Photographs and Video Footage
Here is a place where a hardware upgrade and software upgrade combine to make something a little nicer than either on their own. The new OS 3.0 together with the new 3MP camera do make a big difference in image quality, but in addition they also throw in an auto focus mechanism that allows you to select your focal point by taping the screen. Of course, this will mess up many of the applications that allow you to trigger the shutter by tapping anywhere on the screen, but it is still a nice touch.
As you can see, there is a box to indicate where the camera is focused (forgive the blurry images as getting the screen shot was not easy). Auto focus works partially with video recording as the camera will choose a new focal point if you move around, but you cannot tap the screen to get it to focus.
The video on the iPhone 3GS is not bad. The 3MP camera does help with quality, but I noticed that the captured footage was quite large with 16MB for a 36 second clip in regular light and a 22MB file for a 49 second clip in low light.
I used the same area for my video testing (my work bench), first without the overhead lights and then with them turned on. After having used Cycorder, I am a little disappointed with the new 3GS video recording, but at least you can edit them on the fly before you send them along. You also have the option to send them directly to YouTube if that is what you are into.
Below you can view the iPhone 3GS' video capturing quality in both normal and low level light conditions.
- Normal Light:
- Low Light: