LG Optimus 2X vs Apple iPhone 4: ultimate camera + video comparison

LG Optimus 2X vs Apple iPhone 4: ultimate camera + video comparison
Alright, we've been patient enough as LG was doing the final touches to its latest and greatest invention, the LG Optimus 2X - the first smartphone to ship with the nVidia Tegra 2 chipset - and it's finally here, in our hands. If you ask the photo maniacs, they'd probably say that the most important innovation this new dual-core chipset technology brings is the ability to record Full HD 1080p video. So we decided we should actually put up a nice little article here for all the cell phone camera enthusiasts out there, comparing the photo and video taking capabilities of the LG Optimus 2X, the Apple iPhone 4, and the Canon PowerShot SD870, just for reference (the Canon will not take part in the video test).

As it seems, neither the LG Optimus 2X, nor the Apple iPhone 4 stand a chance against our point-and-shoot, which is a bit saddening, to say the least. When we pit the Optimus 2X and the iPhone 4 against each other, we can't help but conclude that the 8MP camera of the Optimus 2X is faring worse than the 5MP one on Apple's price and joy. Colors with the Optimus 2X are somewhat unrealistic, while there's also a certain blur to its images that prevents them from having some fine detail, eventually leaving the iPhone 4 as the better competitor in the photo-taking world.

When it comes to video, we are once again lead to believe that higher resolution doesn't mean better quality. Although the Optimus 2X records in Full HD 1080p, we don't see some particular improvement in its quality versus 720p recordings we've made with other quality smartphones. In this particular case, we actually like the iPhone 4's more realistic colors and better contrast, which make its video capture, although in 720p res, a more appealing one. That's not to say that we don't like the 1080p video recording of the LG Optimus 2X, of course, it's clearly up there with the best phones when it comes to video capture. That's our take at least, but feel free to express your own opinion in the comments below!

More LG Optimus 2X coverage by PhoneArena:

- LG Optimus 2X Unboxing and Hands-on
- LG Optimus 2X benchmark results
- 3D gameplay on the dual-core LG Optimus 2X
- LG Optimus 2X Full HD 1080p video playback test
- LG Optimus 2X vs Samsung Galaxy S vs Apple iPhone 4: Browser shootout

Related phones

Optimus 2X
  • Display 4.0" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.3 MP front
  • Processor NVIDIA Tegra 250 T20 (Harmony), Dual-core, 1000 MHz
  • Storage 8 GB + microSDHC
  • Battery 1500 mAh(7.83h talk time)



1. based unregistered

lol i knew it! iphone 4 camera quality >>>

15. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

haha, I knew it too. I was dying for this comparison. Hopefully the iPhone 5 takes this to the next level. But I doubt it.....

2. jay barreto unregistered

Despite my bias views against Apple and the iphone 4 i must admit it is a great piece of hardware, the rendering of the pictures and color quality really stand out compared to the LG. I still believe that the Lg Optimus 2x is a beast of a machine that in overall performance based on specs will dominate the iphone 4 however the 2X is just coming out and the iphone 4 is still contending with the recent heavy hitters. im looking more toward the Galaxy S2 being announced on feb 13 watch out Iphone 5!!

3. bondosho unregistered

I agree. iPhone4 and the Galaxy S line of devices are still top dogs in the cell phone world for photos, and videos.

10. DontHateOnS60

Posts: 872; Member since: Apr 20, 2009

If you used a Nokia N8 you wouldn't be writing ignorant statements like that. My Captivate can't hold a candle to my N8 in the camera department, and the iPhone 4 is a joke too. I really can't believe I just read that. The first sign that a phone isn't going to be a camera beast is when it's missing a camera shutter button. It's a necessity and one of the things I hated about the Captivate. What a nightmare it is to take a picture with that.

35. marc unregistered

i agree with it was proven by numerous websites that the n8 is the camera and camcorder KING. sites like this make me sick for being so fuking biased. looks like they hate nokia and love american phones. GSMARENA is the best because they are fair and not biased like this and other american sites

4. vwgolf16 unregistered

the video LG Optimus 2X 1080P lag :-(

5. based unregistered

"eventually leaving the iPhone 4 as the better competitor in the photo-taking world." "the 8MP camera of the Optimus 2X is faring worse than the 5MP one on Apple's price and joy" DAMN IT FEELS GOD TO BE AN IPHONE!

6. based unregistered

ok im just trolling for attenion phone arena i'll stop lol. i was really hoping better quality from it though :(

7. IphoneGuy unregistered

I hate my iPhone 4. I wish i still had my iPhone 3gs. This phone is terrible and my pictures always look bad no matter what, so this test must be BS. I cant even make a call on my iPhone because it always drops the call and the sound quality is POOR and tinny. Also, im so scared to drop this thing since both sides are glass, who puts GLASS on 2 sides of an everday tool like a phone? Then all of my icons are just SHORTCUTS! No live widgets or Live tiles?! WTF, Seriously?! This has to be one of the worst phones ever, so why do all these sheep SLURP this phone? Is it lack of common sense? Trendy fake people ruin the market, its so sad. Anyways, HEY APPLE, Why wont you let me put affordable insurance on my iphone like EVERY other phone in the world? You guys CHARGE me money to call you and ask a question unless I buy you $70 warranty as well?! You people are crooks and anyone that supports you is PATHETIC! Poor America, no wonder why Asia and all are so far ahead of us, MORONS in America still SLURP up this old tech that sucks ass so companies have no reason to step up their quality. People in America will buy anything in a TV commercial, because they are too lazy to do their own REAL research, so sad! Dear Phone Sites, please stop slurping these inferior products! Thanks!

