HTC One M8 vs Samsung Galaxy S5 vs LG G Pro 2 vs Sony Xperia Z2 [CAMERA FACE OFF]

LG G Pro 2 HTC One M8 Samsung Galaxy S5 Sony Xperia Z2 camera

The HTC One M8, Samsung Galaxy S5, LG G Pro 2, and Sony Xperia Z2. What do these devices have in common? Well, they all tout new, cutting edge cameras tech as their claim to fame. We’ve gotten our hands on many of these devices during our time at Mobile World Congress. It’s true, in well lit or daytime environments, most smartphone cameras will perform about the same. But some would say the real test lays in how well these cameras perform in less ideal conditions. They’re the biggest heavy weights of the year, and they’re about to go head-to-head in a low-light camera battle royale.

In one corner we have the HTC One M8. HTC claims the 4MP UltraPixel camera captures more light, helping the phone shoot better in dimly lit situations. Of course, this comes at the cost of having a higher MP count, something that could give its competitors an edge.

In the other corner lays the Samsung Galaxy S5. This phone features Samsung’s own in-house 16MP ISOCELL camera that is capable of lightning quick auto focus, and higher dynamic range. We got a chance to see it first hand during MWC, and can vouch for the optics in brightly lit scenes, but what about during night time shots?

Across is the LG G Pro 2. LG’s latest phablet, the G Pro 2 features a 13MP camera with optical image stabilization, as well as a fancy new LED flash for more accurate color rendition. But how well is the image quality when the flash is off? We’ll soon find out.

Finally, there’s the Sony Xperia Z2. Featuring Sony’s 20MP camera, the Xperia Z2 has the highest resolution shooter of the bunch, and comes with Sony’s camera expertise to back it up. This might just give the phone the advantage it needs to come out on top.

The folks at ePrice were nice enough to put together this camera comparison, snapping photos with all 4 smartphones under a variety of night time, and dimly lit scenes. All cameras featured their default/auto settings for shooting, so your results may vary. Cool? Let’s get ready to rumble!

HTC One M8 top left, Samsung Galaxy S5 top right, LG G Pro 2 bottom left, Sony Xperia Z2 bottom right (click for full size images)

M8 S5 Pro 2 Z2 sample 1

M8 S5 Pro 2 Z2 sample 2

M8 S5 Pro 2 Z2 sammple 3

M8 S5 Pro 2 Z2 sample 4

Having looked over all the images, it’s interesting to see there aren’t really any clear winners here. Each camera behaves differently, but none are really consistent. That being said, which camera out of all these devices do you think performed the best? If anyone is looking for the non-collaged full versions of these images, you can grab them in our Google Drive folder here.

 

 

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  • Toasted_Cracker

    The galaxy s5’s “isocell” camera appears to be a big let down. In my opinion the gs5 was the worst when it comes to lighting.

    I would like to see you throw in the Nokia Icon or 1020 just for comparison sakes.

    • New_Guy777

      Worst how? Worst for having some of the best colors? Worst for having the least light blotch from light sources? Worst for having the highest contrast in the first 3 photos? I’ll agree, it handled the 4th shot worst, but I’d take it over any of the others in the first 3 photos.

  • DavidVarghese

    It’s pretty hard to call a clear-cut winner…
    But I’d say it’s the M8/Z2 that is the winner. The M8 takes in way more light for dark photos (especially shot #3), but the Z2 produces good looking pictures as the M8 in the first 2 pictures.

    The Pro 2’s dark shots look off-colored due to the lighting, and the S5 doesn’t perform too well when taking in light.

    • New_Guy777

      If you really mean the 3rd shot, then we’re talking about the building with the observation wheel, and I have no CLUE what you’re talking about. If you meant the 4th shot, then yeah, I see what you mean. But the S5 and the Z2 both produced greater color accuracy and less light blotch in the other three photos. Can’t see why anyone would want the yellow photos the HTC was producing.

  • http://twitter.com/Vanakatherock Vanakatherock

    I’d probably say the order from best to worst, looking at the photos above, would be Z2, S5, M8, GP2

    The GP2 didn’t do too well in photos 2 & 3 with the lighting (white balance issue?) and the M8 didn’t seem to react well to the lighting in photo 2 as well.

  • mmark27

    Can’t believe that’s auto settings on the S5 in the 3rd photo? The S4 would do fine there with their low light still in “auto” settings, have to imagine the S5 improves upon that.

  • NexusMan

    Isn’t that a pre-release Galaxy S 5? ie, not final software?

    • Marsg

      Does it matter? It has the best image quality except on the last one.

      • NexusMan

        I’m just saying that the final release version could be even better. I’m not much of a fan of reviews or comparisons of products before they are actually released. Maybe ALL the images could have been better.

  • use_the_force

    I think there’s a fingerprint on the M8 lens, based on the flare around bright lights in the night shots. Or can somebody please verify if this is a standard problem?

    • http://twitter.com/Vanakatherock Vanakatherock

      I hope that’s a fingerprint or something on the lens, because that’s a terrible reaction to the lighting.

      Either way, everyone’s real world experiences will vary from these “test” shots.

    • New_Guy777

      Agreed, flare and glare were horrible with the HTC. S5 handled light sources the best.

  • Mitchel White

    Id say, too small of a sample to give a clear cut winner or to even say one is better then the other, most comments on here will fanboys trying to not sound like one.

