DP Review Awards iPhone Camera Just 8.1/10

8.1 my ass.

8.1 my ass.

DP review has tested the iPhone 5S’s camera and – surprise – it’s awesome. At ten long pages (all requiring a click to reach, as is DP Review’s annoying style) it’s an epic read that you’ll probably want to add to your Instapaper queue, but you can always skip to the conclusion and read the rather amusing list of “bad” points that the reviewers have come up with to make the article “balanced.”

The 8MP camera in the iPhone is, by all accounts, a triumph of hardware and software working together, which is exactly what Apple does best. Burst mode has existed since motor drives were strapped to 35mm film SLRs, and slow-motion video has been around since someone worked out how to hand-crank their movie camera a little faster than usual. But Apple made both not only easy but fun to use (and fun to manage!).

Here’s the money quote, for those of you who don’t want to read anything:

The 5s is a photographic lightning bolt, with a blazing-fast (and immediately accessible) 10-frames-per-second burst mode. There’s also virtually no shutter lag, and shot-to-shot times are essentially instantaneous.

The conclusion is actually pretty hilarious. “The Good” lists “Panorama mode better than most,” “Very responsive operation, negligible shutter lag,” and “Very fast shot-to-shot time, 10 fps continuous burst” as plus points, along with several more great points. And then it tries to “balance” this with crap like “No dedicated, two-stage shutter button,” and a moan that it has less resolution than a camera with a higher resolution (“Less detail in good light than some higher-res sensors”).

The overall score is the best part. I guess you could say that 8.1 (out of ten) is pretty good if this is being graded alongside things like the Fujifilm X100S and Canon 5D, but as it’s being compared to other smartphones it’s absurd. What the hell does it take to get a ten? This right here is a great example of why we don’t use percentages to grade our reviews here at Cult of Mac – they’re meaningless (and yes, DP Review looks like it’s marking out of ten, but the troublesome “point one” in 8.1 turns it into a percentage with a misplaced decimal point).

Anyhow, rant over. The iPhone 5S has an amazing camera, which you probably knew already.

Source DP Review

  • Stevaroo01

    I find articles like this DP one to be obnoxious. Seems like everyone who isn’t an Android fanboy is apologetic about being an Apple fanboy (or even just appreciating what Apple can do), and have to water down their praise of Apple products. Whatever!

    Anyway, I can’t wait to get my hands on my new 5s 64gb so I can try out this new amazing camera myself!! It should be here by early next week! Woot!!

  • Eric_M_White

    DP Review is a great review site for photographers. The reviews are more in depth then most sites. I just purchased a Nikon D7100, and their site was my first stop when when I was comparing DSLRs because they are very homestead about a products shortcomings and are very tough graders. The site does not review a lot of cell phone cameras, so the fact they reviewed the 5S camera speaks to its quality. An 8.1 is actually a great score. Comparing the score to other cameras they reviewed, there are some DSLRs behind the 5S. Oh, and the review for the Nikon was 25 pages long, but Apple has a solution for that. Click the Reader button in Safari, and 25 pages becomes 1!

  • enderwiggin21

    I’d say its rating is about right, though I agree the Cons list is lame. If I were paid to review a score of 10 would be the holy grail – kind of like absolute zero – you can only come so close.

    For me it’s not about comparing it to stand-alone cameras of any type. It’s about what it CAN do versus what it IS doing. Until 3rd party apps get updated and optimized to use the 5S, the glaring weaknesses are in image processing and storage. If I *can’t* select a flat look so I can use my favorite image editing program of choice to manipulate the image with as much latitude as possible (either on-camera or on my workstation), if I *can’t* select varying degrees of compression to minimize IQ loss post-processing, then those are cons, in my book.

    It’s nice to see the beveled edge of the sapphire crystal gone, and voila, with it *most* of the purple-fringe is as well. f/2.4 to f/2.2 is definitely a winner. That makes a bigger difference to low-light gathering than the 7% increase in pixel density. The ip4S has bigger pixels than both of them but no one is screaming that Apple has gone backwards. They’re only touting “it has bigger pixels than the 5! huzzah!”

  • danpandrea

    Now… who should I trust more? A relevant website that tackles photography for years or an author bashing it on a Apple-rumor website? Decisions, decisions… Oh, and before any of you get to answer, keep in mind using words such as “rather amusing list of bad points” or “crap” provides the worst way of proving a point.

About the author

Charlie Sorrel Charlie Sorrel is the Reviews Editor here on Cult of Mac. Follow Charlie  on Twitter at @mistercharlie.

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