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Why DxOMark score for Nokia 8 or any other smartphone camera can’t be taken seriously

We have been tipped by some of our readers about DxOMark rating Nokia 8 camera poorly and I just had this feeling of Déjà vu. Not the first time that they have rated Nokia or Nokia Lumia cameras poorly when the real-world tests showed the opposite. So, here is the truth about DxoMark and their tests and why you shouldn’t bother much about it.

  1. DxOMark uses a weightage system to get the score and things that matter more to you may not matter them in terms of scoring. This rating system of DxOMark has been panned by many, just google for it. Here is a similar article by Peta-pixel about DxOMark Camera ratings.
  2. DxOMark works with manufacturers for a fee before their product is launched for so-called “improving” the cameras and later awards glowing scores to them. You could have seen how every new smartphone camera by manufacturers become the new champion one after another
  3. Most importantly unless a reviewer does a side by side shootout and provides full-size images for comparison don’t go blindly for such a camera review. It can be partial.
  4. Nokia 8 has a stellar camera and it certainly is one of the best smartphone cameras out there. We have reviewed it in detail and compared it against Lumia 1020, the gold standard of imaging. Check our detailed Nokia 8 camera review here.
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Nayan
Nayan has more than 10 years of experience of covering Technology and innovations. He is a big Nokia fan and Tech disruptions aficionado. He loves to review new cool gadgets and writing about Android, iOS, Gadgets and general Technology stuff. He has been associated with other well-known Tech sites WinCentral and GadgetOx since long. He currently sports a Lumia 950 XL and Nexus 5X. Other interests include listening to Nu-Metal Hits and Kick-Boxing. Write to him at Email: [email protected]
http://www.nokiapoweruser.com
  • DK

    I guess most of us here have been using the Nokia flagships and probably phones from other manufacturers too.

    I have used Lumia 1020, 950XL, and now Nokia 8. As a daily driver smartphone the Nokia 8 is of course the only choice since the others is running a dead OS.

    When it comes to the cameras they all have their strengths and weaknesses. The Lumia 1020 makes shots with great quality, if you have non moving objects and have time to wait for it to start and then wait for it to process the photo.
    To use it as a pocket camera to capture spontaneous photos it’s just to slow.

    The 950XL is much better in this aspect, faster start up and shorter times between taking photos.

    And regarding photo quality the 950XL is not inferior to the 1020 in every situation. I have done detailed comparisons and while 1020 wins most of the times there are situations where the 950XL delivers more accurate photos with more details, better colors and less distortion.

    When it comes to Nokia 8 I can agree that in some well lit situations it can take photos that’s almost on pair with the 950XL and Lumia 1020.

    But I have taken A LOT of photos with these three phones and overall the Nokia 8 camera is mediocre. If I compare photos taken in similar conditions the quality on the Nokia 8 is not near the 1020 or the 950XL. Even the Nexus 6P from 2015 and the Huawei Mate 9 takes much better photos with less noise and more details then Nokia 8 in most situations.

    The DXO test or even your test does not tell the truth, it’s to few photos and situations to actually draw any accurate conclusions.

    So I think you should value the users real life, long-term tests more, and most of us seem to agree that the Nokia 8 camera is not that good.

    I can see why you don’t comment on the posts that points out that the Nokia 8 uses inferior camera hardware compared to most flagship and higher mid-range phones, because it makes your test less credibile.

    • Muerte

      I agree. Nokia 808 with camera stand is excellent especially when using manual controls, Nokia Lumia 1020 is better in many ways but with manual settings 808 can produce better images, but overall I think Lumia 950 is the best smartphone shooter out there. No wonder DXO never tested it 😉

  • Brajesh kumar

    Every phone has its own sets of advantages and disadvantages. Not every phone is perfect in terms of camera imaging. Nokia 8 has a good camera but needs improvements. Many reviewers on youtube had said that nokia 8 has got a lot of potential but needs improvements. The black and white photos of nokia 8 are really impressive, but the colour photos needs improvements. So just wait for the updates to come. The rating by Dxomark may be true to some extent but not fully. And yes nokia needs to improve in camera segment, make better camera than 950 and 1020 to survive in the market.

  • Anonymousl

    Wow, so many arguments here.why don’t you all take Nokia 8 vs Google Pixel 2 and see how it’s camera gives the photo. Rather than arguing here. If you really want to defend Nokia prove it. While I don’t see anymore comparison between these 2 on YouTube . How will it convince me that Nokia is better if there is only 1 video to prove it. Although Nokia 9 is handling the torch soon. Some said Nokia 8 camera is bad but I believe you can compare the final result with the one that gets an 98. Take a real life photos. But Nokia should start to learn to make details clearer during zooming. Peace. Always support Nokia. Hope they will fix this soon.

