The Samsung Galaxy Note II camera interface has most major options we are accustomed to with flagship Androids, like face/smile recognition, Panorama, HDR, low light mode and so on. It also offers an abundance of scene and focus modes, as well as number of color effects.

The iPhone 5 mostly takes care of everything on its own, deciding what is best for the scene in front of it on the fly, and sports a fast HDR mode for tricky lighting situations. There is a new option for panoramic photos introduced now, which stitches many megabytes of photos (up to 28 megapixels) very quickly with very good end results.

When it comes to picture quality, the phones are about equal outside under broad daylight, with high levels of detail and good color representation, without excessive noise. The iPhone 5 manages scenes with high dynamic range better, though, whereas we get slightly overexposed bright spots with the Note II, and overall more washed-out photos in the sun. The iPhone 5 also sports more contrast in its pictures, making them more visually appealing.

The 1080 videos from the iPhone 5 and the Note II fly smooth with 30fps inside and outdoors, and exhibit the same great amount of detail and crisp focus as the still scenes, with no visible artifacts or skipped frames, yet the iPhone 5 footage comes with higher contrast, and looks less washed out under bright sunlight.

Samsung Galaxy Note II Sample Video:

Apple iPhone 5 Sample Video:

Samsung Galaxy Note II Indoor Sample Video:

Apple iPhone Indoor Sample Video:


The picture and video gallery on the Note II sports the added advantage of splitting the screen with folders on the left for faster navigation, and it also has richer editing capabilities built into it.

The music players on both devices offer tune categorizations and minimalistic interface, with more functionality offered by the Note II via sound modes and equalizer presets that are built into the player interface. Note II also has an FM radio. The loudspeakers are of excellent quality on both handsets in terms of strength, but the iPhone 5 unit sounds a tad fuller and clearer.

As far as video playback goes, the Note II has the upper hand, not only because of the gargantuan 5.5” display, but also since it plays every format you throw at it, up to 1920x1080 definitions. Here the Note II battery life gets a boost compared to the iPhone 5, as the AMOLED screen consumes less energy compared to LCD when displaying colorful scenes. The advantage is commensurate with the one of iPhone 5 when browsing - an hour and change more for the Note II out of runtimes already in excess of 10 hours of video playback for both devices. And if you are watching Die Hard 2, with a lot of snowmobile chasing through the white wilderness, the roles might be reversed.



1. Fayeznoor

Posts: 74; Member since: Nov 15, 2011

its like comparing mother to her pre-mature baby ;)

3. Connie.Linghus

Posts: 32; Member since: Aug 14, 2012

You mean comparing a Mother to her unborn iFetus.

11. redsox420

Posts: 90; Member since: Aug 27, 2012

Abort abort its not going to live past 1 year anyways

38. Jelly_Bean

Posts: 109; Member since: Sep 11, 2012

Its like comparing a dog with Lion :p

39. Hemlocke unregistered

Yes, and it's a shame that Samsung will have to put that dog down after the mauling it just took at the Apple lion's paws.

40. Jelly_Bean

Posts: 109; Member since: Sep 11, 2012

lolzz I said dog to iCrap 5 can't you make out? You are one of those retarded iFans. Tell me honestly is there any comparison between The Beast and iCrap 5?

93. molanjames

Posts: 80; Member since: Oct 11, 2012

Hi @jelly_bean I do not agree with you , you are just trying to d grade Samsung Galaxy Note II , I would say The Galaxy Note II is a huge leap over the previous generation and if any one has galaxy note it would be wise to sell your oroginal asap for an upgrade. according to movaluate’s fair market appraisal , owener could still get $369.00 for his old Samsung Galaxy Note 16GB , which could help pay for the awesome new galaxy note II

43. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

All I know is....whoever mistakes a Note and Note 2 for an iPhone....needs to just go live in a cave somewhere.

47. Jelly_Bean

Posts: 109; Member since: Sep 11, 2012

Then that person needs a life

97. ex_apple

Posts: 1; Member since: Nov 17, 2012

iPhone 5 side by side is like a premature ejaculation and fart at the same time. Why can't apple be 100% sure before they pushed it out to the market? All those promises smells like crap now. And yet they still sell it like gold bars. iPhone 5 owners would be pissed off when they found out that it has a glitch in its swiping.

2. Connie.Linghus

Posts: 32; Member since: Aug 14, 2012

That's like comparing a Teeny-TiNy iAnt to a mighty LION. Of course, the iAnt will be lost because it will be using Apple mAps.

4. e.wvu unregistered

Great review, Daniel P. Actually enjoyed reading it! Already preordered the Note II, can't wait to get it in my hands!

6. darkkjedii

Posts: 31281; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Good comment, instead of posting something dumb and childish u simply chose What's best for u. Smart and mature.

28. oying24

Posts: 48; Member since: Sep 26, 2012

i agree..this is the best comment coming from an android user.. mature enough indeed.

54. darkkjedii

Posts: 31281; Member since: Feb 05, 2011


83. richardyarrell2011

Posts: 510; Member since: Mar 16, 2011

Challenge on my friend. Your so soft it's pretty comical. Acting like your about something. Gosh this site is pretty comical with these new trolls showing up daily..

89. jaimeovarela

Posts: 7; Member since: Nov 02, 2011

Says the man with the split mustache.... ???? Jus saying? LOL

8. andro.

Posts: 1999; Member since: Sep 16, 2011

should be getting my hands on a demo one myself this evening,cant wait


Posts: 4851; Member since: Apr 13, 2012

Will be buying it in 2weeks time, Sim-Free. Excited.

5. jaimeovarela

Posts: 7; Member since: Nov 02, 2011

prettifying!!!! love the word!! YAY for Note II

9. sheik

Posts: 249; Member since: Sep 12, 2012

"...however, has higher 326ppi pixel density vs the Note II’s 256ppi..." Note II's ppi is 267. A simple calculation will tell that. So correct that mistake Daniel... BTW nice comparision...


Posts: 4851; Member since: Apr 13, 2012

Why on earth did they use 267 instead of 300+ This was a major let down.....

18. g2a5b0e unregistered

I like the way you say that as if you'd be able to tell the difference by looking at nothing other than the screen.

58. ddeath

Posts: 170; Member since: Apr 14, 2012

He probably uses the phone 1 inch away from his face so it is a major letdown to him.

21. sheik

Posts: 249; Member since: Sep 12, 2012

As you see, Note II is bigger and heavier than normal smartphones. So we tend to use it from more distance than we use regular small sized phones. which is about 15 inches... So considering that note II has 267 ppi, another calculation will show that it falls beautifully in to the retina category that everyone is going gaga about. Its not a let down, its logic... BTW i love the Sharukh Khan user image you use. Guess you are from India...

24. PhoneArena Team

Posts: 258; Member since: Jun 27, 2006

Thanks, we've corrected the Note II's pixel density information

32. XPERIA-KNIGHT unregistered

^^phone arena team?? hahaha

10. rawdeal

Posts: 21; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

i am using note 2 and i am loving it... truly creative and a mammoth phone...

14. sheik

Posts: 249; Member since: Sep 12, 2012

could you tell me whether the colours are over saturated and look incorrect as said in this comparison? Does texts look sharper?


Posts: 4851; Member since: Apr 13, 2012

They don't look sharper, but the Amoled+ kind helps.

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

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