemingly with all these android phones. Phonearena does not write these reviews (which are great reviews) to piss off a few of you nerds-they call it as they see it. As far as i can see, i agree with them ( about a million or so other websites do as well :) )

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 07:51

15. Matistight1 (unregistered)


I compared the samsung captivate camera to the iPhone 4, only difference is the iPhones camera catches way more color than the captivate, when tested inside. Didn't test outside.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 12:37

22. JWL342 (unregistered)


How can the epic 4g be better then the droid x here when it has the same camera as the fascinate and in your fascinate review you say the following "The Motorola DROID X is the same price and produces much better looking images." ?? Side note i think the galaxy s cameras are better just confused by the conflicting reviews.

posted on 22 Sep 2010, 21:07

25. vzw fanman (Posts: 1976; Member since: 11 Dec 2008)


i have 2 questions for the people who performed these tests: 1) Was the Droid x set on 6 MP (widescreen) or set on 8 MP (large)? 2nd most important thing, was the lens of the droid x dirty? did it have finger prints or smudges? you should make sure it's clean and clear in every shot. if there are fingerprints in front of the lens it drastically decreases quality.

posted on 23 Sep 2010, 11:13

28. PapaJay224 (Posts: 866; Member since: 08 Feb 2009)


I am agreeing with your comment. My HTC Incredible takes amazing photos, Im pretty sure better than any of these. And hope I am not trolling in saying so.

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