Nokia Lumia 925 camera samples show improvements over Lumia 920, impressive design

Although the Lumia 925 is not quite out yet, it seems to be strutting its stuff more and more (see this earlier post from today).This time, the site has gotten their mitts on one for an extensive mini-review. While the article is in Chinese, you can discern easy enough from Bing translator that they are impressed with the upcoming phone.

Indeed, they were even able to pull some image samples from the aluminum Windows Phone and compare it shot for shot next to a Lumia 920. Now, two things to note here: the Lumia 925 benefits from an added sixth lens, which is supposed to improve sharpness. But in addition, the Lumia 925 also has the ‘Amber’ update from Nokia on board, which adds all new and updated camera algorithms and up to 3200 ISO for even faster low-light shots.

So which is which here? Hard to say, but Lumia 920 users should perhaps be more excited than disappointed, as we’re pretty sure these improvements will be coming later this summer to your devices as well. From the samples though, we can see that the combo of the Lumia 925 + Amber update results in better color reproduction, increased sharpness and less image noise.

Overall though, the Lumia 925 is shaping up to be one sharp looking device and it should be a big hit for Windows Phone.

Source:; Thanks, hengxiang32401, for the tip!

Lumia 925 3200 ISO

Up to 3200 ISO for the camera with the Amber update

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • Damn, I wish my 920 had a 6th lens now
  • relax I read somewhere its due more to the software then the hardware so i just want the amber update
  • that would be great :) Lumia 920 rocks :)
  • I hope you're right, because I really don't want to change my lovable 920 yet.
  • Its not the lens, I see very clear signs of software enhancements. Look at the black levels- thats got nothing to do with the addition of a lens element.
  • More glass doesn't mean more sharpness. That's marketing speak.
    A telephoto lens has tons of lens elements and does it make their images sharper? not really. A prime lens will let in more light than a big zoom lens.
  • That really depends.. You can't totally say more glass does not equal to better image quality, when in fact, in many cases, it can. Adding ultra-low dispersion lenses (glass), for example, can have a massive influence.
  • They look great - hoping similar output from Lumia 920 as well! :)
  • Soon...
  • Wow, that's a pretty big difference. Go Lumia 925!
  • That's still to be unfair, as 920 still has the Portico update, while the 925 has the Amber update.
  • Keep in mind that the Lumia 925 has a 6th lense, so even when the Lumia 920/928 gets the Amber update, the photos may still not match the quality of the Lumia 925.
    It will be exciting to see the improvements, nonetheless.
  • Once again that 6th lens doesn't make a noticeable difference..
  • Again, I stated that the software update may not make the photos on the Lumia 920 better than the Lumia 925.  The sixth lense obviously has some benefits, otherwise, why add it?
    The point:  If Lumia 920 users get the Amber update, and find that their results are not EXACTLY like what they are seeing with these Lumia 925 examples, then they will be disappointed.  Nonetheless, they should see improvements.
  • Daylight photos baby. I'm willing to bet it will be noticeable.
  • I'm really dissapointed with 920 indoor photos, colors are washd out, reminded me of Old Camera phones. Try zoomin an you can see massive color coorection that discard details. However, image sample of 925 looks promising. Cant wait for that amber update
  • You're saying this as if you already know it for fact. You don't know this, I don't know this, but I do know from professional photography that lenses frequently have one or more glass elements added to improve contrast, colours, sharpness through lowering aberrations.
  • I don't think the 920 they used had the Portaco Update. My 920 takes far better photos than theirs did.  Unless they have manipulated th elighting condiftions specifically to make the 925 look so much better, but the last set with al the pictures on the wall shows three light sources, no way my 920 would do so bad a job as that!
    not saying the Amber update won't be better, but not this much!
  • Oh come on.  What possible motivation would WPC have to alter the 920 images to make it worse than the 925?  Both phones will still get the update, both phones will still have noticably improved cameras as a result.  Unless you go there and try your 920 in the exact same position, I don't think its fair to suggest that WPC manipulated the lighting conditions in favor of the 925.
  • i guess nokia is having a tik tok strategy like the iphone with the 925 being the tik but will there be a tik for 820 or 620 ?
