Can you tell a phone photo from a DSLR one?

Can you use phones to shoot wildlife and birds? Sanshey Biswas and Manon Verchot tried this out on a trip to the Keoladeo National Park in Rajasthan, India. Their photos were published in the Hindu BusinessLine. 


Though phone camera technology has dramatically improved in the last decade, the zoom capability on mobiles remains limited. So phones are rarely used for wildlife photography and videography. Instead, DSLRs and specialised equipment are the go-to. 


But as mobile phones become more accessible, specialised equipment for shooting wildlife is also emerging, like this telephoto lens:



Phone telephoto lenses are around 50 USD, whereas telephoto lenses for DSLRs cost thousands of dollars. 


Though Sanshey and Manon didn’t have a mobile telephoto lense, they were prompted by the guides in Keoladeo National Park to shoot photos through binoculars and bird watching scopes. Can you tell the difference between what was shot on DSLR and what was shot on the phone? The answer is at the end of this article. 


Sanshey and Manon submitted both DSLR and mobile photographs to Hindu BusinessLine for publishing. The editors at the publication selected an almost equal number of DSLR photos as mobile photos. 


“We just wanted to challenge ourselves and see if someone would notice,” says Sanshey. “ It’s the storytelling that matters in the end — the information and the way it’s conveyed.”


Left: DSLR; Right: iPhone 7 Plus through binoculars


Disclaimer: In this article, we’re writing about ourselves and our own experience and learnings.

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