80 million images are tweaked, enhanced, brightened and uploaded onto Instagram every day. For those of you a few decades behind – Instagram is all about pictures, and most importantly – images uploaded from your phone. So, when it comes to heading abroad for a two-week beach holiday, nipping to Warsaw for a weekend break of culture (read continental one night stands), or travelling the world on an epic adventure for six months, do you take your [eafl id=”1721″ name=”Iphone” text=”iPhone”] or SLR, to capture those perfect, social-envy inducing shots.

I currently use a Canon 7d, but it’s going to be hitting storage very soon!

iPhone or SLR – what can’t the iPhone do

The latest iPhone 7 is packed full of picture taking features (admittedly, a similar selection to the 6), but it still remains a very automated and automatic form of photography. Aperture, exposure and ISO are the three ways you can control the brightness and final result of an image on an SLR. All three functions on an iPhone are automated. Great, you’d think, but these tools provide a great way to add emotion and feeling to your imagery. iPhone or SLR – that’s a win to SLR

Aperture: controls the area in which light can enter your camera – basically the ‘hole size’ of the camera’s eye. The bigger the hole, the more light that can enter

Shutter Speed: controls the length of time in which your camera’s lens remains open. The longer it is open, the more light that can enter

ISO: controls how sensitive your camera’s sensor is to the light coming in. So, for example, you would use a higher ISO setting in dark conditions, to make the given available light better used

There are a few keys things you can do with your DSLR that simply isn’t possible on iPhone.

Zoom Quality
Taken on Canan 7d at around 30 metres away

Zoom Quality

Using your DSLR’s lens to zoom, magnifies the view in front of your, through glass. This means you’ll still get that crisp image even at distance. With an iPhone the lens doesn’t move and you’re simply ‘blowing up’ the image that is the default. This means it will likely be more pixelated.

Changeable Lenses

With an iPhone, you’re stuck with the one lens. It means the type of images you capture, a quite default wide angle, will always look similar. A DSLR allows you to interchange your lenses for different views.

Chipmunk basks on a tree in India
Notice the depth of field in this image – between the foreground and background.

Depth of Field

By changing your aperture you’re able to adjust the depth of field – this is the distance between your focus point and the distant in which images become blurry/ For portraits or close ups this can provide a really cool effect. Comparing an iPhone or SLR in this ability and the SLR wins hands down.

Quirky shutter speed effects

While shutter speed allows you to control the amount of light coming in, you can also do some really cool stuff with it. Like the above image for example, by lowering shutter speed and turning up the aperture, to balance the light, you can capture movement in an image.

Manual Settings – and skill!

A DSLR relies on your skill as a photographer to capture the moment in front of you. There is a lot to be said for this, and an iPhone simply can’t replace it.


iPhone or SLR – I’m taking my iPhone!

It’s light, I need to take it with me anyway, and to be honest, the image quality is superb. I’ll be leaving my Canon 7d at home! Shooting at 12MB and in JPEG or RAW, you’ve got almost SLR quality images when it comes to pixels. Additionally, the new iPhone 7 also has a wider aperture than the 6, meaning more light can enter the lens and IOS can be reduced (toning down that grainy look).

Most importantly, travel photography is about the moment, and not about 3 days of editing and finding the chance to transfer your SLR images onto your laptop. Getting images from your SLR can be a nightmare, and then from your laptop to social media is another ball-ache again.