Pixel 8 Pro: Manual Controls and Video Capabilities
The Pixel 8 Pro offers a rich suite of manual controls for dedicated photographers. Tweak settings include ISO, focus, and the impressive 50MP resolution in JPEG and RAW formats. Plus, Google's signature HDR adjustments can be applied to each RAW image, giving you a level of control and customization that seems even more intuitive than what's found on the iPhone 15 Pro.
Regarding video, the synergy between hardware and software ushers in features previously unseen in Pixel’s lineup. While I'm eager to field-test these capabilities, the “Video Boost” stands out. This feature dynamically tweaks color scenes, balancing dynamic range and honing details. However, the question arises: Does this enhancement make the footage appear artificially altered? The option to manually turn off this feature will be crucial in understanding the gap between untouched footage and that optimized by Google's AI. One wonders if tech giants truly grasp what creators seek in their content.
'Accuracy' seems to be the mantra for Google's imaging team this year. 'Real Tone' ensures a more precise portrayal of a broad spectrum of real-life skin tones. Coupled with improved lighting performance and low-light steadiness, your subjects will appear truer to life, capturing their genuine beauty and, you guessed it, “personal spirit”.
The Pixel 8 Pro's computational audio capabilities are a real game-changer. Not only can you isolate and remove distracting sounds in your videos, but the user interface is so intuitive that anyone can use it. It divides audio into distinct, controllable layers, paving the way for a cleaner and more immersive audio experience. While not nearly as advanced as computer software that most audio engineers are used to, it’s still an exciting step forward for those who wish to play around on a pocketable smartphone.
Night Sight for video promises to revolutionize low-light recording, ideal for moments like evening soirees or intimate dinners. The promotional footage showcases notable enhancements in brightness and color fidelity with the feature activated. While it's unclear if the video demo genuinely represents real-world outcomes, Night Sight is set to be a game-changer if it does. Yet, potential constraints in resolution or framerate when employing this mode remain uncertain.
Differing from Video Boost, Night Sight gets activated as you record. Its efficacy hinges on the Pixel 8 Pro's revamped camera hardware.
Pixel 8's camera is also about grace in those tricky photographic situations. Ever had a group photo ruined by a single person blinking? Enter "Best Take,” which lets you swap out facial expressions between heads. While some might find this a tad 'Black Mirror-esque' (I personally might pass on this one), it's an undeniable boon for the visually impaired and perhaps a hit among the older generations.