Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur
Samsung Galaxy S III, ISO 100, f 2.6, 1/15 sec
The new Galaxy SIII (GT-19300) boasts a 8mp camera. While the cam is fairly competent, a dedicated compact camera will still run circles around it. But then again, can a compact or dSLR surf the web, tweet, play videos, navigate with its GPS and much more? And still fit inside your shirt pocket comfortably?
This answers another question I am asked ever so often: “Which is the best camera out there?” The best camera is the one that is always by your side, ready for any unexpected photo moment. Not the expensive dSLR you leave at home because it is too heavy or is unsafe to carry.
As good as present technology is, some users still feel the pictures from their smartphones are not as smart. The reason to that could be surprisingly dumb.
Due to its position and the lack of a cover, the tiny lens is often smeared with greasy fingerprints, without the user even realising it. To obtain the best sharpness from your phone, inspect your lens and wipe it with a clean tissue. You’ll be amaze at the difference it makes!
Also, make it a habit to place the phone camera-end down into your pocket. That way you won’t grab the camera lens when taking it out. Now that we got the most important tip out of the way, let’s look at some settings for night shots for the Samsung Galaxy phone.
Manually adjust the ISO from Auto to ISO 100, unless light is really low and you have no other choice. As with any camera or camphone, the lowest ISO setting minimises picture noise. Another challenge will arise, as a result though. Shutter speed might get too low, and given its shape, the phone will be difficult to hold steady. It is no fun to carry a tripod, however small, when you have such a slim and light phone. So how?
I use the attached Samsung accessory flip cover as a L-shaped ‘tripod’. Just rest it on any surface and angle it to your liking. This was how I photographed both the shots featured here. Not bad considering the phone was clicking below 1/20th of a second.
Musical Fountain, KLCC Park
Samsung Galaxy S III, ISO 100, f 2.6, 1/17 sec with -1 stop compensation
Under Settings option, play with S3′s “Exposure Value” slider. It is basically exposure compensation where you can lower or increase the light to compensate for different lighting situations. In the above picture of the fountains, I slide the value to “-1 stop” to expose for the water jets. Learn how to access this setting and understanding how it works for better pics. I will explore more of this function in upcoming picture samples under various scenarios.
Look out for PART 2. See PART 2
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