Camera or phone?

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cipherdias

Full Member
Jan 1, 2014
316
129
Wales
How many of you guys carry a camera with you when you are out hiking? I used to carry a bulky DSLR and a couple of lenses on my hiking trips and camps but to be honest with you I now just take my phone as it takes fantastic images which are pretty much as good and sometimes better than the images produced with my DSLR.

Interested in hearing your views on this and meanwhile here is one taken with my iPhone 11



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Nice65

Full Member
Apr 16, 2009
4,833
1,446
55
W.Sussex
Phone. It’s always with me and takes good pics that can be transferred to image libraries or other people at the touch of a button. There are also numerous editing apps. I’m still on the iPhone7, because I bought it, it takes pretty good pics, I’d imagine the 11 is brilliant.

I sold my Canon S95, which isn’t exactly big, because of the faff of needing a wired connection and a PC. The camera manufacturers missed a trick by not including Bluetooth.
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
3,771
2,939
Mid Wales
It's horses for courses. I also have a couple of DSLRs with a range of lenses and, if I'm going out to do photography, that's what I take. But I realized that when on the water or even trekking I wasn't taking the camera out of its protective bag so I bought myself a waterproof shock proof compact with a descent optical zoom.

I use the phone (iPhone 7) when generally out and about but when I'm doing stuff where that could get damaged (such as canoeing) I use the compact (Olympus TG5). If I'm dedicating the day to photography I take my SLR gear.

A phone will never produce the same quality; it looks good on the screen but cannot possibly be as good with a Xmm diameter lens and Ymm focal length - they are fantastic I admit and I'm always surprised at the quality I get from the iPhone, but you couldn't blow them up to poster size - but then who does?
 

Silverclaws2

Tenderfoot
Dec 30, 2019
72
38
52
Devon
When I used to hike I first carried a Nikon D70 with me and later when a friend gave me a Lumix FZ30 bridge camera, that, to discover one tough camera of which got thoroughly abused, but was always ready when I needed it.

It's only recently I have got a phone that will take good pictures, so phone camera was not an option to me
 

C_Claycomb

Mod
Mod
Oct 6, 2003
5,830
904
Bedfordshire
I have an iphone6, and had an iphone5 before that. The 5 took okay-ish photos, but not hang-on-a-wall-print quality. The 6 takes much better photos, given good lighting and the right situation. However, using it as a camera eats battery life, and when I am out I want the phone for communication and navigation (for the latter I will have it in airplane mode most of the time).

While I have a 4th hand Canon 5D (mk1) and a couple of lenses, my main workhorse for the last five years has been a Sony RX100 mk1. That takes very good photos, better than the iPhone 6, especially in less good light conditions. It has far more control and can take much more interesting pictures than the phone. I have blown up photos taken with the Sony to 36" x 20" on canvas and hung them on my walls, which is my benchmark function for holiday pictures.

I even have one panorama blown up big on the wall taken on a little Canon IXUS 860. No phone photo has yet made the cut.

I am finding I am using the phone for more pictures while around the house and workshop, since I have it, but if I go anywhere that I think will be worth taking pictures, or want to take good pictures of stuff I want to sell, I use the Sony away from home, or possibly the Canon.

The quality of photo taken on the Canon, old as it is, blows the phone pictures away...but you have to care about blowing up, focus, and lack of pixilation and artefacts. I know the newer phones are better still, but I bet that a new camera would still smoke them for picture quality.
 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jul 14, 2008
4,653
698
Lancashire
iPhone 6? Not sure you can really call that a camera on that phone. There's better cameras on newer and different phone brands. The latest pixel for example is by reputation very good indeed. Huawei do good ones and they're leica branded whatever that means but the image and control options are excellent. In fact I think the leica branding means leica developed filters and camera control software.

I doubt phones can ever be as good as proper cameras but that's not really the point. What is the point is how they're always with you which means you have a chance of capturing that great image. Without such a device you're less likely.

Decades ago I got into photography a bit. I got the best SLR I could afford, minolta x300s, I took it walking with me everywhere. I even took photographs with me but tbh photography took second place to being in the outdoors. In the end it became a weight in the rucksack because I really didn't want it outside the sack when scrambling around in the rain for example. Mind you my phone tends to be easier to reach.

Considering most people use cameras as simple point and shoot, the most important factor is generally a good auto mode and having it to hand.

Btw what convinced me was a guy I met who has all the latest gear including good DSLR from Nikon. A guy into photography, including the sitting out on a hillside behind a tripod for that one special shot moment. He told me that for most occasions his phone, a pixel phone model, got used most. He told me he's blown up phone taken images to a3 size before.

I've been meaning to get a proper camera for a couple of years now but really haven't. I guess it's the cost but also I realised my phone takes good enough images for me. Cameras cheap enough to tempt me won't be better tbh and likely not to be carried in as easy you reach easy like the phone.

