Before I start, don’t get me wrong. The Nokia Lumia 1020 has a brilliant camera, maybe even up to the point where it becomes a point-and-shoot replacement for some. No doubt about it, Nokia has once again got the upper hand in the camera-side of the smartphone business with it’s 41 Megapixel, Carl Zeiss lens equipped shooter. However, to the majority of the world’s disappointment, it is on an OS that is used by very few.
There are some decent rivals, such as the iPhone 5 (and now, probably the iPhone 5S), and over at the Android side, the Galaxy S4, LG G2 and Galaxy Note II, but none of them have been able to even come close to where the Lumia 1020 is perched. Until now.
Looking around today I happened to chance upon one of the very first low-light camera samples of the Xperia Z1, and my word, am I speechless. Looking through the photos graciously taken by unleashthephones.com, I was overjoyed. Finally, an answer. The Xperia Z1, with its 1/2.3″ 20.7-megapixel Exmor RS image sensor, BIONZ image processing engine and a 27mm wide-angle f/2.0 Sony G Lens, on paper is certainly no slouch.
In it’s default Superior Auto mode it snaps 8 MP photos, but set it to Manual and it will take the photos at it’s full 20 MP capability. This allows it’s digital zoom to prevent any loss in detail and puts it’s image post-processing high in the sky with the likes of the Lumia 1020, with barely any noise and high clarity in it’s low-light photos. The photos below, (again gratefully taken by unleashthephones.com), were taking in Tiong Bahru, Singapore from 1930 hours to 2130 hours. I’ll simply let the photos speak their thousand words. To see these in their full glory, click on this link, which will lead you to the full set on Flickr.
UPDATE 1: unleashthephones.com has again gratefully provided us with daylight shots. I’ve attached some below, but to see the rest of the gallery, go here.
Thanks to GSMArena, we can now see the video camera samples as well, embedded below.
This was taken in Superior Auto mode.
This was taken in Manual mode.
This was taken in HDR mode.
What I have to say is this, this may very well be one of the best cameras in a phone to date, right up there with the Nokia 808 PureView and Nokia Lumia 1020 PureView. It is without a doubt the best camera on an alternative OS to Windows Phone 8, and with Sony’s sudden trump card, Nokia better watch their backs in the camera department, because I believe that in it’s next flagship, Sony is not going to take prisoners. So, with that I leave you with the glory that is the Xperia Z1’s camera.