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.

A Dutch windmill, by three Nokia PureView devices, Samsung Galaxy S5 and Oppo Find 7a

Yesterday was one of those typical sunny / cloudy days in The Netherlands. And I happened to be close to another typical Dutch scene: a windmill. But before showing you the shots and crops I got from the Nokia 808 PureView, Lumia 1020 and Lumia 930, Samsung Galaxy S5 and Oppo Find 7A, I'd like to touch on another theme.

On other sites I often read people reacting "mobile cameras are only good for snapshots". Others wonder what all these MegaPixels are worth - "you're not ever going to decorate your living room wall with one of your shots, are you?"

Well, no-one is I guess. But remember the VGA (640 x 480 pixels ) shot printed on A4 paper? You could recognize what it was, but that's it. Since the 5MP mobile camera, like on the Nokia N95, printing on A4 became a serious possibility. I have some great family shots in my home captured with the N95.

The higher the resolution, the more details you'll see or get to work with. It will enable you to make sharper printed results, or bigger prints with great quality. And it will provide you with the possibility to zoom in (and crop) your shots before sharing or printing.

So that's why I keep zooming in at 100% and keep making crops - just to compare which mobile will give you the best detailed result. It's not just about sharing your shots on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or wherever - it's a search for the very best imaging quality you can get out of your smartphone.

Most visitors here know all this of course, I just felt I needed to explain it once more, since I'll be sharing a lot of shots and crops in this post (and the future :-)

Back to the Dutch windmill. I grew up next to this mill, saw it working countless times. But you know what it's like when you're young: you get used to anything and think it's normal. Only later you'll realize it's pretty special, especially to others.

I captured it with five smartphones: three Nokia PureView devices (808, 1020, 930), the new Samsung Galaxy S5 and even newer Oppo Find 7A (the Find 7 isn't even on the market yet and like I wrote before, the camera is the same on both).

Let's start with one of the 5MP results, from the Lumia 1020. Just to make sure: this is just an order I chose to present these shots, I'm not suggesting they will get better the more MP you'll see. The first presentation of these shots is not about MP, but about coloring. Windmill - Nokia Lumia 1020 5MP

In the shot coming from the Lumia 930, you'll see the light is quite different, thanks to the sun peeping through the clouds. In fact - just my luck - it was only with the Lumia 1020 that I captured the windmill in the shade (the inevitable odd one out).

Comparing Nokia PureView vs. Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2 and: Oppo Find 7a!

In this post you'll find only two scenes, but coming from quite an amount of smartphone cameras... You'll see one scene outside and one inside, captured with the Nokia 808 Pureview, Lumia 1020, Lumia 930, Samsung Galaxy S5, Oppo Find 7a and (just in one scene) Sony's Xperia Z2.

I've been trying to get my hands on the Oppo Find 7 for quite a while. There is no Oppo PR offiice in the Netherlands (not even sure if there is one in Europe), the online channel is out of stock, so I was very happy to find one "second hand" 7a in mint condition here in the Netherlands (in my own town even :-). The 7a is the "light" version of the Find 7 so to say, check out the comparison here. The camera module is the same though, so it fits my purposes :-)

What's so interesting about the Find 7, is that Oppo promised a 50MP (!) resolution. That's not about the sensor itself - that's 13MP - but about a technique combining four shots into one.

Using Oppo's Find 7 in 4:3 aspect ratio (which provides you with the 13MP resolution) and in "Ultra-HD" mode, you'll get a result of 8160 x 6120 pixels, adding up to 50MP indeed. But what does that offer you in the end?

As always, I made a lot of shots and selected the best from all devices. I made them in "normal" and "high" resolution and also in Raw .DNG shots if possible, but I won't take the .DNG files into account in this post - you'll find them on OneDrive.

Speaking of Raw .DNG - the Oppo Find 7 is the first smartphone (to my knowledge at least) after Nokia Camera that will allow you to make Raw .DNG shots. The feature is more or less hidden, but it's possible. When shooting in raw with the Oppo Find 7, it will give you a .JPG file as well.

You might find it interesting to know that shooting in 4:3 aspect ratio, the Oppo's raw .DNG file is 26MB, whereas the Nokia Lumia 930 gives you a 24MB file. The Lumia 1020 gives you no less than 49MB (no wonder with its much bigger sensor).

I'll leave working with the Raw .DNG to you however - I don't have enough experience with programs like Lightroom (and I lack the time to learn alas), but I'm looking forward to your results very much!

Let's Go Outside
So let's have a look at the results you'll get from the devices directly. I'm talking about 19 shots in total, so it's clear I can't share them all in this post. First, the shot taken outside, a street that's "under construction". Just a daily scene offering lots of detail and contrast.

Mind you you'll see the resized versions of the basis resolution (8MP which I always use on the 808 PureView and 5MP Nokia prefers on Lumia). All settings were on automatic on all devices.

Which one to see first? Let's start with the Nokia 808 PureView.

2 Nokia 808 PureView 8MP

Being the new kid in town, I'll share the Lumia 930 shot next