Other iPhone XR Portrait Mode: Issues with using wide angle camera? Previous iPhones use telephoto.

EugW

macrumors G3
Original poster
Jun 18, 2017
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Typically on the dual camera iPhones, AFAIK the telephoto lens is used for taking Portrait Mode photos. This is the case with my iPhone 7 Plus at least. This will no longer be the case for the iPhone XR.

Does it matter?

With traditional portrait lenses, you're better off with a mid telephoto, but that's because of perspective and distance, and the way the lens needs to be set up to get the appropriate bokeh. A lot of this no longer applies anymore with this computationally derived Portrait Mode.

Still, I wonder what affect this will have on the perspective of Portrait Mode on the XR. I guess one just needs to remember not to get too close to the subject.

OTOH, one annoyance I had with the 7 Plus, is if wanted to take a 2-person portrait mode shot with some background, I sometimes couldn't easily fit everything in the frame due to the telephoto lens. This problem would be solved with the XR's wide-angle Portrait Mode.

How do you think a wide angle Portrait Mode will affect things? What are the results on other single-lens camera phones with similar portrait modes?
 

EugW

macrumors G3
Original poster
Jun 18, 2017
8,237
5,613
Apple doesn't actually tell us what the focal lengths are for the XS, XS Max, and XR cameras. However, the X's focal lengths were 4 mm and 6 mm, or equivalent to 28 mm and 52 mm, for a zoom ratio of 1.86X (and not actually 2X).

For my iPhone 7 Plus, the focal lengths were 3.99 mm and 6.6 mm, corresponding to 28 mm and 56 mm, for a zoom ratio of 2X.

For the XR I'm not sure what it will be, but something like a 28 mm equivalent might be expected. And the good news is that it gets the 1.4 um pixels too for improved low light performance over the X.

iPhoneXRCamera.PNG
 
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unagimiyagi

macrumors 6502a
Jun 9, 2009
893
225
so the portrait mode using the f1.8 lens, exclusively in software, should be BETTER than a telephoto if it's like the pixel 2.
The f1.8 lens allows for faster shutter speeds and less noise, and it can snap the pic instantly. This is all in contrast to the telephoto two lens based portrait mode. If the software can differentiate depth, then I think it might be better.

I found the pixel 2 (the xr will be using a similar technique) to be superior to the iPhone's portrait mode using 2 lenses, because the pixel 2 could snap moving subjects far better and with less noise. Given the adjustable bokeh of the XR, I think any imperfections could be effectively erased by adjusting the pic after the fact.
 
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