Photography expert and Halide developer explores iPhone Xs/Max ‘beautygate’ issue

“Sebastiaan de With, the developer behind popular manual photography app Halide, has been putting the iPhone XS camera system through its paces,” Andrew O’Hara reports for AppleInsider. “In a comprehensive look into Apple’s latest shooters, de With provides an overview of computational photography, and explains how noise reduction technology might generate selfie photos that appear artificially enhanced.”

“In the extensive deep dive, de With outlines why the new iPhone’s images look so vastly different to those taken by the iPhone X, even though much of the hardware was carried over from last year,” O’Hara reports. “Notably, the developer offers an explanation for an alleged skin-smoothing effect that made headlines over the weekend.”

“Most selfies are taken in very unflattering light, and without the changes Apple has made, they would be poorly exposed and full of noise. Apple has likely erred on the side of caution by over-removing the noise and creating too-smooth images, but this can be pulled back,” O’Hara reports. “The iPhone XS and XS Max with Smart HDR have significantly improved photo taking capabilities, and the vast majority of users are already seeing the benefits.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We believe a lot fo the confusion is due to iPhone’s Portrait Mode. There are different lighting options (Natural, Studio, Contour, etc.) and there are also different points on the image you can tap that would set different exposures and focus, both in auto and manual, so many effects can be achieved if you want to manipulate images. If you want a less “smooth,” more accurate-looking image, selfies or otherwise, use iPhone’s PHOTO mode, not PORTRAIT mode.

Do Apple’s new iPhones have a secret built-in ‘beauty mode’ that artificially smooths out selfies? – September 27, 2018


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