First tests Samsung Galaxy S6

It's less than I planned to share in my first post about the brand new Samsung Galaxy S6, but it's revealing nevertheless: just two scenes and several crops, captured with the Nokia 808 PureView, Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1 and: Samsung Galaxy S6.

What you'll see in this post are two scenes I captured last Sunday. I fully realize it's not all completely "fair" though. For instance, the 808 PureView doesn't have a HDR setting, which I used on both the Panasonic and Samsung in the first scene. I think it's interesting to see what they can achieve, and not just regarding the brightest part of the shot. First you'll see the three resized results, followed by three different crops from the same scene.

Old room
Nokia 808 PureView (34MP)

Panasonic Lumix CM1 (HDR)

Samsung Galaxy S6 (HDR)

Three Crops
The crops you'll see are from the shots I resized to roughly the same size as the Samsung Galaxy S6 (5312 x 2988 pixels in 16:9).
Nokia 808 PureView

Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1

Samsung Galaxy S6

Without HDR, it's no wonder the 808 PureView can't capture the building outside like the other two. Due to the impressive HDR functionality of the Galaxy S6 it shows more of the building than the Lumix DMC-CM1 does - but the latter shows much more detail of the window in front of it.

Next crop - the paper lamp.
Nokia 808 PureView

Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1

Samsung Galaxy S6

Colours on both the 808 PureView and Galaxy S6 seem much more natural/accurate. The CM1 somehow gives the paper lamp a silvery look. Details in the background are sharper on the CM1 though - it might have to do with the way the camera focussed, I'm not really sure about that in this case.

Next crop: the books on the shelve on the right - a pretty dark spot in this scene.
Nokia 808 PureView

Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1

Samsung Galaxy S6 (HD)

Quite an amazing result coming from the Samsung Galaxy S6! Details on the 808 PureView are on the soft side, the Lumix DMC-CM1 performance is simply (way) too noisy.

Second scene: plant
This scene is a bit "problematic" in the sense that afterwards it appeared I only got the Nokia 808 PureView and Samsung Galaxy S6 to focus in the exact same way - I'll share the crops coming from the Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1 nevertheless at the end of this post.

Nokia 808 PureView (34MP)

Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1

Samsung Galaxy S6

As you can see the colours are quite similar on all devices. Now let's have a look at two crops coming from the Nokia 808 PureView and Samsung Galaxy S6. Again, the 34MP result from the 808 PureView has been resized to roughly the same size as the Galaxy's 16MP.

Three crops
Nokia 808 PureView

Samsung Galaxy S6

Nokia 808 PureView

Samsung Galaxy S6

As you can see, the details from the Galaxy S6 again are extremely impressive - comparable with the 808 PureView, if not better even. I'll share two crops from the Panasonic below nevertheless - I already wrote I didn't manage to focus on the exact same part of the scene
Panasonic Lumix DMC-CM1


Pretty impressive detail as you can see - as expected. Details in the dark part of the first scene were quite disappointing on the CM1 though.

I plan to do much more testing with the Galaxy S6, so it's too early to come to any conclusion I guess, apart from the fact that the Galaxy S6 has been performing in an outstanding way so far. In its "pro" mode, there are quite a few settings missing (check my previous post for all settings).

Ýou can't manually change aperture or shutter time for instance, which is a huge advantage on other "pro" modes (like on the Lumia devices and Panasonic's CM1). Yes, you can change ISO values from 100 up to 800 on the Galaxy S6, but choosing ISO 100 under dark circumstances (to avoid noise) its shutter time simply isn't long enough get a 'clear" result.

So in a really dark scene you'll just have to rely on the auto settings, which will likely choose ISO 1000 to give you more to look at (and more noise). I have examples of that, shall I share those here right away? Why not - resized to fit this post of course.


So the "pro" mode isn't as "pro" as I'd like, but still gives you a lot to work with. On the other hand,the "mass audience" for this device probably doesn't care about "details" like much longer shutter times, and the results I am getting from the Galaxy S6 are seriously very convincing. I hope to write another post about it soon.

Even more interesting should be the fact I'm expecting the HTC One M9 by the end of this week, and the Honor 6+ tomorrow even... The only thing I'm not expecting anytime soon is more time to work with all devices - I can only promise you I'll try, so please stay tuned (and check out my Twitter and Facebook for updates). You'll find the original shots in a dedicated album on Flickr.