Nokia N73 review: Pole position

Michal Sedlák, 28 August 2006. Read the original review at MobilMania.cz
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The main menu can be visualized either in the form of a classical 3 x 4 grid, that is 12 icons en bloc, or as a standard list of items. The menu is cyclical, alias it rolls on instead of stopping at one of the ends of the display. Some icons in Nokia N73 are organized in a way differing from the menu of Nokia N80, For example, the folder "My Own" has disappeared for good. Newly installed programs are directly stored in a sections called "Applications". Each item can be cut out and sent somewhere else; or renamed.

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Main menu in a 3 x 4 matrix • and as a list

Nokia N73
The Applications folder also shares newly installed programs instead of the former section "My own"

With the help of Carl

As soon as we obtained Nokia N73 last week, we grabbed it together with the other two photo mobiles equipped with a 3 megapixel camera and auto focus - Samsung D900 and Sony Ericsson K800 - and immediately ran out to test them. The results were published without any comment from our side. So far more than 430 readers have posted their opinion on which one is better. It looks like a tie between Nokia N73 and Sony Ericsson K800, while Samsung D900 camera has significantly less fans. In this comparison Nokia N73 shows very good resolution and low noise levels. The colors are attractive, vivid, but not very realistic. You may or may not like this approach. The high contrast and saturation levels applied by Nokia help for the wow factor, but produce worse results if you have to edit the photos later.

I am not going to discuss the pictures taken with Nokia N73 in details. It is obvious that they belong among the best. What I am interested in is the interface of the camera application, or in other words, the degree of its user-friendliness. Even though it is quite similar to the interface used in Nokia N80, the interface of the camera application in Nokia N73 has undergone several graphic changes and works a little bit faster.

Let's light it up one after another

Nokia N73 takes photos in landscape mode, that is, like a standard digital camera. The cover of the camera tunes well with the overall design of the phone. In its bottom area you will see 10 bulky dots, whose function is to stop user's fingers when the cover is being removed. The movement of the cover itself is quite pleasant; two springs help it reach its final positions. The cover is active; its removal starts the photo camera applications, while its closure switches the camera off. Unfortunately, it went loose after mere few days of usage.

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The camera cover is quite nice but loose

A splendid illumination of the side control keys welcomes you once you have removed the camera protection cover. They get lighted gradually in the direction of the removal. First to glow is the volume button (here serving as a zoom key), followed by the gallery button and the release button. The order of deactivation of side keys coincides with the direction of the closure of the camera protection. Cool!

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Side buttons for camera control

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Once the cover has been removed, the elements get illuminated one after another

Yet, there is one detail that should not be left unmentioned: should you leave the lens cover open while you are not working with the phone, the camera application switches to a save mode. In a result all three control keys die out and will not come to life even if pressed constantly. To get back to normal use you need to restart the camera application.

The sliding camera cover reveals a lens of the famous label Carl Zeiss with an auto focus and a mechanical shutter (exceptional for a photo mobile). The optics used in Nokia N73 is Tessar with aperture F/2.8. The lens is accompanied by a diode flash with red-eye reduction.

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Tessar optics from Carl Zeiss

Sample photos in full resolution

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