CARLOS DETRES

Photo Journal

This is where my personal projects are born, as well as behind the scenes perspectives of the photo shoots I've done.

Road Tested iPhone 8 Plus Camera: LA > JOSHUA TREE > LAS VEGAS

My dream camera kit is one that could fit in my pocket. There have been issues with the cameras that have been included in nearly every iPhone (the 7 Plus is pretty good) but when I first fired off a few shots with the 8 Plus, I was hooked. Quick autofocus, two lenses (28mm and 50mm equivalents) and the ability to quickly edit, build albums and share images.

Would I switch completely to this type of system and join the ranks of the iPhone photographer world? Of course not. The camera on the iPhone 8 Plus is a tool just as I consider my Sony A6300 and Nikon D800. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses, which are decided by various situations such as lighting, depth of field and resolution of final images for print. Printing 8.5x11s won't be a problem since the camera puts out a resolution of 12.3 megapixels. 

There was some noticeable falloff of sharpness at about 400-600 ISO during low light situations but the images are still usable (I have to add the caveat that I believe "sharpness" is slightly overrated so take my opinion with a grain of salt). During ideal lighting scenarios, the camera was tack sharp; its color reproduction was accurate. I often photographed during the dreaded high noon sun and enjoyed the result of my captures.  

I had issues with the new portrait lighting feature in regards to the depth of field (blur effect). There appeared to be artifacts and fringing at the edges of the the blurred subject. It sometimes worked flawlessly but the effect was too inconsistent to use reliably. I mostly avoided using this feature but I'm hoping that Apple will release an update in the future to correct this problem.

I consider this smartphone to be a serious image making tool that allows me to stretch my creative and storytelling muscles in a way that I've not yet done. I'm writing a review, for chrissakes, which I rarely do! The camera on the iPhone 8 Plus will not be for every serious photographer but it's one that fits my style of shooting and enhances my experience, allowing more flexibility, which means more enjoyment. For amateur photographers, I'd say, skip the DSLRs and mirrorless cameras and try this smartphone. 

*All photos in this collection were shot on the iPhone 8 Plus and edited in VSCO (exceptions being the black and white photos which were applied with the stock presets that come with the iPhone). 

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