    • Guest

      Exactly, once you start cropping these images, the One unfortunately gets left in the dust. Shoulda been at least an 8mp duos.

  • mrjoeyloke

    These results are all over the boards! Lo

    • Henri Weich Conradie

      I see what you did there.

  • DavidB23

    The giant miss here is; if you crop any of these pictures they will all look fine with the exception of the HTC since it only has 4Mps to work with; any cropping results in a grainy mess. And yes; cropping is important since these phone cameras have no optical zoom.

    • jnt

      When I blow them up, I’m not seeing the 4mp make that big of a difference.

      • DavidB23

        True; all of these pics are pretty poor and grainy due to the low light. But normal shots you will see a big difference.

      • Martin Lane

        It’s pretty clear in some of the photo’s, on the S5 and Z5 shots you can read the signs, on the M8 they’re a blur.

        That said it’s harder to see pixel detail in night shots anyway.

  • simpleas

    I feel like the S5 and the One has the best low light images. Though the One seems to struggle to keep the light from overexposing in some shots. LG coming in at last due to weird colors. But we all know 4 mega pixels = 4 mega pixels… This is one of the biggest shortcomings of the new one. Many of the images, S5 has the sharpest and the most correct colors.

    • New_Guy777

      Yes, yellow is just staining every HTC shot. The physical size of their sensor gets the best picture of the box, but it can’t compete with the others. I think the Z2 does a good job trying to keep up with the S5 in the first 3 shoot outs, and I’d call it the second best overall.

    • Trent

      4 MP should be plenty. Full HD TV is only 2 MP and it looks plenty clear unless you plan on printing out a 50 inch picture or something.

      • Borbor Carzola

        IMO, if people are cool with a 4 mp camera on the One, then they should also be cool with plastic on the S5. Just my 2 cents

  • Marsg

    I think the S5 looks the best. More realistic colors, the lighting with the z2 and lg g2 has a orange tint. Every phone in the list cept for the S5 has problems with lens flares which makes the photos look kinda washed out. The last photo with the boxes is probably the only one the S5 lost.

    • CodyTaylor

      Yeah the first 2 clearly go to the S5 in my opinion. The M8 is the best low light and the S5 looked better in the other 2

    • yabatopia

      For scenes 2 and 3, the S5 is clearly the winner with the most realistic colors. But the last photo with the S5 is just too bad. Overall I would say the Z2 delivers consistently, but is rarely the best.

  • MITM

    I think it’s clear that Camera and Battery tech are the 2 areas of smartphones that can use some improvements

    • Marsg

      The lumia 1020 has a pretty nice cam that also captures RAW images. The moto x has nice battery life although it’s small. Now if only we can combine the two. I want a phone with a camera like the lumia 1020, battery saving like the moto x, removable back and features like the galaxy s x, looks and sounds like the HTC one, thin bezels like the lg g2 , stock Android like the nexus, and durability like the xperia line.

      • vinnie

        Why I think you just described the infamous smartphone unicorn… Seriously though, if someone could make that Franken phone it would b amazing

        • Nick Mantzoros

          Android camera’s have always been lacking. I keep hoping 1 day, there will be a killer camera with low noise in night time shots.

      • Henri Weich Conradie

        I prefer my camera images well-done rather than RAW.

  • beenyweenies

    These shoot-outs never seem to feature the main thing people take pictures of – other people. Not only are portraits hugely important to smartphone users, but they are perfect for revealing the full spectrum of issues – color representation, latitude, blurred movement, low light performance, mixture of sharp and soft detail areas, etc.

    In my experience, some cameras (GS4 I’m lookin’ at you) are amazing in ideal conditions, but the shot is a blurry mess if anything moves and you are in less than perfect light. That’s unacceptable for real world, everyday use, and most tests never reveal this flaw.

    • Duong Duc Ngo

      I agre with you. I am tried of all the still life with tripod. If I would carry a tripod I would carry a dslr then. Speed is important for a camera phone.

  • Alex Alexander

    Sensor size is the more important factor, than pixel count when, considering the nose/signal ratio in low light condition.
    The Z2 has a 1/2.3″ sensor and the GS5 a 1/2.5″, those are the biggest ones in this comparative.
    The HTC looks be overexposing the scene. In some conditions can be OK, but with high contrast shots the lights will just blow away.

  • Jerel Butler

    Z2 for most its just so sharp the s5 is OK seems meh the MATE was great…and fuzzy g2 had unleashed sunny d in the picture for a nice orange hue

  • renGek

    why does it look like the S5 is not compensating for incandescent light? The 2 night scene shots are too yellowish.

  • androidguy2222

    I would like to know when everyone started using their phones for professional photography? Just saying…

    • Mitchel White

      Haha some of these comments you’d think there comparing thousand dollar camera’s

    • ClayRogers

      The best camera is and always will be the one that you have with you.

    • elektrobix

      How is taking snaps while you’re out and about professional photography? Most people like to take photos and most people don’t want to be arsed lugging around separate camera equipment. So a phone with a decent camera is a must for people who want decent snaps of their family. I hardly ever use my compact or dslr now for general snaps. I don’t need to.

    • Chimphappyhour

      I’ve actually got cellphone shots that I’ve been able to get by photography curators. As long as you know the limits, strengths and weaknesses of any camera and how to exploit them, you can get some amazing shots.

