Camera comparison: One X vs Galaxy S II vs Nexus vs N8 vs iPhone 4S

When HTC was announcing the One X, it made it sound as if the new ImageSense camera is the best camera on a phone you may get. Well, since we now have the One X in our hands and have been using it for a while, we decided to put his new camera to the test. Winning this comparison, though, won't be easy, as we've chosen some of the best camera phones out there to be its competition: the Samsung Galaxy S II, Galaxy Nexus, Nokia N8 and Apple iPhone 4S. Let the games begin!


The devil is in the details, and when it comes to taking photos, having great level of details is indeed one of the most important elements. Interestingly, the new ImageSense camera of the One X performed terribly in this area, presenting us to muddier-looking images compared to all of the other contestants here. Here's how all five handsets rank in this category:

1. Apple iPhone 4S
2. Nokia N8
3. Samsung Galaxy S II
4. Samsung Galaxy Nexus
5. HTC One X

Color reproduction:

This was a very close one, at least for the first 3 positions. The N8, Galaxy S II and Nexus manages to produce very natural colors, with the N8 excelling slightly overall. The iPhone 4S snatched the 4th position here since it's images are quite warm, but still closer to reality (and more appealing) compared to the pics from the One X, which were too cold.

1. Nokia N8
2. Samsung Galaxy S II
3. Samsung Galaxy Nexus
4. Apple iPhone 4S
5. HTC One X


We're once again seeing some pretty equal performance here, although there are still some anomalies observed. While most of the smartphones tend to deviate from the natural exposure by overexposing the image at times, the One X is the only one that underexposes it, and thus comes up with an overall dark photo. Interestingly, this also happens with normal daylight shots, which aren't taken in some more specific lighting situations that would make it difficult for the phone's camera to do its thing properly. Nope, the One X's camera simply underexposes the pictures, making them somewhat less pleasant to look at, compared to what we get from the other contenders here.

1. Nokia N8
2. Samsung Galaxy Nexus
3. Apple iPhone 4S
4. Samsung Galaxy S II
5. HTC One X



1. FoneAddict

Posts: 263; Member since: Jul 05, 2011

Quality of Nokia N8 images still can't be beaten by the others in this test.

2. maryaaadil

Posts: 146; Member since: Apr 07, 2012

Value for money=N8

95. jsjakesaid

Posts: 12; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

True, but as the review is by RAY S, it sucks, he clearly has something against the one x, it is clearly one of the best cameras here, and he doesnt acknowledge it, but ranks it last, go kill yourself ray s... you suck!

100. cepcamba

Posts: 717; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

I actually have to agree with Ray S. With the samples shown, the One X really is the bottom performer overall. What I was wondering was why the Xperia S wasn't included in the comparison? I'm betting it would end up 2nd or 3rd. Hard to admit but no matter how I look at it 1st overall would be my toothy fruity enemy.

158. Atlas

Posts: 158; Member since: Apr 15, 2012

Well technically Sony still kinda entered. The 4S and GSII both have a Sony camera

105. DontHateOnS60

Posts: 872; Member since: Apr 20, 2009

Clearly has one of the best cameras here? Looks to me like it doesn't at all. It has some cool technology behind it, but the results from the above images tell a different story. Wait until the guys at GSM Arena do a review and then you'll really have your answer about the quality of One X photos.

106. cepcamba

Posts: 717; Member since: Feb 27, 2012

Yeah, I love the GSMarena reviews. My only problem with it is they release it too late!!!! :p

130. CléonLeGrand

Posts: 3; Member since: Nov 20, 2011

Make good and fair review needs more time !

162. theNewDanger

Posts: 5; Member since: Mar 30, 2012

It's up! Picture and video from the One X "officially" suck!

