How close can you get? Comparing the Nokia 808 Pureview, Lumia 1020 and Lumia 1520

I was asked to make a comparison to see how close you can get with the high-end PureView devices, and after I saw Richard Dorman writing about it on Twitter I needed to try it out myself asap.

I wanted the subject to be more ore less "on topic" as well, so I chose just about the oldest Nokia phone I have in my collection, the Nokia 1011 (link to Wikipedia, where you will read it was named after its launch date november 10, 1992 - I didn't know that) .

As you know, the 1011 is pretty big but shows enough details to capture, as you will see. The Nokia 808 PureView was never well known for getting really close - except when you choose the 2MP resolution, of course.

I didn't do that - for a fair comparison I set the 808 PureView to 5MP, the same resolution both Lumia's use ((apart from the high resolution, in which you can't zoom in at all, as I hope we all know :-).

First, I went "as close as possible" with all three devices - without zooming in. I always focussed on the "5" button. Here are the results from the Nokia 808 PureView first, Lumia 1020 next and Lumia 1520 last.

Nokia 808 PureView close

Nokia Lumia 1020 Close

Nokia Lumia 1520 close

Here already, you can get closer indeed with the Nokia Lumia 1520. Now let's see what happens if we use maximum zoom from the closest possible distance. So just before the point where the devices refuse to focus.

Nokia 808 PureView close zoom 5MP

Nokia Lumia 1020 close zoom

Nokia Lumia 1520 close 5MP

Now this is remarkable - at least much to my surprise, you'll get closer with the Nokia 808 PureView than with the Lumia 1020. But clearly, the Nokia Lumia 1520 wins this round, as expected after Richard Dorman's enthusiasm. Nevertheless, I'm surprised by it - I didn't think there would be such a large difference with the Lumia 1020.

One more thing: the difference in color is remarkable (all devices were on "auto"). The Nokia 808 PureView and the Lumia 1520 give the best color in the first set, where the Lumia 1020 shows it's still begging for the Black update. But: the 808 PureView is the worst in the second set. In all, the Lumia 1520 (already running on "Black" instead of "Amber") also appears to win in that respect...

For the critical pixel peepers among us, I will add the original shots in a dedicated set over at the PureViewClub Photostream on Flickr. Feel free to react below, you know I love to read from you as well :-)

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