    • androidguy2222

      I just feel that it’s absolutely insane that everyone is complaining so badly about the one flaw that the One M8 has. I got the phone yesterday and the camera isn’t bad at all. It’s does a good enough job for the everyday photos that we all take on our phones. Let’s quit dogging the phone so badly and appreciate that HTC didn’t give us a plastic piece of crap.

    • Nick Mantzoros

      I need a good camera phone to take pictures of creepers on the train to hopefully be on the front page of reddit some day.

    • Billy_B

      You, sir, get the prize. All these camera phones do fine for casual photography and that’s about it.

  • Jeff

    HTC look the more consistant to me, but the S5 is a lot sharper for outside night landscape.

    So in my book HTC is the winner, but they all perform well at different level.

    Awesome article by the way!

    • SamSung

      HTC Fanboy

      • Jeff

        Its just my opinion…

        FYI,
        I own a Samsung Note 3 and i think it’s the best phone ever.

        And with a nickname like that you really look impartial…

        • MITM

          lol

      • Al Callon

        …so anyone who disagrees with you, “Sam Sung,” is automatically a fanboy? I’m calling hypocrisy…

  • Energyshock

    HTC ONE m8 look great in low-light.
    Please next time use superior auto mode on z2 for better low light performance

    • ClayRogers

      Ok but all the cameras have various modes, this was only a comparison of the standard auto mode.

    • New_Guy777

      Are you kidding? Glare and flare EVERYWHERE, and every photo looks yellow. That yellowing effect is unforgivable to most people, even the casual point-and-shooter. The S5 is the clear winner, with the Z2 a close runner-up.

      • Duong Duc Ngo

        You are the biggest Samsung fanboy here. Dude did Samsung paid you or something. You are only one who say there is a clear winner.

        • New_Guy777

          No, I’m not the only one saying that it’s the clear winner. Several others have mentioned it as well. Look, what spoils photos? Color representation (HTC & LG are the worst offenders here), light glare (no one handles light sources in the above photos nearly as well as Samsung), poor contrast ratios (again, Samsungs photos are the most contrasted), image noise (OK, Sammy did terrible on that count in the last photo, but it’s clear as a bell in the rest), and clarity/resolution (all of them are fairly clear, but in the 3rd pic, boy, Samsung came out as the standout winner with the clearest take of the red circle sign, the video screen near the center, and the bricks). I’m no paid shill, I just have a good eye for photography, and the above points really aren’t that refutable. I’m honest when I say Samsung had the worst pic in the 4th comparison, but there is no competition at all with the 2nd and 3rd comparison photos, and the light glare handling in the 1st is freaking amazing!

  • http://www.purplecloudzlifestyle.com/ Mz. 420

    Starting to dig the HTC. Just going to have to wait til it’s release.

    • WeCameAsRomans

      I have had the htc one m8 for 4 days now and its awesome,motion launch is an awesome feature I find myself using daily.the camera is insane,tons of features and I haven’t even gone through half of them yet…I don’t see you regretting if you pull the trigger and get this phone

    • New_Guy777

      If you like yellow photos, sure.

  • Geno Ramos

    Z2 is what I prefer among all these. Though I should take note that all the images are quite close to each other. Images from the S5 are clear too and I think they look good. However, I noticed that it tends to apply quite heavy noise reduction, then apply more sharpening I guess to compensate for the softness. The 2nd set of photos when zoomed in, shows the buttery appearance from the S5. The paint-like texture is obvious. And it also resulted to an image lacking in depth. Images from the M8 looks good, I also like the overall appearance of the photo from the LG, it’s spoiled only by the very yellowish color rendering. I chose the Z2 because the noise reduction is applied gradually and on the more conservative approach. Images are less blotchy with natural colors even in low light, as promised by the Exmor R. And I can see that the Exmor R sensor is doing its job here. These are just pre production images I maybe, and I know that they could still change. I do hope for the best for each them. Because every owner who pays, deserves a very well-delivered promise.

    • New_Guy777

      I’d say the S5 edged out the Z2 for the general user. Neither the S5 or the Z2 are immune to the “buttery” approach that you mention (although I’ll concede that the S5 does it slightly more). However, take in a few more details here. The S5 does a better job controlling glare and flare from light sources, the color scaling seems better, and the noise is reduced over the Z2. Fewer people will be cropping their image, meaning that these other factors will outweigh any deficiency from the smoothing effect. Lastly, the other S series have a truly stellar “low light” option, and I expect the S5 to be no different. Game, set, match.

  • ijudge

    s5 is clear winner for me except the box one , nice compare but in real life autofocus is most important , less blur chance for shaky hand is the real winner for me .

    • ClayRogers

      Thought the same, until the last shot of course. The LG G2 looked ok on the statue pic though.

      • xanok

        Jus fyi its the G Pro 2. Not the G2.

    • New_Guy777

      Agreed. It’s hard to beat the size of the HTC sensor when it comes to true low light conditions. Size (not MP’s) matters for allowing in as much light as possible. However, even on that last pic, we get that horrid yellow that stains every HTC photo. The S5 does a gorgeous job of removing glare and glow from light sources, which makes for truly stunning photos at night. Combine that with the low noise in the outdoor shots and the true coloration, and it’s really the winner. The Z2 is always CLOSE, but never quite matching what the S5 is doing.

