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#370539 - 16/02/2018 14:55 iPhone Camera
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12016
Loc: Sterling, VA
I'm new to the iPhone, and I'm liking it so far. But there's something with the camera that's been bothering me.

Take a look at the attached photos I took of my son. The first one looks fine, but the second is zoomed in and shows the issue I'm talking about. Why does it look like there's an Instagram filter? It looks like someone applied a bad filter to make it look like brush strokes or something. Is this normal? I see it in every photo that I take, from challenging lighting and movement (both here), to the ones I've taken in the new light box I just got.

Is this intentional? Is there anything I can do about it?


Attachments
Untitled.png (27 downloads)
Untitled2.png (31 downloads)

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Matt

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#370540 - 16/02/2018 15:51 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: Dignan]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31141
Loc: Seattle, WA
The zoomed image looks normal to me (for small-sensor digital cameras that is).

In fact I would say that pic looks better than most. I’m used to seeing a lot more artifacts at that zoom level in digital camera images.

I think most digital cameras do significant amounts of post processing on the images to hide artifacts caused by the image sensors. At high zoom levels you really start to see it. But it’s better than no post processing at all. It’d be worse without it.

Do you have any apps that let you shoot raw? I don’t recall if Apple allows that. If you did you could download the raw file and look at the difference.
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#370541 - 16/02/2018 16:05 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: Dignan]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12016
Loc: Sterling, VA
It could just be a case of "it's different so I don't like it." laugh

I just didn't see this kind of processing in my photos before the iPhone.

For comparison, here's a photo I took with my Pixel XL in September. He's sitting still, which helps, but the light is just TV glow and this is even more zoomed than the last photo. There's still clearly processing and artifacts, but it looks completely different to me (and much better).


Attachments
Untitled3.png (21 downloads)

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Matt

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#370542 - 16/02/2018 20:48 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: Dignan]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13863
Loc: Canada
It looks over-compressed. Is there a "quality" setting or something you can change for that?

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#370543 - 16/02/2018 22:59 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: mlord]
andy
carpal tunnel

Registered: 10/06/1999
Posts: 5745
Loc: Wivenhoe, Essex, UK
Not on the standard iPhone camera app. However nowadays iOS supports RAW, so there are third party apps that will let you tweak the settings to your hearts content.
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#370544 - 17/02/2018 02:40 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: Dignan]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 671
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
What iPhone model are you using?

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#370545 - 17/02/2018 03:42 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: K447]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12016
Loc: Sterling, VA
Originally Posted By: K447
What iPhone model are you using?

It's an 8 plus. The other photo was from a first-gen Pixel XL.

The photos I take with my phone look great on the phone unless I zoom in at all. I'm always surprised how quickly the effect becomes noticeable. Even the slightest amount of zooming in on the phone makes it apparent. You know how you can double-tap on a photo to zoom in to a preset level? At that level it's unavoidable.

I'll try another app for RAW. I have Camera+ installed.
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#370546 - 17/02/2018 05:04 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: Dignan]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 671
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: Dignan
Originally Posted By: K447
What iPhone model are you using?

It's an 8 plus. The other photo was from a first-gen Pixel XL.

The photos I take with my phone look great on the phone unless I zoom in at all. I'm always surprised how quickly the effect becomes noticeable. Even the slightest amount of zooming in on the phone makes it apparent. You know how you can double-tap on a photo to zoom in to a preset level? At that level it's unavoidable.
...
There are several things going on with a 2x zoom mode on iPhone Plus. There are dual cameras on the back, one camera has a normal lens, the other camera has a ‘telephoto’ lens.Telephoto in this case meaning less wide angle than the normal lens.

In good lighting the 2x double tap zoom mode in the camera app will actually use the telephoto lens for taking the picture, but will supplement the image processing with data from the other lens. So both camera modules are involved in making the picture.

If the room lighting is below a certain threshold, the iPhone Plus will continue using the normal lens, with a digital zoom mode, even at 2x camera zoom. The telephoto lens has a smaller aperture and the telephoto sensor is underexposed at these lighting levels.

You may find the artifacting you are observing changes when outdoors or in generally well lit environments.

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#370547 - 17/02/2018 10:31 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: tfabris]
andy
carpal tunnel

Registered: 10/06/1999
Posts: 5745
Loc: Wivenhoe, Essex, UK
Originally Posted By: tfabris
The zoomed image looks normal to me (for small-sensor digital cameras that is).

In fact I would say that pic looks better than most. I’m used to seeing a lot more artifacts at that zoom level in digital camera images.


I'd agree that the artefacts in those images are typical of a small sensor in indoor light.

However in better lit scenes outdoors you'll see much lower levels of artefacts. A few years ago on these small sensors you'd have seen far far more artefacts, things have improved a lot.
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#370548 - 17/02/2018 14:20 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: andy]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 671
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: andy
Originally Posted By: tfabris
The zoomed image looks normal to me (for small-sensor digital cameras that is).

In fact I would say that pic looks better than most. I’m used to seeing a lot more artifacts at that zoom level in digital camera images.


I'd agree that the artefacts in those images are typical of a small sensor in indoor light.

However in better lit scenes outdoors you'll see much lower levels of artefacts. A few years ago on these small sensors you'd have seen far far more artefacts, things have improved a lot.

Apple made a point during the iPhone X introduction to mention that the X telephoto lens has a significantly larger aperture than the other dual lens iPhone models.

I have not looked for reviews of that aspect specifically but I would expect the X camera takes better 2x zoom photos in moderate lighting.

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#370549 - 18/02/2018 04:04 Re: iPhone Camera [Re: K447]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12016
Loc: Sterling, VA
Originally Posted By: K447
Originally Posted By: Dignan
Originally Posted By: K447
What iPhone model are you using?

It's an 8 plus. The other photo was from a first-gen Pixel XL.

The photos I take with my phone look great on the phone unless I zoom in at all. I'm always surprised how quickly the effect becomes noticeable. Even the slightest amount of zooming in on the phone makes it apparent. You know how you can double-tap on a photo to zoom in to a preset level? At that level it's unavoidable.
...
There are several things going on with a 2x zoom mode on iPhone Plus. There are dual cameras on the back, one camera has a normal lens, the other camera has a ‘telephoto’ lens.Telephoto in this case meaning less wide angle than the normal lens.

In good lighting the 2x double tap zoom mode in the camera app will actually use the telephoto lens for taking the picture, but will supplement the image processing with data from the other lens. So both camera modules are involved in making the picture.

If the room lighting is below a certain threshold, the iPhone Plus will continue using the normal lens, with a digital zoom mode, even at 2x camera zoom. The telephoto lens has a smaller aperture and the telephoto sensor is underexposed at these lighting levels.

You may find the artifacting you are observing changes when outdoors or in generally well lit environments.

When I was talking about zooming in, I meant after the photo was taken. None of this is in reference to the zoom lens. I'm only talking about enlarging the photo.
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Matt

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