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iPhone 5s: photographic analysis

The processor, sensor and flash have changed, but the iPhone 5s is the same in regards to photography: easy to use, excellent results. And thankfully this hasn’t changed with the most recent Apple phone. With its 8 megapixels and its slightly bigger sensor, it doesn’t offer many new features, but it still represents the camera of choice of many users.

iPhone 5s

Android and Windows smartphones can now shoot in RAW, something Apple is not too worried about. The same can be said about the resolution, as Nokia –with 41 megapixels- and Sony –with 20- greatly outperform the iPhone 5s.

The iPhone’s camera seems to be one of Apple’s main concerns. After all, according to Flick, iPhone cameras are the most popular in the world.

iPhone 5s

But trivia aside, let’s see what the iPhone 5s can offer that the previous version couldn’t.


The new A7 processor the iPhone 5s features has made the camera more agile compared to the iPhone 5 –especially during high speed shooting-, although the difference isn’t extraordinary.

iPhone 5s

The iPhone 5 is capable of taking several consecutive pictures if you hold down the shutter button, and now this high-speed mode has been increased to 10 pictures per second.

Also, the phone doesn’t treat these pictures are separate shots, but as a series of high-speed shots. To make them easier to manage, the iPhone chooses and shows the best pictures of the bunch, though you naturally have the option to see all of them.

The new processor also improves the focus, measurement and exposition, though not significantly. Creation of panoramic pictures, however, has also been greatly improved.

This new iPhone is now capable of recording Full HD at 120 FPS, something the new processor is also responsible for.

Better sensor, same resolution

Increasingly bigger sensors are becoming the norm in mobile phone cameras. Each company takes a different approach, and Apple is perhaps the most traditional in this regard.

iPhone 5s

The iPhone 5s features a new backlit CMOS sensor with an 8-megapixel resolution (3264 x 2448), 15% bigger than its predecessor. This translates into 1.5-micron photodiodes, compared to the 1.4 ones the iPhone 5 has.

The lens’ luminosity has also gone from f2.4 to f2.2. Along with the new sensor, this translates into better performance in low-light scenarios, something smart phones are –commonly- particularly bad at.

The iPhone 5s lacks an optical stabilizer, though, which affects its performance in dim light. We all know a digital stabilizer is useful, but it has its limits and truly there’s nothing like an optical or mechanical stabilizer.

Well, are all of these little improvements really noticeable? Short answer: yes. Long answer: Yes, but not significantly. If you really take a closer look and analyze it, you’ll discover the iPhone 5s offers very Little improvements compared to the previous version.

The new sensor and processor offer better noise control, but that doesn’t mean the pictures are perfect –far from it, actually- but the improvement is noticeable, especially after post-processing.

iPhone 5s

Like we said, in low light scenarios it tends to offer great results, but there’s also the risk of producing too bright pictures and even ruining them.

iPhone 5s Photo performance

iPhone 5s Photo performance

Two photos taken with the iPhone 5s (Above) and the iPhone 5 flash. Apple’s new terminal opens a system with two LED flashes guy who promises more natural results

The iPhone 5s also features a new dual flash system to deal with a classic problem in every smart phone. These two different-colored LEDs combined adjust to the scenery to offer more natural-looking results –we use the term “natural-looking” very loosely-.

Easy to use

Compared to the previous version, the iPhone 5s offers useful but barely noticeable improvements. Without featuring anything revolutionary, Apple’s most recent phone’s new features make sense: No one buys an iPhone for the camera, and it is no secret that smart phones with much better cameras exist.

iPhone 5s

However, the iPhone 5s can offer good-looking pictures simply with the press of a button, something that, for most users, is more than enough. Numbers don’t lie, after all, and this is the most popular camera in the world.

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