11. narley

Posts: 357; Member since: May 14, 2009

P.S. You just wrote an entire article about all the TOOLS that purchased the iphone and how they slurp it all up.... did you ever stop to think you're one of those people? ha ha FAIL

13. DJLegacy2k5

Posts: 212; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

I sell phones, I was given the phone, I did not choose to purchase the device, but thanks for commenting on something that has nothign to do with the iPhones shit overall qualities.

30. rtutrjhydjydj unregistered

Ha ha Ha..... You should have a good looking face to get good pictures, why are you blaming the camera, blame your genes instead.

44. Schmao

Posts: 365; Member since: Jul 05, 2009

Yeah... That was stale

8. Monique27 unregistered

yeah, it's kind of disappointing to see this and I'm suspecting that all the other upcoming Android phones that have 1080p video recording and 8 megapixel cams. will still come up short against the iPhone....that's why the iPhone 4 will still be competitive and as a VZW customer, I can't wait for Feb. 3rd

9. DontHateOnS60

Posts: 872; Member since: Apr 20, 2009

There is no way I'm reading this correctly. Ultimate camera + video comparison between the Optimus 2X and iPhone 4?? You could have at least saved this comparison by bringing in the camera champion, the N8. By the way, let's all look at the iPhone 4 sample video 1, and say this together: The bus is not that red in real life.

12. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

a few things. were you using HDR on the iphone4 to clean up the pics? unless the LG has something similar, its not really a fair fight then. The iphone4's camera sucks without HDR. neither the iphone4 or the lg looked as natural as the real camera. I'd say its a toss though, some pictures looked better on the iphone, some looked better on the LG. megapixels dont equate to quality. lens size and quality as well as software have more to do with it than MP count. This being the first 1080p android camera, i wouldnt assume it would be leagues ahead. but with some good software updating it could possibly outperform everything that doesnt have a Carl Z lens like the nokia n8.

16. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

Why wouldn't you use HDR? If one phone had autofocus and the other one didn't would you say that it's unfair? No that means that it just a better camera. the LG optimus has an 8 megapixel camera and the iphone only has 5, so I guess it's really not fair then too.

17. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Hdr isn't part of the camera, its a software clean up tool after the fact. might as well say adobe photoshop is ok to use as well. Obviously you didn't read and/or comprehend my entire cogent. megapixels don't mean quality. Lens and software do. megapixels just indicate the SIZE of the photo, not its details. iphone 4 looks ok with hdr on, without it, its as bad or worse as any other regular cell camera. The rest is just fanboy hype.

18. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

Woulda, coulda, shoulda. Why are we speaking hypothetically? The iPhone has a feature that makes pictures clearer so it doesn't really matter how good or bad the camera is without it. The iPhone is a better camera phone than the LG Optimus. The photos aren't a toss. If Photoshop was integrated directly with the camera then I'd say yes. Many cameras have software that enhances their pictures.

19. clevername

Posts: 1436; Member since: Jul 11, 2008

You say that HDR is software that cleans up the image. Basically saying it doesn't count for that reason. But in the same comment you say that lens and software make a good camera. You can have it both ways. If HDR is a software tool and software is part of the equation you put forth then HDR is a totally acceptable method for these tests. Besides before HDR came for iPhone4 websites had iPhone 4 winning camera tests with all other phones then too. Sometimes I even turn HDR off because it's horrible for action shots. Any clear photo from an iPhone 4 you ever see that has a still of a walking person or driving vehicle is without HDR. HDR blurs every photo with movement because it's combining several images and movement means those images are not identical.

22. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

And that is exactly why HDR is a cheat. rendering software and cleanup software are 2 different things. only frikking idiot iphone fanboys dont know the difference apparently. a camera contests should be between cameras only. any clean up utilities need to be left out, as the quality of the camera is in question, not the quality of HDRs photoshoping abilities. It's a crutch and a cheat. My point stands and is correct. If you cant fathom why, then u should just stop commenting.. lol.

23. iwebdroidberry7

Posts: 230; Member since: Jan 17, 2011

You android fanboys always cry when you cant win don't you? Lol Omg we have flash no fair!!!! The iPhones camera software is better OMGG no fair. Get over your selfs.

24. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

I agree 100%. this guy is like the ultimate fanboy. He's just hating everywhere. I understand what he means but it's such a weak and insignificant argument. When people compare real cameras, features like face detection, red-eye removal, etc are included as features that make the camera better and are included in comparisons. Even with the HDR off, the iPhone takes better pictures (I love how you just ignored clevername's post about the iPhone winning camera tests even without HDR) and I'm still jailbroken on iOS 4.0 so I don't have HDR either. So really, when it comes to the LG optimus, the iPhone has a better camera (lens) and it is a better camera phone (everything put together). I think that pretty much closes your argument.

25. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Lol, you only read what you wish. Actually, I said BOTH weren't that great compared to a real camera. There is nothing special about the iphone lens or software other than HDR clean up. The iphone didn't even win against the galaxyS On phone arena without hdr on. Honestly, I don't think that either are up to professional quality. My favorite camera on a phone (minus specialty prices like carl z. Lenses) would be the 3.2 mpx shooter on the blackberry storm. Say that you want about the phone, it took excellent pictures.

26. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

lol "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." The samsung epic's camera is more balanced, but "when it comes down to overall quality, with most people simply wanting to instantly shoot photos without the hassle of choosing specific settings, the iPhone 4 still seems to take the crown. Not only does it work insanely good in low lighting conditions, which the other handsets failed in doing, HDR photos are there for backup to clean up shots that reveal additional details." (emphasis on "there for backup") - PA, Samsung epic vs Droid X vs iPhone 4 "One would imagine that a handset which is able to meticulously reproduce some rich looking colors on screen would equally be able to accomplish the same for taking photographs, but unfortunately, images produced by the Samsung Vibrant's 5-megapixel shooter were mediocre at best." - PA "Again, the Apple iPhone 4 easily produced sharper looking images and natural looking colors." captivate vs iPhone "In fact, it manages to outshine the Nexus S in just about every situation you find yourself in." - PA (this one doesn't mention whether or not used HDR.) Of course these phones aren't up to professional quality. With that said, I think it's safe to assume that with or without HDR, the iPhone 4 has the better camera lens and is a better camera phone than the Galaxy S phones and the Optimus. So even without HDR, the iPhone 4 is not "as bad or worse as any other regular cell camera."

28. rayjones09

Posts: 149; Member since: Dec 16, 2010

Thankyou. The lens is what makes the camera and I don't think many know. If they do, they just ignore it.

33. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

lol, reread what they said about the epic camera (btw, all galaxyS phones have the same camera, so its user error that they couldnt get one to work and another worked well) "The epic camera is the MOST BALANCED" (that means its the better camera over all) "people that dont want to think about settings choose the iphone4". - as in, if your a complete idiot and cant figure out basic settings, u should stick with an iphone. Ill put the iphone4's lowlight conditions up against my vibrant and lets have a contest. I can tell u how it will work out. The iphone will look better for up close shots because of the flash, but the vibrant will destroy it in middle to far range because of its great lowlight mode that apparently PA couldnt figure out how to use. but hey, again, i never said the iphone4's camera sucked. i hit both cameras, so quit being a sad panda fanboy because i dont think they should use HDR to clean up the shots. wah wah wah. BTW, the Nexus S isnt concidered a galaxy device. It also isnt even capable of 720p video shooting. kinda lame actually.

36. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

You've just out fanboyed yourself. The vibrant?? Really? That's not even in the picture (haha, see what I did there?) but anyways I wish we could compare ecause iPhone has great low-light and I've see many phones with a low-light option that suck. And I'd totally choose something that's more balanced over something that has higher overall quality. Wouldn't everybody? Don't think so. (I thought that higher overall quality actually meant higher overall quality). And many of these more balanced features includes Photoshop features that we talked about earlier like the beauty mode, cartoon mode, add me mode, etc. Someone here is being very wishy-washy don't you think? This whole conversation started because of HDR, remember? But anyways I'm done cause this is never going to end and I'm starting to see your quite the acrobat. I just wanted to call you out on your bull, and I feel like I did. Going back to the original argument, with or without HDR, the iPhone 4 has a better camera lens and it's a better cameraphone than the LG Optimus and it's not "as bad or worse as any other regular cell camera." Considering the quality of pictures and videos (we haven't even mentioned videos yet) I think most sane people would agree. Oh yeah, I know nexus s isn't galaxy. I just threw it in just for fun, lol

37. remixfa. unregistered

lol, the only positive they said about the iphone4 is that it worked better in lowlight and had HDR to make things look better. Most balanced would be the best in the most situations. Maybe u just dont know what balanced would be? Epic, vibrant, captivate, fascinate ALL HAVE THE SAME CAMERA (+/- camera flash). But yet, the comparing person had different results. Whos wishy washy.. me or the person that cant figure out the phone? lol, here we go with the lens. the iphone4 has nothing special about its lens. turn your iphone4 over. does it say Carl Ziess (sp) or some other known brand? nope, its a pin sized hole like just about every other cell camera. until they start making the cameras bigger and putting real power behind them, they will all be about the same with a margin of error. If the iphone4 had some magnificent camera that took perfect pictures, that would be neat. but it doesnt. its colors are just as uneven as every other cell camera. NEITHER phone tested looks like the real camera.

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