The modern high-end smartphone is the ultimate example of the convergence of technology: besides being, you know, a phone, these devices are our music players, video players, alarm clocks, organizers, dictionaries, calculators, internet communications devices, full HD video recorders and go-to cameras.
The very last aspect of smartphones – them being our go-to cameras – has improved significantly within the last 3-4 years. We’ve gone from web-cam quality photos of the Nokia 7650 to dedicated point-and-shoot imaging capabilities of smartphones like the Nokia N8, Windows Phone 8X by HTC, and iPhone 4S.
The recently released iPhone 5 has a very powerful camera for a smartphone. It’s actually not that different compared to the iPhone 4S’ camera, but that’s not a bad thing considering how the 4S’ camera is still among the best in the business; shooting 8 MP (3264 x 2448) photos and recording videos at Full HD (1920 x 1080). It’s performance is helped by the five element lens and backside illumination.
Now, we’ve seen comparisons of the iPhone 5’s camera against the iPhone 4 and 4S, and other phones like the Galaxy S III, One X and Lumia 920, it’s time we compared it against the really high high-end cameras: professional DSLRs.
The short and informal comparison of the iPhone 5 vs. the Canon 5D Mark III comes from Dustin Curtis. He took one photo each of the about the same view from the same position, and posted them on his blog.
Here they are:
5D Mark III
The differences are immediately visible. Canon’s 5D Mark III, with its 22.3MP resolution, a significantly larger sensor and lens takes obviously awesomely detailed and accurately colored photographs, but the iPhone 5 is no slouch. This is considering how the iPhone 5 ($649) costs almost five times as less as a Canon 5D Mark III ($3499).
If the reviews around the web and our own testing is anything to go by, the iPhone 5 can easily replace a dedicated point and shoot camera for casual photography. That’s another consumer device that we don’t need to carry around everywhere anymore!
At the rate at which things are moving, we may just see a time in the near future when smartphone cameras reach the image quality of low-end DSLRs.