Taking Google's Nexus 5 camera out for a spin (pictures)
CNET takes the Google Nexus 5 around San Francisco now that its 8-megapixel camera features optical image stabilization and HDR+ technology.
Shooting with the Nexus 5
The Nexus 5 is packing a few new features that aim to improve the camera quality. First, there's a slightly different-looking viewfinder UI that has two menus instead of one. You swipe up on the screen to get to all the different settings.
Second, Google added HDR+, an image-capturing technology that takes multiple shots at once using different exposure settings and combines them into the best possible photo. That's a welcome addition since the camera tends to struggle in auto mode. Most of the time, things got better when we used HDR+.
Lastly, there's a small, precise gyroscope in the camera lens for optical image stabilization. That's supposed to cut down on blurry photos that result from moving your hand too much while shooting.
For the next two photos we purposely shot into the sun to demonstrate the Nexus 5's HDR+ mode. Here in auto mode, the light overpowers the scene. Granted, most cameras would struggle here, but keep clicking to see how the camera improves as you move off auto mode.
There's motion blur on the car in this night shot, captured in automatic mode. Of course, no smartphone camera will fare well at night, so this isn't unique to the Nexus 5. But, again, we wanted to show the progression from auto to HDR+ mode. So keep on clicking.