One thing we do like about the Nexus 5 camera is PhotoSphere, or the ability to take 360-degree panorama images. The stitching could use some improvement, and generally it's more of a user issue than a software one, but it's a neat trick to have.
When it comes to image quality, we will give the edge to the Nexus 5 despite its huge shortcomings in the actual shooting department. Images just seem less noisy and not oversharpened on the Nexus 5.
Another thing the Nexus 5 does better than the Moto X is HDR, or what's called HDR+ on the Nexus 5. It does a good job of retaining details in highlights and in shadows without making them look too cartoony, or giving a halo effect around edges. The Moto X tends to overdo the HDR effect, especially in scenes where the dark and light areas are extreme.
In the end, getting the shot, and preferably in a timely manner, is what matters to us. The Moto X does that a little better than the Nexus 5, and the X's camera software is a little more manageable, too.
Nexus 5 vs. Moto X: Battery life
Initial reviews of the Nexus 5 weren't so forgiving when it came to assessing its battery performance. However, we've found that over time, the Nexus 5's batter isn't bad at all, and it's very much comparable to other high-end Android devices like the HTC One.
However, it still doesn't quite keep up with the Moto X, whose battery can easily last an entire day and then some depending on your usage.
If we had to estimate just how much more life, on average, the Moto X gets over the Nexus 5 in terms of juice, we'd say that the Moto X can get up to 4-8 hours more on a single charge than the Nexus 5.
At the low end, it might not sound like a huge difference, but those few hours between getting home from work and going to sleep is big - especially if you're going to spend those hours being out on the town.
If you're considering either phone and battery life is a dealbreaker for you, we'd highly recommend getting the Moto X.
Nexus 5 vs. Moto X: Performance
In day to day use, performance differences between the two devices are surprisingly negligible. One would imagine that the Nexus 5, with a 2.26 GHz Snapdragon 800, would easily blaze by the Moto X's 1.7 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro.
Numbers and specs don't tell the whole story, as we've learned over time. There were some cases when the Moto X was just slightly faster than the Nexus 5, and vice versa. In the end, it's a toss up between the two for most uses.
Similarities in performance can also be attributed to the device's displays, where the Moto X has fewer pixels to push than the Nexus 5.
When we opened and ran apps side by side, they were both roughly the same. In situations where the Moto X was faster, we were slightly surprised. A few examples are within Chrome and YouTube: in Chrome, some web pages loaded up faster than on the Moto X, and in YouTube some videos were ready to play on the Moto X, too.
The Nexus 5 was definitely faster in some cases, like when we we loaded up Asphalt 8 and played through one round of the game.
One would think that the Nexus 5 would have the clear edge in performance because of its spec sheet, but real-life daily use tells another story. Between the two, it's honestly a toss-up.
Nexus 5 vs. Moto X: Perks and features
One of the nice things about both phones is having voice control options. For the Moto X, you simply have to train it to recognize your voice via Touchless Control. Its microphone is always on, so whenever you say "OK Google Now," the phone will be ready for your next command.