Comparison of Cameras Across iPhone Generations

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001


    Lisa Bettany, one of the developers behind Camera+, has posted two interesting series of photos comparing the camera quality across all generations of the iPhone, as well as to Canon point-and-shoot and professional-level cameras.
    PetaPixel has taken the images from the iPhones and presented portions of them side-by-side to provide the clearest example of how the iPhone's rear-facing camera has evolved over the years.


    Article Link: Comparison of Cameras Across iPhone Generations
  2. AAPLaday Guest


    Aug 6, 2008
    Manchester UK
    The original and the 3g look like garbage. The dumb phone i had at the time was far better for photography use.

    Autofocus really makes a difference
  3. Tastydirt macrumors member

    Sep 25, 2009
    Interesting, but we really need 100% crops to get a true comparison, and some night shots too.
  4. flamejob macrumors member


    Oct 11, 2007
    Look at the link in the post!
  5. chrmjenkins macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2007

    Here's some night shots from the original.

    At the park

    Having dinner

    On the beach
  6. dethmaShine macrumors 68000

    Apr 13, 2010
    Into the lungs of Hell
    I am pretty sure iPhone3G wasn't that bad.

    I used it for almost 2 years. It took pretty good pictures. I am not a photographer but they weren't as bad as the one shown in the first pic.

    Silly stupid.
  7. room237 macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2008
    Queens, NYC
    The 4S looks like it brings out more of a magenta hue that I'm not so crazy about. Anyone else?
  8. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003

    Mmmm, that looks yummy. Now I'm hungry.
  9. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.
    Sharp but the colors are still of compared to the original (pro slr camera).
    Look on their website there are better shots to compare.
    But for an iPhone its not that bad at all, just have to adjust the colors afterwards.
  10. jayducharme macrumors 68040


    Jun 22, 2006
    The thick of it
    I'm glad the article posts comparison images from "real" cameras. What amazed me is how much more I like the images from the iPhone 4. There seems to be a richer color in those versions. The 4S images seem over-exposed.
  11. sevimli macrumors 6502a


    Jun 26, 2007
    They tested on a macro shot which original and 3g did not have that capability... Not fair at all...
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    For the macro situation, you can pretty clearly see the difference without the 100% crop. The change over time is impressive -- the performance of the 4S is surprisingly close to the PowerShot. On the other hand, these are situations where camera phones do relatively better, vs. things like a portrait, where I think they're more noticably not as good as P&S's (and certainly not as good as dSLR).
  13. andylyon, Oct 25, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011

    andylyon macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2008
    Haha night shots on the 2G, 3G and 3GS would just be a black rectangle!

    EDIT: Damn, beaten to it!
  14. cvaldes macrumors 68040

    Dec 14, 2006
    somewhere else
    Wow, that chick in the bikini is smokin' hot!

  15. BC2009 macrumors 68000


    Jul 1, 2009
    That's standard apple operating procedure. They are cutting edge in some areas, but lag in others. Usually when they make up for the areas in which they are lacking they leap-frog the competition. Examples:

    Bad Mobile Phone Camera --> Best Mobile Phone Camera
    No MMS on iPhone --> Now you can iMessage/Tweet/MMS almost anything from any iOS device
    No eSATA on Mac --> Now you get Thunderbolt
    No Voice Recognition --> Now you get a personal assistant
    No Copy/Paste on iOS --> Now the slickest select/copy/paste touch UI out there
    No Multitasking on iOS --> Now smart Multitasking that saves your battery
    No HDMI on iPhone/iPad --> Now you have HDMI/Composite/Component adapters + AirPlay
    No Magazines on iOS --> Now you get Newsstand
    No Third Party Apps --> Now App Store has more apps than Palm ever did
    Poor Cloud Offering --> iCloud will effortlessly sync your stuff + 3rd party apps

    Sure there are some things that Apple usually just does catch-up on. The "WiFi Hotspot" on iPhone was one example, but it was basically AT&T blocking that. Technically the iPhone 3GS was the first to offer tethering, but AT&T did not support it until iPhone 4 was almost out, so Apple did not bother with hotspot. And decent notifications were ultimately a cross between Web OS and Android functionality with some pretty UI and a nice sliding gesture to jump to the app and some widgets in the notification center. But Apple by and large does three things:

    1) Completely change a market with a ground-breaking product introduction

    2) Sit back and leap frog the competition once they feel they have something that is good enough or done right to fit with their road map

    3) Produce a solid or above-average (or even best implementation) that is more or less a clone of the competition's offerings

    What they don't do is:

    1) Add a feature or product without extensively testing it internally

    2) Add a feature or product just because the competition is doing it

    3) Add something that is going to require more customer support and therefore lower customer satisfaction ratings

    I don't doubt Apple's ability to add willy nilly features. Rather I suspect it comes down to internal prioritization and fitting those features into a road map that is already in place. Blu-Ray has never fit in Apple's roadmap since they want everything to be a download to a hard drive or be available in the cloud, so they will always leave that to third-party providers.

    And YES, this can be frustrating when Apple's priorities don't match your personal individual priorities.
  16. Norkusa macrumors member


    Nov 25, 2010
    Grand Rapids, MI
    4S is definitely the sharpest but the white balance looks like it's off just a bit.
  17. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.
    Fixed that for you.:)
  18. ksgant macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2006
    I'm sure the problem with the original iPhone and 3G models was that it couldn't focus that close. The normal pictures on those two models were fine as-is. It's just in this one demo showing they couldn't focus that close at all.
  19. JusChexin macrumors member

    May 28, 2009
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    Maybe it's just me, but the quality of my 3GS camera shots are nowhere near the quality shown here :-/
  20. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    Given the inherent auto-ISO/auto-WB limitations of any small sensor smartphone camera, I actually prefer the white balance on iPhone 4 better than the 4S. YMMV.
  21. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    What a nice evening. I can't believe all the stars.
  22. Dcuellar macrumors regular

    Feb 24, 2010

    I can't stop laughing...
  23. chimpboy74 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 12, 2007
    look closer, if you zoom in the woman behind is topless!
  24. Dr McKay macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Aug 11, 2010
    I genuinely laughed out loud. Good show sir.
  25. daxomni macrumors 6502

    Jun 24, 2009
    This thread does a great job of reminding folks that not ever component Apple chooses is great. Or even good. Or even worth using at all.

    No eSATA on Macbook Pro --> Now you get ThunderBlunder!
    No USB3 on Macbook Pro --> Now you get ThunderBlunder!
    No HDMI on Macbook Pro --> Now you get ThunderBlunder!
    No ExpressCard on Macbook Pro --> Now you get SD Card Slot?!

    And what's with only two ancient decade-old USB2 ports on a thousand plus computer in 2011?

    Sometimes Apple gets it very right but other times Apple just plain screws up.

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