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Best Android Cameraphone?

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by Jezston, May 29, 2010.

  1. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    So basically my last two phones have had a xenon flash - the SE K800i followed by the Nokia N82, and I've been keeping my N82 holding out for the release of the Nokia N8 or if Motorola ever decide to get round to releasing the Motoroi Android phone with xenon flash in the UK. The N82 is a pretty crappy phone by today's standards and the battery was dying but I was coping.

    However, last week I lost my N82, so I'm now stuck with a dreadful 2G Samsung U600, and I'm not sure I can wait too much longer!

    The main thing I am looking for is the ability for the cameraphone to be able to take acceptable looking photographs in low-light conditions. Now I thought this meant Xenon flash was ESSENTIAL - I tried a Nokia X6 for a little while and while I liked it (more people need to make smaller smartphones) the camera was utterly dreadful. However, I had a go on a friend's HTC desire, turned the lights off in my office and was actually pretty impressed by the picture quality. In fact, the pictures were actually a bit sharper and less grainy than those off my old N82!

    Now I've heard the SE X10 has the best camera, but what about under low light conditions? I don't mind if the picture quality isn't the absolute best - if I wanted that I'd buy a proper camera - but I do want to be able to take photos at gigs, in clubs, bars etc, on the street at night and be able to actually see stuff in the picture rather than a grainy mess.

    Are any of the camera equipped android phones out there up to such a task? I don't really care about much else - capacative screen, multi touch interface, internet, gps are the only other essentials - clever facebook integration and that kind of stuff I care little for (I don't need constant reminders as to how much more exciting lives my friends are leading without me thanks), and it would be nice if I could get something a little less bulky than the likes of the X10 ... or should I wait a few more months with this crappy phone for the possible appearance of the Motoroi or the possibility that the Nokia N8 won't be a buggy mess rather than lumber myself with a phone that isn't quite right for the next eighteen months?

    Thanks for reading ;)

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  2. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Hmm ... anyone know if the HTC Legend has the same optics as the HTC Desire?

    HTC Desire is a little bit big for what I'm after, whereas the Legend seems like a nice size.

    Sony X10 I've ruled out after trying it out. Total crap compared to the Desire.
  3. Vihzel

    Vihzel Destroying Balls Everyday

    Since you're in the UK, I guess I would recommend the Desire.
  4. jojitsu

    jojitsu Member

    I have still got an N82, and in my opinion it is still a very good phone and the camera is quite a bit better than anything android (so far), due to very good optics and a superb flash, and I sometimes put my SIM card in it when I'm going out on the piss (more likely to survive a snotty pub crawl and better for pictures).

    I used to have a HTC Hero, and a great phone it was, but it annoyed me not having a flash, although you could get a decent enough picture in good light conditions...

    Anyway, I now have a nexus one, and the camera is really rather good (same as the Desire), and although the N82 is still a good bit better for pub snaps, I do get decent enough shots with the N1 most of the time; the LED is bright enough (picture is more likely to be blury because the shutter speed needs longer than a xenon to get enough light).

    A xenon flash requires the phone to be quite thick, so couple that with a full touch screen and it is usually going to be quite a handfull of a phone.. Don't be put of with the size of a N1 or Desire, I find them better in the pocket than my N82 due to being so thin..

    Never used the Legend but it looks like a good phone, but I hear a lot of people complaing about poor signal due to the design (I believe when holding it, your hand blocks the internal antena signal)

    If you are not bothered about the most up to the minute apps and tech, maybe you should just buy a second hand N82/satio/pixon 12, if not, get the N1/desire or similar, or wait for a xenon phone that you like..

    Hope this helps, matey..
  5. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Hi Jojitsu, thanks very much for your thoughts!

    Just wondered if you'd mind quantifying what you think is better about the N82 for pub snaps - is it just that the N1 is a bit blurry because of the longer required exposure, or are there more things about the N82 that deliver better results?

    One thing I found with the N82 is stuff looked great at short range, but as soon as what you were taking a photo of moved beyond 5 meters or so, it all went dark and grainy. The couple of test shots Ive taken on a Desire don't seem to have so much of this problem ... wondering if the sensor or the software side in the Desire is in some ways better than the N82 - certainly taking shots without the flash on the N82 was dreadful in the dark.

    Sometimes I wonder if I'd just be better off buying a proper compact digital camera! But then it's those moments out at night with friends which I feel camera phones are for ;)
  6. jojitsu

    jojitsu Member

    Well I'm no photographer, and I don't take loads of pictures when I'm out and about, so don't use me as reliable fountain of knowledge (I'm actually a numpty! 8)..), but I find that I will be more likely to get a better low light action shot with the N82... Nokia use great components in there cameras, and you simply can't beat a real xenon flash, it's just so bright and fast.. I was at a Thai boxing event a few weeks back that was basicaly a boxing ring in a big old barn like pub, with dim lighting, and as you would expect the N1 struggled a bit (low light and fast punches is a nighmare for most cameras), and I am prety sure that the N82 would have got slightly better results..
    Don't get me wrong, I am VERY happy with the camera on my N1, it is really rather good, and better than practicaly any other phone I have taken snaps on, and it's plenty good enough for most situations (there is no way I want to carry a phone AND a camera when I'm on the piss!), but there is only so much you can do with ANY current mobile phone camera when you are trying to take pictures of things that are moving in low light conditions.. At the end of the day, I find that my phone is perfectly good for taking pictures that are not that important (like in the boozer), and great for better quality shots for things like eBay pictures, when you have a bit of time to turn a light on; If you NEED great quality pictures you have to buy a great quality dedicated camera. ;)
  7. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Cool, thanks very much chap, I think you've given me the confidence I need to go for it.

