On the Road is a weekday feature spotlighting reader photo submissions.
From the exotic to the familiar, whether you’re traveling or in your own backyard, we would love to see the world through your eyes.
“Your best camera is the camera you have with you.”
A couple of years ago, I was out walking my girls just before sunset and I spotted an incredible sight, a double rainbow arching across the eastern sky. I didn’t have my camera with me, but did have my phone and captured the rainbow. Sure it would have been better to head back to the house and get my camera out, but by then the rainbow would have disappeared(it did). While I carry my camera with me a lot, I can’t take it everywhere.
Madame and my cellphones were getting a bit long in the tooth(her’s was the Galaxy S8 and mine the Note8), with really reduced battery life and no security updates; so we decided to get Samsung’s newest offering, the Galaxy S22 Ultra. Of course, I was drawn to the improved cameras on the phone, especially compared to the 4 year old Note8. Where the Note8 had 12 megapixel wide and 2x telephoto cameras, the S22 Ultra has a super-wide 12mp, a 108mp primary camera, a 10mp 3x telephoto camera and a 10mp 10x super-telephoto camera. These cameras also don’t work by themselves for each shot they work in concert with data from each sensor playing a role in producing the final shots via the phone’s software.
I’ve had the phone for 2 weeks and have taken it out for several shoots to test it out, I’m quite impressed with what it can do. I’ve shot handheld as well as with a tripod for some night shots. In addition ot the camera app that ships with the phone, you can download another app that produces 16-bit RAW images that can be processed in Lightroom allowing for really good control of the highlights and shadow recovery.
A wide shot of Downtown LA from Elysian Fields above Dodger Stadium. This shot was taken handheld with the phone’s night mode set on.
A sunset shot of Griffith Observatory framed by trees. This was taken handheld using the super telephoto lens. It was shot in 16-bit RAW.
Glendale from Griffith Park, shot 16-bit RAW with the primary camera.
Buildings in Downtown LA shot with the telephoto(3x) lens using a tripod. This is a 16-bit RAW image.
Sandstone Peak from the trailhead leading to the summit, shot with the primary camera.
Sandstone Peak from the same vantage point using the super telephoto camera.
Americana at Brand(the fancy pants mall) in Glendale using the primary camera in 108mp mode. This is not a RAW image.
The Moon, shot using ‘Space Zoom’ at about 65x zoom.
That’s impressive for a phone camera but I can definitely tell the difference between this and the shots you take with your normal camera.
Hmm, our new tenants live in Highland Park and the Zillow photos of their house look right over Dodger Stadium too.
That is a fine shot of the moon. I bought the S22 as well, mostly for the camera. I had the S6, which was about to get stranded when they turn off the CDMA network. My biggest frustration was being able to take photos at concerts and such. Glad to see it meets with your approval.
I’m an iPhone guy, and the camera upgrades on the most recent model is stunning. All of my OTR set of
Climbs this year have been with the phone.
J R in WV
How amazing, that the phone camera is as capable of better photos that the best film cameras of our youth… Bill did you post-process toy with the colors on any of these photos, or are they pretty much straight from the imagery tool? Particularly the 2nd and 3rd photos, with the delicate colors in the sky?
Amazing tech ~!!~ And the person pointing the tech tool too… of course. Thanks again for sharing. Wife’s phone will stop working as soon as they turn off that network. Maybe my turn to get a high end phone… I wonder if my newer LG is a 5g tool? Have to check on that one day soon… decisions, decisions…
Great shots as always, Billin.
What is the 16-bit raw camera app you’re using? Nothing obvious jumped out at me at the PlayStore.
@Baud: Yeah, the sensor size still matters; that’s why I want to get a full frame camera for my night stuff. I still take my NX1 with me when I go out to shoot.
@raven: Sounds like Mt. Washington.
@Planetjanet: Thanks, I’m sure you’ll see a big difference between the output from the S22 compared to the S6.
@Wag: I still take the regular camera with me when I’m hiking, but this is good if I’m out and about.
@J R in WV: The phone cameras have come a long way. I always do some post processing on all of my images though there was less processing with images 1, 7, and 8 since they’re not RAW images.
@Another Scott: Thanks, the 16-bit app is not on the Play Store, it’s on Samsung’s Galaxy Store. It’s called ‘Expert RAW’.
Nice! Got an older Samsung (S20 ultra) for the camera but I’m not great with it. Hurts to have old man eyes that can’t see anything I can touch without glasses. So either I can see what I want to photograph or the camera but not both easily, especially when I’m out for a walk. I’m impressed with the definition of the dome using the telephoto and hand holding it. (I also have old man shake these days.)
Nice view of the GP Observatory!
I got an iPhone 12 (not the Pro) last year and I’ve been startled by the quality of the low light photographs it can take. I’m always out walking the dog pre-dawn so see some great colours.
You can’t tell me that Sandstone Peak is not called “(insert adjective here) Turtle Rock.”
@mvr: I use reading glasses for the eye part and the cameras all have optical stabilization on them now. I used a tripod(got a mount for the phone, already had the tripod) for the closeup of downtown LA and the Moon.
@BigJimSlade: Thanks, I hiked up to the helipad from the Vermont Canyon Tennis Courts and shot that from Commonwealth just east of the tennis courts.
@currawong: They’ve all gotten better with low light in recent years.