      • JointhePredacons

        What “yellow stains” on “every HTC photo” ?? I can show you dozens of pictures on my personal camera on my M7 that have no “stains” Ill continue to state it, because until proven otherwise, is true. The people that experience pink and yellow distortions on their pictures have defective cameras on their smartphones and should return them for working units. My M7 camera consistently takes better pictures than my wifes S4. I expect it to continue with the M8 and the S5.

        • New_Guy777

          Well, the above photos are yellow. Like, old photo stained with age yellow.

  • thatcrazyone

    love how on the statue pic you moved significantly closer to the statue with the S5…. FAIL

    • ClayRogers

      Not necessarily true, the sensor sizes or camera lenses may be different lengths. Look at the bottom two statue shots, also appear to be the same distance. You are probably only looking at the top left shot. Anyways, the word FAIL is for people that still live in their moms basement.

      • thatcrazyone

        you were dropped on your head at birth were’t you? back in your whole troll… those pics are not even close to being the same distance away from the statue. besides moms basement has better cooking.

        • ClayRogers

          Look at the other shots, the s5 looks closer in every one of them. In the statue sample the LG G2 shot is the one that appears closest. Why would it make a difference anyways, you think a couple inches is going to skew the results that drastically?

        • Nick

          Hole not whole

    • http://www.ahwagnerphoto.com/ Andrew

      The camera’s focal length and sensor size makes a difference. The reviewer didn’t move closer.

  • Captain Obvious says:

    Most people use their phone to take pics of food and selfies.

    • bikdav

      Yea, that’s true. Having the last bit of pixel accuracy just isn’t an issue with most users – including myself.

      • JointhePredacons

        Me either. If i wanted a super picture quality id purchase a professional camera. With what i take pictures of, and keep in mind some are vacation pictures, the quality in general from HTC cameras is spectacular.

  • bikdav

    It’s almost impossible to be accurate without seeing the scene live, but I find the HTC One M8 easiest to look at.

  • Chimphappyhour

    Well, if it weren’t for the “painterly” noise reduction in the statue photo, I’d say the LG carried this but that’s just hideous. Looks like Sony has made vast improvements. That’s about the best I’ve seen one of their camera phones do in at least a decade. Samsung seems to have taken a step back. There’s no way I’d believe that they are using some sort of camera with improved low light performance.

    • New_Guy777

      Isocell isn’t for low light performance. It lowers crosstalk, making for better color scaling, dynamic range, and quicker focusing. That being said, it did awesome! Look at the lights, see the missing glare! Look at the detail in the 3rd pic, especially the red circle sign, the bricks, and the video screen just right of center. Look at the awesome color balancing. Note the lack of a blown out night sky in the 2nd comparison.

  • Martin Lane

    Surprised by the Z2, Sony have clearly made some progress with the software on that camera.

    Both the LG and M8 seem to have problems with colour accuracy and exposure, they don’t look right, some of the colours produced by M8 are just comical.

    #1 Z2 – Best images overall
    #2 S5 – Close second, did better than the Z2 in a few shots
    #3 LG
    #4 M8 – Worst images overall, box shot was good though.

    This isn’t enough of a sample to really rate these cameras. Also did they use the night modes on these cameras?

    • Guest

      I don’t know… I felt like the colors on the Z2 were pretty crappy in low light.

      The M8 and LG G2 seemed to have the best contrast and colors, with the M8 coming out on top. But the M8 definitely had the worst resolution.

      I will say though that the Z2 did do a good job.

      • New_Guy777

        The M8 was yellow in every pic, ESPECIALLY the last. S5 handled colors the best, with the Z2 a close second. LG had a problem with red staining. Only the last photo saved the M8’s butt, which was the clearest pic at the cost of coloration. However, even a general point-and-shoot consumer will hate the yellowing of photos.

        • Billy_B

          It’s a white balance issue. Just change the white balance. The light being captured clearly puts the M8 on top which can’t be replicated by the other phones. Just alter the white balance before shooting to your liking. Clearly the new HTC camera software allows for quick white balance changes. Auto white balance settings is hardly a reason to crucify a smartphone camera. You’re taking this way too seriously.

          • New_Guy777

            Maybe, but probably not. In my over 5 years of owning an android, changing the white balance setting has yielded a better result maybe 4 or 5 times. These things are pretty good about determining color temperature themselves… And I can’t imagine trying to tweak every photo I try to shoot because it can’t figure out what “white” is. That sounds like an extreme annoyance to me.

          • Billy_B

            Yes but you are so passionate about this that you take it too far. You do realize that for almost everyone out there all these smartphone cameras are fine. None of them do anything spectacular. You just end up discrediting yourself because you sound like a fanboy. Don’t reply to every post here saying the same thing over and over. It’s super annoying whether you have good information or not. State your opinion, step away from the keyboard, and go enjoy the outdoors or something.

          • New_Guy777

            It’s raining out there…

      • Martin Lane

        M8 and LG had the worst colours and contrast overall.

        • New_Guy777

          Agreed. I think the top graphic may be throwing people off.

    • New_Guy777

      Sony was a close second, but check out the lack of flare and glare from the S5. It handles dim and bright exquisitely, especially seen in the video screen on the building just to the right of center in the 3rd comparison shot. No one else came even close to getting that image clear. The S5 replicated that light/dark balancing feat in every instance except the last comparison, where it came in dead last. Dunno what happened there, because the S5 and the Z2 were racing each other for worst pic of that bunch.

