Cam­era phone is a flash pack­age

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Gadgets - NOKIA 808 PUREVIEW

Mo­bic­ity, $549 mo­bic­ ★★★

IS Nokia’s lat­est de­vice a phone or a cam­era? It’s hard to say. The 808 PureView looks like a phone, with a 4-inch touch­screen, call but­ton, speaker and apps.

But its cam­era has more megapix­els than a top-of-the-line DSLR, a sub­stan­tial flash, an f2.4 Carl Zeiss lens and a shut­ter but­ton.

Re­ally, this 41-megapixel de­vice is as likely to be used for pho­tos as it is for calls, and Nokia de­serves credit for up­ping the ante.

The cam­era on the 808 PureView is un­like other phone cam­eras and, in prac­tice, has an ef­fec­tive rat­ing of 38 megapix­els. It cre­ates enor­mous im­age files — of­ten more than 10MB in size — and lets users zoom in to ex­am­ine small back­ground de­tails you couldn’t see in other phone pho­tos.

Nokia’s first PureView phone cam­era is easy to ac­cess — a shut­ter but­ton on its side lets you get straight to busi­ness — and users can ac­cess its largest res­o­lu­tion by delv­ing into the Cre­ative menu.

The cam­era’s menu is not sim­ple to mas­ter, but it of­fers many set­tings in­clud­ing white bal­ance op­tions, 80 to 1600 ISO, ex­po­sure com­pen­sa­tion and brack­et­ing.

But Nokia didn’t re­ally in­tend this phone cam­era to be used for 38-megapixel im­ages all the time (or it would store more than 16GB). The larger sen­sor lets users zoom more ef­fec­tively, re­ly­ing on that big sen­sor rather than dig­i­tal zoom.

Us­ing the 3-megapixel set­ting, for ex­am­ple, de­liv­ers a 3.6x zoom. A 2x zoom is avail­able on the 8-megapixel set­ting.

As a phone, it is less im­pres­sive, us­ing Nokia’s tricky Sym­bian Belle soft­ware, a 1.3GHz chip and a 169g body with a 1.39cm girth. Mo­bile pho­tog­ra­phers will find few bet­ter cam­era phones.

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