Why cameras like the M are still worth carrying everywhere

Started 1 month ago | Discussions thread
Martin JC Senior Member • Posts: 2,660
Re: Excellent example

fstopx2 wrote:

thunder storm wrote:

Wayne Larmon wrote:

thunder storm wrote:

trungtran wrote:

The market is so big for smartphones, there is still lots of room for improvement as users demand better quality.

Demand in a market doesn't change laws of physics.

But computational photography is becoming great equalizer.


If you are happy with let's say an 8Mp output: yes. If you like to have the full sensor resolution output: no. Computational photography looses detail. If you don't need so much detail you can expect improvements. But if you are expecting computational photography can be done with significant less loss of detail in the future in phones being just as compact as now, i think you are having to high expectations.

Phones today aren't all that ambitious if it comes to detail. Even if they manage to get a 100mm equivalent lens in it, they only put a 8Mp sensor behind it. I can tell you that 8Mp can't generate a 24Mp picture even with the best computational photography in the future. You just can't generate data never captured by only using algorithms.

This is only one of the problems computational photography can't solve. Another thing is the fake bokeh still not working properly. It is either hairs being blurred away while they should not, or haires not blurred away while the background is partly not blurred between those haires and the rest of the head. There is depth mapping, but i don't believe they will get this tech working precise enough to distinguish individual hairs, while to my eye these kind of details are pretty relevant in a portrait, while portraits are a pretty relevant part of photography.

So all in all i still think cameras can't be beaten by phones as it comes to performance. At the same time most customers will be satisfied with convenience, 8Mp output resolution + computational tricks, even more if they don't want to spend money on dedicated lenses.

In the same world where most picture sensors are shrinking, there is a Phase One IQ4, with 150Mp on a 53.4 × 40mm sensor. It exists for one reason: bigger is better. If it is adequate for you is another discussion.

Go to Flickr and look at some of the pictures taken with a smartphone. You are going to be very surprised.





Suppose you are right.  Suppose a 28mm lens with a camera and a 28mm smart phone are identical.  Presumably, that would displace the market for cameras with that focal length (at least over the medium to long run).  But they are not identical.  Therefore look for the trade-offs.  I don't think anyone is arguing against the convenience of smart-phones.  And -- at this point in tech development -- on average a traditional camera is 'better' for IQ in terms of latitude to process, quality of lenses, image sensor size and noise control etc.  But there are trade-offs.  You just have to figure out what does it for you.  As a package the phone might be better.  For others not.  These a choices of image taking attributes.  And as such largely a preference.  -- martin

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