Shootout: Nokia 808 PureView vs Sony Xperia T

Late this afternoon I was surprised to receive a review sample of the  new Sony Xperia T, the new flagship Sony announced during IFA 2012 in Berlin. It's not so much because I have the PureViewClub, but because of a Dutch smartphone blog I'm running for years now as well. So why not combine the two? :-)

This will of course not be a review of the Xperia T. In less than one hour I took it out for a walk to make some shots with the Nokia 808 PureView and try to make the exact same shots with the Sony Xperia T.

The Xperia T "boasts" a 13MP resolution, which as you probably know is a bit larger than their previous flagship Xperia S and also than the Nokia N8 - I didn't have time though, to include that previous master of camphones in this test.

All shots were made in 4:3 format (which gives the Xperia T its maximum resolution). I had the Xperia T on automatic settings and the Nokia 808 PureView in 8MP Creative mode with all settings on automatic (colour setting on vivid, which I use standard).

Actually, there is not much you can choose in the camerasettings of the Xperia T. The menu is super simple and that's probably a good choice if you are targetting a mass audience. Autofocus works quite well, also in macro shots.

Outside, the sun had almost set and we've been having some rough weather the last days. So it was still quite windy, but in all cases I tried to make as similar shots as possible, and from all shots I chose best from both smartphones.

The few pictures in this post from the Xperia T itself were made with the Nokia 808 PureView, of course. You can find all pictures in their original sizes in the special set on the PureViewClub Photostream on Flickr.

Most of the shots speak for themselves. When I think it's useful I will add some comments. In the first two shots the Xperia T used autofocus, whereas I had to use macro mode for the Nokia 808 PureView.

Below are the only shots where I used zoom with both devices to get this traffic sign closer.

In the next two shots you will see that the Sony Xperia T captures less than the Nokia 808 PureView. This was something I noticed in the Xperia S as well. The shots were made from the exact same distance.

Meet Sammy, a dog of one of the neighbours. Sammy can stand up for quite some time if he's asked to :-)

Here once more, with the classic Volkswagen Beetle you can see the Nokia 808 PureView gets a wider shot than the Xperia T. Again, I didn't move an inch when making these shots.

In this shot you can see the Xperia T has a more general focus in close-up (there is no macro setting in the menu). The logo is still quite sharp, and even the background shows more detail. The Nokia 808 PureView (in macro mode in this case!) focussed as I wanted exactly on the emblem. The logo is hence unsharp, just like the background.

To conclude the only shots I took inside, in less favorable lighting circumstances. Once more it seems like the Xperia T "zooms" in a bit more (although I didn't use any zoom in this shot). No flash was used, all settings still on auto.

That's all for today :-) I thought.

But after some reactions I concluded I wasn't quite done yet. I was asked to provide you with some 100% crops of the shots above, so I chose three to highlight the difference in 640x480 as well. First you'll see the results from the Sony Xperia T, and than the Nokia 808 PureView.

It will be no surprise I strongly prefer the camera of the Nokia 808 PureView. It has much more detail, better colours and much less noise.

I think Sony has done a fine job in providing its newest flagship with a nice camera that will quite likely hold up against many other smartphones offering a comparable (say from 8-12MP) resolution. But it's no competition for the Nokia 808 PureView, and that can hardly come as a surprise to anyone following this blog.

Testing will continue of course, I still need to make som videos as well. If there's anything interesting to show in comparison with the Nokia 808 PureView I will post about it here. Remember all original shots are on the PureViewClub Photostream on Flickr. Hope you've enjoyed this comparison!