What is macro photography?
Macrophotography is extreme close-up photography. Mostly very small subjects and living organisms like insects are subjects in macro photography. The size of the subject in the photograph is greater than life-size. By the original definition, a macro photograph is one in which the size of the subject on the negative or image sensor is life-size or greater. However, in some uses, it refers to a finished photograph of a subject at greater than life-size. In short, with macro photography, you are able to get really close to your subject without getting a blurry image.
Just a couple of days ago the popular YouTuber, Marques Brownlee, questioned the addition of 2 MP macro cameras in smartphones. He wondered who asked for them. With the Redmi Note 9 Pro, you get a 5 MP macro camera. This is more than double the number of pixels compared to those 2 MP macro cameras. But is it usable? Read along and we will find out!
Marques Brownlee questioning the 2 MP macro camera in the Poco X2.
To start off, no this is not your main camera. So no, you should not expect the same results as you can expect from the 64 MP main camera. However, this additional camera allows for another form of photography to be taken on your phone. Making your phone more multi-functional.
So what can we expect from this camera?
We already know it is not your main camera, is it any good then? Let us talk about some specifications first. The 5 MP macro camera included in the Redmi Note 9 Pro is able to autofocus a subject from two to ten centimetres in front of the lens. The aperture is f/2.4 and the sensor has a 1/5-inch size delivering a pixel size of 1.12μm. The larger the aperture (smaller f/X.X) the more light illuminates the sensor, and the better the image. However, when the aperture is larger, the depth of field is shallower. Meaning, less of your image is in focus. The choice Xiaomi made, to go with an f/2.4 aperture, helps to get more of your subject in focus. The disadvantage is that you require more light.
When we look at this first image, we see a cat. More specifically, a close-up of its nose and mouth. Even with the bad lighting conditions the overall picture is clear and retains detail pretty well. Some noise in the shadows is noticeable but nothing disturbing. Considering the conditions I am impressed by the quality in this shot.
Cat nose and whiskers close-up.
The second and third pictures we inspect are floral pictures. Colour is vibrant and detail and sharpness are brought out beautifully. When inspecting the images even closer you can see small specs of dust on the petals. The dynamic range is not very impressive as the shadows are rather dark. None the less, the focus is spot on and the subjects are exposed correctly.
Yellow and black flower, Purple and white flower.
Next up, we have a dead housefly. In this macro shot, you can really see the sharpness and detail, especially in the wing. Looking further up the body of the fly we see the hairs. The rest of the fly is out of focus due to the shallow depth of field. In this shot, I tapped to get focus on the wing.
We shall continue with a small little spider. This was a tricky shot, wind and low light conditions make it difficult for any camera to capture a sharp picture, let alone a macro camera. Yet, the Redmi Note 9 Pro macro camera pulls it off. On the background, we have a beautiful sunset covering the whole sky in colours. The lights reflecting in the water also point out that the shot was made in the shimmers of sunset.
Small little spider, backlit by sunset.
Lastly, I found myself taking a picture of a 3V3 / 5V voltage level shifter. In this image, you also see how the field of depth changes over just a few millimetres of distance. The lighting provided for this image was produced by a small desk light, the Redmi Note 9 Pro manages to deliver an image with good noise levels and great detail.
Voltage level shifter.
Question for the reader; Would you use the macro camera?
Thank you for reading my more detailed tread about the macro camera. If you are interested in the full review, you can read that here. If you have any questions feel free to reply and like my post if you enjoyed it.
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