What Determines a Smartphone Camera’s Image Quality?

Nov 13, 2015

Gannon Burgett

Gannon Burgett is a communications professional with over a decade of experience in content strategy, editing, marketing, multimedia content creation. He’s photographed and written content seen across hundreds of millions of pageviews. In addition to his communications work for various entities and publications, Gannon also runs his multimedia marketing agency, Ekleptik Media, where he brings his expertise as a full-stack creator to help develop and execute data-driven content strategies. His writing, photos, and videos have appeared in USA Today, Car and Driver, Road & Track, Autoweek, Popular Mechanics, TechCrunch, Gizmodo, Digital Trends, DPReview, PetaPixel, Imaging Resource, Lifewire, Yahoo News, Detroit Free Press, Lansing State Journal, and more.

What Determines a Smartphone Camera’s Image Quality?

Nov 13, 2015

Gannon Burgett

Gannon Burgett is a communications professional with over a decade of experience in content strategy, editing, marketing, multimedia content creation. He’s photographed and written content seen across hundreds of millions of pageviews. In addition to his communications work for various entities and publications, Gannon also runs his multimedia marketing agency, Ekleptik Media, where he brings his expertise as a full-stack creator to help develop and execute data-driven content strategies. His writing, photos, and videos have appeared in USA Today, Car and Driver, Road & Track, Autoweek, Popular Mechanics, TechCrunch, Gizmodo, Digital Trends, DPReview, PetaPixel, Imaging Resource, Lifewire, Yahoo News, Detroit Free Press, Lansing State Journal, and more.

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Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 12.09.02 PMWell before the DSLR megapixel war ever started, it was fairly common knowledge that megapixels alone don’t result in better image quality. The same statement can be said in regards to smartphone cameras, whose quality is now to the point of most point-and-shoot cameras a few years ago – or even better.

While megapixels are one aspect of smartphone image quality, there is far more to it than meets the eye. Here to explain what makes or breaks a smartphone camera is YouTube tech reviewer Marques Brownlee, known as MKBHD.

In the five minute video, Brownlee breaks down the importance of sensor size, the surface area of the individual pixels, the camera’s aperture (most of which are fixed in smartphones) and other components such as image stabilization. Throughout every aspect, he does a wonderful job to explain in detail concepts that oftentimes become convoluted.

Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 12.08.33 PMOf all the details and differences he mentions though, one stands out in particular. Processing.

Almost all smartphones output images as JPEGs. As a result, all information captured by the sensor must first be processed by software, which varies from manufacturer to another. This means that the resulting images from one smartphone to another can vary greatly, even if they were to have identical camera setups.

YouTube video

For more videos from Brownlee, you can head on over to his YouTube Channel and subscribe.

[via Lifehacker]

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Gannon Burgett

Gannon Burgett

Gannon Burgett is a communications professional with over a decade of experience in content strategy, editing, marketing, multimedia content creation. He’s photographed and written content seen across hundreds of millions of pageviews. In addition to his communications work for various entities and publications, Gannon also runs his multimedia marketing agency, Ekleptik Media, where he brings his expertise as a full-stack creator to help develop and execute data-driven content strategies. His writing, photos, and videos have appeared in USA Today, Car and Driver, Road & Track, Autoweek, Popular Mechanics, TechCrunch, Gizmodo, Digital Trends, DPReview, PetaPixel, Imaging Resource, Lifewire, Yahoo News, Detroit Free Press, Lansing State Journal, and more.

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