The other day I wrote about my new smart phone, the Realme 6 Pro, and my initial thoughts on its camera and photographic capabilities.
You also probably know I don’t much like post processing.
Despite it being spring round our way, and flowers blooming in abundance, my photography head is still in black and white (b/w) mode, so I decided to experiment with the Realme’s in camera b/w setting.
My approach in terms of using the camera is simple, as you’d expect.
Press the power button to wake the phone, swipe the camera icon up from the bottom right of the screen to activate the camera, select the 2x lens, then drop a notch back with the volume down button to 1.9x zoom (and force the camera back to its main f/1.8 and much closer focusing lens) and I’m ready to shoot.
This whole process takes about four seconds, and typically as with any camera, I’ll have the camera set up and ready in my hand, then wander about looking for shots, so I’m not going through the same steps for every single photo anyway.
The only other feature I use is tapping or holding my finger on a part of the screen to encourage the camera to focus and meter for that part, which is more necessary for close up work, where the camera tends to assume you want the whole scene in focus, and focuses accordingly.
The photos in this post are my favourite few from a recent photowalk with this b/w mode.
Overall I’m really happy.
The camera is easy to prepare, and the b/w mode seems to have enough contrast for my tastes for me to not want to race to Snapseed and slide the contrast up, which cannot be said about most cameras and their straight out of camera b/w images.
The only downside, as always with phone cameras, is it’s not ergonomically as satisfying to use as a bigger camera with a proper grip and more curved body.
Otherwise, I plan to experiment more with the Realme 6 Pro in this mode in the coming weeks.
Thanks for looking.
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6 thoughts on “Shooting Black And White With The Realme 6 Pro”
Looks like a camera that perfectly fits your photography style, Dan. And the “bokeh” in the second photo is very pleasant.
Thanks Robert! Yes sometimes the bokeh is a bit mushy when zoomed in, but here it worked out fairly pretty, especially for such a small lens.
I found being able to see the image in B&W was a real plus when I was using a digital camera. I really like your second photo.
Thanks Doug. I agree about the b/w on screen too, an intensive period with my Nikon Coolpix, shooting over 1000 photos a month for seven months, and mostly in b/w, was a great learning experience in how to see the world in b/w.
A built in black and white mode is great, although I have to confess with your Panasonics the blacks and whites have a bit more of that cinematic 50’s noir I like, or maybe is a personal misperception, I mean creamy deep shadows and dense highlights. I had a Samsung J1, I didn’t like the colors, so I gave up and got an app called Hypocam, when you open the app it takes you straight to the mode to photograph in black and white (it has an editor mode too, with options to resemble the filters red, green or yellow used with black and white film), but is old and I doubt updated for modern Android cellphones. This is a photo I took with it: http://prntscr.com/11ruu91 is the cat sniffing the lens, it is not focused but I like it. Thank you, Dan, for sharing your experience.
The first camera I used with a high contrast b/w mode was actually my first “proper” camera (ie not a phone cam), the Nikon Coolpix P300. The more other cameras I’ve used, the more I realised what a very good choice the Coolpix was for me, and how I probably could have stuck with it and bought nothing else!
Undoubtedly the digital compacts I like best are those with some kind of similar in camera mode. They vary a little between the cameras, and some, like the Ricoh GRD III are much more extreme, but generally all perform a similar function and give me similarly satisfying results.