It will have marked the summer, it is a certainty. The 41 million pixel sensors obviously don't run the streets and that's probably why the Nokia Lumia 1020 has made so much noise over the past few weeks. The most loyal of you know, the Finnish manufacturer sent me a copy of the beast just before the new year. After a first grip available at this address , you will therefore be able to discover my complete test a little further down, a test that will allow you to learn more about what stands out as one of the best photophones in the world. market.
Little clarification before starting. As always, I would like to remind you that this test will not be pure technique. No numbers, therefore, and no complicated measurements obtained with expensive probes. Some people do it a lot better than I do, anyway.
The features of the Lumia 1020 have been known for a long time, but a booster shot can't hurt.
The bugger thus embeds a 4.5-inch ClearBlack TrueColor AMOLED screen capable of displaying a WXGA-type resolution, or 1280 × 768, for a pixel density of 334 ppi. It is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor clocked at 1.5 GHz and supported by 2 GB of RAM . Otherwise, the storage space reaches 32 GB and this is good news since the terminal does not include a port for SD cards. However, it will be possible to supplement its internal memory by relying on the 7 GB offered on SkyDrive.
But the main asset of the Lumia 1020 is above all its photo module. There, Nokia has not done in half measure since the latter takes the characteristics of that of the 808 PureView. The sensor, for its part, reaches 1 / 1.5 ″ for a definition of 41 million pixels, all with a backlighting system history to give a little more pep to our pictures. As a bonus, we are entitled to a Zeiss 26mm f / 2.2 optics, an optic that plays the stabilization card and which comes with a Xenon flash and a high-resolution x3 zoom.
In terms of photography, the 1020 is capable of doing wonders, of course, but this point will be covered in detail a little later in the article. Just know that this sensor is able to capture video in HD 720p or Full HD 1080p, with different modes available.
Okay, so what next? Afterwards, we are entitled to an 802.11 a / b / g / n WiFi chip , a Bluetooth 3.0 chip , an NFC chip and an LTE chip . If the subject interests you, know that the terminal supports five different channels: 1, 3, 7, 8 and 20. The battery, for its part, does not exceed 2000 mAh, for the most correct autonomy. Here again, we will have the opportunity to talk about it later.
Design & Ergonomics
The time has come to discuss the design and ergonomics of the terminal.
No big surprise here. The Lumia 1020 is positioned in the right line of the terminals of the range with neat lines and a pretty polycarbonate shell . A quick look at Wikipedia will tell you that this material was discovered in 1953 by three researchers working for Bayer AG. It is “a polymer resulting from the polycondensation of bisphenol A and a carbonate or phosgene, or for transesterification” . Don't count on me to explain the secrets of this strange recipe. If I was good at chemistry, I would probably be cooking meth in some desert.
What is certain, in any case, is that the terminal is very pleasant to look at, and to touch.
On the front of the terminal, we find the screen inlaid on the shell, a screen protected by a large glass plate integrating the three sensitive buttons specific to the Windows Phone ecosystem. Buttons that will allow us to go back, display the home screen or trigger a search … on Bing, of course. By pressing the first button for a few seconds, we can also access multitasking. If we do the same on the second button, then the voice assistant will be activated.
Above the screen, we will find the manufacturer's logo, the speaker and the front camera.
All the terminal buttons are located on the right edge: volume controls , power on and trigger answer the call. A long press on it will launch Nokia Pro Camera. On the upper edge, we will find the headphone jack and the hatch protecting the SIM card. On the other side, we can count on the microphone and the Micro USB socket. In the corner, we will also be entitled to a hole in which we can slip the strap supplied with the terminal.
The back of the shell plays the card of minimalism, except for the presence of this huge photo module, a module that includes the lens of the terminal, of course, but also its Xenon flash. The rascal emerges a few millimeters from the hull, and it will therefore not be possible to lay the terminal flat on a desk or a table. I was worried it would be a little too slippery, but I had no problem during this week of testing. Same thing when you hold it in your hand, by the way. In fact, the prominence of the module even facilitates gripping.
