I haven’t liked most of the iPhone 4 closeups I’ve seen so far, so I decided to do my own for you. These were taken with an Olympus EPL1 on a tripod using a Nikon Micro-Nikor 55mm Macro lens at an aperture of f. 22. In order to get them on the site they were taken at 1280×960 and posted to TeleRead at 400×300.

The first is a full frame shot of the 3GS and 4 side by side. The 4 is on the left. Both are displaying the same text from the same book and the Kindle software has been set to a sepia background – which is the way I usually read on the iPhone. Both phones brightness sliders were set the same and auto brightness was turned off. Note the color difference between the two:


The next is a closeup of the 3GS. Both closeups are at 1:1.


Now the 4:



  1. Easily the best side by side pictures I’ve seen yet. Really highlights the HUGE step up in quality and pixel density, although the background color of the 3GS looks a bit more pleasing side by side, in the zooms, you don’t really notice the difference. Of course, using a digital camera with unknown white balance adjustments and unknown lighting, it’s not fair to say those are how they actually look. 🙂

  2. Icke: thanks, the 4 was on the left. I fixed the text.

    Lewis: white balance was calibrated before taking the pictures and lighting was afternoon sunlight coming through windows. Still, the camera didn’t capture the fairly obvious color differences between the screens.

  3. Paul,
    If you focus on the screen, the auto adjustments of a normal camera will assume you want that brightness dimmed, so a spot meter that focuses on something at the same depth but darker or some area in between them helps.

    Having said that, your pictures show the iPhone 4 CLEARLY much easier to read. The other has spread on it and these are really effective comparisons. Thanks for this.

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