  • 777sasha3331
  • Buxz777

    Photography is light… Sensors capture light… The Nokia 8 has a tiny little sensor that is found in mainly budget Chinese phones… It is obviously not going to be the best camera… To top it off even the lens is slower than a lot of the competition

    I am sorry but the Nokia 8 camera is mediocre at best, stop trying to say it’s excellent or Nokia won’t improve it and will keep giving us this shit because it’s good enough

    You sound worse than apple fan boys making excuses for Nokia… They put a tiny sensor and slower lens in the phone, it’s going to be worse than the competition… Give them real feedback instead of pretending it’s as good as the others if you want things to change

    Yes dxo ratings suck and could be better… But do you know what else could be better… The Nokia 8 camera 😉

  • Hacklove666

    The stock camera app by HMD is very bad compared to anything I have , but when you use Google Cam app with Nokia 8 (Gcam also have very many versions you have to test it one by one) it is very very good , but I am waiting for a 41mpx phone , hope Huwai brings it on the table

    • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

      Hopefully there is Nokia 10 or Nokia X with such sensor. Would be really nice to have one.

    • Kamal

      Yup the camera app certainly needs algorithmic tweaks. That is something we did mention in our review too.

  • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

    Yeay… The reply to my earlier comment has been made as featured comment. Please scroll down to read a reply to that reply too😃 Hopefully Nokia 9 would have a better camera than the 950.

  • Keith B

    I would never take into account DxoMark when choosing a phone. They have rated some Lumias so low it is beyond belief. I like the real life test that NPU and Steve Litchfield put up. I am well impressed with my Nokia 8. Might not be as good as the 950 but certainly good. I believe it is now faster since the Oreo update.

  • Seriously? Nokia 8, one of the best smartphone camera ? Poor little sensor, photo app and imaging software with no imagery team in HMD. Please, be equal, not blind. DxOMark was unfair with old high end Lumia/Nokia, but not with th Nokia 8.

    • Kamal

      Isn’t it necessary to go ahead and prove our conclusion wrong than pouring mouthful here. We don’t throw things in air but test comprehensively and then conclude.

      • Why don’t approve my comment? Link it’s not an ad, it’s my test where I explain why Nokia 8 had a poor camera.

        • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

          Can you share the link bro.

  • 777sasha3331

    I wrote you this news yesterday. Let’s be honest: the Nokia 8 camera is much worse than the top-end smartphones Lumia 950. How two years later they were able to release a Nokia 8 smartphone whose camera is much worse?!

    • Kamal

      What we say is based upon our testing and full-size samples are always provided. I will tell you this personally I prefer 808, Lumia 1020 and Nokia 8 over Lumia 950 XL when it comes to stills. However video is where Lumia 950 XL is certainly better than Nokia 8. So, currently my go to camera is either Lumia 1020 or Nokia 8. And to reiterate, check our Nokia 8 review and check the samples compare them and you will reach same conclusion.

      • 777sasha3331

        I did a comparison of 8 vs Nokia Lumia 950. Lumia 950 makes it more clear pictures with much better detail, autofocus works much better than Nokia 8. Dynamic range and color reproduction is also much better on the 950. Below I added a link to my comparison, I’m waiting for you to approve it

        • Kamal

          This is from your samples only and check how much more resolved details Nokia 8 offers over Lumia 950 XL. This is at 100% crop level.
          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5846f8332048433b21d763a89a5f07ddfec607376a08607752ae5580a4cacd58.jpg

          • 777sasha3331

            In this picture, more details are in 950. I will explain: in the store the price tag is made of matte plastic and 950 transfers the texture of the plastic. And nokia 8 lubricates the texture. Moreover, you can also see that the pictures at 950 are lighter, which indicates a better matrix of the camera. I discussed the quality of the camera with the Nokia representatives (the most powerful Microsoft Mobile) in Russia, each of them has 950 and Nokia 8. They honestly admit that the 950 camera is much better, and at the same time note that they pointed it out to the developers but they did not listen to them. Moreover, the creator of Nokia 808 and 1020, 950 Juha Alakarhu also in his tweet wrote that he uses Nokia 8 but at the same time the camera 950 is better.

