LG G4 camera test vs Samsung Galaxy S6, Apple iPhone 6, HTC One M9, and more


The LG G4 is out and one of the key areas of focus for it is the brand new 16-megapixel main camera with big aspirations.

The LG G4 camera technical details are all pretty clear: a 16-megapixel sensor of a large, 1/2.6" size with a fast, six-element f/1.8 aperture lens on top. LG has also overhauled its camera app adding a full-on manual mode where you full manual control over your smartphone: you can set shutter speeds, control focus manually, set ISO, white balance, and so on. There's an interesting new color spectrum sensor as well. Position right below the LED flash, this tiny sensor is there to tell what kind of lighting conditions you are taking pictures in (whether it is natural or artificial light), and adjust the white balance of your images properly. The LG G4 can even shoot and save RAW pictures, and it bundles in a neat shortcut to capture images right away by just double tapping on the volume down key.

But what about the actual image quality?

We've looked at camera samples from the LG G4 already, but to truly understand its capabilities we have to compare it with the other big names. For this quick camera comparison, we've got the Samsung Galaxy S6, Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, HTC One M9, LG G3, Sony Xperia Z3, and Motorola Droid Turbo.

We took them all for a spin on a day with scattered clouds, and we snapped a few samples to show how their cameras perform in comparison with the LG G4. Take a look right below.

Camera specs overview:
  • LG G4: 16-megapixel camera with 1/2.6" sensor, f/1.8 lens, OIS 2
  • Samsung Galaxy S6: 16-megapixel camera with 1/2.6" sensor, f/1.9 lens, OIS
  • Apple iPhone 6: 8-megapixel camera, f/2.2 lens
  • Apple iPhone 6 Plus: 8-megapixel camera, f/2.2 lens, OIS
  • HTC One M9: 20-megapixel camera, f/2.2
  • LG G3: 13-megapixel camera, f/2.4, OIS
  • Sony Xperia Z3: 20-megapixel camera, 1/2.3" sensor, f/2.0
  • Motorola DROID Turbo: 20-megapixel camera, f/2.0

*Full-resolution samples follow right below. Loading the images may take extra time, so be patient.

Scene #1: against sunlight, high dynamics picture



We took these pictures on a day with scattered clouds as the sun was constantly peeking behind the clouds, so we have similar yet slightly different lighting for every image in this series. The LG G4 does a good job capturing the shadows in the image, while the blue color of the sky is overexposed and practically lost. Still, the overall result is a pleasing image. Then, we have the Galaxy S6 that seems to have done worst of all in this scenario as the image it took is way underexposed and nearly useless. The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have done an admirable job preserving both the blue color of the skies as well as the shadows. Great job, Apple! Then, we have the HTC One M9 which captured a decent image that shows the shadowy areas in the image well, but burns the whites of the clouds. Sixth comes the LG G3 with another decent but not great shot: notice the burnt whites and the slight underexposure in the shadows. The Sony Xperia Z3 is a step above with a detailed image that has nice dynamics to it. Finally, the Motorola Droid Turbo has captured a visually impressive image that captures all the various elements well: preserving colors in both highlights and shadows.

Which shot do you like best?

Which shot do you like best? (Scene #1)

#1: LG G4
56.06%
#2: Samsung Galaxy S6
14.48%
#3: Apple iPhone 6
7.25%
#4: Apple iPhone 6 Plus
5.53%
#5: HTC One M9
2.26%
#6: LG G3
0.85%
#7: Sony Xperia Z3
9.51%
#8: Motorola Droid Turbo
4.06%

Scene #2: tree trunk, look for details



This image of a tree trunk is a great way to explore how the handsets capture detail, but given the practically identical lighting condition in all images, it also shows how these phones perceive color differently.

Which image do you like best?

Which image do you like best? (Scene #2)

#1: LG G4
41.04%
#2: Samsung Galaxy S6
31.46%
#3: Apple iPhone 6
5.88%
#4: Apple iPhone 6 Plus
6.13%
#5: HTC One M9
4.14%
#6: LG G3
1.33%
#7: Sony Xperia Z3
8.16%
#8: Motorola Droid Turbo
1.87%

Scene #3: New Jersey home on a cloudy day



When looking at this image keep in mind that on this cloudy day the lighting conditions changed, so the house is illuminated directly by the sun on some images, while on others it is hit by light diffused by the clouds.

Which image do you like best?

