DSLR Vs. iPhone – The Pros and Cons

While smartphones have had an impact on our entire lives, one place where their advent has rather been disruptive is the field of photography. It wasn’t until a few years ago that smartphones were able to capture photos striking enough to land on the first page of a magazine, but things like these have become increasingly common these days.

Today, it has become easier for anyone to click photos using the phone in their hands. And, when this phone is an iPhone, things get even easier. But, does this mean that smartphone photography will take over camera photography using the likes of SonyCanon or Nikon? Are they advanced enough to give these leaders a run for their money?

Here are some of the pros and cons of DSLR and iPhone photography to help you understand where each of these stands.

What is the difference between a dsrl and iPhone

Photo by Adrianna Calvo

The Size

This is where a smartphone will always win. iPhones are small, handy and very easy to carry as compared to the DSLRs which are large, heavy and bulky. While the trend is shifting towards lighter and smaller mirrorless cameras, the smallest one of these is still larger than the biggest phones out there. This gives an advantage to the iPhones, especially in cases where carrying a DSLR is not feasible or allowed, for security or personal reasons.

Control Over the Settings

One area where DSLRs win straight is the control offered on the settings. Even if you have the most low-end DSLR, the control it offers is much more than offered in an iPhone. While an iPhone allows you to control settings such as the flash or the white balance, a DSLR allows control over everything from the aperture, shutter speed, the ISO and even allows shooting in a RAW format. While some models of the iPhone might allow a control over these settings, you will not be able to get the same quality that you can get using a DSLR.

Quality of the Image

This is one thing that is highly subjective when it comes to a comparison between DSLRs and iPhones. Most of the high-end smartphones, including the iPhone, offer somewhere between 10-20 MP image quality. This quality of an image is fine for viewing on the screens or even for large prints. The quality of the image actually depends more on who is clicking the photo than the camera itself. Thus, an experienced photographer might be able to click a better photo using an iPhone as compared to an amateur using a high-end DSLR.

Photo of an iPhone on a wooden table

Photo by Tyler Lastovich

Out of Focus Areas

To create the best bokeh, you need to have a camera with a large sensor. Since bokeh is better made when there is a shallower depth of field, having a large image sensor makes it much better. This helps in separating the background and the main subject of the image. While you can always add a bokeh in the editing process once you have clicked the photographs, it just doesn’t compare with the one you created with a lens. The focal length of the lens also affects the creation of a well-formed bokeh. In the case of smartphones like the iPhone, the maximum focal length you can have is between 28-35mm. A lens with this focal length is great at capturing scenes but doesn’t work well when you are trying to get a separation between the background and the man subject.

These are some of the areas that create a distinction between a DSLR and an iPhone camera. While both these are amazing at capturing photos, there are some pros and cons for each that you need to consider before making a purchase.

Want more? Here are the differences between a DSLR and a Mirrorless Camera.