  • SBaka

    Good article, Chris.

    • Martin Lane

      Interesting choice of images he decided to link to though given there was a wider selection on the site that actually did the comparison.

  • Anthony Gallagher

    To be fair the HTC M8 is as good a camera you would ever need. Phone users are never going to use their images to blow up and frame, almost all images will be used for sites such as facebook, twitter, instagram etc. Even the resolution/dpi of a 2mp camera will be totally sufficient for what they use it for. If you are serious about photography then you’ll buy a dedicated camera such as a DSLR!

    • Defenestratus

      I disagree. Phones need to be at least as good as your run-of-the-mill point and shoot cameras that you take with you on vacations. There’s nothing worse than having crappy vacation photos.

      • Billy_B

        You can disagree all you want. But I haven’t seen a camera phone to even come close to the IQ of my 3 year old Canon S95. Therefore, for 99% of people in the world that own a smartphone for posting pics for their grandma to see on the intrawebs, all these phones will do fine. These arguments are always stupid with camera phones. Until one is made with at least a 1/1.7″ sensor, I will keep taking my super compact S95 with me and dominate all pics you can take with your dumb camera phone. And I’ll take my DSLR’s for more serious work.

        Pick the smartphone you like and the camera will do okay for you. None of the pics in this article excite me in the least.

        • New_Guy777

          My phone is the camera that I’m most likely to have inside of 10 second at any given time that I want to record a memory. And I take awesome pictures because I use the hardware and software intelligently.

    • Chimphappyhour

      Welp! You got that one wrong. I’ve done 16×20 off of my Note 2. I also own 3 DSLRs but sometimes the cellphone actually does a good job.

  • Defenestratus

    1) Whatever my phone is.
    2) ..
    3)…
    4) Whatever phone I perceive to be my phone’s biggest competitor.

    • toomuchgame441

      U win the internetz today.

  • phinn

    There seems to be little doubt the HTC One captures more light, the shots in general are better lit, I especially thought it did well on the first photo. The software could use some work though as color could be improved. Also there seems to be excessive lens flair, making me think it’s a poor quality lense/glass cover. Should Android start using sapphire too?

    In general of course bigger pixels will capture more light. I’d like to find the happy medium between pixels size and quantity, and top end 8mpix phones seem to have done that, especially since 4K resolution is 8mpix.

    • New_Guy777

      It’s true, the bigger sensor captures more light. That’s physics. However, it does so at the cost of coloring (all shots are yellowish), glare and flare from any and all light sources, and lack of distance detail. S5 handles almost everything better except for the box at the end. Then, despite the yellowing, HTC wins, with LG with it’s best performance yet, Z2 after that, and S5 dead last. But, in general, regular night shots will look best with the S5, and pick that awesome low light setting found in the other galaxy phones for a pic of the box. :-)

  • New_Guy777

    Hey Chris! It would have been nice to actually put the phones in the same order in the top graphic as their pictures are shown later. I think that may be causing a lot of confusion. HTC is the top left photos, Samsung is in the top right, LG is in the bottom left, and the Sony is in the bottom right.

  • abrcrmdl23

    I thought the Xperia Z2 has the best shots overall, other than the low light shot at the end. The LG shots looked a little washed out, and Samsung’s were very dark. The M8’s I thought looked ok but were lacking some detail and the colors looked off to my eye.

    • New_Guy777

      The S5 isn’t exhibiting darkness as much as a higher contrast ratio. And the color scaling on it looks excellent in every picture, although it’s horrible noise problem in the final picture needs looked at. However, the other 3 pics show an excellent handling of light sources by Samsung, making little or no light blotch to ruin the photo. I agree about the M8’s color problem, which the LG shared. HTC, too yellow. LG, too red. Sony and Samsung were both just about right.

  • J Cav the Great

    the Z2 looks sharpest, while the HTC M8 is definitely brightest…these are my two picks..no pun intended.

  • Dean Politis

    The Galaxy S5 does look real good. However, the shots appear to be taken at a closer range for all the shots (or does the S5 have a slight zoom).

    • New_Guy777

      No, what you’re seeing a difference in viewing angles. The S5 does have a tighter viewing angle than the other 3.

  • Lennatron

    I’d say it’s tie between the S5 and the One M8. I’m surprised at how poor the camera on the Pro 2 is.

    • New_Guy777

      M8 was too yellow and blotchy with lights. I’m definitely more inclined to love on the S5 and the Z2 (in that order).

  • Captain Spaulding

    Z2 for the most part.

  • notnot2

    Verdict: All four of them suck and annoy in their own way.

    Inaccurate color production, noise, grainy, poor low light etc.

    That said, there are definitely worse camera performance on other Android phones (Nexus, Motorola, Huawei etc.) The 4 reviewed in this article are the better ones.

    If you want better photography from your phone, get an iPhone.

    P.S: Please do not misconstrue this as a bash on the Android platform.

    P.S #2: Windows phones/Nokia Lumia fanboys, the Lumia phones have their own problems despite having better optics. Two that I can think of now are oversaturation and slow shutter speed. There are other issues.

