Xperia Z camera samples against the iPhone 5 & Oppo Find 5

by XB on 21st January 2013

in Imaging, Xperia Z and Xperia ZL

As we approach the launch of the Sony Xperia Z (C660X) we will no doubt see plenty of camera samples from the device as well as samples compared to other flagships of the day. To get the ball rolling, we have a number of camera samples below which compares the Xperia Z against the Apple iPhone 5 and Oppo Find 5.

What you see below are not the raw images themselves but 100% crops compared. Obviously there is a mega pixel difference between the Xperia Z/Oppo Find 5 which have 13MP CMOS sensors versus the 8MP sensor on the iPhone 5. The Xperia Z appears to come out on top in our view, with the HDR function working particularly well in a few shots. Have a look at the images below and let us know which handset you think comes out on top.

Xperia Z camera samples against the iPhone 5 & Oppo Find 5

[Click to enlarge]

Via Mobile.IT168.

Thanks Quynh!

  • wow, HDR works great yaaa!!!

  • jmcomms

    I got to take some photos on a test unit at CES and they, obviously, look amazing on the phone display – and no doubt when posted to FB and Twitpic etc.. but zoomed in at 100%, I was a little disappointed by the noise and fuzziness. It was an incredibly well lit room/stand too, and the only annoying thing was not being able to get a copy of the photo(s) to share.

    These comparison shots all confirm that image sensors are still too small, although it would have been nice to have seen a comparison with the PureView 808 or Lumia 920.

    Sony has led the way for some time in imaging (and sold its sensors to many other manufacturers) but I feel they need to work on the next big step before they’ve overtaken by others. I expect many flagship phones from other makers, including Samsung, will have 12/13MP cameras this year.

    How ironic that Samsung and Sony Ericsson had already made 12MP devices years ago (Satio/Pixon12) and each concluded – at the time – that the smaller pixels resulted in worse images! Another factor was the size of the sensor, of course – but are these thinner sensors up to the job?

    The rest of the package looks great though. I hope Sony has a big success with it, and gets it to market before the others come along and upstage it!

  • Oh!

    In the above sample, Z has done better in all day light pictures and IPhone has done better than Xperia Z in low light… Third sample is crappy whether day or night :D

  • fuckingyourmom

    while youre celebrating im doing your mom!

  • NikJoe

    Adding S after Exmor-R sure improve the quality alot……

  • meld

    I don’t care whoever win this battle.
    Sony win this battle absolutely because all camera sensors made by Sony

  • meld

    while you doing with his mom, im doing your sister

  • Herman

    Most images can’t even be compared with each other!

    Just look at the photo into the sun: on the Xperia Z image you can make out what kind of building that is, but the highlights are completely washed out.
    On both other phones the sky can be seen while the building is too dark to see a thing.

    Next time, please, keep all phones in the same spot, focussing on the exact same spot too.

  • SonyFan

    while you’re doing each other i’m just laughing :D:D:D haha

  • XYZ

    This is all completely meaningless without a reference from a decent quality DSLR/SLT. We can’t tell which image is the most accurate without a reference.

  • Yeahhhhhh.!!!

  • Cerunnos

    This is an useless test if ISO values differ…. While not much can be done about the iPhone, at least put the Androids with the same settings.

  • APai

    and yet strangely sony’s phones can only produce a 5MP panorama, while iphone spits out a monster MP output. so has sony fixed it ?

  • APai

    “Sony has led the way for some time in imaging”
    perhaps you forgot nokia ?

  • jmcomms

    I thought I’d implied Nokia too when I mentioned comparing against two of their handsets. However, I’ll qualify it by saying that when Sony Ericsson was investing in better image sensors, LED (then Xenon) flash bulbs and better post-processing, Nokia wasn’t really doing much more than licensing the Carl Zeiss name to use on rather ordinary plastic lenses. Only more recently would I say that Nokia has really upped the stakes by realising that image quality is important – and I’d say that Sony has perhaps begun to go the other way, thinking it’s the number of pixels that counts.

  • APai

    I’m sorry, my bad. I missed that line in its entirety!