Personal choice obviously.
 

C_Claycomb

Mod
Mod
Oct 6, 2003
5,830
904
Bedfordshire
iPhone 6? Not sure you can really call that a camera on that phone. There's better cameras on newer and different phone brands. ...
Oi! :lmao:
Five years ago, when I was using an iPhone5, and my guide had just got an iPhone6, he was full of praise for the quality of the photos it produced, and rather cool towards the quality of the 5. When the 5 came out, everyone said what a great camera it was compared to things that came before. Now you are looking back and being derisory because the 6 isn't the latest and newer models are better? Jeez! :nana:

You realise of course that a younger version of you will be doing the same thing about whatever phone you have in a year or two's time?

My ixus860 produced a panorama that was blown up and printed at 40"x12"...and that camera was purchased in 2008. I would hope that the latest phone camera was capable of blowing up a picture to more than A3.

Of course people are going to take more pictures on phones now, especially as the cameras get better. There has been much discussion over the last 4 years on how phones have just about killed the market for point and shoot compact cameras. Before mobile phones got big, and started coming with cameras, I tended to carry my small compact point and shoot camera almost everywhere. Now I don't. I only carry my (bulkier RX100) when I expect to see things worthy of photographing, which is not every day, or every walk.

I took both phone and camera on my last few interesting trips and took photos with both. I would say that in most cases, when the view was amazing and I took the picture with my phone...when I got home I wished I had used my camera. Both phone and camera were contemporaries of each other. I see little reason that the delta would disappear if you used a current phone and current camera.
 

Billy-o

Native
Apr 19, 2018
1,355
551
Canada
Phones are OK, but you get too much bendiness and size distortion at the edges.

I prefer the Ixus I have, too ... its about 20 years old
 

Paul_B

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jul 14, 2008
4,653
698
Lancashire
Oi! :lmao:
Five years ago, when I was using an iPhone5, and my guide had just got an iPhone6, he was full of praise for the quality of the photos it produced, and rather cool towards the quality of the 5. When the 5 came out, everyone said what a great camera it was compared to things that came before. Now you are looking back and being derisory because the 6 isn't the latest and newer models are better? Jeez! :nana:
I had a Samsung galaxy s something back then. I have a 5s at work. The Samsung S2 I once had took better photos than the iPhone 5 does. Apple IMHO have been behind the better cameras on top Android phones I think. iPhone is image rip off,a scene tax for the gullible IMHO. All with a feeble, weak charging plug that fails so easily. Mine is held together with electrical tape and still needs the cable to be just so.

The latest pixel phone is better than latest iPhone camera. Then Huawei and the Leica tie in is also probably better. One of our directors has always been a big fan of Apple but before lockdown he admitted he thinking of getting an Android phone next time. He still likes Apple but doesn't think it's as good anymore.

PS a colleague gets a free charging cable from Apple every 6 months due to it failing. She's a heavy phone user so charges her phone a lot I guess because the cable fails a lot. So she complains to Apple and always comes away with a replacement every time.
 

C_Claycomb

Mod
Mod
Oct 6, 2003
5,830
904
Bedfordshire
I went straight from a Nokia dumb phone to the iPhone5, and have never had any other brands, so perhaps I have based my view of phone photo performance on too limited a sample. If it works for me, I don't feel a need to chop and change.

I inherited my iPhones from a good friend who uses a total Apple system; phones, tablets, computer, TV, network, and head phones. He is anything but gullible and definitely not image conscious, he uses what works for him, and I have benefited. For the record, I also inherited the Canon 5D from him when he upgraded, and it was he who recommended the Sony RX100, and helped me pick that old IXUS 860...and today, when he is out and about in good light, he is happy to take photos of his kids and local sights with his current iPhone, leaving his bigger cameras at home. He is a great fan of the cameras in the new iPhone (even if, as you say, they are not as good as the competition) but is the first to say that in lower light, which for him includes indoors, and for quick moving subjects, cameras still give better results than his phones, with newer cameras being better than older ones (no surprise really).

How do the Android phones manage with battery life, if you are using them to take photos in addition to GPS while out on a walk? Can you get more than one day use out of them without a recharge?

Regarding the charging cable. Yeah, annoying that Apple couldn't use a common standard, and that there is weakness there. A good tip is to use Sugru to mould around the the plugs and form a tapered strain-relief tail down the cable. I have a 32 pin cable that came with my iPad 4 that is still going after being so treated. Similarly, I am still using the Lightening cable that I got with the iPhone5, which I have had sine 2015.

I don't recommend ending the Sugru where the plug gets widest, since over time it does tend to separate there, better to over mould the plug a bit.
Chris