It's 2017. Which RW phone takes the best pictures?

So reading a few discussions from the past, like this one started by @saxman, I know I’m not the only one.

Camera Still Takes Bad Photos

I don’t expect this discussion to actually lead to any happy resolutions. (I am optimistically calling this a “discussion”. Right now it’s just me talking in an empty room. )

Before anyone responds to chastise me for “wanting a mobile phone camera to compete with a professional camera”, that’s not what’s happening here at all. So I’ve never owned anything better than a $300 point & shoot digital camera. The funny thing is, the best camera I ever had was my very first digital camera probably pushing 12 years ago now. It was a simple, low-end Kodak, but it consistently took crisp, clear, color-correct pictures. Every camera I’ve owned since then has been a disappointment. When I finally broke that old Kodak, I bough the newest version of that Kodak camera…and it took crappy photos. I went out and bought the most highly recommended Canon of the low-end market, and couldn’t get a non-blurry photo to save my life. Of course folks just reply to say “you have to hold the camera still”. Like @saxman, I’m just looking for relative success. Somehow I was able to take great photos with that old Kodak. Did I develop Parkinson’s since then? No. No, I did not. (At least I have that good news!)

I could care less about another 10 million pixels! I think that old Kodak was 2 MP, and it took great photos. There is a WHOLE LOT more that goes into making a great quality photo than megapixels. I whole lot of crap is still crap. 21 MP of blurry, grainy, color-flat photo is still a crappy photo. Of course if I’m trying to publish photos in magazines or blow them up to make billboards, well pixel count starts to matter. But I’m just a guy wanting to look at photos online and occasionally print a 4x6. I might even go crazy and print an 8x10 for a frame. Hold me back!

So…all that rambling for what? …well, I’m trying to become a long-time RW customer and fan. I bought 2 phones and am on the 14 day “experiment”. I picked up the Huawei Ascend 5W and the Moto G4. Very similar camera specs. The specs on both are way above our old Samsung Galaxy S4 phones that we currently have with Verizon. I’m happy with both phones–like them a lot actually. We are having a cellular call issue with the Moto G4, but I’m sure tech support will resolve that for me. HOWEVER, my wife is extremely picky about the camera. She has been testing the 2 new phones against her old Galaxy S4. She sets up shots with all 3, then views the results all on the same screen to level the viewing playing field. I have to agree that the pics on her old phone are consistently better. I would describe them as “warmer” and more color-true.

Now me? I just take the new phone, faster CPU, more memory, more storage, WiFi calling to resolve my basement call issues, and the RW savings. I don’t worry about the photo quality. My wife? Almost ALL she cares about is the photo quality. I think if every other call dropped but the camera took consistently great photos, she’d be happy! (maybe that is hyperbole)

So of the current RW lineup, which phone is going to stand the best chance of satisfying my wife’s camera demands? I don’t want to throw hundreds of dollars at this problem, but I will if it actually results in happy wife. We’ve been married more than 24 years, and believe me, that has involved throwing money at all kinds of issues over the years!

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I’ve seen photos on the Samsung S6 and it takes a very clear, crisp picture. A photo of a flower clearly showed the pollen on the petals. The Moto X Pure also has a great camera.

well, not the Moto G4. i got this phone as soon as it was available and it hasn’t been particularly sharp when compared to my previous Moto X. and now it is taking nothing but blurry photos as it’s lens is cloudy and no amount of cleaning removes the cloudiness. it is under the glass, not on the outer surface. i have the phone in a very good, rugged case so it is not directly exposed to harm.

If the camera is defective, you can contact Motorola here:

Motorola Support - Find Answers | Motorola Mobility, Inc.

The Moto G4 is now officially my phone. I have transferred my Verizon number to it and set it up the way I like. I’m actually happy with the photos it takes–mine are clear and sharp as long as I’m super-steady. The moisture issue you have under the glass is not good. That might be a warranty issue, unless of course the internal water sensor indicates your phone took a dunk.

My wife, as I explained earlier, does not like the G4 picture results. She is going to a Verizon store today (I hope) to play with a Samsung Galaxy 6. If she likes it, I’ll order one from RW and get that $Verizon account shut down.

Your wife might like the “effect” setting on the Samsung S7:

I am very happy with my Moto X Pure…and the camera is definitely an improvement from my old Moto X1…but I had the opportunity to compare the MXP side-by-side with an S6…and the S6 won hands down.

I just flew to Mexico and back for a vacation. The monitors had a warning: “Samsung Galaxy S7 not allowed on the plane”

Since I want to take my phone with me when I fly, the S7 is ruled out for now.

Are you sure it was the S7… I thought only the Note 7 were on the no-fly list!

That is a mistake. The phone on the no fly list is the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, not the Samsung Galaxy S7. Just a month ago I carried my Samsung Galaxy S7 on a round trip flight involving 4 boardings without a problem.

I have a Moto X2 and use Camera zoom FX premium. The pics are about as good as they get with this camera hardware.

*** ~~ßocephous™***

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My bad. Yeah, the Note 7 is the naughty one with an explosive temper.

Tell your wife that the chosen effect is visible and adjustable before the picture is snapped. Here is what she might find to be an interesting scenario:

  1. I connected my phone to my PC using Samsung SideSync. This puts my phone’s screen on my desktop computer’s screen and lets me control it with my mouse. The connection can be made with either a USB cable or over WiFi.

  2. I mounted the camera on a tripod and framed what I wanted to shoot.

  3. I was able to adjust the effects from my desktop PC while viewing the picture I was about to take.

  4. I had configured to S7’s camera app to respond to a voice command. When the photo was adjusted to what I liked I said “shoot” and the phone took that picture.

Easy peasy with excellent results. Great for taking photographs to include in eBay ads because you don’t have to deal with your own shadow.

RW Galaxy S7 ordered today. Wife liked S6 and S7 equally, but S6 does not support SD card at all. I did not go with the S7 Edge simply because of glass replacement cost. Yikes! It’s almost twice the cost of S7 glass. I’ve had to put new glass in most of my phones and tablets. They inevitably get dropped just right and…ouch.

Thanks @billg and @bocephous for the tips!

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own both, pixel has best camera ever seen on a smart phone.

#1 Google Pixel XL

#2 Moto X Pure

If you check most reviews, the media agrees the Pixel has one of the best cameras on any cell phone.

Pixel smartphone camera review: At the top - DxOMark

Google Pixel XL vs Apple iPhone 7 Plus: What’s the difference? - Pocket-lint

I haven’t tried any of the 3.0 phones, but on the face of it Moto Z play sounds like the best bet as it has a camera attachment with a real lens.

On any bare phone, the biggest limitation is that a phone that’s, say, 10 mm thick can not have a lens with more than a 10 mm focal length (actually, somewhat less). The result is that they are always wide angle compared to any normal camera, whether point & shoot or SLR. The thinner the phone (always high priority for the marketing folks), the worse this effect.

The moto x pure takes good photos only when the light is good. Inside with low light doesn’t yield great photos. Outside is great. I’ve tried multiple camera apps on lollipop, marshmallow, and nougat. All the same results. It was, however, an incredible step up from my moto g 1 and moto g 3.

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