  • arifkpi

    while you’re laughing i’m just capturing it with my Xperia Z :D:D:D haha

  • Bolo

    Fantastic. I think someone at sony finally mentioned they should put the good sensors in their own phones :p

  • SonyFan

    not funny :P

  • I think the camera of the Z produces better colors than iphone5…the green and yellow are somehow washed out with the iphone camera.
    If you reduce the brightness of the Z you can possibly see the sky better.
    I think the Z performed better in low light than iphone…┬┤cause you can see the light reflections of the tree…what worries me is the zoom…I hope they show some better examples

  • TheLoyalist

    Eh, who’s that really bad amatuer photographer? Look at the Xperia Z ISO’s….man, idiot!

  • Quark Gluon

    If you look closely at Xperia Z’s samples, you will find annoying magenta fringes on the edges. But don’t worry, it will disappear once you apply your favourite instagram effects or just upload the image to your social network. Just give no love to the crop buttons, or just be realistic and get a real camera. Phone camera just getting better and better, but it also means you can’t get the best of it today.

  • Shichun Zhang

    5MP panorama? how does it work?

  • i just wondering if xperia z sample taken with super auto or manual configuration

  • John-Mark Christmas

    Wow!!! That last photo really sealed the deal for Sony. Well done.

  • tonkotsu

    if it was on auto.. then…………

  • Zephyron

    Eh, just do what I do and take multiple pictures with either your own camera or the phone camera in portrait orientation, and then stitch them together later on with either Photoshop or applications like PTGUI

    It’ll be better than what any phone app is capable of doing anyway

  • APai

    I agree with you, I have been doing that both with my phone and camera for a long time. but you know the simple convenience of seeing the result and adjusting your point of view on the spot works wonders sometimes. that is what i miss with the older approach that you have suggested.

  • APai

    the xperia sola has a 5mp cam, and the t has a 13mp. unfortunately, both have the same low res output :(

    it pains to buy a flagship and see that it is stunted. sont, get your **** together.


  • The third one in the third row says it all ! Plus, iPhone tends to over-saturate pictures and I’ve noticed that a long time ago.

  • Zephyron

    I see your point too, but the phone panorama can act as a preview for the bigger things to come :3

  • boom!

    at least SONY’s NOT in a patent war! LOLx,

    and a great designs too :D

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  • APai

    there also is the factor of time. i have been through a couple of situations where i absolutely did not have 5 minutes worth of time, but i had to cover kids and a bunch of people, AND cram in a couple of panoramas at a historical place. i was juggling with a handycam a dslr and a cell phone. yeah pretty crazy! but i did it for my kids who love to review a tour at leisure. so i did get a couple of lovely panoramas… sadly no luck with the resolution. thing is t is perfectly capable of a higher res – and would have loved to have it that way. it’s just that sony should try harder, which is the only reason they can set themselves apart from the pack.

  • XYZ

    Not even close to a DSLR. You could match a point and shoot, but even something like a RX100 would murder the 808 in terms of out and out image quality, while being no less pocketable. The 808 is good, but it has absolutely trite lenses compared to most dedicated digital cameras.

  • shanefalco

    iphone 5 win! apple is the best!

  • APai

    I agree – I also insisted the same, but apparently it comes very close to beating the low end dslrs. look at the results and rating of the 808 reviews by good reviwers. you’ll be surprised how nokia has managed to make 808 a great camera phone

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  • MatthiasDB

    To me, the winner of this all is the iPhone 5. Every shot shows more sharpness and detail than the Xperia Z.
    But I don’t care, I’m going to buy the Xperia Z anyway :)

  • MatthiasDB

    load of bs
    Even without the reference we can compare and judge:
    -noise performance
    -amount of noise reduction
    -exposure in difficult setups

    The only thing you can’t judge without a decent camera reference is the white balance and color reproduction.. and then again, who’s to say the “decent camera” nails it…

  • PVV

    I bought Sony Xperia S this summer and I can definetly say that its 12 mpx “fancy” Exmor sensor shoots pictures that are terrible even compared to my ancient 5 mpx Nokia N95 (to be frank, in low light or even decent electric light those pictures are complete unusable garbage). And as I have red reviews on smartphone cameras on the web and looked at sample pictures, I have got a strong opinion that only Nokia sensors with CZ optic in PureView 808 and Lumia 920 can produce good quality pictures in present time. I am really disapointed in Sony (however its only about phone camera, all other things are pretty good).

