Comparing the Cameras on Some of the Top Phones
All but the most basic phones have a camera these days. But which captures the best quality images?
Modern smartphones have cameras that have hit new heights in terms of quality over the past few years. In fact, very few of us bother with a camera these days, as sales of compact cameras continue to decline. Even professionals are starting to use their phone more instead for shots that do not require a large aperture lens.
There is no shortage of advice regarding the best phone cameras for buyers scouring the new phone market, but what if you are looking to get all the quality for a fraction of the price by buying second hand? Unsurprisingly, for the very best phone camera, a second hand iPhone 6 plus cannot be beaten. But there are other choices that run it close, too. Let’s take a look.
DxO Lab Results
DxO Mark is one of the most respected independent voices in the world of photography. Every year they conduct a number of influential reviews, and their assessment of mobile phone cameras is quickly becoming one of the most eagerly awaited.
We have taken a look at their reviews for some of the most popular phones that are on today’s second hand market, and perhaps unsurprisingly, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus took joint first place, and outperformed all of their rivals in terms of both camera and video performance.
Apple’s market leaders took 82 points in the DxOMark Mobile tests. Other models that scored well included the iPhone’s main rival, the Samsung Galaxy S5, as well as Sony’s offerings, the Xperia Z2 and Z3. All three of these models scored 79 points. The Z1 also scored well, proving that Sony is becoming a genuine player in the top end smartphone market.
The highest ranked Nokia was the 808 Pureview. This had a rating of 77, which, while still constituting a good score, was only one point better than Apple’s previous offering, the iPhone 5S.
As DxOMark are specialists in photography rather than phones, their tests come from a slightly different angle than most, and can sometimes throw up some unusual results. On this occasion, however, they told us what we could already guess – that the iPhone is the market leader in every respect.
The scoring is comprised of both photography and video tests, each of which are broken down into a number of sub categories, including autofocus, colour, exposure and contrast, flash, noise, artifacts and texture. In the case of the video evaluation, an image stabilisation test is substituted for the flash test.
While Apple’s iPhones offerings performed well across all the tests, it would appear that it is their new autofocus that swung the results their way and gave them that all important edge over the rest.
What is next?
Looking forward towards the next generation, will there be much change at the top of the rankings? Nobody could realistically bet against the iPhone 7 for being there or thereabouts at the top, but there are some interesting challengers.
In particular, watch out for the OnePlus 3T, and of course Sony’s next generation Xperia, the XZ. Perhaps the biggest competition to Apple’s dominance, though, will be from internet giant Google. Many reviewers suggest that this could be the next big thing in camera phone technology.