Camera comparison: Samsung Galaxy S4 vs HTC One, Sony Xperia Z, iPhone 5, Nokia Lumia 920 and Galaxy S III
Taking photos indoors is a challenge regardless of what cameraphone is being used. Light is often far from optimal and our handsets' LED flashes can only do so much to help with scene illumination.
Still, when a strong to medium artificial light source is provided, all of the smartphones we're comparing fare well, with the Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5 being our favorites. Their photos maintain a color balance that's closer to reality while packing enough detail in the shot, which is why we favor them in this scenario. Indoor photos taken with the Sony Xperia Z or the Nokia Lumia 920 look fine, with sufficient detail and all, but the colors in them are way off. As for the Samsung Galaxy S III and HTC One, they are both a step behind in the detail department.
Looking at photos taken in low light conditions, or when there's no light at all and a phone's LED flash is surely going to fire, we're finding it hard to pick the best device among the bunch. But if we had to select a favorite, that would be the iPhone 5 as it is the phone that gives us best balance between color accuracy and detail level. Yeah, its photos may contain a very high amount of digital noise, but they are still the most usable overall.
The Galaxies can take detailed indoor photos as well, but the LED flash light firing results in a heavy shift of colors towards the cooler side. The Xperia Z, on the other hand, maintains a good color accuracy, but can't capture as much detail. Last in line stand the Nokia Lumia 920, which still has troubles capturing colors properly, while the HTC One's photos are underexposed if its LED flash fires.