Camera Shootout: SGSIII vs One X vs One S vs Galaxy Note

I've mentioned this before, the end is nigh for the digital compact camera! The top end smartphones have been progressing well camera wise the past couple of years, and we're almost at a point where they render the digital compact rather useless. If you go out you take your phone, there's no need for another device that takes just as good photos as the phone in your pocket! The one thing they do lack is optical zoom, but most of us can make do without that, especially given the high-resolution of the images taken on our phones, we can simply digitally zoom in most of the time to get the cut of a photo we desire.

I'm lucky to have four of the top smartphones on me right now, the Samsung Galaxy SIII, HTC One X, HTC One S and the Samsung Galaxy Note. What better way to discover how good the camera on each of these phones is than with a group camera test!

In order to make this test as fair as possible we took all four phones outside with us and took a few sample shots. If you mouseover each of the images you can see which phone took the shot, and clicking on a set of images will bring up a larger sideshow preview so you can judge the quality for yourself!

The One X and Galaxy SIII show the best amount of detail in the first selection of images taken, however the One X does seem to have a lower contrast. This helps represent the cloud formation better, but does leave the picture with a somewhat muted look. The One S shows a more saturated colour quality and is actually my favourite shot from the four taken.

[nggallery id=43]

The HTC phones both suffer with the colour representation on the images below, especially with regards to the grass. The One S just plain fails really, with the grass coming out in a strange sea green/blue colour. The One X fares slightly better, but still lacks realistic colour tones. The winner for us is the Samsung Galaxy SIII, beating the Galaxy Note on level of detail from the image.

[nggallery id=44]

All four camera show an impressive level of detail on the main image within this photo, with the One S perhaps coming out top followed closely by the Galaxy SIII and One X. The One X seems to display the colours most natuarlly, followed by the Galaxy SIIi and the Galaxy Note. The One S once again seems to have a mind of its own when it comes to colours, but although they are not as natural in this shot, it still looks quite pleasing.

[nggallery id=45]

Again, impressive level of detail from all four phones in this shot. The One X suffering slightly from a lack of contrast and the S from a lack of detail. Both the Samsung phones and the One X seem winners in the detail category however. It's a difficult choice between the One X and SIII on this occasion, but the One X might just take it due to a greater level of detail for the far away objects.

[nggallery id=46]

Once again the Note, SGSIII and One X lead the way in terms of detail, with the One S just suffering slightly. The One X shows a more muted colour temperature. This round is a tie between the Galaxy Note and Galaxy SIII.

[nggallery id=47]

We finish with what we think is an appropriate indoor shot. It's immediately clear that the One S and the Galaxy Note will be losers in this round. both suffer from a lack of detail, especially noticeable in the calendar in the background, whilst the One S also seems to be overrun by the light coming in from the side. The One X gets the colours right in this photo, and also has the most readable text displayed on the calendar, however suffers with focus taken away from the main feature of the image. We'll have to end this one on a tie, wishing for the colour accuracy of the One X, and the smart focus of the Galaxy SIII!

[nggallery id=48]

I can't confess to being an expert in photography, but I do take a lot of photos on my phone and as such, a good camera is a necessity for me. I've tried to review the photos on a "what you see is what you get" basis. The best judge however will be yourself, I hope you use the photos I've provided above to see which of the cameras you prefer, but for me? Well it's a difficult choice between the Samsung Galaxy SIII and the HTC One X.

At a push I would probably pick the Galaxy SIII, mainly due to two reasons. The first, the One X suffered to find its focus quickly, and out of all four phones was the one I had most trouble getting a good shot with. The second is the speed of the shutter when compared to the SGSIII. It's fast on the One X, but it's instant on the SIII.

At the end of the day I should note that all of these camera gave excellent results generally, the One S being the exception with some outrageous colours at times!