Samsung Galaxy Ace – How to improve pictures

I have a Samsung Galaxy Ace. It can take decent pictures, especially (outdoors) with enough light. But more often then not the pictures are a bit ‘misty’. Not optimal. Of course one can say, use a ‘proper’ camera. True, but well, it happens that the only camera at hand is my Ace, so I have to do with that. Then it is good to know you can much improve the Galaxy Ace pictures with Lightroom 4 (other software will do this too but I use LR4). The problem of ‘mist’ is mostly a problem of the ‘blacklevels’. Tweak the ‘blacklevel’ and the picture will come to life:)

Original

Processed with Lightroom 4 (mostly ‘blacklevels’)

The quality has improved dramatically, and this by using only a few sliders, of which the ‘blacklevel’ is the most important. Look at the pictures below. Original and processed and check the histogram and the sliders (esp. ‘black’) You will see that the histogram is correted for the ‘blacklevels’ (left part of the histogram) which was too much to the right (meaning no blacks, resulting in the ‘misty’ pictures). Moving the ‘black’ slider into the negative moves the histogram to the left, enhancing the blacks and removing the ‘mist’.

Some other improvments were done, just experiment a bit, but don’t overdo it. Just ‘repair’ or ‘optimze’ the histogram and the picture will be a lot prettier.

Original

Processed with Lightroom 4 (watch the ‘black’ slider)

So, with a bit of work the Galaxy Ace can produce useful pictures. Always good to know when there is a special moment and the only camera at your disposal is a Galaxy Ace smartphone. Make the shot(s) and postprocess the picture with Lightroom 4. Good luck.

Tip: But of course you would like to process the picture on your smartphone, e.g. because after that you want to put it on Facebook or want to email the picture. I have tested some apps, and found Photo Editor (Android) to be a very good tool to do the trick. In this app, use the function ‘Color (levels)’ to manipulate the histogram.

— Max

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4 Responses to Samsung Galaxy Ace – How to improve pictures

  1. Thanks for sharing the photo before the adjustments and after. The photo becomes alive; the colors vibrant.

  2. chuck says:

    I too have this phone and find the camera abominable. I was hoping you had an “onboard” levels correct. I find when my finger is not in the picture and there is sufficient time for the senor to settle it helps. But I noted what you call “mist” is due to sensitivity for lowlight which results in highlights that are blown out. . I would rather nip it in the bud. I have seen other Samsung phones ( S3 ) where the camera is top notch. I usually have a small digicam with me as I was using this before Smartphones, When I get a better Smart phone I will hopefully get a better camera.

    • Max says:

      Sure, we now live in 2015. The camera of this Ace can now be regarded as ‘bad’. I have a new smartphone, a budget Lumia 630. It makes better pictures. I thought of buying a top smartphone with good camera specs, but in the end decided to postpone that until later. However I was tempted by the Lumia 1020, but decided to keep my Nikon D5100 + Sigma 17-50 lens as number one. Lack of DOF (depth of field) is a major argument against having a smartphone as my number one camera.

      So, for the moment I have

      – Nikon D5100 … in case I really am going to shoot picture (like on holiday, cities, portraits, etc)
      – Canon S95 … in case I want to travel lightly but still expect to shoot some quality pictures
      – Lumia 630 … everyday, always with me. Trusty backup. Enough for snaps

      If I would buy a highend smartphone, it would render the S95 useless. No problem with that. Who knows, maybe next year. If I can have Lumia 1020 quality for 200 euro’s, I might be tempted.

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