Samsung Galaxy K Zoom vs Nokia PureView (1)

Again, I've dozens of shots to compare and even after "killing my darlings" they won't fit into one post. Moreover, I have many more shots to make since I can only use the Samsung Galaxy K Zoom for a few more days :-/

I'll write a longer review of the Galaxy K Zoom later, but let me describe what's it like to work with the Samsung Galaxy K Zoom in the first place? Well: it sure is fun. The display has 4.8 inches and it's a Super AMOLED, so colors are lovely. Resolution is 720 x 1080 pixels, which of course will give you a pretty sharp (306 PPI) image as well, although it isn't Full HD as on the Galaxy S5 (432 PPI).

Nokia 808 PureView and Samsung Galaxy K ZoomAnd although the device is pretty big - a bit like a full-grown Nokia 808 PureView - it's amazing how Samsung managed to get a 10x optical zoom in there. Your lens is always protected when you're not using the camera, it opens remarkably fast, there's an impressive amount of different settings to choose from and if you like to get closer to your subject it's close to impossible to beat an optical zoom.

There's a lot more to write about it of course, but I'll save that for my review later. First two scenes I captured with it and with several of Nokia's PureView devices. First the (inevitable) flowers in the sun. Flowers because they always make for a nice colorful shot and offer great detail to compare.

An old farm at the river. Nokia, Samsung, Sony, HTC, Oppo: 7 smartphones, 8 resolutions (3)

Here´s the third scene I captured a few days ago during a sunny day last week, when I was testing the Nokia 808 PureView, the Lumia 1020 and 1520, Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2, HTC One M8 and Oppo Find 7a.

The Nokia will let you capture in three different resolutions, the Lumia 1020 and 1520 give you two with the same shot, you can shoot in two resolutions with Sony's Xperia Z2 and with the Oppo Find 7a. So in total I've been sharing thirteen shots from all devices.

You know the drill after the previous two posts I guess. First I show you the original scene - this time from the 5MP result coming from the Nokia Lumia 1520 (which I chose for no particular other reason than change :-).

2c Nokia Lumia 1520 River 5MP 640 x 360

In the next screenshots (again, they are resized to fit this post), I'll be "closing in" on the old farm on the other side of the river. From HTC's 4MP up to Oppo's 37MP (in 16:9 aspect ratio). At least it's interesting to see there are many different shades of blue in these results :-)

An ancient castle. Nokia, Samsung, Sony, HTC, Oppo: seven smartphones, eight resolutions (2)

As you may already have read, a few days ago I've been testing the Nokia 808 PureView, the Lumia 1020 and 1520, Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2, HTC One M8 and Oppo Find 7a. With each device I took several shots, when possible in different resolutions, so I ended up with way more than a hundred shots to select from. From all those shots I selected the very best.

First scene was from a bar in  new restaurant in an ancient fort in the small city of Muiden. This time you'll see the majestic outlook on the Muiderslot, an ancient castle that dates back to the 13th (!) century (check the link). It was a very sunny day, so the light was bright and constant (not hindered by any clouds that is, which is a bit of a rarity in The Netherlands).

Like the last time, I'll show you one resized shot of the scene itself first, then I'll "zoom in" to see how much detail you will get from the different reslutions. This is the Nokia 808 PureView's 8MP result (resized to fit this post of course).

3a Nokia 808 PureView Muidersslot 8.3MP 640 x 360

I do realize there is a lot more to be said about coloring etc (there are some huge differences in the way the old bricks and the blue sky is represented), but I'm focusing on resolutions in this test first.

Like I wrote in the previous post, it ranges from 4MP in the HTC One M8 all the way up to the artificial 37MP in the Oppo Find 7a. Not the full 50MP resolution since I 'm shooting in 16:9 and "artificial" since there is no 50MP sensor in the device - it combines four 13MP shots.

Here's the full range (screenshot from my laptop) in the order I'm going to present them to you.

Nokia, Samsung, Sony, HTC, Oppo: 3 scenes, 7 smartphones, 8 resolutions (part 1)

Luckily I had a few hours off yesterday afternoon and the weather was great, so I tried to find some interesting scenes to capture with no less than seven (!) smartphones. I was travelling with the Nokia 808 PureView, the Lumia 1020 and 1520, Samsung Galaxy S5 (still don't have the K Zoom to test), Sony Xperia Z2, HTC One M8 and Oppo Find 7a. With each I took several shots, when possible in different resolutions, so I ended with way more than a hundred shots to select from.

Two 20MP sensors compared: the Nokia Lumia 1520 vs the Sony Xperia Z2 (1)

Still waiting for the Samsung Galaxy K Zoom - the newest smartphone camera with a 20MP sensor - I can't wait with sharing a few of the first results I got from the Nokia Lumia 1520 and Sony Xperia Z2. It's interesting to note that 20MP seems to have become the new "standard" for high-end smartphone cameras by the way.

I'll tell you a bit about my method of comparing. First I (usually accidently) find a scene I think worth looking at. I take several shots of that with the smartphones I'm testing, making sure the light is as constant as possible. Nowadays, when it's very sunny outside, I usually choose the corresponding white balance on all devices.

After that I copy all the results to my PC, I check them in detail and pick what I believe is the very best from each device. Then I resize them - usually to 640 x 360 pixels, to fit this page. Next I either make crops in the same size, or I zoom in to 100% (using Picasa) and make a screenshot (like I've been doing in this case).

Finally, I start writing the post like I'm doing now, adding the shots and details as I go along. And doing so it's in fact the first time I actually compare the results from the devices I'm testing myself. It has become a simple method I find not only easy but also fair, and it's a way of surprising myself during the whole process as well :-)

With the Lumia 1520 and Xperia Z2 I made a few shots in bright and not-so-bright light - in this post you won't find the "low light shots" a lot of you seem to appreciate so much (will work on those later). First, a scene from an antique store, captured pushing both devices directly on the window to avoid reflection.

The Nokia Lumia 1520 was set to 5MP/16MP (in 16:9 aspect ratio), I need to make two shots with the Sony Xperia Z2 - one in Superior Auto (8MP) and one in manual (15.5MP in 16:9). Where the Lumia 1520 will be more or less identical, we might see some small differences between both shots from the Xperia Z2.

In all comparisons, you'll see the Lumia 1520 first, Xperia Z2 second. First you'll see resized versions of the smaller results.

WP_20140602_09_02_49_Pro DSC_0044The second shot (Xperia Z2) is noticably brighter, but strangly enough also a bit more "yellowish".  Let's have a look at the crops. First from the 5MP (Nokia) and 8MP (Sony) results.