25. bbblader

Posts: 590; Member since: Oct 24, 2011

what I really want to see is a Nokia N8 vs Nokia 808 PW that would be worth it this is obvious that the N8 would win in this comparison

92. christianqwerty

Posts: 467; Member since: May 05, 2011

The Nokia has an amazing camera, definitely the best, I think most people don't like the iPhone so immediately they disregard it's camera. But I think the iPhone is in 2nd place, the HTC in third place, the galaxy s2, then the nexus. They all have great cameras

169. alpinejason

Posts: 262; Member since: Sep 06, 2011

no s**t even 2 years later just goes to show how behind the others really are!!!!!

3. bloodline

Posts: 706; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

how can the galaxy nexus place last on ease and speed? Its like the easiest and quickest method possible! I owned the S2 and Nexus and although the s2 took better pics the nexus is quicker and easier!

4. hungcolin

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

After reading HTC ONE X review of Ray, I think Ray really have prejudice with this device.

35. jhan410

Posts: 13; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

n8 is still camera king but haha who still believes Ray S?,, all of these photos were handpicked by him, took the worst photos of one x just to justify his mistakes,,,, how can a fanboy even have a job at phonearena? lol if you want "professional" reviews of the cam here: if you want a "Non-RayS-sortfanboy-professional-notpaid-by-apple​​​​" review here; - google translate

97. Saamic

Posts: 119; Member since: Feb 20, 2012

Wow so that's what a real review looks like

116. jhan410

Posts: 13; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

broken link,,,just google "recombu htc one x camera comparison" the Swedroid one x review shows the real camera capability of one x that was not handpicked and edited by RayS :))

121. odevoted

Posts: 2; Member since: Mar 26, 2012

Have not translated any of it yet, but JESUS is this a FULL review or what.....tempted to start learning Swedish and start following that site......

126. Commentator

Posts: 3723; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

The Recombu review is done by Basil Kronfli, AKA the erstwhile "Basil from PhoneArena." It's funny how two different reviewers can come to COMPLETELY different conclusions.

37. jhan410

Posts: 13; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

any hottest android in competition w/ his "4-year-old-ui-ipodtouch-with-a phone 4S" will be downplayed by ray s. :))

63. bolaG

Posts: 468; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

Wish he would have thrown in Sony Experia S too :(

77. romeo1

Posts: 824; Member since: Jan 06, 2012

the xperia s camera is the best of all the phone cameras that are available at the moment ;-)

5. jubbing

Posts: 150; Member since: Aug 20, 2008

Why isn't the N8 even mentioned ONCE in the summary? I know it's old and you won't recommend it overall, since the UI is terrible but for a camera it's amazng 2 years on.

6. shadez10

Posts: 427; Member since: Jan 15, 2012

its because they love to mention more about the iphone...

117. shandesilva

Posts: 105; Member since: Mar 28, 2012

when i saw the topic, i was sure the ipohne would be the winner..this time i m surprised. dumb as they are, they too realised they couldnt rate iphone as the there is no winner..!

7. PackMan

Posts: 277; Member since: Mar 09, 2012

N8 Htc One X Samsung Galaxy SII Samsung Galaxy nexus iPhone 4s In that order......

23. bucky

Posts: 3795; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

You have to be a true fanboy to put the gnex above the iphone 4s. Give credit where credit is due-the iphone has a great camera.

40. sudhar131998

Posts: 63; Member since: Sep 06, 2011

Yes I agree with you but people don't know that if you have a perfect water drop on iphone's camera it would be the best in macro shots

102. Non_Sequitur

Posts: 1111; Member since: Mar 16, 2012

Yeah. I'm a die-hard FanDroid, but even I know that the Gnex's camera isn't on par with the One X, SGSII, and iPhone 4S.

48. frydaexiii

Posts: 1476; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

Honestly, the photos only look good on the iPhone's screen. Me and my friends took a few pictures when we went to the amusement park and we settled that he'll take the pictures with his iPhone instead of my SGS2 because they look better. When I got home and imported my photos and he imported his into the computer, I can tell the quality difference isn't that great (close to no difference).

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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