From Nokia 808 to Pixel 2: phone cameras got drastically better with time

The megapixel war was over a few years ago, and manufacturers focused on pixel sizes, focusing technologies, and improving software algorithms. One can see very clearly what a difference this had made to the cameras we always carry in our pockets, in the span of just a few short years.
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29 Comments

2. meanestgenius

Posts: 21019; Member since: May 28, 2014

Camera tech on smartphones has become simply amazing! I still have my Nokia 808 Pureview...such an awesome camera on that device! I still use it from time to time to take photos. The camera on iPhones is also one of the reasons I have been drawn to using one here and there, until now, where I actually use an 8Plus as my daily driver. All of the OEM’s listed have amazing camera tech, and it’s only going to get better!

3. biagnosis

Posts: 106; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

Lol. Me too. Still have my Nokia 808 PureView and it's alive and kickin' *ss. I use it too from time to time. Got the whole box and accesories as well. Will keep it with time as I learned its going to have higher value in the long run

6. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

"Lol. Me too. Still have my Nokia 808 PureView and it's alive and kickin' *ss." Kickin' which *ss? Midrange devices? Lel...

9. hemedans

Posts: 746; Member since: Jun 01, 2013

xenon flash alone make 808 as one of the best camera phone, it can stop movement of any thing. even 2018 phones like s9 cant do that. if it is dark or low light 808 can handle that easly.

14. dazed1

Posts: 771; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

BS, S9 in pro mode would kill 1020/808.

16. hemedans

Posts: 746; Member since: Jun 01, 2013

even if you combine 100 galaxy s9 their led flash wont be as bright as single Nokia 808 xenon flash. xenon is thousand of times brighter than led. Not only xenon is bright, it is also very quick, it deliver light by 0.1 millisecond thats just 1/10,000 of second, it can freeze any motion, be it fan, high speed car, diving, etc also xenon can reach further, light can reach even 15 meters aways. so no way phone powered by led will beat xenon flash in enviroment which depend on flash.

13. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Whichever cameraphone you have, the 808 is kicking its a**.

5. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

To this date, there is no better cameraphone in total darkness than the Nokia 808. The Lumia 1020 was close, but no cigar. I'll admit my 808 produces more red-eye than anything else but that's a quick fix.

7. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

"To this date, there is no better cameraphone in total darkness than the Nokia 808" That's due it's huge 1/1 2" sensor along with the Xenon flash, nothing else.

10. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4764; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

Why do you have to comment if you don't have anything sensible to say? "That's due it's huge 1/1 2" sensor along with the Xenon flash, nothing else." that's a part of what makes the camera great.

12. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Yeah, and? What does it matter what the reason is?

24. L0n3n1nja

Posts: 1499; Member since: Jul 12, 2016

Well it does explain why no other phone has beat it, a larger sensor cannot fit into the thinner phones they make now. It will probably be years before a smaller sensor can do that if it ever happens.

11. wesley.

Posts: 202; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

I still don't get why they gave the Huawei Mate 10 Pro such a high score. The photos in all reviews that I've seen are dull, lacking HDR and colors are quite off. Front facing camera also won't allow beautification mode to be turned off fully, so selfies will always be fake looking.

23. chenski

Posts: 726; Member since: Mar 22, 2015

My mate 10 camera is up there with the best

17. LRSousa

Posts: 42; Member since: Jun 20, 2014

And none of them are even close to 808 in quality.

18. andriodfanboy1

Posts: 157; Member since: Jul 22, 2014

I would have preferred cam compression of both instead thse charts

19. kevin007in

Posts: 323; Member since: Oct 28, 2015

no match for 808 pureview and 1020 . why phone companies r not bringing bigger sensor sizes???? time to think

21. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Because these little punks want thin phones. No way these hipsters are buying a phone with the camera humps on either of those phones, particularly the 808.

20. SIGPRO

Posts: 2806; Member since: Oct 03, 2012

DXO Mark please......they are apple minded! Where is the 1020 and 950XL in the list?

22. rsiders

Posts: 1775; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

Now all we need is one magical device to tie the past hardware features like xenon flash and a super large sensor and the future like smart processing and computational photography we would have the single most complete smartphone camera system available. And I would be in line to get a device like that. The fact that the S9/+ have variable apertures are a step in the right direction. Still waiting for a 41mp sensor beast from Nokia with modern power and processing.

25. pixelated

Posts: 108; Member since: May 03, 2015

I still have my Lumia 1020 & in manual mode, God... That's just a beast. Only Nokia 808 can beat that.

26. pooma

Posts: 83; Member since: Oct 01, 2015

my dream camera: 1/1.15 inch sensor, pixel size >1.4, Dual pixel autofocus, f 1.5, HDR+ processing, powered by SD 845

27. rsiders

Posts: 1775; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

I'm right there with you. Out of all the dumb and wacky phones they're making anyway, why not make a device like this?

28. xtroid2k

Posts: 601; Member since: Jan 11, 2010

I could be wrong but the 808 has a 41mp camera with alot of features that was well ahead of its time. The fact the we are even comparing it to the S9 means something within itself

29. miazga

Posts: 17; Member since: Mar 01, 2018

"phone cameras got drastically better with time" very good joke. It's very said that it's been almost 6 years from Nokia 808 debut and its' picture quality is still unmatched. If companies don't start implementing bigger sensors, the quality of photos will remain the same as it is right now. I believe that image processing algorithms have reached the peak and there is a small margin of improvment left. I'm glad to see many reasonably thinking people who see that big sensors is what we need. With today's technologies it would be possible to pack a Nokia 1020 sensor into a good looking and comfortable to hold device. In 2018, the smallest sensor should be 1/2.3 which has been nicely implented by Sony for a couple of years now (alongside the worst possible image processing ever.) If 1/2.3 can packed to a relatively slim body, then it would be possible to use a slightly bigger sesnor and not killing the design. That is why we need Nokia on the market cos they used to push all branch of this industry forward. I hope they will come back to be in top 3 manufacturers worldwide to keep the progress moving.

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