Screen, Power & Autonomy
So what is the screen worth?
It is rather comfortable, with a good rendering in terms of colors and deep blacks. Its definition remains correct and will suffice for most uses. The only really annoying thing, in the end, are its very wide borders and the sensitive buttons do not help. I much prefer the LG G2 or the Galaxy Note 3 on this point. Contrast is very nice, however, and the same is true for brightness.
On paper, the Nokia Lumia 1020 has an older generation screen. Let's be honest, the Snapdragon S4 doesn't come close to a Snapdragon 800. Not in raw power, at least. Because indeed, behind, we have Windows Phone and this platform is not the most greedy. It is even very well optimized. Result of the races, the 1020 remained fluid and responsive in all circumstances. In addition, I did not have to complain about any crashes during this week of testing.
It remains to evoke the autonomy of the beast and here again, the results are rather positive. For normal use (web, mail, etc.), the Lumia 1020 can easily last a day and a half without having to stick it to a power outlet. Either as much as the Z1, the G2 or even the Note 3. Like what, the capacity of the battery is not everything. If necessary, know that it will also be possible to invest in an optional shell incorporating a 1020 mAh battery, a battery that will allow you to last a few more hours.
Ideal for photo / video outings.
Photo & Video
The Lumia 1020 , as mentioned above, has a sensor of 41 million pixels. Be careful, however, because it will not be able to capture shots reaching this definition. In fact, every time we press the shutter button, no less than two photos will be recorded: one of 5 million pixels , and a second of 34 or 38 million pixels . Everything will depend on the format of the photos.
Why two clichés? The explanation is quite simple, after all: to help us share our photos more easily. When it comes to pushing our image on Twitter, Facebook and all the others, it will actually be the 5 million pixel shot that will be taken into account.
In addition, it should also be noted that if the 1020 embeds an optical stabilizer, it is also possible to rely on a mechanical shutter. When you start Nokia Pro Camera, this will give you an easily identifiable * click *. The downside of this system is that you will have to wait between two or three seconds before being able to shoot. A delay that we will also suffer between each shot, which can be very annoying on a daily basis and when we want, or need, to strafe our subject.
On the other hand, Nokia Pro Camera is a real good surprise. The application should even delight the most demanding photographers since it will give them control over several settings that are very popular in the industry, such as white balance , shutter speed , sensitivity or even… focusing. manual ! Yes, you read that correctly, the manual map will be part of the game and we will just have to move a simple marker to go from the back to the foreground, and vice versa. The interface is also particularly well studied, and very ergonomic.
To display all the settings, we will just have to put our finger on the shutter button and pull it towards the inside of the screen. All the virtual knobs will then appear in a few seconds and we will only have to move them in one direction or the other to modify the associated settings.
The video mode uses the same ergonomics, with fewer settings since we can simply take control of the torch, the focus and the white balance. After, of course, we can always access the advanced settings to change the format of the recording. On this side, no big surprises, however, since we will be entitled to 1080p (30, 25 and 24 frames per second) or 720p (same thing).
Okay, this is great, and the quality in all of this?
It is uneven. With light, the Lumia 1020 is able to perform real miracles and it will have no trouble replacing most digital compacts, with the exception of the top of the range of course. He won't stand a chance against an RX100 II ( tested here ), for example. On the other hand, it sits on the top of the basket compared to other smartphones available on the market, and thus performs better than the Xperia Z1 in most situations. To be honest, some pictures have even bluffed me.
However, everything changes when there is no light.
Photos captured using the Lumia 1020 do lose sharpness and detail, with noise often present. However, it will be possible to slightly improve the situation with the Xenon flash or even with the focus light, without correcting all the defects of our shots.
So that you can get an idea of the possibilities offered by the 1020, here is an image gallery (click on the thumbnails to enlarge them) and a video edited from the rushes collected over the last few days.
The time has come to approach the ecosystem developed by Nokia, and therefore to discuss the various applications developed by the firm. A rich ecosystem, and a solid offer capable of attracting most mobile users, including people who are not very comfortable with new technologies.
