The Pixel-Binning Process
The Nokia 808 PureView’s pixel-binning process allows noise to be averaged-out across multiple pixels. This helps to lower noise significantly on images which were taken in low lighting conditions. As we tested the Nokia 808 PureView, noise is even almost virtually eliminated from images which were shot in good lighting conditions, thanks to the pixel-binning process. Another benefit of the Nokia 808 PureView’s pixel-binning process is a better digital zoom. For instance, if you set the Nokia 808 PureView’s output at 5 megapixels, you can continue zooming while maintaining a 5-megapixel output until the Nokia 808 PureView is no longer oversampling and uses only a 5-megapixel area of the sensor.
In this case, the image quality will certainly decrease because noise is not averaged-out anymore; however, through this process you will still get a 5-megapixel output at approximately 2.8x zoom. You can even get more zoom by choosing a lower resolution output. The same process also allows High Definition videos to be recorded with up to 4x zoom, and since the zoom is achieved without any moving optic elements, the process will be very fast and silent. Thanks to the combination of the Nokia 808 PureView’s silent lens mechanism and its Dolby Headphones technology, you will be able to enjoy your recorded videos with clean and clear sound.
The Nokia 808 PureView is equipped with a Carl Zeiss-branded lens, which has a comparatively large aperture of f/2.4. According to Nokia, the Nokia 808 PureView’s lens should be better than other smartphones’ all-plastic lenses, because it features one glass element out of 5 elements. The company also claimed that the combination of the Nokia 808 PureView’s large-sized sensor and its comparatively large aperture lens allows you to shoot images with a nice background-blur effect; however, we think that this latter claim could be misleading.
While it is true that a larger sensor can create a shallower depth-of-field which leads to a background-blur effect, you will be disappointed if you expect the Nokia 808 PureView to deliver an intensive background-blur effect like that you will get from a digital SLR camera. The reason for this is simply because with the Nokia 808 PureView’s lens, you would not be able to get much control over depth-of-field like when using a lens with a longer physical focal length. As for the sample picture with shallow depth-of-field provided by Nokia below, it doesn’t prove anything since the object in the front was taken with a very close focus distance. Anyway, even without the capability of delivering a digital SLR-like background-blur effect, the Nokia 808 PureView is still a very impressive camera phone.