Faceoff: Canon 5D vs iPhone 5 vs Galaxy S4

Photo courtesy of Markus Baumgartner

Smartphone cameras are fast becoming the must-have devices for shutterbugs due the fact they can easily fit into your pocket. As the bigger and bulkier cameras are slowly taking a back seat, are smartphones reigning supreme? In this article, we’ll be comparing one of Canon’s most powerful cameras, the 5D Mark III against two of the best smartphones in the market today: the Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom and iPhone 5. Whose lens and features will reign supreme? Let’s find out:


Round 1: Specs and Features

Based on the information we gathered about the iPhone 5 on O2, its 8MP (megapixel) rear camera’s maximum resolution is up to 3264 x 2448. The 33mm lens is built from a sapphire crystal, making it highly-resistant to scratches. It also has a medium-wide angle feature and a smaller 1/3.2-inch backside illuminated sensor, which can take good pictures even in low-lighting conditions. Aside from taking great images, it can record 1080p or HD videos at 30 frames per second. Other features like a LED flash, panorama, HDR (high definition recording), and touch focus are also present on this device.


On the other hand, the Samsung S4 Zoom is a 16MP camera with a backside-illuminated CMOS sensor which takes better pictures than the iPhone 5 in low light settings. Its 24-240mm lens also features a 10x optical zoom, and manual controls for tweaking aperture, shutter speed, white balance and ISO. Available presets also make it easier for budding shutterbugs to learn about photography. High-definition videos in the 1080p format can be also be shot with the S4 Zoom.


The EOS 5D Mark III is a full-fledged camera compared to the two. Its 22.3MP lens features a full-frame sensor to capture higher quality images. The 5D Mark III’s native ISO ranges from 100 to 25,600, and its shutter speed is clocked at 30-1/8000 sec. The aperture can be expanded depending on the type of lens you’re using. Also, it can easily record high-quality videos at 24, 25, or 30fps, with a 6fps continuous shooting mode.


Round 2: Zooming Capabilities

In this category, the iPhone 5 is at a disadvantage because it can only do a digital one. Digital zooming allows you to crop a portion of the subject and enlarge it. By using this method, the number of pixels is greatly reduced, thus, resulting in a loss of quality.


The 5D Mark III and the S4 Zoom’s optical lens can enlarge a subject, without affecting the image’s sharpness and resolution. Instead of digitally cropping it, the lens moves in and out to get closer to the subject. However, the S4’s lens isn’t interchangeable which limits its zooming capability. In this round, Canon’s camera wins, since DLRs have a variety of lenses to choose from: an EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, EF 50MM f/1.4 USM, or the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L.


Round 3: Versatility

Thanks to improvements like better image stabilization, the iPhone 5’s camera can now take pictures with vibrant colors, especially for outdoor shots. But since it doesn’t have manual settings, it’s only suited for a limited number of environments. With the Mark III and S4 Zoom, they can both take photos from a distance without losing picture quality. Both of their lens’ ISO and aperture can be customized to fit your needs. The Canon 5D has a wider range of shutter speeds which helps it capture movements better.


Round 4: Extra Features

Thanks to editing applications, smartphones became fun tools for photography. It makes it easier for you to edit and add filters automatically when taking pictures. Wide-angle shots are now easier to shoot with these phones’ panorama features. Also, each phone has a built-in High Dynamic Range Imaging (HDR) system, which combines images taken in different exposures making the colors more vibrant. Light Trace, Drama Shot, and 25 other shooting modes are available on the S4 Zoom.

Round 5: Convenience

Inform IT published an article showing that 45% of consumers prefer using their smartphones to take pictures. These devices are more versatile, convenient, and portable compared to regular cameras. Since we are living in a wired, digital world, mobile phones are a necessity and we use it more often.



Each type of camera has its own advantages and disadvantages. Phones with built-in cameras are compact, has different features for average shooting purposes. But, if you need to shoot high definition videos and photos, better get a DSLR camera instead.

Which camera do you use the most? Share us your thoughts below.

About Charlie

About the Author: Charlie Schofield is a Tech Blogger from TechieDoodlers. He is an expert in the latest gadgets, video games, and social media trends. He blogs after work, which basically means he spends his entire day in front of his laptop. Most likely, Charlie is currently on a hammock, sipping coconut juice while beating the 300th level of Candy Crush.

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