From casual smartphone users to amateur and professional photographers, the iPhone’s camera user interface is a no-brainer.
iPhone 8 — the smartphone that everyone was looking forward for this year has finally arrived. While the iPhone has a series of USPs which tempts users and fans to opt for each year’s updated hardware, the main highlight is its camera. iPhones have been known for setting benchmarks in the imaging field with its superior sensors and simplicity in usage.
While the iPhone 8 has a single camera on the rear, the iPhone 8 Plus flaunts a dual primary camera setup, which gives it an edge over the former for near-professional and DSLR-like quality. Even DxOMark agrees, and they have tested and rated the iPhone 8 Plus’ camera performance with 96 on 100 in the photo mode, and an overall score of 94/100 for photos and videos combined, leaving the older title rankers Google’s Pixel and HTC’s U11 which ruled till now at 90/100.
The dual camera setup is a boon for super-quick shots, be it for an amateur or a professional photographer. The ease of use, simple UI and quick capture capabilities ensures that you get the best shot without losing the timing on your subject. However, be it a quick important shot or a frame that you are patiently setting up, you can be assured that your iPhone will capture photos without any disappointment.
The key iPhone 8 Plus features include a 12MP main wide-angle camera with an f/1.8 lens and a 12MP telephoto camera with an f2.8 lens clubbed along. UI features include Portrait mode, Portrait Lighting (Beta), Natural Light, Studio Light, Contour Light, Stage Light, and Stage Light Mono.
Smartphone cameras are now, soon emerging as DSLR (professional camera) replacements. In the next few years, you may probably see the DSLR taking a back seat. The bulky old hardware has started giving way to the new, compact and cheaper smartphone camera. Though the DSLR may not die as soon as we predict, it will definitely see a huge slowdown, restricting itself only to highly professional photographers that need telescopic zoom, high-speed photography and extremely precious RAW imaging— the likes of nature photographers, sports photographers and fashion photographers. However, we have seen that even professional photographers, who swear by their expensive and bulky photography gear, are slowly adopting high-end smartphones for instant photography.
iPhone’s cameras are known to be superior, and even though there are other brands that may have equivalent camera performances on their flagship smartphones, the iPhone’s camera is definitely trusted by many. From casual smartphone users to amateur and professional photographers, the iPhone’s camera user interface is a no-brainer. Simply point and shoot, and you will definitely be contented with its performance.
To show you what the iPhone 8 Plus’ camera can perform like, we bring you a few too many sample photos from known professional photographers and travel photographers. Click on the images for a larger, full-res view. Kindly note: Each photo is a copyright of the respective photographer and should not be used for any purposes without the permission of the owner.
First, let’s begin with Austin Mann, a renowned travel photographer, who recently uploaded a chunk of his work that was shot primarily by the iPhone 8 Plus. Austin has worked for many NGOs and non-profits, and his work has also been seen on National Geographic. He has travelled as far as Iceland in 2012 with an iPhone 5, simply to test out the device. He himself ‘now’ prefers to use an iPhone instead of his professional camera. His recent blog highlights the iPhone 8 Plus’ camera performance on his blog. His review of the camera shows off his skills, combined with the iPhone 8 Plus’ technology, which produced impressive, glamorous and jaw-dropping photos, especially in the Portrait Mode. “While the iPhone 8 Plus looks essentially the same as the phone we’ve had since the 6 Plus, there are some new features in the 8 Plus which really impact creative pros across the board — most notably Portrait Lighting, along with a few other hidden gems,” Austin wrote on his blog. Here is some of Austin’s work, while on his tour through India’s most photogenic Rajasthan.
While the international photographer has already defined the camera’s excellence, what do our professionals back home think about the new flagship? Let’s find out.
Firstly, let’s have a look at the different functions that the camera offers where professional-like photos can be easily captured by amateurs, by simply using the iPhone 8 Plus and its onboard features.
You can capture your subject in grace by simply shooting the photo and then using the onboard artificial intelligence to alter your shot later. All this can be done by a simple click of an icon on the camera’s user interface. Rotate the dial on the bottom of the display and you can immediately see the effect in real time. No need for any desktop PC or professional imaging software anymore.
Take for example this photo by Geordie Wood below. The image has been altered automatically where your subject’s face is in sharp focus against a blurred background.
The one below is by Julia Noni where a Studio Light effect has been given to a subject. Here the clean look on the subject’s face is brightly lit.