            • Kamal

              To my eye it is clear that Nokia 8 offers much better resolved details. I can’t plug in opinions to prove something which is clear to me. I don’t want to be Lumia or Nokia fanatic. It is what it is nothing more or less.

              • 777sasha3331

                Please see this image: here is a stand made of transparent and smooth plastic without texture. Nokia 8 has a much worse detail. The colors are darker. Sharpness of the picture along the perimeter of the full picture is also worse https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/cb6d1ad9bcba52c2528b20cfcc962261bdbb52dd8d8ee460b84353720a2f33a4.jpg

              • 777sasha3331

                And I, too, am not a fan of Lumia or Nokia. But just in my opinion the difference between them in the camera is in favor of 950, at least in detail and colors. I understand that the task of Hmd to advertise Nokia 8, but we must adequately face the truth that the camera Nokia 8 does not hold out to the flagship. It’s closer to 830 in the Lumia lineup. Therefore, I am waiting for Nokia 9 in the hope of a better

          • On this picture, the 950 had more details ^^ wood, white cable, irregularity of blurred plastic… 950 wins !

          • Muerte

            Nokia 8 is far inferior to Lumia 950XL. That is not even an opinion issue, it is self-evident.

      • 777sasha3331
      • 777sasha3331
  • HemaNt SoNi

    All others feel jealous, but nokia is nokia, fans can’t move

  • I know that my Lumia 950XL’s camera is a world above the iPhone 6 that I have for work, yet at the time everyone was praising how good the iPhone 6 camera was and yet DXO Mark never pitched the iPhone alongside other phones like the Lumia range,

    All I know is that my 950XL’s camera has held its own against the leaders of the pack.

    Until DXOMark do side by side comparisons, then as you say, we can take their results with a grain of salt.

    I also think part of the scoring process should be ease of access. Nothing beats a dedicated camera button on a phone.

    Cheers Adam

    • Kamal

      Bang on! I remember them ignoring or badly rating Lumias that had much better cameras than competition. Difficult to take them seriously.

    • 777sasha3331

      Camera Nokia 8 much worse camera Lumia 950

      • John Jennings

        Sadly that’s true. I actually contemplated taking my old 950 alongside my Nokia 8 when I went away recently, because I knew I’d be disappointed with some of the shots I took with the latter. We can criticise one rubric of scoring all we like, but we have to acknowledge that HMD’s imaging software still needs some work.

        • John Jennings

          (Obviously the front facing camera on the Nokia 8 is by far an away the winner, though, and so I’ve switched to just taking a lot of selfies…!!)

        • Kamal

          Refer to our review of Nokia 8 camera and many things will be clear. Really don’t want to repeat myself again and again.

          • 777sasha3331

            I really respect your opinion but the facts are facts. I provided the originals for comparison. You in your review compared with 1020, nothing that he came out 5 years ago? Can you provide your comparison of Nokia 8 and 950? You have 950, can you make some photos? I’m afraid Hmd will not let you do this, since the defeat of Nokia 8 is obvious …

            • Kamal

              Are you really trying to suggest that HMD controls us and what we write here? Then you are insulting your own wisdom. Do you also mean that Lumia 950 is better than Lumia 1020 in terms of imaging? We had compared Lumia 1020 and Lumia 950 XL in the similar manner as we did for Nokia 8 and Lumia 1020. https://nokiapoweruser.com/lumia-950-xl-detailed-camera-review-comparison-vs-lumia-1020-daylight-low-light-slow-mo-stills-video-samples/

              We can’t really keep comparing Nokia 8 to every phone out there. Lumia 1020 is a legendary device which I rate as Gold standard of imaging. Even when Nokia 9 will arrive I would compare it to Lumia 1020 and not Lumia 950. Lumia 950 and 950 XL are long gone and dead. Lumia 1020 and 808 PV have a different standing when it comes to imaging.

              • 777sasha3331

                Do not be offended by my assumptions. I propose that if you contact Hmd with a request to take a Nokia 8 test and compare it with 950, then they will refuse it.
                Yes, in fact, I believe that 950 in automatic mode in most shooting modes is better than 1020. I used 1020 for 5 years and now I also have this phone. But after the purchase of the 950 I personally did not once compare the camera of these smartphones. I came to the conclusion that 950 makes the photo faster, has a more accurate focus and more accurate and real colors, and there is also no yellow tint in the photos. The 950 camera module may be worse, but the image processing algorithm is better than at 1020. Because of this, in most modes, the pictures are better at 950. I can say that, since I have been using 1020 for 5 years and 2 years 950.
                Therefore, Nokia 8 on the quality of photos in my opinion is between 1020 and 950, but does not reach the quality of 950. I proved this by giving you real photos above. But I would be interested not only to hear your opinion, but also to see your photos from Nokia 8 and 950, as long as my experiment and your suggestions

                • Kamal

                  Offended? no way. but amused? too much. So our tests showed way back that Lumia 1020>>Lumia 950 and you don’t trust that. Now our test showed that Lumia 1020>Nokia 8 you still don’t trust that.

