Given all the discussion about the underwhelming quality of the camera app, I thought I'd install the Google Camera app and compare the two.
Given all the discussion about the underwhelming quality of the camera app, I thought I'd install the Google Camera app and compare the two. I should add that this is not a scientific test, it's just me, a camera and 2 apps. However, I am a keen photographer and have worked as a pro in the past.
All done using standard auto settings, with HDR on.
For me, there is one killer issue with the Nokia app. The images just aren't as sharp as from Google Camera. It's not a camera or phone issue, as the images from the Google app are as sharp as a tack. This is a shame, as the Nokia app is actually better at almost everything else.
Panoramas are easier with the stock app, and the Live Bokeh feature is stunning. Google Camera does okay with these, but the Nokia app is just better. HDR is done much better with the Nokia app as well. It brings more out of the shadows and, whilst the images are a little too bright for me, this is easily fixed.
Also, the Google app complained constantly about low light if the subject wasn't brightly lit. The Nokia app just got on with it.
The thing is, though, you can have the best exposure, colour rendition and bokeh in the world, but if your subject isn't sharp, your images just won't be good enough. Nokia need to fix this, and fast. I suspect they've largely got away with it so far because it only really becomes an issue with close subjects.
Really, the problems aren't actually as big as many posts would have you believe. If you don't take close-up shots, you'll never think your images are anything but high quality, because that's what they are. If you do like close-up shots, though, you will see a difference if you compare them to the Google app, at least. I'm less worried about the camera app than I was a little while ago, but that sharpness issue does need fixing.
I will also say that I had several crashes of the Google app, running these tests, so I won't be using it regularly. That's not an app issue, of course, as it was never meant for the Nokia 8 and has been modified to make it work.
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