Another example below is by Geordie Wood again where Contour Light mode shows dramatic shadows with highlights and lowlights.
A Stage Light effect (below) by Geordie Wood again shows the subject’s face spotlit against a deep black background.
A similar mode in Stage Light Mono below, but in a classic b/w look by Michael Everett and Jamie Irving,
Heading on, other effects produced by the iPhone 8’s camera are equally impressive. Take for example this one below. Here the Slow Sync flash combines a slow shutter speed with a short strobe pulse. It’s useful in low light when you want a brighter foreground subject with a properly exposed background. And the quad‑LED True Tone flash delivers illumination that’s up to 40 per cent more uniform, helping to reduce hot spots.
There are more to investigate on the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus’ cameras. Apple asked a few amateur and professional photographers to take the devices around with them and shoot the best they can. Here is what they came back with.
So now that you have seen what almost anyone with a powerful DSLR-like camera on an iPhone can do with its subjects, it’s time to also show you how you can do these yourself. The tips are straight from the mouth of the professional.
We had a chance to speak to a travel photographer, Siddhartha Joshi, who expressed his views and experience with the new pocketable photography expert. “I am a huge fan of street portraiture and the iPhone 8 Plus takes it to a completely new level. Can’t wait to step out and experiment more with it — it might change the way I capture life on the streets,” he exclaimed.
Siddhartha is a traveller, photographer and a TEDx speaker, who has his work featured on Discovery India (India’s Best Jobs), CNN, NDTV, Shutterstock, Buzzfeed, Huffpost, TOI, HT and Mashable. His work can also be seen on his Instagram handle, where he has hosted numerous photos of his work, apart from those clicked from the Apple iPhone 8 Plus.
Siddhartha also gave us a few iPhone 8 Plus photography tips to share with our readers. He explains how you can create or compose professional-like photos using simple amateur skills and the iPhone 8 Plus’s new camera features.
- Portrait Mode is one of the features I love the most is the Stage Lighting in the iPhone, and one of the best ways to get good result is to shoot in this mode itself when you click a portrait. You will know while you are clicking if edges are not working out well, and can reposition or make changes in the setting.
- There is flash with the Portrait Mode and it takes very balanced and polished images even in the dark. Even if it’s so dark that you can’t see anything, do pick your focus point (just touch on the screen where your subject’s face is) and then click.
- Live Photo is even more useful now. You can save the 3 second photo into a short fun video, and it can then easily be shared. My favourite is the long exposure shot.
- The camera is even faster than before, so do use long press to capture images in burst mode; this is especially useful for action shots as well as bird-in-my-frame shots, which are my favourite!
Shown below are some of his photo samples clicked using the Apple iPhone 8 Plus. The photos shown here are compressed to load quickly on your screen, and hence have a lower image quality. However, you can click on the images to see the original photos in a new tab.
While the images shown above are from Siddhartha’s phone, we also gave it a shot from our very own iPhone 8 Plus review unit. Check the sample shots we took this morning from our camera below. Click on the photo to view the original images.
The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be going on sale from today, September 29. Prices for the iPhone 8 models are as follows:
The iPhone 8 will be available in two variants in India, with prices starting at Rs 73,000 for the 64GB variant and going up to Rs 86,000 for the 256GB variant. The larger iPhone 8 Plus will be available in two variants for the Indian market — Rs 64,000 for the 64GB variant and Rs 77,000 for the 256GB variant.
As for the specifications, the iPhone 8 sports a 4.7-inch Retina display with True Tone and 3D Touch. It is built around Apple’s A11 Bionic chipset with an embedded M11 motion co-processor. There’s a 12MP rear camera with an aperture of f/1.8 and is aided by Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) for stable photos and also captures 4K videos at 24fps, 30fps or 60 fps. The selfie shooter has a 7MP sensor with an aperture of f/2.2. Other highlights include Bluetooth v5.0, GPS, GLONASS, Galileo and QZSS as well as support for Dolby Vision and HDR10 content on the Retina display.
As for the bigger iPhone 8 Plus, it differs only in few specific areas such as a bigger 5.5-inch Retina HD display with full HD resolution and the rear camera sensor — 12MP wide-angle sensor with an f/1.8 aperture and a 12MP telephoto sensor with an f/2.8 aperture.
Both the iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus feature a glass panel on the rear, which aid wireless charging — a first for the iPhone.