After I got my iPhone 6s+ last week, one of the questions posed to be by some folks was, “How is the camera?”
I honestly couldn’t say.
I’ve never been a good “snapshot” person, so once I acquired a DSLR I essentially stopped taking pictures with my iPhone camera. I figured if I was going to take the time to set up shots the way I wanted, I’d rather shoot them with my best camera. So the camera was the least important feature to me when I upgraded to the 6s+.
And then I saw some video shot with the 6+’s image stabilization, and my brain exploded. It was pretty amazing, and this led me to begin testing the camera out some more. Yesterday afternoon I took my Nikon DSLR and iPhone 6s+ out on a photowalk so I could compare the images between the two. Because I’m a nerd, I decided to compare macro shots. For my Nikon I used a 40mm lens with a macro mode, and on my iPhone I used the fantastic Camera+ app. I did adjust settings in Adobe Lightroom so I could get each image to look their best according to my eye, but as that’s part of my work-flow I feel those adjustments are fair game.
Let’s begin with the iPhone image. I captured this in Camera+ and then did my first adjustments on the excellent Lightroom mobile app. There isn’t a whole lot of depth of field, but the definition on the leaf is very nice. The colors also responded to some color adjustments. The definition on the leaf is pretty nice, but I don’t care for how the iPhone is handling highlights. The grass in the background is a bit washed out, but the rust colors on the leaf render very nicely.
Here is the image from my Nikon. The nature of my 40mm lens leads to some soft focus on the edges of the leaf, but the added depth of field help overcome this softness. The colors of the grass are also more pronounced, and responded to adjustments in Lightroom better than the iPhone image. The details of the leaf’s surface aren’t as sharp, but they also lack the jagged-look of the iPhone’s photo. The colors of the leaf aren’t as pronounced, but to my eye they also appear more natural.
So what do I think? I think the iPhone is a pretty dang nice camera. It won’t replace my DSLR any time soon, but the combination of a nice camera and the presence of Lightroom on my device make it a camera I won’t regret using.