  • I kind of doubt it.  Here is my thinking.  When it comes to Lumias, there are really two camps, those that want the best (920), and those that want something based on a price point (820,720,620,520).  Since the design of the 920 might not be for everyone, I can see why Nokia thought it best to introduce some veriaty there.  So now amongst the camp that wants the best, there are options, 920 has better wireless charging and has a more "Lumia" design, while the 925 is lighter/thinner with slightly better camera.  In the other camp (820-520), I think there is already plenty of diversity in device choices and releasing new variants might just confuse people.
  • I don't think this is a tick tock strategy. Isn't the 925 just the varient for T-mobile. It came like 8 months after the 920. So, they made some improvements. They changed up the design and I bet when the AT&T update comes it will use some of the 925's design language.
  • Wow, that's so much better! Okay, I really want to get a 920 but I think I'm gonna be waiting for the new flagship, "930".
  • You can wait for "1000".
  • 930 won't be the number for the new flagship.  There are already three variations of the 920, consumers will get confused if they use that number.  But yes, I am also waiting for the EOS...seeing that I am on ATT and don't want to move over to T-Mobile anytime soon.
  • Can't wait for the Amber update on my 920! I too had some problems with the indoor shots being very cold. 
  • wow. Looks good.
  • Daylight pictures will be even sharper on the 925 with the sixth lens. Can I have this phone already?
  • Ha you can't!
  • Right but come know the
  • I would have held out for the 925, but the 16GB of storage killed its usability to me. (;´Д`)
  • Bring it on Nokia/MS, June is here already..:):):)
  • Looks good =)
    I dont like the autofocus on my 920... will the amber update fix some of that 2?
  • +1... when I'm holding down the shutter button the focus looks great, but when it actually captures the shot it is siginificantly more blurry... doesn't make sense to me. capture the most in focus image please.
  • Isn't that because of the OS optimising photos for faster viewing? So, correct me if I'm wrong, but the actual images are supposedly sharper than they appear on your phone.
  • SOOO looking forward to the update :):D:):D:-):P
  • This is cool, but what I'm really eager to find out is T-Mobiles pricing for the 925 (in the US).  I hope I'm just as pleasently surprised by it as I was by the $150 521.
  • As a person who bought their 920 unlocked and full price (between 650-750 $) anything below 650$ is good.
  • In my country it was 930$ unlocked. with proper Nokiawarranty, instead of the cheaper solution with reseller's only  warranty (which is a risk actually, mileage depends on the shop where you bough it, I didnt want to take the risk).  F***** expensive toy, cost way more than my Surface RT from the US.
  • Wow, where do you live? =P I got it for 680, stil pretty expensive IMO.
  • In one of those central European country with not-so-lucky-history.
  • HAHA well formulated sir! I'm from one of those middle eastern countries who are a geographical mistake =P
  • US dollars?
  • Yesp, I converted the value into USD. That is roughly the amount of the average 1 month net salary. Of course you can buy it for 0$, if you sign a 2-year contract, with 133$ monthly plan. Even better, right? ... Not..
  • I'm gonna guess $119 upfront, $20/mo over the next 24 mo.
  • That comes out to $600.  I think you guys are too stuck on the pricing of the Lumias in the EU.  The 521 hit T-Mo at $150 while its like 200 Euros in EU.  The 920 hit AT&T for $450 while I think it was more around 600 Euros in EU (correct me if I'm wrong though).  So honestly, I'm suspecting more around $400.
  • Sounds about right. $119 with taxes included.
  • I wonder if the camera hardware could be swapped? I heard that the actual camera module isn't very expensive.
  • There are probably different OS level drivers that are on the 925...than on the 920.  Also the camera module would probably be larger on the 925 than the 920 seeing that it has an additional lens. 
  • the more i see this beast the more i drool... me. want. that. SHAAAT! lol
  • .... but what i really feared the most was how TMo EOL the L810 after 5 months of its release w/o even telling its consumers about it... i just hope this device doesn't go the way the L810 did... "DITCHED"....
  • Look, the 810 just didn't sell well. Blame it on Nokia, blame it on T-Mobile, blame it on both for delivering a pretty drab looking phone (performed well, looked boring). You can't blame a carrier or OEM for ditching a product that is not selling for something new.  EOLs happen and so don't failed devices. Just the risk in technology :/
  • yea it just sucks.. felt like all L810 users got robbed.. but it is what it is.. i'm not complaining that i own the device.. i think its a decent device to have.. does the job well and battery life is stellar.. but this L925 could very well be my next one.. i'm done with Android for now.. and iOS blows... giving WP a chance and its looking pretty good so far.. just UP the apps lol
