10

I was comparing the rear camera quality of two Android phones; The Samsung Galaxy S2 and Lenovo A7000.

Both have the same camera specs,

  • A7000: 8 MP, 3264 x 2448 pixels, autofocus, dual-LED flash

  • Galaxy S2: 8 MP, 3264 x 2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash

When using apps like Snapchat or just Camera, I noticed that the A7000's picture quality is lesser (blurry) than that of the Galaxy S2. The pictures taken using the Lenovo aren't that great and the S2 has some really good quality.

Why is it that when different phones have same camera spec, they don't capture images the same way?

  • 2
    In addition to hardware and software differences, one factor that can have big effect on the quality of pictures taken by phones, or even the same phone, is how dirty the lens is. – Ross Ridge Sep 21 '15 at 7:35
  • It would be really helpful if you could take the same photograph with the two cameras and upload them, so we can see the visual difference you are referring to. – IQAndreas Sep 21 '15 at 21:17
  • @IQAndreas sure. I'll upload them when I'm able to (right now, having a busy schedule and I don't have the photos in my current phone) – Ero Sɘnnin Sep 22 '15 at 0:45
  • Why does a 16MP Brand1 camera takes better photos than a 16MP Brand2 camera? – Salman A Oct 19 '15 at 13:26
21

The only thing you mention is the resolution. Stating that the cameras have the same specs only because they have the same resolution, is a fallacy at best. It's like saying that two cars should perform the same because they both have 4 wheels.

When using apps like Snapchat or just Camera, I noticed that the A7000's picture quality is lesser (blurry) than that of the GS2.

With the amount of information provided you might as well roll a dice to determine what camera is better. Did you use the same settings? Did you take the same photo?

Why is it that when different phones have same camera spec, they don't capture images the same way?

There is more to a camera than its resolution:

  1. Software can have an influence on the image. That software may or may not be visible to you. Noise reduction, stabilisation, etc.
  2. the lens
  3. additional hardware like image stabilisation
  • Did you use the same settings? Did you take the same photo? Snapchat has its own settings (I guess) so I had nothing to do with changing the settings. And yes, I took photos of the same visual. Great answer btw :) – Ero Sɘnnin Sep 21 '15 at 17:21
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    @EroSɘnnin good, the less variation you have, the more reasonable it is to compare two images. But any app will only have so much access to the camera as android allows them. If one chip is better than the other, you can't do much about it in software. Say for example, if one chip is performing better at low light it can boost the sensitivity to keep the exposure short and a shorter time means less blur even in regular lighting conditions. Phone camera specs are horribly obfuscated by marketing gibberish. The lack of objective measures makes comparison hard. I'd buy a "real" camera. – data Sep 21 '15 at 17:42
9

Because resolution is probably the least important from all the characteristics of a camera (and it can even go against quality, a larger resolution without an accordingly better sensor might just as well give a worse overall quality).

In the usual circumstances of phones, probably the most important factor is the sensor size and quality, and neither will be accurately described in sales literature. The physical size of the sensor has obvious influence on image quality. A smaller sensor will see less light, and while the attached hardware and software will try to compensate, this will increase noise.

Then come the actual lens and optics. This is again something you can't really describe and compare in specifications but it matters a lot. Phones that excel in the camera department often have more complicated and more expensive lens systems coming from reputable old names of the photographic era.

And finally, the processing of the image. I don't think you can find any phone camera these days that doesn't do an awful lot of processing under the hood because that's what people want to have. Most people are very bad photographers so it would really upset them to see what they actually shot. :-) Phones compensate for almost anything these days, lighting conditions, movement, they enhance contrast, sharpness, faces, whatever.

So, what it boils down to: there is really no other way to compare two phone cameras but to shoot and compare for yourself. If you're lucky, somebody else already made the comparison and you can find the pictures on the net. But always judge by the pictures, not by specifications.

4

You also need to take into account the pixel size of the sensor, as well as the sensor size, all of which can positive affect image quality of the photo. The processing of the photo is vital as well.

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    Consider technically explaining how the pixel and sensor size affects the image quality and then argue with specs in question. These are the things not everyone knows or often comes in contact with, so a thorough explanation is definitely required. – Firelord Sep 21 '15 at 8:16
-4

The fact that some cameras are interlaced has a huge effect on quality.It is down to the marketing and saying that a camera has 21mp for example when it doesn't.

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    On the contrary, I fail to find the usefulness out of this answer. Could you be more precise and technical in explaining your answer? – Ero Sɘnnin Sep 21 '15 at 17:24

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