    • New_Guy777

      Verdict incorrect. The S4 straight up gives the iPhone 5s a run for its money in the camera department (check out the following two links if you don’t believe me).

      http://www.cnet.com/news/samsung-galaxy-s4-shootout-versus-htc-one-iphone-5/

      While the 5s may have come out as a edge out victor, it is by NO means the stand-out champion. Now, with literally half the resolution and no Isocell technology, the (current) iPhone has no choice but to throw in the towel. It’d have better luck beating Chuck Norris.

    • das

      dont make me laugh ,iphone camera is LOOOL

    • https://www.facebook.com/christopher.johnsc chris_johns

      lol iphone…u fail…everywhere…iphone has a good camera sensor…but there are plenty other products that are way better

  • southerndinner

    S5 seems to wipe the floor with the rest, though the Z2 doesn’t look too bad either.

    M8 camera looks absolutely dreadful

    • New_Guy777

      Agreed

  • toomuchgame441

    I’m so glad this article was written, just by all the comments one thing is clear… Beaty is in the eye of the beholder. Everyone clearly has their own opinion of these images, some have the M8 dead last, some prefer the colors and overall image quality of the M8, some are even saying the Pro 2 look terrible (weird)

    One thing for sure… I like the M8s color accuracy and quick shutter, I can live with the camera and everything else about the device I love, goodbye G2

    • New_Guy777

      Rethink the color accuracy on the HTC M8…it’s yellow. Just in case you aren’t sure which is which, the HTC is the upper left in all of the comparisons. It’s clearly more yellow every time, especially in the only picture it actually wins in, which is the last. The LG is very reddish most of the time, so our consensus isn’t “weird” at all.

      • NinoBr0wn

        No, not every time.

        • New_Guy777

          Yes, every time. Consensus of color is clear with the S5 and the Z2.

        • JointhePredacons

          Agreed, the M8s pictures are not “more yellow” NewGuy missed your point about “eye of the beholder” He sees yellow because he wants to. Hes prob one of the guys that believes the M7 had a pink tinge, again, when it does not.

          • NinoBr0wn

            Exactly. The last two samples quite clearly are not yellow for the M8. But that S5 photo with the snacks looks like there isn’t any light at all in the room. Like I said before, inconsistency.

          • New_Guy777

            OK, take your snacks photo. Look a the color of the box in the upper left corner. Not the brightness, but the actual hue. Now look at the other three. See how they look the same? They actually look green, not a grass stain color. Now go back and look at the leaves in the first picture and the docks/sky/lights in the second. It’s hardest to tell in the third, but that’s because you’re looking at a real color collage, and the bricks still tell the tale. LG gets that shoot-out the worst, giving a horrid red stain to the shot.

          • New_Guy777

            Also, I’ll agree with you that in the last comparison, there’s a kind of inversion of what normally occurred. But I’ll take correct color scaling and light source handling (at which the S5 reigned supreme) over the ability to take a normal shot in the dark. I don’t often take pictures while I’m grabbing a late night snack. :-) Besides, the other Galaxy devices took EXCELLENT low light shots with their night mode, so I expect this to be no different.

          • New_Guy777

            No, the M7 tended to miss color reproduction all over the place, not just pink: http://www.cnet.com/news/samsung-galaxy-s4-shootout-versus-htc-one-iphone-5/

          • JointhePredacons

            Color production on my M7 is awesome. Perhaps it was just some people with defective units that experienced problems. Ive been taking pics all year long in sun, dark, dusk, never had a color problem at all. In fact as i mentioned in another comment, my M7 consistently took better pics than my wifes S4.

          • New_Guy777

            And I sometimes take better pics with my S3 than my co-worker does with his Rebel.

          • https://www.facebook.com/christopher.johnsc chris_johns

            samsung mobile products blow…get over it…id only buy a sammy tv

          • New_Guy777

            Your statement lacks substance and context. We weren’t taking about which to buy, we’re talking about the fact that the S5 and the Z2 killed their competition 3 out of 4 times. And anyone is capable of making a great product, the fact that Samsung is out isn’t on the label shouldn’t sway anyone. My first android was an HTC, I’m not brand loyal. I’m capability for price loyal.

      • https://www.facebook.com/christopher.johnsc chris_johns

        your yellow

        • New_Guy777

          My yellow what? Or did you mean “you’re”? If that’s the case, are you being literal (unlikely) or figurative (and possibly racist)?

  • feztheforeigner

    Why not compare it to the camera on the G2. It’s still one of the best cameras out there IMHO

  • NinoBr0wn

    Kinda surprising to see such inconsistency in low light. Also surprising to see the S5, in my opinion, come out looking so dull by comparison.

  • PaulaJCarlton

    The LG shots looked a little washed out, and Samsung’s were very dark. The M8’s I thought looked ok but were lacking some detail and the colors looked off to my eye. http://qr.net/rtcX

  • Richard Ashmore

    Oh Joy don’t you just love a good old cock fight? Regrettably though you are all wrong and you are all right the test is worthless without a master image to compare to. Please include a professionally shot image so that the battle over colour, saturation, exposure and light can make sense, without which this “mine is bigger that yours” fight will go on without end.

    • Christian

      my thoughts exactly! :)

  • Darren Wong

    I actually thought the M8 did well, considering the camera is supposedly the weakest part of the phone. The best looking pic there, IMO, is the 2nd one from the Z2

    • New_Guy777

      You apparently are incapable of seeing the color yellow if you think the M8 did well.

