Apple opens up 'Shot on iPhone' macro challenge

26 January 2022
Enter and if you win, you can be featured in Apple's social channels.

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  • AnonD-909757

Gex, 27 Jan 2022Awesome explanation! :^DThanks you =]

  • Gex

AnonD-909757, 26 Jan 2022TL;DR : Indeed, what is considered Macro is based on the r... moreAwesome explanation! :^D

  • AnonD-909757

Anonymous, 26 Jan 2022Generally it doesn't matter how macro shots are made o... moreTL;DR :
Indeed, what is considered Macro is based on the result and not on the focal length or distance.

Long answer :
Obviously, there is a limitation where the shorter the focal length mean the closer you need to be, but with a powerful, long focal length, you can take Macro from quite a long range (macro wise).
Having a higher focal length can either give you more details or allowing you to take the shot from further, but you are also limited by your focus capabilities.
Focus is two things, the distance at which you can focus, and the depth of field (the distance between the closest and furthest in-focus point), and for Macro you want a really short depth of field.
This is because, the longer/shallower a deep depth of field, while the middle point where you get sharp focus is wide, you also get a wide area around where you get not good focus, and this limit your minimum good focus distance.
Which is why Ultra-Wide are the opposite of what you want for taking Macro, they have a shallow depth of field, also the shorter the focal length, the closer you need to be.

More in depth explanation :
A great example of how higher focal length can give you more details is this illustrative image :
https://i1.wp.com/digital-photography-school.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/16-macro-lens-full.jpg
In contrast, this image allows you to notice how with a higher focal length, you can take "the same" Macro shot from a longer range :
https://blog.sigmaphoto.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/105-180.jpg

I quoted "the same" because in fact there is a difference.
Illustrated in this picture :
https://i.pinimg.com/474x/a1/cd/fd/a1cdfd88ffa8fe005239459bad76bc9d--photography-tricks-family-of--photography.jpg
The reason of this deformation isn't because of the shorter focal length.
This is simply because the picture is taken from a close distance, in fact, even a Telephoto would do it, but you are usually taking a shot from too long for it to show.
It is because the distance between the closest and furthest part of the subject are a big percentage of the overall distance to the camera.
When you take a close distance shot, the distance between the nose and the camera compared to the distance between the forehead and the camera are much more different from each other than from if you took the shot from further, so it accentuates those differences.

Some numbers to understand this, imagine the tip of the nose is 5Cm in front of the forehead, if you take a picture at 30Cm, you get 30Cm vs 35Cm (and technically even more if the camera is centered in front of the face as you get a trigonometric increase between the camera & nose compared to nose and forehead), over 15% of the distance.
While the same shot at 5m mean those 5Cm are 1% of the distance, meaning a much smaller change.
And this also play a role with the depth of field.


But one fundamental thing many don't understand is that while Ultra-Wide, Wide and Telephoto are based on focal length alone, Macro isn't, hence why any lens can theoretically take a Macro (even a Fisheye), but a good Macro is much closer to a Portrait or a Telephoto than a Normal, Wide, Ultra-Wide or even Fisheye.

  • Anonymous

yalim, 26 Jan 2022that is not a macro shot. this is just a close distance sho... moreGenerally it doesn't matter how macro shots are made on technical level, what counts is that you can see details that cannot be seen with naked eye. That's what's a "macro" shot in an essence. Something you can't achieve with regular lenses because their focal length is too high. Or they are fixed focus which usually means you need at least 50cm of distance from subject.

that is not a macro shot. this is just a close distance shot. they are different but confused so much. macros are shot from a distance of min 20-30cm with 50-105mm lenses, not 26mm, not 13mm.

  • Anonymous

Wow. Android fanboys spend a lot of time whining about Apple.

  • Anonymous

"Hey plebs, create some marketing and PR material that we (*the world's richest publicly traded company wohooooooo!*), will use to advertise our products. Go!"
"Err...okay...and can we please get our payment in-"
"The exposure is your payment."

So Macro is a thing now!

  • AnonD-1035985

Apple announces Marco photography in 2022
Meanwhile Android in 2021 : 3 MP, f/3.0, (microscope), AF, ring flash, 60x magnification

  • Anonymous

not enough tissues for the fandroids tears in the comments crying over the littlest thing that no one even cares about.

AnonD-909757, 26 Jan 2022Lol. First, no, there is a reason why all company that are... moreAgreed, I never saw the point of having wildly different mp counts between camera's on the same device. And the less said about the dreaded yet ever common '2mp macro + 2mp depth' combo that is prevalent in the android world the better.

No Android manufacturer ever expects a customer to actually use a 2mp macro camera, it and the equally useless 'depth' cams are simply and obviously there for no reason whatsoever other allowing the product to be marketed as having a 'mutli lens camera system'

If you look at the Android world as a whole, then true actually useful macro photography capabilities are more or less as comparatively rare as they are in the iOS word.

  • AnonD-909757

Technology , 26 Jan 2022First improve cameras megapixels and pro's Rear Design... moreLol.
First, no, there is a reason why all company that are known for their excellent photo prefer 12Mp, it was the case of Google before they went all trending, it is the case of Sony and Apple.
12Mp is more than enough for most use cases, granted, a 16Mp Ultra-Wide and Telephoto would be better so you can compensate, respectively, the pixels per degrees of the UW and have a layer of numeric zoom on top of the optical magnification.
But 48Mp and more, firstly, does NOT produce higher quality, and secondly, they are binned anyway, meaning 48Mp is a normal 12Mp whose pixels are divided by 4, same for any higher resolution, and the Samsung's 108Mp is a 3x3 binning.
And more importantly! A phone that has a CONSISTENT 12Mp is MUCH BETTER than those having 8Mp (or less) Ultra-Wide or Telephoto, and a whole other level above those with useless 2Mp sensors.

  • Anonymous

No prize money? No thanks

  • Kev

Nick Tegrataker, 26 Jan 2022It would be really interesting if someone entered the chall... moreSpoofing photos would be hard. I have no doubt that Apple retains image processing algorithm patents that make their photos easy to recognize. Replicating it would likely require another iPhone, and no Android can convincingly replicate it unless you spoof the data AND give the photo a good edit. And also, their heavy processing makes DSLRs a no-go.

GAMIR3DH, 26 Jan 2022Sure... i take selfies of myself every 367 days of the year 💯Never doubted it

DaFink, 26 Jan 2022You really really do catch a glimpse of your biggest fan ev... moreSure... i take selfies of myself every 367 days of the year 💯

GAMIR3DH, 26 Jan 2022Even if i already had a iPhone 13 Pro, the prize not being ... moreYou really really do catch a glimpse of your biggest fan every time you happen by a glossy surface don’t you.

In all honesty I wouldn’t bother with this competition anyhow pal, macro photography is pretty much useless when your favourite photographic subject is yourself.

  • Anonymous

AnonF-1009694, 26 Jan 2022Of course there wouldn't be a prize money, this is app... moreNo matter what they'd put as prize money, people would whine how a trillion company can't give more or something. You know how that works... And they can't give out iPhones since it's expected to make shots with an iPhone which means you already have one. They could hand out "voucher" for the next iPhone Pro Max or something tho so winner would get the best possible version for free on next release aka iPhone 14. But I'm just brainstorming at this point.

[deleted post]The thing is, these smartphone companies are just slapping a dedicated lens for it which in most of the cases, is more useless compared to a telephoto lens while Apple doesn't even add any new lens to their phones.

[deleted post]What you said is true. No one cares about a feature unless Apple implements it and calls it an innovation.