Z3, S5, G3 & iPhone 6: Smartphone Cameras Compared

Which Smartphone camera delivers the best photos? A question that can be not just answer with a mega pixel specification. Therefore, went with seven current top smartphones CURVED and has made the same photos with all – with very different results.

With this on the photo tour of Hamburg-Altona were the Samsung Galaxy S5, the LG G3, the Sony Xperia Z3, the HTC one M8, the Moto X, the Nokia Lumia 930 and the iPhone 6. We have selected on the way various motives to us and tried to recreate typical scenes from everyday life. So, you can compare the cameras of seven different smartphones with images of landmarks, streets snapshots, portraits, Selfies, panoramic shots and in the Studio with little light – with and without Flash -. You look at the pictures of a Smartphone – perhaps even on its display -, notice the differences between Smartphones such as the color casts and other shortcomings sometimes not so clearly as in our galleries.

Since most users trust the camera auto-their smartphones and very rarely manually set capture settings, we have left us in this test also on the automatic. If available, we have enabled the macro mode for close up and of course also the panorama mode as well as in the Studio the flash light activated. The recordings were all made from the same location, however, the different focal lengths of the lenses provide different framing. During our photo tour it was cloudy most of the time, occasionally the Sun came through.

On The Way Outdoors

The snapshot on the Chair man well revealed felt almost all colors of the Rainbow. The automatic white balance came to a different conclusion on any Smartphone and thereby colors that sometimes have nothing to do more reality. To recognize the most striking colors such as the LG G3, however, appear better when one M8 and Moto X, and neutral.

The last street scene – the Altonaer Rathaus – revealed the significant differences in the automatic exposure metering. The Moto X continues to fall out of line and manages as a single camera to give drawing the sky light – which is due to the auto HDR mode of the Smartphone.

At the portrait shots can be seen previously also clearly the automatic lighten of the shade as shown in the picture, such as the Z3 or the G3. In the Moto X, the HDR mode ensures a Halo around his head around. Not really, of course, but if you stand on great effects and want to select no filter during post processing itself, perhaps the ideal Smartphone camera. The skin tones appear again in a wide range and illustrate the casts of the cameras: red for the Xperia Z3, blue for one M8 and yellow at the Moto X.


A close-up was easily possible with any Smartphone. Apart from the usual yellowish cast of the Moto X this time also the Lumia 930 significantly out of line dancing. We have made the image several times, but the camera has automatically adjusted the white balance in the wrong direction.


None of the two preinstalled apps of Lumia 930 provides a Panoramo mode so that the Nokia in this round was forced to sit out. A panorama mode offered all other smartphones, where you need swing the camera in one direction only. It is striking that the angles are very different. So the Moto X creates no 180 degrees, the Galaxy S5, however, provides you with 360-degree shots.


For the Selfies we take the front camera of smartphones for a change. The same quirks noticed despite an overall poorer image quality and thus are likely to have caused for the most part in the camera software. The Moto X provides us once again with its built-in filter/HDR-automatic, and the Lumia 930 surprises with its psychedelic colours. Selfies iPhone 6 and Z3 are dull and shows poor contrast in comparison.

Backlight / Low Light

It is essential to say that the small image sensor in smartphones get problems in low light and noise most of the pictures quickly. The Moto X also had problems focusing and rushes compared most. None of the images look really good. The quality is rather comparable with the first digital cameras because with proper cameras of today.

Automatic Flash

The automatic Flash will be used primarily at parties. He should work at a distance of approx. 1, 5 m actually perfectly. Again evident at the Moto X yellow tinge and the focus problem, otherwise all largely right. Partly the shots are slightly too bright or dark, what but can be different again in any situation for Flash. The skin tones look fairly natural when the Galaxy S5 and the one M8.

100-Percent View

In this snippet, you can see what look like the photos in their original size. The S5 and the G3 are approximately equal, and offer even the most sharply recognizable details. The Lumia 930 strikes also surprisingly well to the color antics. The iPhone 6 and the one M8 follow about neck and neck. The Moto X and the Z3 the details look sharp, there are hardly any edges or straight lines to detect. The image quality is sufficient for Facebook and co if you however want to magnify image sections or make large prints of your photos, then a Smartphone camera is not the ideal choice, but you have access to a SLR, compact camera or system with a large image sensor.

We have tested all in full automatic mode, the device, in order to have a basis for comparison. Wants to get more out of the images, there are many setting options, certainly resolve the one or the other shortcoming with any Smartphone. At the end is always the claim and the intended use. Despite all the criticism, we tried to get the cameras of the smartphones in a ranking and see the Galaxy S5 and the iPhone 6 with different advantages and disadvantages at the top.

Skin tones work here than most natural, sometimes the colors at the iPhone 6 to your Smartphone by Samsung are somewhat dull. There they are sometimes too contrasty. Close behind followed by the Xperia Z3 and the LG G3. With some distance, follow the one M8 and the Lumia 930. The tail light is the Moto X when it comes to deliver natural shots. Who is edited pictures and filter effects, however, will have his joy with the new Motorola.