It's the one you've been waiting for. The highest end (in terms of imaging) iPhone ever against an AAWP stalwart. Last year's iPhone 11 Pro managed to win out against the Lumia 950, thanks to triple camera, restrained image processing, loads of horsepower, and some very clever multi-frame software. So the 12 Pro Max, with larger sensor, new OIS system, and longer lensed telephoto should do even better, right? Well... Let's find out.
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It's the big one... the largest iPhone ever with the largest, most sophisticated camera ever. In an iPhone, at least. But it looks pretty good so far - an imaging shootout is coming next (of course), but in the meantime here's a specs feature. Yes, the 2015 Lumia's outgunned, but it gives me an opportunity to go over what's in the new iPhone flagship against a known bookmark.
Despite Apple's (and then Google's) attempts to quosh the humble wired 3.5mm audio jack on modern smartphones (and copied by many others), plenty of decent smartphones are still sold with jacks and with DACs feeding whatever wired headphones you care to plug in. Potentially higher quality, and certainly no issues with drained batteries or lost AirPods (etc.) In this update of an article from 18 months ago, I test some of the 'jacked up' smartphones that I've had in for testing in 2020. Any conclusions, any winners?
A few days ago I pitched the new Sony Xperia 5 ii against the familiar Lumia 950 XL and I did promise an imaging head to head at the time. This is lockdown Britain and weather conditions haven't been ideal, but I do have enough comparison images and crops below to be able to deliver thoughts and a verdict. Tldr? The Xperia 5 ii wasn't quite as impressive as the specs and hype would suggest.
Cross posted here to AAS as well, because the Sony Xperia 5 ii is possibly the Android phone that most closely matches how I'd hope a classic Nokia smartphone would have turned out after half an extra decade of evolution. Think of it, perhaps, as a modern day Nokia N8 or how the Lumia series might have ended up if it gone down the multi-camera route. From display to multimedia to overall performance, the Xperia 5 ii is a bit special. Here's my initial impressions and specs round-up, watch this space for an imaging head to head as well.
Something a little different here, with a three way test - just because I have the very latest from Google and Apple here. Pitched against the classic Lumia 950 (from 2015), because this is AAWP, after all, I've taken a number of test scenes in all light conditions - which will be the purest of PureView cameras? Do note that the 'big one' on the iPhone 12 imaging front is November's 12 Pro Max, so that'll have its own camera showdown in due course...
OK, it's a fair cop, the comparisons are starting to get a little stretched now in terms of raw power, but the brand new (out today) iPhone 12 is almost the same size as my trusty Lumia 950 and might well be a device that many are aiming for, or at least aspiring to. No, it's not the iPhone 12 Pro Max with the next-gen camera stuff, but it's not a million miles off. So how does it spec up to a Lumia that you'll all know and love?
I thought this might be of interest, from someone who was all in on Windows 10 Mobile and Continuum (or Android and Samsung DeX) as the way forward four years ago. Even though Windows 10 Mobile had the rug pulled out from under its feet by Microsoft and then died the death of (lack of) a thousand apps, the dream of hot-desking lives on in other guises. Witness my data point below - it's not a perfect solution but it's technically elegant.
A week ago I compared the relatively small, brand new £350 Pixel 4a to the favourite Lumia 950, with quite a bit in common - now I do the same at a larger scale to the 4a's sister device, the (still mid-priced) 4a 5G, more equivalent in feel and size to the larger 950 XL. The Pixel 4a 5G goes get several component upgrades, mind you, over the smaller 4a, see the specifications below, and ends up hitting the sweet spot for most people, I think. Just the lack of Qi charging stands between this device and perfection at the price. Video review coming very soon!
It's true that I've done a fair number of shootouts that include Google Pixels in the past - and the hardware here is the same as the main camera on the last few generations - but the software continues to be tweaked and, besides, the Pixel 4a is brand new to the UK (and compared generally to the Lumia 950 here), so why not pitch it against the natural single-lensed competitor from the Windows world? Neither of these camera set-ups are as flexible as the triple-lensed solutions available elsewhere, but they both still take great as-is photos...