Nokia Lumia 1020 , Thoughts
1020 and accessories
The Lumia 1020
Well I have had the Nokia Lumia 1020 for just over a month now, and surprise surprise, I love it :) Now as the majority of 'Professional' tech experts and bloggers have pointed out, the stand out feature of the 1020 , feature wise and physically is the 41 mega-pixel camera and the raised 'Minion Eye' camera module on the back of the handset , which seems to be a bit of a Marmite feature, however most people appear to like both the design and the results it produces. I take a lot of photographs and for over a year the vast majority of them have been taken on my Nokia 808 PureView, which coincidentally , also has a 41 mega-pixel camera !! I literally adore my 808, since the day I bought it, it has been my constant companion, it has travelled the world with me, never let me down and helped me take photographs I didn't think I was capable of producing at all, let alone , using a phone. I have used alongside my 808, several Windows Phones, including the second iteration of PureView the Lumia 920 with its OIS system enabling great low light photos, but although the OS of WP is slicker and more modern than Symbian and the browsing and media experience on the Lumias beats the 808 nothing could compete with its photographic prowess.
82 Mega Pixels
As I say, I have had my 1020 for just over a month now, and even though I still carry two phones (the 808 is always in my pocket as much for backup as photography) I have found that I have almost exclusively used the 1020 for almost everything, including photography, because it's that good !! Of all the photos I have taken since I got the 1020 I don't think 20% have been taken on my 808, and of those quite a lot are actually photos OF the 1020 or taken specifically to compare the two cameras (I do that a lot in case you hadn't noticed) So despite a couple of minor criticisms, which I will come to later, the Lumia 1020 is both a fantastic camera phone and a fantastic phone phone .
Full Lumia 1020 Specs GSM Arena
Full GSM Arena Lumia 1020 Review
I have used and written about most of the Nokia Lumia handsets and mentioned more than once the similar and consistent performance and user experience , however, the 1020 does have an edge, obviously it's the latest and greatest, but it is still running Windows Phone 8 as are the other current batch, however to help process the huge photo files the phone produces, it has 2 gigabytes of RAM and the effect this has on the rest of the phones performance is noticeable, all Windows Phones are quick and slick, but the 1020 just flies, apps open more quickly than on any other Lumia handset I've used, they resume quicker, the browser opens more quickly, you can switch from app to app in the blink of an eye and I have never had even the threat of a stutter on the handset.
To add to the pleasure of using the phone , along with most of the other WP 8 Lumias Nokia have added with their 'Amber update' the feature to tap to unlock the phone and the 'Glance Screen' features which I had on my Nokia N9 and this has gone down a storm with every Lumia user I know and to make thinks even more customisable and fun , Nokia Beta labs recently released Glance Background beta enabling the addition of pictures on your lock screen, very Symbian 'sleeping screen' and again very popular. This phone has virtually covered my requirements 100%, maybe because I am lucky that all my personal requirements for apps are covered or maybe because the camera is far simpler for an idiot to get great results from, but whatever it is the 1020 is turning into a fantastic experience and firm favourite for me.
Another thing which I am extremely pleased about with the handset is the battery life, considering the work it does on a daily basis for me, doing a full days work and having juice left really impresses me, it isn't quite as good as a 625 or 720 but it is much better than my regular Lumia 920 and it has the same battery !! What amazes me the most is that people say battery life is much better with glance screen and tap to unlock turned off, but I am running everything and it's still great !!
Build & Accessories
The materials the 1020 are made from are great, I love the matt polycarbonate and black Aluminium camera housing and the accessories I received with the phone are absolutely great ! Particularly the camera grip, which both gives a great secure feel to the phone when taking a large number of photos, but also provides what I find to be a much better feel to the camera button and gives an additional battery reserve with the built in battery pack in the main 'grip' of the case, not to mention the tripod mount built into it, that camera grip has to be the most fit for purpose phone accessory ever created, it really is that good for anyone remotely interested in taking pictures
Shots of phone and camera grip
Now I mentioned earlier that I had some minor criticisms and one is the shot to shot time when using the Nokia Pro Cam app, it gives fantastic control both for the taking of photos and also for the manipulation of them afterwards, but due to the processing required to take both a 'full resolution' 34 or 38 megapixel photo, used to 'reframe' photos after they have been taken and a 5 megapixel 'PureView' shot created using oversampling from the original full res pic it can take up to 4 seconds between shots. This can be frustrating, even though you have the alternative choice of Smart Cam , which will in effect take a burst mode of photographs in 5 mega-pixel resolution which you can use to catch quick moving objects like kids or animals, it would be nice if the 1020 had the grunt to take Pro cam photos more quickly in succession. Hopefully some sort of software update may improve this, but it may be that extra processing power is needed, like the additional processor in the 808 dedicated to the camera. My only other gripe, is that with the Pro Cam app you can re-frame or re-zoom your shots which is fantastic, however , if you transfer both the full res and pureview photo from your phone to your computer and decide you would like to manipulate the photo again, you can't, if you put them back on the phone from your computer, they cannot be opened in the Pro Cam app so all you can do is to crop or process on your PC, really wish you could have a second bite at #ZoomReinvented , it must be possible as the sample photos on the phone obviously weren't taken on it so it must be possible to put photos onto the 1020 and use Pro Cam to manipulate them ?
Now notwithstanding the irritation of shot to shot time, the 1020 has , in my opinion, already taken some of the best results I have achieved when it comes to photography, I don't think the vast majority of 'snappers' require burst mode on a regular basis and if they do , as I mentioned before , smart cam will achieve this and there is rumour of it being integrated in to Pro Cam so instead of swapping apps it will be as simple as adjusting the rest of the settings in Pro Cam.
I fully acknowledge that I am a Nokia fanboy and I may not be completely objective regarding their products, but I have and do use other handsets and I honestly believe the 1020 stands up as a modern smarphone in its own right, it just happens to be a modern smartphone that has a better camera built into it than any other phone on the market at this moment in time.
Some photos I was pleased with from the 1020
Steve Litchfield 1020 review
I actually had a very minor bit of input in the above video and Steve was kind enough to let me include it here.
I could have droned on and on more than I already have about the 1020 but I honestly think the photos of and from it will explain things better than I can, also the links posted should help people wanting more detail or impartiality :)
Anyway thank you for reading, if you want to view any more of my photos, my .Flickr stream is here and there are a couple of sets from the 1020 there.