The arrival of the Realme X3 SuperZoom, another smartphone with much hyped zoom camera system had me scurrying for some zoom favourites of yesteryear for AAS and AAWP readers, plus I also threw in the current champions, the iPhone 11 Pro and Huawei P40 Pro, for good measure. Six contenders then and I'll throw various zoom and low light use cases at them. Note that it's not all about extreme zoom, as I contended in an editorial last week, sometimes it's about zoom versatility.
A few days ago I pitched the new POCO F2 Pro against the Lumia 950 XL, spec for spec, with a view to it perhaps being a viable across-the-board upgrade. Its imaging system seemed a bit limited in terms of raw specs (no OIS, no telephoto lens), which is why I present my usual multi-scene pixel analysis below - can the POCO F2 Pro get close to the Lumia in terms of image quality?
The choices of which Android smartphone to jump to are legion, of course. But I do try and provide some useful hands-on comparisons, with this week's instalment looking at the brand new (Xiaomi-made) POCO F2 Pro, providing top internal specs for a relative pittance. Here's how the specs match up, and don't worry, imaging is core for most of us, so there will be a camera head to head in a couple of days. Coming right up!
Three years ago, I let the world know what was in my mobile IT kit, the accessories I group together in the house and take with me on any serious journey to family etc. What inevitably happens in all locations is that, as the 'tech guy', I'm the one people turn to connect A to B, to adapt C to D, to provide power in the middle of nowhere, you get the idea. I'm sure the same is true for you! In compiling this, hopefully of interest and with helpful hyperlinks, I was surprised by just how much had changed, with more capable items replacing older tech, etc.
One of the jewels in the Lumia 1020's imaging workflow was something called 'reframing'. By keeping a high resolution (34/38MP) photo behind the scenes, the selected 5MP output could be 'reframed' after the fact - cropping differently, rotating, and so on. And although this system isn't quite matched these days, I wanted to give a glimpse into what Apple's done with the iPhone 11 Pro, offering reframing of sorts with its 'crop/discard' (after the fact) function and with its unique expandable frame system. Pictures being worth a thousand words here, see the examples and explanations below.
After my head to head imaging comparison between the Lumia 950 XL and Find X2 Pro, in which we learned that OPPO's image processing from its main 48MP pixel-binned camera leaves a lot to be desired, it seemed appropriate to show how well oversampling from a 40+MP sensor should be done, by pitching the Find X2 Pro against the classic Lumia 1020. But another current benchmark device needs to be in the mix too, to push both of these somewhat unbalanced contenders, so I'm putting in my iPhone 11 Pro. In other words a tough three-way fight and as I write this intro I have absolutely no idea which of the three might emerge the winner.
A few days ago I pitched the new OPPO Find X2 Pro against the Lumia 950 XL, spec for spec, with a view to it perhaps being a viable across-the-board upgrade. The huge question mark was over its imaging, which is why I present my usual multi-scene pixel analysis below - can the OPPO get close to the Lumia in terms of image quality? Also, does its 5x periscope zoom deliver, should you need this?
Following my detailed comparison between the classic Lumia 950 and the revamped new budget Apple iPhone (the SE 2020), here's the promised camera head to head. Both are single camera systems with OIS and PDAF - the Lumia has oversampling for purity and a limited lossless zoom, but the SE has a newer sensor and far, far more powerful chipset handling the image processing. So it should be a close run thing...!
The Lumia 950 is famously compact and yet powerful (at least, in terms of imaging). But what if I said that you could switch to a brand new Apple iPhone of similar size, keep a great camera and Qi charging, add stereo speakers, and all for not much more than £400, all in? That's the beauty of the new iPhone SE, see below for a blow by blow comparison. Could an iPhone SE be the one that finally tempts you from your 950 and into a more modern ecosystem? Hey, you even (cough) get to keep the top and bottom bezels(!)
By popular request, this latest imaging flagship that's great with Microsoft and not so hot on Google, is pitched head to head for video capture with the classic 1020, the very first high megapixel zoom cameraphone with stabilised sensor. I look at stabilisation and smoothness, at audio and low light handling, with plenty of zoom examples. As I start this feature, I suspect the newer OIS, newer and even larger sensor, plus newer and far faster chipsets will win out, but can this classic 2013 Lumia come close?