Smartphone Cameras Have Come a Long Way

There was a time when we wouldn’t even imagine using our phone cameras for any serious photography. The sensors were small, the quality was pretty horrible, and the image sizes were just tiny by today’s standards. However, smartphone cameras have improved by leaps and bounds over the years, to the point where we have smartphone photography awards around the world.

Nowadays, you don’t necessarily need to lug around a heavy DSLR or even carry a small mirrorless camera with you to ensure you don’t miss a possible shot. You can just take out your smartphone and take the shot you want. Smartphones have much better quality these days, with improved colors, bigger sensors, and ‘deeper pixels’. We even have multiple camera lenses on phones now. Whether you like to take landscape shots with a super wide angle lens or want to have a dedicated monochrome camera, you can easily find a smartphone that has a secondary lens to do what you want.

With all that said, there are still a few areas where smartphone cameras can’t compete with bigger ones. Dynamic range is one of those areas, however, you could always use an HDR photo editor and create HDR photos right from your phone. Another problem many phone cameras face is bad low-light performance. This is mainly due to the fact that most smartphones still have very small sensors as compared to bigger cameras, which means that they can’t get enough light to create relatively noise-free images.

But despite all of these issues, the fact remains that smartphone cameras have come a very long way in a very short period of time. The reasons for carrying around proper photography gear with you, unless you are out for professional reasons, are getting lesser and lesser by the day and there may come a day soon when smartphone cameras are all we use.

Windows Now Also Has the Best HDR Editor

If you are a photographer and you like taking HDR photos, you know how important it is to have a great HDR editor at your disposal. There are many such editors one can use, each providing something different from the other. However, when Aurora HDR came on the scene in 2015, it was reserved for Mac OS only.

This year, Aurora HDR has finally been made available for Windows users too. This is great news as it is one of the best and easiest to use HDR editors available.

Packed Full of Features

When you visit Aurora HDR’s website, you will see all the new features the 2018 version of the editor brings. Other than its ever-excellent HDR processing prowess, the new version also adds lens correction settings, a new UI that is suitable for both beginners and professionals, more speed than before, and a number of new brushes and masks.

Windows users will finally be able to use this software for their HDR needs. Not only does Aurora HDR let you create true HDRs by combining multiple brackets but also has some great tone-mapping algorithms to turn individual photos into HDRs.

Cheaper than Many

Before Aurora HDR, many people used only Photoshop and Lightroom to make HDRs. However, both these programs are limited as compared to a true HDR editor, and ever since they have started charging a monthly fee to use them, they have become much more expensive than Aurora HDR’s $90 in the long run.

So if you have been waiting for a true HDR editor to use on your Windows computer but haven’t found one that suits your needs, Aurora HDR might be just what you need.

Why A Compact Camera is still better than your Phone’s

Smartphone cameras have come a long way in recent years. The quality of photos that can be taken with a smartphone camera is sometimes too good to be true. Smartphones these days not only come with manual controls and wide apertures, but also boast optical zoom by using dual lenses for different focal lengths.

So you may wonder, why does one need a compact camera if smartphones have come so far?

For Larger Sensors

Smartphones may use wide apertures and good sensors, but the fact remains that a typical point and shoot compact camera still has a larger, often better, sensor than your smartphone. A larger sensor means better ISO performance, more detail captured, and overall potential to produce a better image.

For Optical Zoom

Yes, we just mentioned that smartphone cameras now have optical zoom, but it is very limited. Compact cameras, however, boast an impressive range of optical zoom. Most such cameras allow for 3x zoom, with some reaching over 30x zoom. This optical zoom is essential for many people who want to bring faraway subjects closer to their cameras without affecting quality.

For More Control

While some smartphones these days provide full manual control over your photos, not all of them are in the same camp. For complete creative control over your images, a compact camera will probably serve you much better than your smartphone. Especially in the case of long exposures and low light photos, you need this kind of control in your camera for taking an ideal shot.

So if you want a camera that allows you to go beyond what your smartphone can do, compact cameras are still very viable purchases. However, if you just take photos to post on social media or record some casual memories, you will probably be content with the one on your smartphone.

Some of the Best Tips to take Photos of Tech

Every time you visit an online store to buy some new tech, the pictures you see are the first impression that product has on you. A large number of people make online purchases based on the images they see. A picture can definitely be worth a thousand words; it shows the materials, the specifications, the condition, and the design of whatever product you’re looking to buy. Without a picture, you just cannot imagine how a product might turn out to be.

Now that we have established the importance of product photography, here are some of the things you should always keep in mind if you want your tech to look great in photos:

  1. Set your Backdrop

One of the most important things in product photography is the backdrop. You should try to use white backdrops for most of your tech products to showcase their own design and color. Any other color used in the backdrop is bound to make the actual product look different than it is.

  1. Pay Attention to Lighting

Lighting is key for taking photos of your tech. You should remember to use soft lighting so that strong shadows and contrast can be avoided. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do so. There are many DIY solutions that you can use to create budget tech photography setups.

  1. Take it Outdoors

If you want your photos to stand out among the rest, try taking your tech outdoors. Place the product against a nice, natural backdrop and use the sun’s natural light to bring it to life. If needed, you can even try taking HDR photos of your tech. There are many easy to use software programs you can use for this purpose, like Aurora HDR 2017.

  1. Choose the Right Equipment

In order to take excellent photos of your tech products, you need to invest in the right kind of camera equipment. You don’t have to buy very expensive gear, but you do need to know what kind you should buy. For example, even a basic DSLR camera will do the job paired up with a decent prime lens and propped up on a tripod. Keep in mind that you should not use wide angle lenses for product photography as these tend to warp your subject.

  1. Shoot RAW

Last but not the least, always take your photos in RAW format. This will allow you to take them into a RAW editor later and adjust the brightness, contrast, color, noise, and much more without destroying the image quality.

Another thing you should always remember is to take your time with photography. Don’t rush things because then you’ll probably just have to do it again. Pay attention to your setup, adjust the lighting and the white balance of your camera, make sure your camera is not moving and the tripod is stable, and once you’re satisfied go ahead and shoot.