  • You feel like you were robbed? How is that?
  • I like my 810 even though TMobile EOL it. The best part it works great with good battery life, and great OS. I used to owned Samsung Galaxy Vibrant that's a "F" nightmare, waste of money. I felt like I paid Samsung to annoy me.
  • False impression. Consumers have this imbedded believe that because they're buying this popular brand name, they're getting a quality product- because its cheap and its Samsung, its the best.
  • If the device stopped working, then the users would have been robbed. Since it works exactly the same way as when they bought, the users got what they paid for. The only problem might be updates. I don't know if Nokia handles the updates or T-Mobile. If it's T-Mobile, they might not want to put time into testing updates and would not push any future updates to 810 users.
  • In this day and age, people buy smartphones with some expectation of continued support by the provider and the manufacturer. I'm not saying you are wrong, but when support (updates) stop, people have a right to feel robbed. A lot of AT&T users felt that way about the L900 too. We saw a vastly superior successor in half a year and, while support wasn't completely dropped on the 900, everything was out on the back burner. These two phone models I mention are probably models that really never should have been. 
  • The initial presentation of the L810 should've told you it doesn't look good, design and sales wise. This should've never happened in the first place.
  • You're hurting my 810 feeling calling it ugly. :-P
  • I'm sorry, I mean ugly in a good way.
  • But it has a great personality!
  • So the "old" hardware should be getting GDR2 and Amber sometime around mid- summer, right ? 
  • hehe.. that's what everyone's hoping.. i still remain optimistic... my L810 could surely use some freagen viable update lol..
  • Well GDR 2 will definitely be coming, after all it is a OS update, and Nokia said that Amber would come to wp8 hardware, I just don't know when . :D 
  • well GDR 2 will definitely be coming, after all it is a OS update, and Nokia said that Amber would come to wp8 hardware, I just don't know when ? :D 
  • well least we got something to look forward to...  we better get'em otherwise lotta people would be pissed including myself!
  • A lens elements not the same thing as a lens. Though a rotating lens mount with six different lenses would be neat I'm pretty sure there is only one lens in both the 920 & 925.
  • What does this amber option do that can't be accomplish by just setting white balance manually? Or is it an additional white balance option?
  • This is obviously not the fairest comparison, but does give us a gimp into what's coming up in the Amber update. The 8 ball says "Nokia 920 Outlook is looking fantastic".
  • Something else though, that last screenshot with the ISO values, the black of the background is very, very gray. How's that possible with the 925's AMOLED screen? Even my 920 with its LCD screen doesn't show up nearly THAT gray even with brightness fully pumped up.
  • In GDR2, That screen is gray background, and other not. Lumia 925 used AMOLED screen turely.
  • If this were available on Verizon, it would rock. The 928 just seems too square.
  • Sixth lense or sense? Awesome pics...
  • My wife returned her 928 for a Droid DNA becuase of the softness/washout/etc.(whatever you want to call it). She uses her phone about 80% of the time for pictures and she liked the Droid's better. Hopefully this Amber update will help my 928. I kept mine as I use it more for phone and work.
  • the 928 has a much better camera... one thing you have to mind with the big f2.0 lens is that there are no smudges on the lens. I have to wipe mine often or pictures will be very soft and washed out. the bigger aperture is very prone to fingerprints on the lens. also, the default photo gallery wp app shows you a downsampled version of the actual photo that is softer than the actual image. using hd photo viewer app, you can see the actual detail which is sharper.
  • Any reason why the 928 didn't get the sixth lens like the 925 will?
  • Black is accurate on the L925.
  • sexyyyyyy!! ;-)
  • not even a rumor for CUSTOM SMS TONES??? common.... please.. make this part of the update..
  • Woah! Calm yourself. This post is only talking about the camera, we don't know anything about custom SMS sounds yet.
  • i know... you should calm down. 
  • My 928 can has? Pls?
  • Can 920 camera be upgraded to the 925 (camera replacement)?
  • most of us, use default settings in camera since we don't know how to adjust it professionally, IMO after Amber update, 2 phones will be having extremely similar shots.
  • Ill save money for 1020 or maybe wait on an 8.1 phone, due soon