And you think you need a "real" camera?

by Volker Weber


A casual 20 MB JPEG shot with the mighty Nokia 808 PureView. Just pointed it at the bird and hit the shutter release. No cropping or editing. This file is straight off the device. And it has about 6.5 times more pixels than the Retina MacBook Pro.

Update: Here is a copy I reduced in Photoshop with a simple bicubic reduction to 8 megapixels. It's for those folks who think that nobody should have or need 34 megapixel images. The PureView can do this much better than myself, since it combines four pixels into one before storing the images. It can even downsample the photo to 5 megapixels or 3 megapixels by combining even more sensor pixels. If you are more into cameras than shooting photos, you can play with lots of settings. The camera has three customizable presets and sliders for saturation, contrast and sharpness. You can set color tones, captures modes, aspect ratio, JPEG quality, and resolution. This is measurbator territory and I don't think the bird would have been patient enough for me to go through all of those permutations.



Sebastian Herp, 2012-06-14

One word... wow.

Darren Adams, 2012-06-14

If you take a first look, you might say wow.

But take a look at the picture at the original size and you will recognize that it is not sharp.

But it's a smartphone, and so I say also wow. Unfortunately it's from Nokia with the wrong operating system.

Karl Heindel, 2012-06-14

I would not need a "real" camera if there would be a 400mm lens for my iPhone and I could use a "real" flash wir LZ > 40.

Helmut Weiss, 2012-06-14

Karl, I have a simple challenge for you. Shoot a 34 megapixel image with 500 EUR worth of equipment and show the result. Any equipment you like.

Volker Weber, 2012-06-14

Do we really need 34 megapixel images on our hard-drives? (I suppose it does eliminate some of the need to have a zoom lens, however)

John Keys, 2012-06-14

"640 kB ought to be enough for everyone" :-)

I shot this frame to show the power of the camera. It also shoots photos in 2, 5 or 8 megapixel formats. 5 megapixel is the preferred format and it uses either pixel binning to reduce noise, or it zooms through digital cropping, or a combination of both. However, it will never create pixels that were not on the sensor, like other "digital zooms" operate.

Volker Weber, 2012-06-14

Honestly, despite the incredible detail and great color, the bird's body does look a little flat and cartoonish to me. I couldn't tell you why.

But I don't need a real camera. That's because no matter what camera you gave me, I could not take a better picture than this.

Richard Schwartz, 2012-06-14

Klasse! Gibt es dasselbe Foto auch mit einem 4S?

Hubert Stettner, 2012-06-15


Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

You need a real camera to add the sensor dirt spots :)

Kristof Doffing, 2012-06-15

Well, the picture is Great for a smartphone picture. But its Not about megapixels. who needs 32 of those anyway?

Especially with birds its all about detail and sharpness.

For a smartphone it's really good. but 500 euros worth of equipment (some beginner slr + kit lens would do way better. (exempt in mp)

Johannes Matzke, 2012-06-15

What do you need 34 megapixels for? Pixel binning, digital lossless zoom. And stuff that entry level DSLR with kit lens in your baggy pants and come to the party tonight.

Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

Hi there,
My 2 cent. For me, high resolution and MP plays a very big role. 10years ago, if nokia came out with 8mp camera everyone would be thinking why do i need so huge picture that would take up my HDD space. But now, that's the standard. So all the photos you take now with high MPs, will be a sweet memories later when you show it to next generation or view them later years.

Paramasivan Pillai, 2012-06-15

Party with vowe? Where, when? Are we all invited? :-)

Jörg Hermann, 2012-06-15

Sehr schönes Foto!

Ich habe mein 808 heute bekommen, bin aber leider noch nicht zu Hause
um es zu testen.
Ich freue mich wie ein Kind.

Ulrich Willer, 2012-06-15

Das ist so schön - viel Spaß!

Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

Volker, I do not need 34 MP to get a sharp image. 8mp from my really old D80 with 50mm is enough.

Karl Heindel, 2012-06-15

I know what you mean. I have a really old D70 with a 50mm at home as well. But I can't shoot a photo like this with it. Two reasons: (a) it's at home and (b) with 50 mm I would only have gotten about a third of the bird. There was not enough space behind me.

And then finally, the lens is good, but the camera isn't.

Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

And I always thought photography is all about expressing yourself and not about science. I might be all wrong these days. Will stick to my Leica gear and enjoy CAs, distortion, focus shift etc..

Besides this, it looks like an impressive camera build into a phone. Camera producer watch out...

Thomas Köster, 2012-06-15

Radel doch mal zum Kalkofen und schieße einen der Pfaus mit der Leica. Das Ergebnis fände ich superinteressant. Ist gar nicht weit:

Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

Sollte ich wirklich mal machen, damit ich mal wieder auf's Rad komme :-) das steht schon wieder seit zwei Wochen rum...

Aber die Pixelpeeper werden daran sicher keinen Spaß haben

Thomas Köster, 2012-06-15

I'm curious if there was any additional lighting used in this photo. The peacocks feet are very well lit. Was the flash involved or the use of a reflector?

Andy Reimer, 2012-06-15

Nothing whatsoever. It was a very casual shot.

Volker Weber, 2012-06-15

Klasse Foto !

Otto Foerg , 2012-06-15

Kalkofen. Hätte ich mir denken können. Wird das nun der neue Referenz-Treffpunkt der mobilen Fotofreunde? ;-)

Kristof Doffing, 2012-06-18

Well I just bought one!
Unterrichte Video am FH Salzburg
Es ist der erste kamera mit ein smart phone integriert.
Ich hab aber probleme mit die videos. Mac kennt die nicht.
Probiere erst seit 2 stunden

Christopher Walker, 2012-07-17

Mount the camera as USB drive. Open the drive from the Mac and find your videos in DCIM. They are plain MP4 files which the Mac does understand.

Volker Weber, 2012-07-17

Old archive pages

I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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