The BlackBerry Z10 ditches the company’s traditional layout with small screen and QWERTY keyboard, beloved of business corporations, for the sleek slab-sided minimalist design with a relatively large 4.2-inch touch-display preferred by the consumer.
The multi-media orientated Z10 shuns the popular Android platform in favor of BlackBerry’s proprietary OS. Nonetheless, it features an 8-MPix camera using a BSI (Backside Illuminated) CMOS chip complete with a 5-element f/2.2 lens and continuous auto-focus for stills and 1080p 30fps video clips.
Achieving a overall DxOMark Mobile score of 67 the Z10 in comes in ahead of the recently reviewed HTC 8X and Nokia Lumia 920 (both scoring 66) but falls behind Apple’s highly regarded iPhone 4S which at number 5 in our rankings achieved a good overall score of 72. Although that’s slightly disappointing for a new model, the camera is capable of good results so long as the light levels aren’t too challenging.
Looking at the individual scores of 67 for Photo and 66 for video, it has good exposure accuracy and delivers pleasing colors in bright light, including both ambient daylight and flash. Images are then generally free of artifacts and show good detail. The autofocus could be better but it is both responsive and can track some (slow-moving) subjects.
In lower light levels it’s a slightly different story. The main shortcoming is very high luminance noise levels and the associated lack of fine detail rendering. Images also reveal color shading, especially with artificial light sources. Being fairly inefficient and with higher artifacts than we would like or expect, video stabilization isn’t a particular strong point either.
- Nice detail preservation including in low light conditions.
- Overall good auto exposure.
- Nice and pleasing colors outdoors.
- Good white balance.
- Accurate autofocus in most situations.
- Responsive autofocus with some tracking abilities.
- Very strong luminance noise in low light.
- Clearly visible color shading with tungsten light source in low light or D50 lighting.
- Slight color fringing.
- Some white balance inaccuracies when using flash. Color shading when mixed with a tungsten light source.
- Visible color non uniformities.
- Perfectible texture reproduction.
- Inefficient video stabilization.