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Dave Collerton

Smartphone camera, Compact or DSLR?

Smartphone camera, Compact or DSLR?

A lot of people ask, what's the best camera for taking great pictures? In general terms, the answer will be,  the one you've got with you, as this is the only thing you've got to capture the moment. Of course, if we all had crystal balls we could prepare for that one in a lifetime shot but unfortunately, life's generally not that kind.  In this example the lighting all wrong, the colours could be stronger and the background is a little distracting. However, my eyes are drawn immediately to the two main characters and in particular, the smile of the young lady and the enigmatic gaze of the man. As a composition, it really works and with a little post processing, this is a 100% un-edited photo, some of the issues mentioned above could definitely be improved. However, as a spur of the moment photo, I think it's nailed. 

The key question is then if I had had a Nikon D600 as opposed to my trusty Samsung Note 3, would the photo, if taken spur of the moment, be any better? The answer is possibly, the D600 has excellent low light capability after all, but to be fair, I suspect that unless the shot was staged, which it most definately wasn't, the smartphone captured the moment pretty well.

So, as my arsenal of cameras grows will I rely less and less on my smartphone? Probably not. For street photography, even at low light, a good smartphone such as the Google Pixel, Samsung S6 / S7 / S8 or iphone etc perform really well and can grab shots photographers often miss wielding a 2lb, state of the art DSLR to their eyes to capture a moment that probably lasted just 10 seconds! The shot below is a good example of of where having a smartphone just works. 

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