      • Darren Wong

        Sorry for stating my opinion, I see you’ve been busy here. I understand you dislike the M8, no reason to bash the people who positively comment about it. Discussion is fine, but telling someone that they’re “incapable of seeing the color yellow” really isn’t necessary.

        • New_Guy777

          But it’s SO very yellow, it’s like looking at an actual photo that’s yellowed with age. And it’s the same color/camera problems that kept me away from last year’s One. If only someone else would do some of the inventive things they’re doing, and get the camera right, too.

          • Al Callon

            oh my god shut up about the yellow!! jfc

      • toomuchgame441

        Dude get a life, youve been all over this article spreading your “opinion” like a decease. The M8 does fine… I’m sorry that you’re so butt hurt that other people like the M8’s camera

        • New_Guy777

          Decease, or disease? Grammar, it’s not there to hurt you.

  • JointhePredacons

    In all honesty anyone that picks their smartphone because of picture quality has some screws loose. But on subject, the M8s camera looks no better or worse than the others, at least in the test pictures given. If its similar or slightly better than the M7, its a worthy buy. My ONE m7 always takes better pics than my wifes S4 which seems to have a consistent focus and lighting problem.

    • New_Guy777

      I DO make the photo capabilities of my smartphone one of my highest priorities. It’s the camera I’m most likely to have handy when I need to take a picture in 10 seconds or less, and when you have a little one like I do, that’s just common sense. So keep your “screws loose” comments to yourself, ‘cuz your priorities aren’t even remotely close to the average persons. That being said, it’s clear that the S5 and the Z2 take the best pictures of the lot, hands down.

      • JointhePredacons

        I think my priorities are the same or on par with most consumers. I like that there is a camera on my smartphone, but its not a priority. If i wanted high quality shots id have a professional camera. Id never choose a smartphone based on that. If i had, id have a Nokia with that 21MP or whatever camera. But being that i had a Nokia, the rest of the features on the phone would completely suck. Good luck tho, i have a screwdriver right here for you to borrow.

        • New_Guy777

          And I need something that takes near pro shots at the spur of a moment, because that’s what we need with kids. And no, I’ve never been suckered by the Lumia commercials, but I did at least try it in the store first. Every time I pick up a phone or tablet in a store, I open up the camera. PS – I often pwn my coworker with his Rebel DSLR.

    • malcmilli

      why? all the phones perform equally and last you all day, why not let the differentiating factor be design and camera?

  • Your Mother

    LG #1
    Samsung #2
    HTC, Samsung & Sony #3
    HTC #4

    • New_Guy777

      I agree that the 3rd comparison was the hardest to differentiate, so I dropped LG from the running due to the obvious red nature of the pic. I zoomed in to see what could be read near the center of the picture, and looked at the red circle sign. The S5 was the best of the remaining 3 for that, although still unreadable. Then I looked at the video screen just to the right of center. Whoa. S5 is the clear winner there. Also, the bricks are the best textured with the S5.

      LG did OK in the first pick, but I’d take the higher contrast ratios and best light glare handling of the S5 in that one as well.

      #1 – Samsung, LG, Sony, HTC
      #2 – Samsung, Sony, LG, HTC
      #3 – Samsung, Sony, LG, HTC
      #4 – HTC, LG, Sony, Samsung

      • malcmilli

        you have* LG’s photo’s looking better than HTC’s in shots 2 and 3? Even if you had samsung’s as the best in those, HTC’s looks closer to samsung’s than LG’s does.

        • New_Guy777

          You make a fair point, especially if it was just color hue, and I think it could go either way. However, in the 3rd, LG did almost exactly what Samsung did, despite the red tint. It has a remarkably clear view of the bricks, the circle sign, and the video screen. HTC and Sony tended to wash those features out, and HTC is still yellow, as well. In the 2nd, it’s closer, but with 1/4 of the picture obscured by light haze, I had to rate it last.

  • deltatango

    all new_guy777 says is “m8 is yellow! m8 is yellow!” move on dude.

    • New_Guy777

      Yup, yellow is the worst color you can oversaturate a picture with, turning an otherwise nice picture into something that looks like a real photograph taken 40 years ago. LG way over does the red, and is the second worst iteration you can have. At least Samsung and Sony agree that it’s important to give an accurate color representation, without screwing up any of the hues.

  • Anthony Johnson

    According to me HTC M8 has better clarity in its camera if
    the photographs shown above are real images captured by this device. The main feature
    which I am looking for every Smartphone is its battery as everyone is familiar
    that quick battery consumption is the biggest matter of concern in every
    Android based Smartphone and sometime due to bug in the latest Android version
    like KitKat4.4.2 like the one in my qi enabled Nexus 5 a strong battery backup
    plays a crucial role.

  • KimVo

    The LG would be the clear winner but for the poor white balance giving the shots that yellow tinge. Followed by the Z2. The GS5 is over processing the images have a look at the statues close up to see what I mean. And sadly HTC overexposes by at least 2 stops.

