Camera Comparison: Google Nexus 5 vs iPhone 5s, Sony Xperia Z1, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy S4, LG G2, Nokia Lumia 1020, HTC One
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If you’ve been keeping a close eye on our news feed, then you might have noticed that the Google Nexus 5 has been getting quite a lot of attention as of late. And that should come as no surprise since the handset is pretty great, as we concluded in our Google Nexus 5 review. What’s so special about it? Well, the smartphone has quite a lot to offer for its money – powerful hardware, polished software, and a camera that’s actually really good considering what previous Nexus-branded phones had to offer. It has 8 megapixels of resolution and optical image stabilization for steadier, blur-free images.
However, the competition in the camera department is pretty tough, with plenty of smartphones that have already proven themselves as excellent shooters. These include the Nokia Lumia 1020, the Sony Xperia Z1, the LG G2, and the iPhone 5s, among many others. Clearly, the Google Nexus 5 doesn’t stand a chance against smartphones of this rank. Or does it? That’s the question we’re curious to find the answer to, meaning that it is time for another extensive camera comparison.
Note: the Panasonic Lumix GH2 is used as a reference camera.
|Nexus 5||iPhone 5s||Xperia Z1||Galaxy Note 3||Galaxy S4||LG G2||Lumia 1020||HTC One|
|Flash||Single LED||Dual LED||Single LED||Single LED||Single LED||Single LED||Xenon, Single LED||Single LED|
|Features||Optical image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes||Digital image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Effects||Digital image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes, Effects||Digital image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes, Effects||Digital image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes, Effects||Optical image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes, Effects||Optical image stabilization, Panorama, Scenes, Effects||Optical image stabilization, HDR, Panorama, Scenes, Effects|
While not the best in the details category, the Google Nexus 5 delivers commendable results, with plenty of fine elements preserved well in its photos. At the same time, digital noise is generally absent or unnoticeable in areas that aren't of a solid color. But most of the smartphones we're testing can do an even better job at it. The Nokia Lumia 1020, in particular, is the clear winner when it comes to detail preservation. Examining its high-resolution photos at 100% zoom reveals tons of details, including ones you might have missed at the time of composing the image. In second place we rank the Sony Xperia Z1, which can also take photos of impressively high detail for a smartphone. However, its photos aren't quite as great as we expected them to be considering the 20MP resolution of its sensor. That's because when we zoom in we can easily see how finer details are destroyed by digital artifacts. But don't get us wrong, the Z1's photos are still quite pleasant to look at. It is just that the Samsung Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 3, and the LG G2 can produce photos of almost comparable quality despite having 7 megapixels less to work with. As for the iPhone 5s, its images are neither too sharp nor too soft, and about as detailed as those produced by the Nexus 5. Trailing far behind is the HTC One, which takes the least detailed photos with its 4MP UltraPixel camera. Sure, they do look worthy of being printed in a small size or posted on a Facebook wall, but that's about as far as its camera can go. Obviously, 4 UltraPixels are not more than 4 megapixels when it comes to resolved detail.