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Camera Shootout: LG G3 vs. Galaxy S5 vs. One (M8) vs. Nexus 5 vs. iPhone 5s


The 13MP camera featured on the LG G3 is certainly one of its main highlights. Much like last year’s G2, the camera features optical image stabilization (OIS+), as well as a fancy new laser built right into the backside of the device to create super-fast auto focus times.

Over the weekend, we put the LG G3 through the camera paces, coming away extremely impressed. For comparison purposes, we took out five top devices, just to see if we could try to come away with something useful.

Down below in the gallery, we have shots from the LG G3, Samsung Galaxy S5, HTC One (M8), Google Nexus 5, and Apple iPhone 5s. 

You may ask, why did we use an iOS device? If you follow smartphones, then you should know that the iPhone 5s has arguably one of the best situational cameras ever featured on a smartphone. It has an 8MP sensor, but takes great shots.

Without going into each camera’s performance, and to keep this short and sweet, I will only discuss the G3’s performance out in the field. The first thing you notice when snapping a photo with the G3 is the lightning-fast auto focus. When taking photos of a flower in the breeze, the quick speed of the shutter helps capture the shot you want, with little to no blur coming through.

As someone who personally loves the macro shots, this device delivers one of the best experiences I have had on a smartphone. Colors are true, performance is fast, and thanks to the 13MP resolution, you can crop and zoom in with nothing to worry about.

All photos were taken with out-of-the-box settings, and no editing or cropping has been done. Each photo has been resized to make things even across the board.

Got questions? Shoot ’em below.

Note: Ordered from left to right – G3, Galaxy S5, One (M8), Nexus 5, iPhone 5s.


LG G3 pics - 2 Galaxy S5 pics - 4 HTC M8 pics - 4 Nexus 5 pics - 1 iPhone Pics - 1

LG G3 pics - 4 Galaxy S5 pics - 3 HTC M8 pics - 2 Nexus 5 pics - 3 iPhone Pics - 2

LG G3 pics - 3 Galaxy S5 pics - 5 HTC M8 pics - 3 Nexus 5 pics - 2 iPhone Pics - 3

LG G3 pics - 1 Galaxy S5 pics - 2 HTC M8 pics - 5 Nexus 5 pics - 5 iPhone Pics - 4

LG G3 pics - 5 Galaxy S5 pics - 1 HTC M8 pics - 1 Nexus 5 pics - 4 iPhone Pics - 6

Bonus shot. This was the first photo I took with the G3 after opening the box. I wasn’t lucky enough to have all of the other phones with me to compare, but I wanted to share the photo because it came out so nicely.

LG G3 pic

  • Paul

    Thats right apple, make the best phones the best cameras the best screens the best of everything! better start looking around folks, Theres a saying i heard recently, if we always do what we’ve always done weil only get what weve already got!

  • Paul

    Where is the sony z2 here with its 20mp camera. Seriously Sony has been around longer makeing cameras than any of this lot! Pretty sure they know what there doing after all these years! Dont get it!

  • Jose Avelar

    I just got the LG G3 on launch day and camera has blown me away. My previous phone is a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and camera was great but doesn’t compare to the G3. I work at T-mobile and I was testing it against the S5, Htc M8 and Iphone 5s and it was a tad bit better than the Iphone. Colors seem a bit more accurate and focus too.

  • M8 shots look horrible.

  • mike

    Oh god, you have to post the full size shots! Its completely impossible to judge in theese pictures…

  • iKrontologist

    iphone’s camera is obviously over rated and the camera app sucks for features. Samsung Galaxy S 5 ISOCELL is the clear winner here. It’s colors more true to life, greater detail and in darker conditions it’s Black is just that…. BLACKER!!!

    Thanks for the comparison, but ISOCELL is lightyears ahead of the competition and Samsung is already the #1 CMOS sensor maker over Sony!!!

    Now I know what my next phone will be. NOT….. an iPhone for sure. I like the LG better than HTC M8 and Sony G3. But I’m going to have to say Samsung’s Note 4 or that new secret smartphone that’s rumored to launch this year!!!

  • Derek Duncan

    the reason why the hardware and software takes bad photos is because they put a crappy 4mp sensor in it.