- Social App: As its name does not necessarily indicate, this application simply presents the most popular tools from the Windows Store, and more specifically utility lists powered by Nokia himself. A good starting point when taking your first steps on Windows Phone, in short.
- HERE Drive + and HERE Maps: Nokia is very active in the mapping sector and these two applications allow both to virtually walk around the world and to define routes to follow on foot, by car or even by public transport . Through them, it will therefore be possible to transform the 1020 into a true full-fledged GPS. We will appreciate in passing the fact of being able to download maps locally, on the device.
- Nokia Care: A very useful tool, in the form of a virtual and interactive getting started guide. If you are new to the Windows Phone universe, then this tool should be particularly useful for you.
- Nokia Cinémagraphe: Creative people should greatly appreciate this application and that's normal since it will allow them to create animated images, and little GIFs that are sure to make their friends laugh. We capture a sequence of a few seconds, we draw on the screen the outlines of the area to be animated and the tool takes care of the rest. Formidable.
- Nokia MixRadio: This time, it is music lovers who are targeted by this application. They will only have to indicate the name of three artists they like to generate a completely free radio. If they wish, they can also draw from the mixes prepared by Nokia.
- Nokia Panorama: As the name suggests, this application has only one goal, which is to allow you to easily create panoramas.
- Nokia Smart Cam: This tool may be of interest to the most novice photographers. It will actually allow them to record, all at once, a dozen or so pictures and it will then take care of organizing them to bring out the most successful photos according to several different criteria.
- Nokia Creative Studio: A nifty photo editing application, an application that will therefore allow you to sublimate your photos by modifying their contrast, their brightness, their colors and even by adding pretty blurs that are sure to impress your most friends. relatives. Because you are an artist, actually.
- Nokia Pro Camera: I have obviously saved the best for last but it is unnecessary to detail how this application works since it was discussed, in length, in width, a little earlier in this article.
You will understand, the offer of Nokia does not lack charm and this is precisely what has allowed the firm to conquer a lot of people. It should not stop there and the takeover of its mobile division by Microsoft should give life to pretty things in the weeks and months to come.
The time has therefore come for my personal verdict. Personal, and therefore subjective, eh.
In terms of design, nothing to say, the Lumia have always had the mouth and the 1020 is obviously no exception to the rule. Admittedly, the optics integrated into the back of the shell stand out quite a bit from the latter, but it is not really annoying and it can even be very practical in some cases since it improves the grip of the apparatus.
The same goes for the overall performance of the terminal. Its chip is not the most powerful on the market, it is a fact, but that does not prevent it from turning on the small onions. The touch screen is also very responsive , which does not spoil anything. In the end, the terminal is as comfortable to use as an LG G2, a Sony Xperia Z1 or a Samsung Galaxy Note 3.
What about Windows Phone? I didn't really mention it in my test and it was completely intended. One week is not enough to get a real idea of a mobile platform. The ecosystem of Nokia is frankly worth the detour, however. The manufacturer has not turned its thumbs in recent years and its offer is particularly solid, with pretty nuggets like the HERE applications, MixRadio or even Nokia Pro Camera.
Regarding the photo part, and as indicated a little above, the Lumia 1020 is doing really well in the middle of the day and it is capable of delivering truly stunning photos or videos. Of course, it will not replace either a reflex, or even a high-end hybrid, but it can perfectly serve as a digital compact, especially by investing in the shell / grip offered as an option by Nokia. The only thing a little annoying, finally, is the turnaround time between two shots. At times, the 1020 does tend to pedal in the sauerkraut and it's quite annoying when you want to strafe your subject without going through the burst mode. Photographing a baby, for example, is not easy since the latter rarely strike a pose.
The results of the experience are therefore rather positive. If you have any questions, do not deprive yourself of them, even if the terminal has returned to its manufacturer this morning.
My next test will focus on the LG G Pad 8.3 which has also been accompanying me for a week. I got a little late on writing my article, however, the holiday season didn't help.