Phablets, or just ‘big phones’ if you prefer, aren’t normally associated with great cameras, but the flagship models from both Samsung and LG both have fairly capably 13mp shooters.
Therefore, it would be fairly rude not to compare them. Some stand out specifications are as follows
- Video recording at 4k resolution (2160p) at 30fps
- 1080p video at 60fps
- HDR (stills and video)
- OIS (Optical Image Stabilisation)
The major difference here is that the G2 has OIS technology, meaning, in theory the shots should do better in low light, and blur less. Whilst the low light performance of the G2 is not bad at all, blur is something I encountered frequently with the G2. It seems the stock camera application isn’t very good at capturing anything that moves unless there is plenty of natural light around. I did try some other camera applications from the Android market, and indeed, they performed better. Something to be aware of if you’re thinking of picking up the G2.
On to the pictures… All of these pictures were taken using automatic settings, except for turning the flash off during the low light scenes where appropriate.
The Note 3 pictures are on the left, G2 on the right.
My overall thoughts are that the G2 does perform better in low light, but as with most phone cameras, the slightest bit of movement and it all goes out of the window and you end up with a blurry mess. The Note 3 tends to make everything slightly orange when amplifying the light.
The Note 3 seems to do a better job getting the white balance right in decent lighting conditions (see the market scene, where the G2 image is over exposed comparison) and detail on both phones is impressive, so long as you don’t zoom in too far.
Video capture on both phones is good, but again, with the stock camera app, the G2 framerate plummets as it tries to amplify the light in a low-light scenario. Try another video recording app, and you’ll get better results. I used ‘Focal beta’ which, whilst definitely a beta, gave good results in low light performance.
This video was recorded using the Focal app, as you can tell the microphone in the G2 doesn’t cope very well with the very loud music, unfortunately I didn’t have the same scenario captured on the Note 3 for a valid comparison, but for this level of noise, you really need the HAAC microphones (rich recording) found in the early HTC One models, and the Lumia 1020.
Either phone is capable of some terrific shots, particularly in good lighting conditions, I feel the G2 needs some work at the moment but has the potential with software updates (official and non-official!) to be much better.
Do you have either of these phones, what are your thoughts? Do let us know in the comments.