  • Vladimir

    It would be really great if you could redo, or at least post similar shots with Nexus 5 with HDR+ enabled.
    The problem here is the name.All the phones above do some post-processing with the pictures after they come out of the sensor. HDR+ does the same (with multiple exposures if it needs to) but the result is a lot better. The picture which comes out looks natural without weirdly looking colors comping from most phones when HDR mode is enabled.

    Again the problem is marketing. HDR+ is a good name but people are associating it with weird looking images. Just like Hangouts 🙂

  • Daran

    I own all these phones they all suck I prefer my sony SLT a99v

  • MacPhyle

    I bet it’ll be fun taking pictures with the G3. I like some of the G3 pix better than those from the iPhone. I don’t see any of the haziness I get with my Galaxy S3.

  • Me

    The G2 took great shots outside in sun light. It failed miserably indoors with low light. Pics looked like oil paintings. Simply HORRIBLE! Main reason I switched phones. Other than that it was a great device.

  • AlexKCMO

    It’s really interesting to me that LG is becoming such a big player in the Smart Phone, and a top name in the Smart Phone Camera arena. In the dumb phone days, I would swear by LGs. They were built like tanks (my wife fell in the pool with her phone, dried it out and it worked perfectly afterwards), had the best cameras when compared to other dumb phones, and crazy battery life.

    That same kind of reliability is starting to come out, which I find really interesting considering their first Smart Phone iterations were so poorly received. I told a friend I used to be a huge fan of theirs and hoped they’d come back. LG becoming a key player in the Smart Phone game is exactly what HTC and Motorola need to look at. Those two have fallen so far from their former glory days it’s depressing. I know everyone loves the Moto X, but it’s not selling. LG is starting to sell phones now and get “geek cred”.

  • hoosiercub88

    By on par, you mean far and above the HTC One M7 or M8.. right?

  • OneForTheGoodDays

    Took this on my G2 this morning…it’s a crop.

  • RustyTechGuy

    I have been an HTC fan since the Incredible but I will have to say the camera on my M7 is not that great sure the pics look great on my phone but once they are on a PC to review they are usually not great. And from what I have seen with the M8 things aren’t much better. My wife has a S4 and it takes much better photos in almost all situations and they still look great when you transfer them off the phone to PC. I can’t add much along the lines of G3’s or S5 but I have used a few iPhones and the new 5S does pretty well but I wouldn’t say it beats the S4 let alone the S5. But everyone will argue lets face if your and Android fan your going to love the S5 or G3 if your and Apple fan then nothing compares to your 5S. To each their own.

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  • alexg

    Nexus 5 and M8 don’t even belong in this comparison and G3 seriously owns that last flower macro shot.

  • Josh

    I’m really interested in this phone, and I’m coming from a GS4. I was a little worried about the camera since it’s just 13mp, 9.6 in 16:9 like my GS4. But seeing these shots puts my mind at ease a bit. I’d really like to see more samples, honestly.

  • Viper

    I have shot a few pics now with my M8 and it does a good job. Much better then the pics posted. But then again if I really want great pics I winds up bringing out my DSLR.

    • tiger

      Sad excuse….

      • Viper

        Maybe I should explain so you can understand. I did not buy my phone based on the picture quality it takes. And it does a good enough job. I bought it based build quality and how it performs overall.

  • Froosh Freak

    Nexus 5 camera is soooooo bad…

    • BD

      The Nexus 5 i’m using takes very good photos and video comparatively. It would be hard for the naked eye to pick up any major differences here.

  • Rod

    All of them look good.

    I was hoping for some low light shots.

    That’s what matters now.

  • Mike Keck

    There has to be 2 different models of M8, I know there are 2 different screens being used, but all the camera comparisons I see the M8 pictures look terrible, but my M8 takes beautiful freaking pictures. Literally pop off the screen clarity & color. Something has to be up with that.

  • @Timotato:disqus Next time you do this, lie about the order of the photos. I think too many people comment based on their preconceived impressions.

    • Cedric Wilmore

      I remember Android Central did something like this where they took some pics using the “bokeh” effect with a S5, M8, N5, And Z2 but did not say which photo belonged to who and asked readers to vote on the best one. Surprisingly the N5 got the most votes.