HTC One M9 vs iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy S5, Nexus 6, Lumia 930 blind camera comparison: vote here


Voting is now closed.

The day is February 19, 2013. HTC's Jason MacKenzie steps up on stage at an official HTC event to announce the company's latest and greatest smartphone. The smartphone in question is the HTC One, now referred to as the HTC one M7. Back then, it blew our minds with its outstanding design and premium sound quality, among other goodies in its feature arsenal. What didn't quite impress us, however, was its UltraPixel camera. The latter came with the promise to blow the competition out of the water, but in actuality, it lagged behind the cameras on most other flagship devices. Little changed with the HTC One M8 which also relied on an UltraPixel snapper. 

Today, some 2 years later, we have our hands on the HTC One M9, which swaps the UltraPixel cam in favor of a more traditional, 20MP camera. The snapper features an aperture of F/2.2, 27.8-millimeter focal length, a dual-tone LED flash, and a sensor size of 1/2.4" – respectable configuration, but nothing extraordinary by today's standards. Still, it is our duty to put the One M9's camera through its paces and see how it compares to the cameras on other flagship devices. But before we present you with our verdict, let's have a blind camera comparison, shall we?

In case you aren't familiar with our blind camera comparisons, here's what you're about to find below. We've captured six scenes under identical conditions using the HTC One M9 and five highly-acclaimed smartphones. These are the iPhone 6 Plus, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, the Samsung Galaxy S5, the Nokia Lumia 930, and the Google Nexus 6. All we ask from you is to vote for the images you find best. Easy, right?

To eliminate bias of all levels, however, we're not going to reveal which phone in particular was used for capturing each photo. On top of that, we've shuffled the images for each scene – in other words, chances are that Photo A in Scene 1 and Photo A in Scene 2 were not taken using the same device. Practically, you have no clues to help you tell which of the six phones was used for a given picture. 

With this disclaimer out of the way, let's move on to the actual photos. The winner of this blind camera comparison will be announced in a few days.

Scene 1


It was noon when we took this shot – a well-illuminated scene that any flagship smartphone's camera should have no troubles capturing in great fidelity. Sure enough, all phones did a good job at capturing this particular scene, but which image do you like best?


Scene 1: Which photo do you like best?

Galaxy Note 4 (Photo A)
9.38%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo B)
39.44%
Lumia 930 (Photo C)
8.78%
HTC One M9 (Photo D)
8.02%
Galaxy S5 (Photo E)
13.72%
Nexus 6 (Photo F)
20.66%

Scene 2


Oh, boy. This scene was captured at sunset, and obviously, some of the phones had a different opinion than others as to how colors should be balanced. Which photo looks best? We're letting you be the judge of that.


Scene 2: Which photo do you like best?

Galaxy S5 (Photo A)
0.73%
Nexus 6 (Photo B)
28.8%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo C)
1.82%
Galaxy Note 4 (Photo D)
56.21%
HTC One M9 (Photo E)
0.84%
Lumia 930 (Photo F)
11.61%


Scene 3


This comparison would be incomplete without a night scene. So, here it is. Clearly, some phones allowed a more generous amount of light into the frame. 


Scene 3: Which photo do you like best?

HTC One M9 (Photo A)
0.1%
Lumia 930 (Photo B)
37.47%
Galaxy Note 4 (Photo C)
6.35%
Galaxy S5 (Photo D)
18.84%
Nexus 6 (Photo E)
0.55%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo F)
36.68%


Scene 4


This bunch of photos goes to show that PhoneArena's team knows no sleep. The images also demonstrate how well the six phones perform while shooting close-ups. 


Scene 4: Which photo do you like best?

Nexus 6 (Photo A)
36.52%
HTC One M9 (Photo B)
10.89%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo C)
3.32%
Lumia 930 (Photo D)
14.86%
Galaxy S5 (Photo E)
33.5%
Galaxy Note 4 (Photo F)
0.9%


Scene 5


This is a scene captured in the dark from a distance of 5 feet, and obviously, all phones had their flash enabled. Some illuminated the frame better than others. There are also differences in how much details have been preserved.


Scene 5: Which photo do you like best?

Lumia 930 (Photo A)
53.62%
Galaxy S5 (Photo B)
10.98%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo C)
14.53%
Galaxy Note 4 (Photo D)
11.32%
Nexus 6 (Photo E)
0.29%
HTC One M9 (Photo F)
9.25%

Scene 6


And lastly, a shot taken indoors, with some artificial lightning providing illumination. This scene is suitable for judging how well the cameras handle low-light scenes, how well they handle noise, and how sharp of an image they can produce with the light that's available.


Scene 6: Which photo do you like best?

Galaxy Note 4 (Photo A)
61.31%
Lumia 930 (Photo B)
24.79%
HTC One M9 (Photo C)
1.15%
iPhone 6 Plus (Photo D)
5.09%
Galaxy S5 (Photo E)
1.63%
Nexus 6 (Photo F)
6.02%

Related phones

One M9
  • Display 5.0 inches
    1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 20 MP (Single camera)
    4 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, 3GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 2840 mAh
  • OS Android 7.0 Nougat
    HTC Sense UI
iPhone 6 Plus
  • Display 5.5 inches
    1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP (Single camera)
    1.2 MP front
  • Hardware Apple A8, 1GB RAM
  • Storage 128GB, not expandable
  • Battery 2915 mAh
  • OS iOS 12.x
Galaxy Note4
  • Display 5.7 inches
    2560 x 1440 pixels
  • Camera 16 MP (Single camera)
    3.7 MP front
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 7 Octa, 3GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3220 mAh
  • OS Android 6.0 Marshmallow
    Samsung TouchWiz UI
Galaxy S5
  • Display 5.1 inches
    1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 16 MP (Single camera)
    2.1 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, 2GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 2800 mAh
  • OS Android 6.0 Marshmallow
    Samsung TouchWiz UI
Lumia 930
  • Display 5.0 inches
    1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 20 MP (Single camera)
    1.2 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, 2GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB,
  • Battery 2420 mAh
  • OS Windows Phone 8.1
Nexus 6
  • Display 6.0 inches
    2560 x 1440 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP (Single camera)
    2 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, 3GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB,
  • Battery 3220 mAh
  • OS Android 7.1 Nougat

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