    • New_Guy777

      I’ll admit that some closer crops of the first 2 S5 pics look a little off. However, I think it’s rare that people do crops to get the photo they want. More important is color scaling (a toss up between the S5 and the Z2), light source exposure handling(not a single camera could compare to the S5 in that category), detail (again, the S5 wins, especially in the 3rd comparison), noise reduction (actually, all of them do OK with this until the last one, when the S5 and the Z2 both do a face plant), and contrast (again, something the S5 did extremely well, particularly in the first two comparisons). The balance of all of these criteria gives us the winner)

  • liav24

    the M8 camera looks great, well all of them looks good, and for people who buys phone for 700-800$ and picks them for the camera – are totally idiots. want a good camera? buy a digital one. Or just the Xperia Z2 , that is twice as “fat” as all of the others, u need a big pocket for that too.

    • Ziich

      HTC One M8 (5.0) 146.4 x 70.6 x 9.4 mm (5.76 x 2.78 x 0.37 in)
      Xperia Z2 (5.2″) 146.8 x 73.3 x 8.2 mm (5.78 x 2.89 x 0.32 in)
      Lg G Pro 2 (5.9″) 157.9 x 81.9 x 8.3 mm (6.22 x 3.22 x 0.33 in)
      Samsung Galaxy S5 142 x 72.5 x 8.1 mm (5.59 x 2.85 x 0.32 in)

    • malcmilli

      Why are they idiots? If all of the phones basically do the exact same things, what’s differentiating one from the other? The UI, the battery life, and the Camera. That doesn’t make them an idiot cuz either way they are getting an excellent device and either its going to cost them $650, why cant they want the one with the best camera out of the bunch?

      • bluevoodo

        The UI, the sound, the display, the aftersales experience and support, teh build quality, the updates, and the camera. Some dont see the camera as the most pressing issue.

        • malcmilli

          you are correct, some don’t…. but some do… some people think… all this phones a fast and nice and last me all day… how’s the camera on these things? Oh that one’s the best? OK.

          People have different priorities, but that doesn’t make them idiots.

    • New_Guy777

      Ziich gotcha

    • FatFredJones

      “Idiots”? These days most phones pretty much all have the same capabilities via software . Outside of looks, the one of the main differentiators is the camera. Why not choose a phone that takes better photos ?

      • bluevoodo

        Explain how I can get front facing speakers through software? Quality construction and look from a software update?

        • FatFredJones

          “one of the main differentiators”

        • Del373

          You haven’t heard? All that and more will be coming with the new version of TouchWiz. :P

    • BornRight

      People who spend $700 for a new phone and another $500 for a point-and-shoot camera are the total idiots. Who wants to carry around multiple devices? Your phone should be able to take decent pictures. That’s not too much to expect these days.

      • bluevoodo

        Pictures on the M8 are decent dont spread fud, just because you cant crop in close enough for a picture of your penis is not HTC fault.

        • BornRight

          You’re resorting to personal attacks for lack of arguments. Shame on you.

      • Del373

        I don’t think liav is disputing that. I think they meant that people shouldn’t buy a smartphone based solely on what type of camera it has.

        • BornRight

          You’re buying a smartphone for the total package and the camera is an important part of it. There’s no denying the importance of the camera.

  • Renu Bisht

    I think HTC One M8 wins here because it is really an amazing phone.

    http://www.techgreet.com/techgreet-on-htc-one-m8/

    • bluevoodo

      Spam!

      • Renu Bisht

        you are spam motherfucker….

      • Alexander Udengaard

        Shut up! Or I will kick your ass

        • bluevoodo

          Oh noes !

  • BornRight

    HTC M8 and LG are the worst

  • https://www.facebook.com/christopher.johnsc chris_johns

    sony looks like a clear winner…then maybe htc…how can anyone say the lg is the best all i see is yellow…sammy is up n down around the rest…id go with the sony for the higher mp and quality

    • Del373

      I think it’s a toss between HTC and Sony. The Xperia looks a bit clearer, but the M8 obviously excels over the other offering in low light conditions. I’d be interested to see what these cameras daylight pictures looked like as well.
      …admittedly I’m probably a tad biased, I’m planning on getting an M8 as a replacement for my Galaxy Nexus.

  • Del373

    To me it seems the M8 wins just because it can take better low light condition shots. I’d like to see daylight photos for a more comprehensive competition. Though I’d probably still pick the M8 over the other offerings just because I like the dual sensor tech and what they’ve done with the software.

  • Scharel Browns

    When is the lg pro2 coming to the states. ..anybody knows

  • Mike

    I’m an HTC fanboy and freely admit it, that being said I am really not a fan of the camera in the M8. It is “okay” but in some of the shots above you can clearly see that it’s not as sharp or crisp as the Sony for instance. For me, it’s not a deal-breaker because I’m not a big picture taker and when I’m on vacation or somewhere that I think I will be taking lots of pictures I’m going to bring a regular digital camera. There is PLENTY to love about the M8 and I don’t regret the decision a bit. But like any big purchase, you have to know your priorities and if the camera quality is near the top of the list then you may want to reconsider. If you’re like most people that it’s just nice to have for some of those unplanned moments you want a picture of…it’s probably “good enough” for most people.

  • Smartphone World

    S5 is the best ! Hope to buy it asap! http://www.nexus6price.com

  • SexyHyde

    For me the HTC and Sony are the best. The LG I could live with may even grow to like. The S5 I couldn’t live with. I live in the UK where you need low light performance but If I lived somewhere with more sun I guess the S5 could get reconsidered. It would be interesting to see what the phones could do when their settings are adjusted as the M8 has profiles you can set up for varying conditions.