I finally got it

Started 3 days ago | Discussions thread
Smaug01 Senior Member • Posts: 2,931
'glad you finally got it!

Marty4650 wrote:

I am one of those grumpy old men who always said that smartphone photography was just a fad. Something that is only good enough for selfies and photos of your lunch to post on twitter or facebook. For anything else, you absolutely needed a real camera.

Well, it seems I was wrong.

I recently replaced my four year old Motorola Moto X Pure with a brand new Google Pixel 3a, and was shocked at how good the Pixel camera was. It seems there has been so much improvement in smartphone cameras, that they are now useful for more than just documenting where you parked your car.

Yes, the latest ones are amazing, largely due to the software that accompanies the camera/phone. (computational photography)

I still don't think anyone will be using a smartphone to shoot a wedding, for commercial photography, for sports/action photography, or for fashion photography, but this device is now the ideal choice for travel photography, vacation photography, family photography, or for casual snapshots. And lets be honest, those subjects are around 90% of what amateur photographers shoot.

...with the caveat that you like the image processing the camera applies and the shutter lag is OK with you. My LG G6 is now getting old enough that it's getting laggy. I probably need to de-fragment it or something. Too bad, as the standard wide angle lens + super wide angle lens is a great combo.

Three weeks from now my wife and I are flying 3000 miles to Seattle to visit our newest grandson, and luggage restrictions being what they are today, I just might not bring any camera with me. If I do, then it will just be my Panasonic LX100.

I think the real "revolution" here is that people stopped buying more camera than they really needed once the smartphone camera became good enough for most everyday uses.

I respectfully disagree here. A lot of people NEVER bought more camera than they needed. I'm thinking of my grandmas with their 110s, and before that, 126s. Or my mom with a hand-me-down 35 mm point & shoot from my grandpa.

The dedicated camera has left the mass market and become a specialty device. And a very good one at that, but one that most people don't need very often. And that is a problem that the camera makers may never be able to solve. And this also explains why the overall market for dedicated cameras keeps shrinking, despite the fact that they keep getting better. In some ways.... quite a bit better.

People really didn't want better. They just wanted more convenient, with sufficient image quality for the task. So much so that they were willing to sacrifice versatility, best image quality and ergonomics to get it.

You may not agree, but the fact remains... a lot of people are perfectly happy with their smartphone cameras, and new camera sales are feeling the pressure of that.

Yep, we all know it.

The computational photography that allows smart phone cameras to shoot night scenes, hand-held with good results and that blurs backgrounds artificially to mimic wide aperture lenses is particularly impressive. Yes, it's not QUITE the same, but it's close enough!

What I like to do, and what I suspect you'll come around to in time is to treat the smart phone camera as a supplement to your real camera. For example, I haven't been buying any lenses wider than 24 mm (eq.), because the super-wide in my phone handles that duty on the rare occasions I need it. I COULD go out with just a telephoto zoom on my real camera and be pretty well-served.

Why don't you try it on your trip to see your new grandson? Something with a decent telephoto* + your Pixel 3.

* = could be a fixed lens compact with a 1" sensor, a µ4/3 with lens of your choice...

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"Rudeness is the weak person's imitation of strength."

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