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  • It’s painfully obvious you know little to nothing about photography. The fact that you’re whining about megapixels, of all things, is the giveaway.

  • APai

    salutations zen master of photography & technology!
    pray tell me how a 5mp panorama is better than a 28mp output that iphone 5 spits out. despite sony supplying the sensor ?

    please. do enlighten!

  • I never said anything about 5MP being better than 28MP. But the important thing in images is not the megapixel size but rather the less tangible things like noise, color accuracy, white balance, etc. Most displays don’t display the full pixels of even a 3MP image, so it’s really not that important how many MP you’ve got unless you’d like to print full-size prints, in which case you should be shooting with something other than a smartphone camera.

  • APai

    but you did laugh on a high horse about my ignorance about MPs. why is a superior MP count necessarily bad ? you can take a smaller crop of anything useful with a higher MP.

    see, my point is that large panoramas are good, with a 5mp panorama, the resolution is too less in the height. the width is fine. because I can selectively crop what i want, and for that resolution matters.

    I know that tangible things like color accuracy and others matter, but the cellphone is a limited beast. the masses will never lug a camera, and so we are talking only about a camera. also, you can downsample the 12mp or whatever they offer to reduce noise by a bit.

    I have a dslr, a superzoom and have owned compact cameras for more than 12 years now, so, i know a thing or two about digital photography. and anything around 6Mp should be good enough for a poster sized print. i appreciate all of that – i’m talking only about the given options at hand

  • I agree with you at your most issues, I have been doing that both with my phone and camera for a long time. But i think the camera of the Z produces better colors than iphone5…the green and yellow are somehow washed out with the iphone camera.

  • Rune Austad Visth


    Sorry…. get out of your Apple world and try different stuff than Apple for a change.:)

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  • mahadragon

    Starting from pic #1 upper left corner, the iP5 rendered the sky more accurately than the others. I’ve seen the sky enough to know what it’s supposed to look like. Pixel peeping, I look at the sliver of building that the sun is hitting just above the stairs and it’s clear to me the iPhone’s rendering is more lifelike. That hint of sunlight offers more contrast than either shot and shows the greater dynamic range of the iPhone. The Experia Z’s reds and greens appear a bit more saturated than iP5.

    The next 2 shots at night are overwhelmingly in favor of the iPhone. iP5’s shots are much more controlled and offer a greater contrast. The other 2 shots have blooming from the lights which is happening because the sensors can’t handle the extremes of really bright lights and a really dark background.

    Pic #4 is some trees at night with an office building in the background. It’s a poor shot and it’s too hard to interpret anything.

    #5 Again, the Experia Z is over emphasizing the red and green colors being more saturated than the rest of the field with the “8F” being a bit more red than the field. There’s blooming from the column on the left side due to the fact that the sun is hitting it and creating a harsh contrast with the darker background. iP5’s shot is more controlled.

    #6 is in favor of the iPhone. The tree on the far right is reproduced in significantly better detail than the rest of the field. The Experia Z made the tree into a dark mass while the Oppo overexposed it badly. Just to the left of the tree there is a sliver of sunlight between the buildings. iP5’s dynamic range really shines here being able to handle the extreme bright of the sunlight and darker background better than the field. Again, the Sony appears a bit more green than the rest of the field.

    I won’t cover the rest but sum up. I think iP5 made the best and most accurate images overall. iP5 without question had greater dynamic range and the pictures looked more lifelike than the rest of the field. The Experia Z had more saturated pictures but possibly at the expense of color accuracy.

    In just about every shot where there was some contrast iP5 showed it could better handle bright light against a dark background. This is again, apparent in the two miniature house shots on the bottom where iP5 clearly nailed the brighter front facade of the house against the darker grassy area. The only shot where iP5 failed was on the very last pic on the bottom right where the 8 mp really showed a lot of graininess.

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