                  If you really believe that Lumia 950 > Lumia 1020, then I rest my case. You are the biggest Lumia 950/950 Xl camera fan I have ever met anywhere. Kudos man!!

                  • 777sasha3331

                    I provided real photos of why I think so. Why do you think a person who really perceives what is a fact is called a fanatic ?! This is just my opinion, it is subjective, but I did provide a photo. And yes, I do not use 950 already, in my daily use of Nokia 5. But I still consider the 950 camera to be one of the best.
                    Why do you think that I do not trust your reviews? I just sent you another comparison so you can see the difference and hear other opinions. It is necessary to respect not only your opinion, but also the opinion of other people

                    • Kamal

                      Don’t get offended. Was just being a bit sarcastic. Anyways, I really love my Nokia 8 and Lumia 1020 cameras like you love the Lumia 950. But then as mentioned in our camera review of Nokia 8 it has very good camera hardware but lacks some software tweaks. https://nokiapoweruser.com/nokia-8-camera-review-nokia-8-vs-lumia-1020-camera-comparison/
                      With those updates it will truly shine and we will cover that too, hopefully in near future.

                    • Buxz777

                      How does the Nokia 8 camera have good hardware

                      A camera is made from a sensor and a lens and based around capturing light

                      The sensor in the Nokia 8 is used in budget Chinese phones, other manufacturers use it as a front facing camera it’s that rubbish

                      The lens in the Nokia 8 is f2… Other manufacturers are using f1.6 and f1.7 equivalents

                      So the sensor is crap and let’s in less light than other sensors used by different manufacturers and the lens is also slower than most of the competition

                      Only one lens has stabilisation and some phones offer 2 lenses that are stabilised

                      Do how does the Nokia 8 have great camera hardware, do you even know what you are talking about? It just sounds like you love Nokia and are making it up as you go along

                    • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

                      Bro I agree with your opinion. You have always provided facts to support your opinion. Thank you for being a sensible person. Would love to meet another sensible fan in person. Cheers.

                    • 777sasha3331

                      Thanks for the support!)

                • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

                  Actually 950 is better than Nokia 8.for the main camera. This is something acknowledge by Juba himself when I tweeted him. But no way Nokia 8 is bad. Yea no extra sharpening. But photos have minimal noise. For some reason their FFC seems better than their main camera. And I have yet to see the actual benefit of dual camera.1020 is still the gold. I bet 808 is better but I don’t have one. But I have 1020 950 950XL Nokia 8 Nokia N8. If to rate in order of image quality it’s 1020-950-Nokia 8. In terms of overall performance and speed it’s 950-1020-Nokia 8. Don’t get me wrong. Nokia 8 is not bad. But the Lumias were much better camera. Something that AAWP has proven. In fact only thing is off in Lumia 950 is the wondering focus issue in low light.

                  • Kamal

                    Can you post the tweet where Juha said that Lumia 950 is better than Nokia 8.

                    • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

                      https://mobile.twitter.com/shansp3/status/905041756298780673 not sure if u could see the what the earlier topics were. But it was a question directed to which is better. While not mentioning directly,he liked the comment that the only gripe with 950 is the focusing issue. Other than that,I’m pretty sure he isn’t allowed to diss Nokia 8 in the open. In my personal experience, Nokia 8 has a lot of room for improvement. Stills not in par with 950. Maybe video it could be acceptable. Low light nothing impressive if compared to 950. I would probably say Nokia 8 is comparable to Lumia 1520. Good but not better.