    Turns out I may not have much to lose going for one anyway - have a relative who needs to spend some money on their business by the end of the month or pay even more in tax and they've said they'd be happy to buy the phone, give it to me for a few months until their contract runs out then claim it back off me - so by then hopefully the Nokia N8 an Motorola Motoroi will be out over here and I'll be able to get exactly the phone I need!
    RoboMonkey likes this.
  8. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Just bumping this as I wondered if anyone knows of any Xenon-flash equipped Android phones on the horizon?

    Since I started this thread I got an HTC Desire which was pretty lousy in low light conditions it has to be said. I then got a Nokia N8 which has a WAY better camera but an absolutely appalling operating system and support.

    So it appears a xenon flash is pretty much a must have for me and a camera. I have a friend who has an iPhone4S who thinks the camera in low light is as good as a phone camera can be, and it's total shit I'll be honest in low light. Ugly and noisy as hell.

    Seems the only Android phone there's ever been with a xenon flash is the Motorola which apparently sucked balls and never received a proper launch in the UK - it was launched, but no networks wanted to take it on!
  9. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Bump! My contract runs out in a few weeks and desperate to get an Android phone again. The new Belle update to my Nokia N8 sucks balls harder than I could have ever imagined - want to ditch this thing but need something with as good a camera!
  10. chanchan05

    chanchan05 The Doctor

    No phone currently in existence has the camera capabilities to fight back against the N8. Unlike other phones which use camera sensors optimized for phones, the N8 uses an actual camera grade sensor (even better than sensors used on entry level Sony Cybershot cameras). The closest you can get to in the Android section are the Sony Xperia Arcs (Arc and Arc S) and the Samsung Galaxy S2.

    From Windows you get the Nokia Lumia 800. Nokia is supposed to release the successor camera phone to the N8 later this year though.
  11. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Giving this a bump as my contract has now officially ended and I could get a new phone whenever I want.

    It appears the successor camera phone to the N8 is going to be another Symbian phone ffs. So it will have a really quite special with exceptional low light performance with it's 42mp oversampling shennanegans, it's still going to be running shitty clunky unsupported dead end Symbian OS. I want to break free from that.

    Having a peruse around the likes of GSM Arena it's hard to tell what is a good cameraphone and what isn't. Their tests are usually in daylight outdoors - I need to know what it's like in a dimly lit bar, a house party, a concert etc - that's where I tend to capture most of my memories.

    So what are the current crop really like as cameras? Anything special on the horizon?
  12. chanchan05

    chanchan05 The Doctor

    Windows version of the PureView, and the new HTC phones with an improved sensor.
  13. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    Just looked into Windows Pureview and it looks like I'd be waiting another six months for anything available on that at the very least, besides I'm not impressed by the immensely restrictive functionality and lack of decent apps (even compared with Symbian!) on Windows Phone, and also I don't feel terribly inclined to give Nokia any more of my money.

    Can't find much on these 'improved sensors' on HTC phones - don't suppose you can direct me to any examples? Was just distracted looking into Sony phones - they always seemed to take cameras seriously - but their recent offerings, despite high megapixel counts - seem pretty poor.
  14. jy02113800

    jy02113800 Newbie

    the newly released HTC ONE-X

    i think that's the best camera. also got a terrible resolution screen..much higher than IPHONE4s 's 960X860
  15. danaj

    danaj Android Enthusiast

  16. El Presidente

    El Presidente Beware The Milky Pirate!
    VIP Member

    I can vouch for the camera on the One X, it's excellent. If that's a little out of your price range, I'm sure the One S & the One V have the same camera and software so they might be worth a look in.
  17. marc12868

    marc12868 Android Expert

    adding to that list the HTC Amaze, HTC Sensation, and HTC Mytouch 4G Slide all have the same camera sensor as the One series granted they aren't on ICS they still are awesome. And the MT4GS at least (since that is what I have... Idk about the Amaze or Sensation) has virtually no shutter lag once focused. Maybe not quite no lag, but compared to other phones and the fact it's running GB it's amazing.
  18. chanchan05

    chanchan05 The Doctor

    I was actually talking about Titan II (newly announced). If we're talking about the sensors on the Sensation, camera reviews already had SGS2 and Xperia Arc's camera better than that.
  19. Jezston

    Jezston Member
    Thread Starter

    The One V is definitely not the same as that on the X and S, however some reviews appear to be suggesting the camera on the S is not as good as the X. Very confusing. The S doesn't appear to be going for much less than the X here in the UK (with contracts at least), but the slightly smaller size does appeal - the X is a bit of a beast.

    Also, I can't seem to find any real low-light performance examples - one at dusk that actually looked quite impressive, but I really need to see what photos look like in a dimly lit indoor environment to tell if it's going to come close to matching what my N8 offers.

    Ah Nokia, why did you sell out to Microsoft? Although I'm sure if they'd gone Android they would have found some way to bugger up the user experience!

  20. El Presidente

    El Presidente Beware The Milky Pirate!
    VIP Member

    Yeah, I just saw Techradars review of the V this morning and it's 5MP so def not the same. I'm sure I read somewhere it was though :thinking:

    The One X doesn't feel that big, despite it's size, it doesn't feel much bigger than my old Desire HD.
  21. MSUgEEk

    MSUgEEk Android Expert

    My wife has the HTC Rezound and I have the Galaxy Nexus. We are both satisfied with the performance of the cameras. I would think the HTC One X would be on par with the Rezound. If you're looking for anything better, I suggest getting a dedicated camera. I don't expect the same quality of photos of my phone as I do my pro-grade dSLR equipment.
  22. ArmageddonX

    ArmageddonX Android Expert

    I know the Galaxy S2 & the HTC Amaze are supposed to have great Cameras. Might want to check those out =)

    ~ ArmyX

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