This may not be the most useful post in the world, because who other than me regularly shoots these two cameras? Who knows, maybe this post will end up ranked #1 on Google for “Canon PowerShot S95 vs. Apple iPhone 12 mini” for the five people a year who might do that search.
But on my Ride Across Indiana, I sometimes made a photo of something with both cameras as I thought I might want to use the image for that night’s blog post and to share with friends on social media. I didn’t have any way to get photos off the S95 and into my phone.
Every digital camera makes decisions in its software about how to render a scene. It’s fascinating to me how differently these two cameras manage the light.
In each of these pairs, the Canon S95 photo is first. I’ve done light post-processing on all of these photos but they are not substantially changed from how they came from the camera. Sometimes I tried to zoom the iPhone and the S95 to the same extent, and sometimes I didn’t.
I notice three main differences: the iPhone tends to pull out shadow detail to the point of flattening scenes, the iPhone over-sharpens everything, and the S95 is far more likely to blow out highlights.
1: Old alignment of the National Road west of Dunreith
2: Indiana Statehouse.
3: My bike by an abandoned bridge west of Plainfield.
4: Rising Hall in western Hendricks County.
5: Old house in Putnam County.
6: Bypassed US 40 bridge, Putnam County.
It’s great to have a capable camera in my pocket all the time. But I think I prefer the S95 shots every single time.
I wish I still had my old iPhone 6s — I don’t remember its camera doing such aggressive processing.