I’ve got my hands on an activated Sprint HTC One on Sprint’s network for the next nine days. Therefore, I have decided to put it head to head against the HTC EVO 4G LTE since, well, that’s what I have activated at the moment and I’ve been pretty happy with my EVO camera so far. For purposes of this comparison, I flashed my EVO 4G LTE back to a Sense-based ROM, so this is HTC software and hardware vs HTC software and hardware.

Most of the photos were taken by holding the devices right next to each other with the lenses at approximately the same height. All pictures (except the currency pictures) were taken within five seconds of each other, so there should be no real environmental change from the EVO 4G LTE to the One. The day was overcast and dreary, the sort of day that makes you want to sneeze for no reason.

The EVO 4G LTE has a camera resolution of 8MP, while the HTC One only has four but uses a different capture technology which is better in lower lighting conditions.

HTC EVO 4G LTE vs HTC One

Still shots (left is the EVO 4G LTE, right is the One):

HTC EVO 4G LTE catHTC One cat

What I notice about this most is that the grass in the shot by the HTC One really looks a little more detailed. The white shading on the cat’s neck looks more realistic on the One, although the dimness of the day is better reflected on the EVO 4G LTE.

HTC EVO 4G lte purple plantHTC One purple plant

In this photo of the purple plant and plastic cup, the HTC One loses some of the detail on the brick damage by over-saturating and normalizing the brick. Interestingly enough, though, the EVO loses detail on the back concrete wall.

To my colorblind eyes, the One’s photo of the plants looks like they actually are in normal lighting; however, they were not in normal lighting. It was overcast and icky.

Most importantly here, and you’ll need to click on the photos and enlarge them to see this, the purple plant has hairs that string off of it. On the EVO 4G LTE you can see them very clearly, and on the One the hairs have been blurred into the photo. It doesn’t appear to be a resolution issue, but more a photo enhancement one.

Chances are you’re not looking for plant hair details in 99% of the photos you’re going to take, though.

EVO 4G LTE vs One in resolution

Hair on the leaf shown – more foreground detail on the EVO 4G LTE, more background on the One

HTC EVO 4G LTE bushesHTC One bushes

Neither camera caught this scene quite right, but I think the HTC One managed slightly better.

HTC EVO 4G LTE Weed gardenHTC One weed garden

EVO 4G LTE overexposed the whites losing detail in the fence. Detail seems to be lost on the bricks on the One. Grass looks more like it actually was on the One, but I believe the EVO rendered this better. This time I think resolution may be the cause.

HTC EVO 4G LTE two dollar billHTC One two dollar bill

HTC EVO 4G LTE taking a picture of the HTC OneHTC One taking a picture of the HTC EVO 4G LTE

On the left is a picture taken by the EVO 4G LTE of the One’s screen taking a picture of a stack of two dollar bills. On the right is the One taking a picture of the screen of the EVO 4G LTE.

The EVO fails pretty badly at taking a picture of a screen, while the One does significantly better but loses brightness in the background when it does.

HTC EVO 4G LTE red chairHTC One red chair

In the battle of the red chairs, the resolution on the EVO 4G LTE wins, but the dreariness of the day was more accurately reflected in the sad tones of the One. Also the One looks more real zoomed out.

I did a few extreme lowlight photos on both cameras. The One won, but the photos were pretty bad.

A few things to note for the dreary daylight test are that the EVO required multiple shots on some of these, and it also really messed up when the money was close to the lens (it would focus and then focus to the wrong place the instant I pressed the capture button). For one-shot close up pictures, the One won.

So far, I’m a little more impressed with the One’s camera than I am with the EVO 4G LTE, but there’s more to a phone than a camera that performs well on an overcast day and I’ll be playing with that the next few days.