Which image do you like best? (Scene #3)

#1: LG G4
45.07%
#2: Samsung Galaxy S6
28.05%
#3: Apple iPhone 6
5.2%
#4: Apple iPhone 6 Plus
6.52%
#5: HTC One M9
2.97%
#6: LG G3
1.22%
#7: Sony Xperia Z3
8.56%
#8: Motorola Droid Turbo
2.4%

Scene #4: Brick wall, shows bokeh and detail



Finally, this close-up shot of a brick wall shows in perfect clarity how the phones differ in terms of their ability to capture fine detail, and you can also notice how much of a bokeh effect is achieved when you switch your focus to the background.

Which image do you like best?

Which image do you like best? (Scene #4)

#1: LG G4
44.29%
#2: Samsung Galaxy S6
33.21%
#3: Apple iPhone 6
4.55%
#4: Apple iPhone 6 Plus
3.79%
#5: HTC One M9
2.63%
#6: LG G3
0.68%
#7: Sony Xperia Z3
7.36%
#8: Motorola Droid Turbo
3.49%

FEATURED VIDEO

151 Comments

1. drunkenjay

Posts: 1695; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

at the moment galaxy s6 is beating the lg g4.

18. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

No, they are getting head to head.

25. drunkenjay

Posts: 1695; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

i said at the moment when i checked.

38. hassoups

Posts: 473; Member since: Jun 06, 2013

at the moment it's just fanboy voting.

54. drunkenjay

Posts: 1695; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

true. we need a blind test.

69. TylerGrunter

Posts: 1544; Member since: Feb 16, 2012

100% agree to that. With the names of the phones fanboyism wins 9 out of 10 times.

85. TheAsh

Posts: 43; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

LG G4 shall win in blind test. What I think that S6 edge performs better than regular S6.

124. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 968; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

We need a blind test with the Note 4 in the lineup. Disappointed that it was included in this comparison.

125. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 968; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

*wasn't included

88. LGisgood

Posts: 833; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

but samsung has more fans right?

81. bachir8k

Posts: 153; Member since: Feb 25, 2013

HDR is off on S6 in the first photo right?

82. Awalker

Posts: 1981; Member since: Aug 15, 2013

All the phones are on auto.

106. bachir8k

Posts: 153; Member since: Feb 25, 2013

on first time camera use the HDR on S6 is off, you need to manually turn it on.

111. Jermainesmit

Posts: 43; Member since: May 01, 2014

Doubt that. I know it captures more with hdr. Pretty clear cut

104. KyleRiemen

Posts: 170; Member since: Oct 29, 2014

Seems to be on a level with S6, iphone, but hard to rate with these pics. No information about the settings, no low light pics, no pics when moving...

20. AnTuTu

Posts: 1620; Member since: Oct 14, 2012

S6 All the way.

60. AizenMne

Posts: 14; Member since: May 22, 2014

Losing all the way? :D

91. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2265; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

lol@ losing all the way.

84. LGisgood

Posts: 833; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

LG G4 is leading! best camera in a smartphone today!

110. marorun

Posts: 5029; Member since: Mar 30, 2015

Yeah LG G4 beat them all but droid turbo was a good second for me the color looked much more accurate than the S6 and the others ( beside the G4 thats the color was amazing ) S6 is a good third.

33. Neros

Posts: 1016; Member since: Dec 19, 2014

I love how in the second picture s6 has perfect colours and sharpness, yet lg boys be voting for the blurred and washed out pic of the g4. S6 owns g4 easily except for the first picture.

50. amasog

Posts: 552; Member since: Aug 22, 2013

perfect colors? did you personally see the actual object/place pictured to say that? haha!

58. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

i dont know the actual color, but G4 is obviously washed out..

62. Neros

Posts: 1016; Member since: Dec 19, 2014

G4 overexposes objects and puts and an ugly yellow tint on it. Sorry, but g4 has an average camera. S6 and ip6 are still better, period.

64. Neros

Posts: 1016; Member since: Dec 19, 2014

*them

113. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2265; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

you guys are just trollers for lg g4 which came to beat up s6..

137. psychok9

Posts: 43; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

Have you seen S6 "painted" photos? I prefer real photos... The tint is fixable.

119. mythhood

Posts: 17; Member since: Feb 05, 2015

Yeah, for the brick one the g4 is out of focus pretty bad yet it gets the most votes. Bigger aperture means worse st focusing, and also the g4 is constantly over exposed. But the LG fanboys are obvious this should've been blind.

140. marorun

Posts: 5029; Member since: Mar 30, 2015

I am pretty sure there is much more Samsung fanboy on this site than LG fanboy so your comment make no sense.

51. amasog

Posts: 552; Member since: Aug 22, 2013

yes you are correct. s6 is beating the g4 when it comes to fanboy that can not accept that their phone is beaten in some scene. haha!

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.