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Rocking the Samsung S6 Edge's Camera
Let's demystify the jargon around smartphone cameras today. We're looking at the Edge's camera, which is easy to use and yet offers a slew of features that you can use to improve your photos with just a little effort.
It's a 16 megapixel camera on the Samsung S6 Edge, and is optimised to take photos in low light conditions, ignore shakes of your hand and focus faster on moving objects. The best part? It's all digital so even if you make a mistake, all you need to do is hit the Delete button and the blurry photos disappear so you can try again. Keeping that in mind, let's start, shall we?
We begin by launching the photo app, which throws up these options, clockwise from top left:
Settings (the gear shaped icon) - if you want to get the basics of getting a photo right, start here.
Picture Size (rear)
The Samsung S6 Edge allows you to take really high quality photos - you can start with the 16 megapixel photo setting or reduce it to 8, 6 or even 2.4 megapixel, which will consume lesser space but simultaneously also not look as pretty.
Video size (rear)
We aren't getting into video in this article, so let's skip this, shall we?
AF stands for auto-focus - use this option if you're taking an action shot - any photograph of a moving object or if you are in a moving vehicle.
The One Third Rule of photography is something that is taught to beginners to this field. It's definitely helpful in taking normal photos too. All you need to do is align the camera so the scenery that's in focus takes up either a third of the full photo or two-thirds. For example, if it's a lake, use the grid lines to align the photo before you click so the sky takes up a third of the photo while the remaining is taken up by the lake. Try this and see the marked difference in the impact of your photos.
If you're traveling and sharing your photos online, location tags become really useful, especially on a long trip. Turn this option on when you need it!
With this option, you will be able to immediately see the photo taken, instead of them getting hidden away in the gallery.
Quick Launch: Tap, tap
Turn this shortcut on so you always have your phone's camera ready to capture the right moment! Tap the Home key twice to activate the camera.
Say Cheese to Click
The functions Voice Control & Volume Keys further expand the ways you can click the pic - either using a command ("Smile" "Cheese" "Capture or "Shoot") or pressing the volume buttons. If you find this too ..cheesy (get it?), use the "Timer" to automate the click after either 2 seconds, or 5 or 10. If you are taking a selfie, the Gesture Control feature proves very handy. Just wave your palm before the camera and it detects it and clicks in two seconds.
Do I Need Flash?
There are three options available in the Flash menu - Auto, On & Off. We advice you keep it set at Off, unless you're taking a photo at night. Actually, just keep the flash off and rely on other light sources.
Keep this as On for highest quality photos at all times, or pick 'Auto' to let the mobile choose.
Vintage, Vignette, Tint, Grayscale, Faded Colour, Moody or Cartoon - play around with the filters depending on your mood and see your photos come to life. We loved the "Cartoon" filter that makes anything look like it has popped out of a comic book!
To the right of Effect, you see an arrow button inviting you to click it. Go on, and see how all the buttons so far get 'minimised' - perfect to de-clutter your photography experience. What's interesting is that you see the options selected on the edge, even after you have minimised them.
At the bottom, you have the Gallery where you can access stored pics, and to its left is the Video icon, which allows you to switch to recording a video.
The camera lets you take multiple photos instantly so you capture the right moment - just keep pressing down on the main camera button for as long as you want (but remember to delete the pics you don't want before they eat up your storage!)
The button on the left of the main camera button lets you switch between the front and back camera.
Auto - Let the camera take control with auto focus, the right amount of light (exposure) and how fast it should click (frame rate).
More: Pro - This feature is for the DSLR-camera owners who are already well versed with the tactics of taking a photograph, including changing the ISO sensitivity exposure value, white balance, focal length and tone colour manually.
Mode: Selective Focus
Use this to change the focus of the camera so that one particular object is sharper while the other is blurry - perfect for when you want to take arty shots of a person!
We've seen enough Panorama shots to know what they are but somehow not all of them are really impressive. Here's what makes a good panorama shot:
- Place: Finding a suitable place for a panorama is critical. Look around and imagine if the landscape is worth a panorama or if you can capture it with a normal photo. Wide open spaces, horizons and skylines are typical panorama picks, but streets also make for good panoramas, if taken at the right angle.
- The right time: In photography, "golden hours" of a day refer to the sunset hours - pick a time before, during or just after a sunset to capture your panorama.
- Rule of thirds - remember what we said about using the grids? Focus first so the panorama is fixed and doesn't get blurred by auto-focusing while you take the panorama.
- Direction: Move the mobile slowly in one direction without stopping.
The camera also has other video-related modes - Live Broadcast, Slow Motion, Fast Motion, Virtual Shot. Of these, we found the Virtual Shot quite interesting - it takes 360 degree videos of an object. All you need to do is circle the object with your camera and it will capture the photo so when you preview it, you can scroll around the object, viewing it from different angles! Watch this video for an example:
The Download button takes you over to the Samsung App Store to download more camera apps.
With the front 5 megapixel camera, Samsung's Selfie modes turn on instantly, which you can also control through gestures. The Wide Selfie modes is also an underused feature -it results in much better selfies. It's easy to take one too - just swivel the S6 till the white frame reaches the end of the window - just like in the instructions.
The camera will automatically crop out the unnecessary parts and let you save it.
Remember to stand still while taking this wide selfie!
With that, we conclude today's lesson on the Samsung S6 Edge camera's features and hope you have a blast trying them out!