The iPhone 4S had/has one of the best smartphone cameras. Probably the best if you don’t include the insane Nokia PureView 41MP snapper. The iPhone 5′s issue was that the engineers tried to improve the camera while making it smaller.

Reducing a camera sensor/set up is generally detrimental to the image quality. So, I decided to take my brand new iPh5 out to take some photos of my surrounding area. (Click images to enlarge.)

One thing you will notice is how vibrant the colors are on the new camera. I won’t go in to an in-depth comparison today, but, compared to the iPhone 4S the images are much more full of life. Detail is really sharp, and you have to get within a couple of centimeters to objects before focussing becomes impossible.

No editing was done on any of these images. I got some really nice lens flare on this one. Good depth of field too.

Perfect day for shooting. Nice to see that the filter didn’t fade the blue out of the sky.

Panorama above was my second attempt. Took me a while to get the hang of keeping my hand still and not tilting the phone too much. Again, the smoothness is pretty impressive considering with most panorama apps/cameras you end up with clear blurred seams where the frames are stitched together.

Love the greens and the blues I’m getting out of this camera. Once again the depth of field is fantastic. The fence is nicely blurred in the background, while the blades of grass at the front are crisp and clear.

Even indoors is great quality. I did notice some motion blur in some of the takes when he moved his head to quickly. (Side note: he’s keen to make my old 4S his own now).

Portrait. Nice contrast and definition makes this a possible candidate for new wallpaper.

I’ll update this post with lowlight shots to see how the new lens fares in the dark.

Night Time and LED Flash Performance:

The two images directly below were taken at the same time. The first without a flash, the second with. In the first image, the only thing lighting the hedge was an orange streetlight. It wasn’t that bright either, so I’m surprised with the amount of detail still visible, even in lowlight conditions.

The flash is very bright. But – as expected – the closest objects end up over-exposed. It’s why I generally avoid taking any images with flash.

The shot above shows that although the iPhone does well in taking in light, it’s still pretty noisy. Distortion levels are pretty high with the sensor pushed to its limit. Still, most other cameras the same size would only pick up the streetlight and not pick up any of the surrounding features. Check the gallery below for more examples.

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