Nokia Lumia 1020 Phone Camera Review - Part 2 - Image Quality and other stuff

Above are what 100% blowups from a 41MP smartphone micro sensor look like. No Sony A7r certainly, but not that bad either. These are out of camera jpgs. with no levels adjustments or sharpening. I've seen worse on DSLR's with good reputations and much smaller image sizes and larger sensors than this, so it is a remarkable technical achievement to get the image quality this good.

A few other interesting bits and pieces.

There is a shutter button, half press and it focuses, fully press to take the picture. Much like a 'normal' camera. It's nice to use as well.

This is a Windows phone so just plugging it into a Mac isn't an option. However, the Nokia website has a nice little piece of software which I've installed on my Mac which accesses the images folder so I can see what's there when I do plug the phone into my laptop. It's then just a case of dragging the images to where I want them.

The camera takes creates two versions of each image. One at high resolution and one at 5MP. This smaller version can then be used to upload to Social Media. Very handy. I should also point out that these downsized versions are astoundingly sharp.

There are also some touch screen manual controls. Unfortunately these are very small and difficult to see. However there is a curve type graphic where ISO, shutter speed, +/- and colour balance can be altered. There is also a control to select the focus point and a control for turning the flash on and off. Incidentally the fill-in flash is pretty good and natural looking. See below.

Overall it's nice and easy to use. With the superb view screen taken into account, there's actually a lot here that 'proper' camera manufacturers should be doing. Why many of them have such poor live view screen implementation compared to this, I cannot guess. It's not as though the Nokia is that expensive. The screen is also big enough to negotiate comfortably and to be honest this is a much nicer camera to use than the extremely fiddly Panasonic GM1, which I did think was a good camera. Until now that is. Obviously the 1020 has no interchangeable lens function, but the image quality at low ISO's is better than the GM1 and operationally I much prefer it. The GM1 is awful to work with in sunny conditions, the Nokia Phone isn't. You may well ask, as I do, why is that the case?

Hopefully, I'll really run it through it's paces today and report back tomorrow. 

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