                    • Kamal

                      Juha never ever said that Lumia 950 is better than Nokia 8. Lumia 950 has its strengths and weaknesses just like Nokia 8 has. I understand people’s love for Lumia 950 though. still won’t let it go 😛

                    • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

                      I didn’t say he said. I said acknowledged. Anyway,most readers here are fans of Nokia. And they would have owned several Nokia devices to actually comment on what they feel. It’s good that some feel Nokia 8 is better. At the same time opinions of others should be respected if someone says 950 is better. DXO mark is crap. So is the opinion by people who does it randomly. Steve’s opinion is something more valuable. Consistently test new devices against Nokias bests with description why he awarded the points that way.Lumia 950 has issues. But not as much as Nokia 8. The amount of out of focus photos with Nokia 8 is quite worrisome. Especially if come from Lumia 950. But won’t be much of a culture shock if u been using a less capable phone.Juha did his best with 950. Anyway guys there aren’t many Nokia sites. mynokiablog was good. But it’s done. This are the last few. I do hope that discussions here would be more positive towards readers opinion. The entire comment section here appears defensive and hostile. Dan used to do that in windowscentral. This is a good site for Nokia community to mature. Hope everyone here takes this with good intentions. Whatever said, I have to give to NPU for their contributions in posting Nokia related news not found in other sites. I value your opinion. Good night everyone.

                    • Kamal

                      I didn’t find Juha even acknowledging that. Nokia 8 has surprisingly got very hostile reception by Nokia Lumia fans. I remember similar hostility around Lumia 1020 when 808 PV fans greeted it with all contempt and disbelief even not trying to acknowledge that it is better than 808 PV in many respects.

                      The important thing for all Nokia fans to understand is it is great to love the past but not great to live in the past. I personally loved Nokia N8 and lots of my proud memories are taken with Nokia N8. Then I owned and loved 808 PV and it was much better than Nokia N8 in many respects, but when we posted a comparison between Nokia N8 and 808 PV I remember hostile comments. Similarly when Lumia 1020 came many disgusted it saying it can’t be better than 808 PV.
                      Now, we need to remember one thing. Lumia 1020 was the last Camera Flagship. Lumia 950/XL were the best smartphone cameras when launched but not exactly the camera flagships. Now, they are long gone. I see a similar pattern of hostility against Nokia 8 and I have already seen it repeating over three generations of Nokia flagships.

                    • Sankar Pillay Hovelly

                      I won’t blame you for not seeing what was being discussed in the Twitter. Nokia 8 is clearly a step back compared to Lumia 950 in terms of hardware and algorithm. I’m not sure about your previous comparisons with the other mobiles you mentioned.but definitely you seem to be living in the past to associate the same hostility of your previous comparisons to be a justification that the Nokia 8 is better 😂😂. Anyway,all those here own all these devices to come to a conclusion. Unless if u have a McLaren with you then will take your word as gospel truth. these are phones that most of us here have used and tested. Heck I’m even using a Nokia 8. My personal opinion is it’s just comparable to 1520. What you say about it is your opinion. And I respect it. Besides it’s your site. You above all have the right to say what you want. But it’s not the gospel truth. AAWP has a great comparison for Nokia 8 Vs 950 and it’s like in a more extensive ,more professional and in detail explanation with a healthy comment section-this is for those who aren’t aware of the site. I just come here for my dose of what’s new with Nokia. Living in the past isn’t as bad as forgetting the past.if you don’t have a stepping stone to guide you,you are as good as stepping blindly into the future.

                    • Buxz777

                      There’s no hostility just disappointment

                      They gave us the n8… Then the 808… They then shrunk the sensor for the 1020… They then shrunk the sensor for the 950 and even took away xenon flash

                      Now old skool Nokia users were already outraged by this… The Nokia n8 was awesome… The 808 even better… Then we go backwards with the 1020 but hey its a modern operating system and the next generation will be better…. Nope Nokia shrink the sensor and the oversampling as well as killing of the xenon flash with the 950 taking us even further backwards… Then they release the Nokia 8 with one of the smallest sensors they have used in probably a decade on a flagship and taken away all oversampling and xenon flash as well as a decent camera application

                      I bet if you put the n95 sensor in the Nokia 8 with the Nokia 8 software it would take better pictures

                      The reason we are so disappointed is the Nokia 808 got us within inches of our dream Nokia device and every device since then just takes is further and further away

                    • Kamal

                      Frankly speaking, your disappointments are well-argued and I can’t stop myself from agreeing to many of them. But in a parallel world when Nokia could have not strayed away from its legacy and leadership in smartphones, we could have been still getting our Camera flagships every year. But alas that is not supposed to happen anymore. That Camera flagship legacy is long gone with Lumia 1020 as the last Monarch.

                    • 777sasha3331

                      Please moderate all my link!

                    • 777sasha3331
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