The worst feeling is coming home from travel and realizing the photos you took weren’t as good as you saw it!
In early years, Filipinos relied on generic postcards or blurry film cameras to keep memories of our unique travel experiences. But in the age of DSLR cameras and action cameras, well-crafted travel photographs are now possible for every after-hours traveler (like me).
Believe me, one of the most gut-wrenching feelings I’ve had are these: finding out I forgot to charge the batteries of my camera, accidentally leaving my memory card inserted in my laptop, and forgetting my camera entirely. Of course, I can always enjoy the trip. But it makes me wish I have captured all those beautiful sights to keepsake!
Are you DSLR or Action Camera user?
For more than five years, I’ve been an avid Nikon D3100 user. It was my second pricey investment. My Nikon has accompanied me atop mountain tops as I capture fantastic landscape photos. It captured my OOTDs during photowalks while hunting murals in BGC, documenting the temples of Southeast Asia, and even during social work assignments that has sent me to remote communities in the Philippines. I loved the detail that comes with its powerful lenses, and how I can capture emotion and intricate details in just one snap.
Meanwhile, my boyfriend has been a GoPro user since before we met. He has taken fantastic underwater shots during snorkeling in Hundred Islands and scuba diving in Batangas. He has played Ultimate Frisbee while the action camera is mounted on his chest, and has taken a video of our canyoneering adventure that involves multiple waterfall jumping!
For after-hours travelers like us, a camera is a necessity. And quite frankly, we didn’t want to rely on our smartphones for photography. The risk of getting less-than-amazing photos is just too high. That is, until the recent innovations introduced in the market. Now, we are seriously considering switching to powerful smartphones.
The Pros of Using Smartphones for Photography
Based on experience, carrying a DSLR camera can be daunting for light packers like me. The bulky camera bag itself usually takes up 50% of my backpack space. While I have considered going mirrorless, it still comes with a degree of fragility and bulkiness. I can’t tell you how much I’ve risked life and limbs protecting my DSLR camera from getting shattered during rock climbing activities. NOt to mention, during perilous city tours that makes it holdap prone. As much as people discouraged me for bringing it, it’s such a waste when you can’t take a memento of an amazing landscape.
Meanwhile, my boyfriend’s action camera came with hefty price tag. Of course, there are now alternative Chinese action cameras in the market. But his own GoPro has given him problems such as that he had to transfer his shots to a computer and do heavy editing to adjust the exposure, vibrance and sharpness of the photos. Action cameras simply do not allow you to use filters instantaneously so that you only need to upload it online. Not to mention, there are many times he failed to use his GoPro the entire day because it was terribly battery- and memory-consuming.
Switching to smartphone photography
As such, sometimes the best choice for travelers is a simple smartphone that has great camera features, plugged-in filters, and large memory. This way you can get the exquisite details that comes from a Nikon DSLR shot, and the portability of a GoPro.
Let me introduce the Oppo F1s, which is a self-titled selfie camera. I know, I’m not an avid fan of selfies and monopods. But that’s only because I haven’t found the perfect smartphone to capture them. Taking a selfie using a DSLR is just difficult, and with an action camera, there are no cute filters that can make me upload them quickly. Here are just some of the best Oppo F1s features perfect for travelers like us:
Best Oppo F1s Features #1: The Selfie Expert
Selfies. This is the first time I heard of a smartphone that packs more megapixels in the front camera (at 16MP) than its rear camera (at 13MP)! It looks like Oppo truly have capitalized on the selfie. And why not? Travel photos in selfie formats receive far more engagement on Instagram than just panoramic landscape shots with no people in them!
Low-Light Shots. Similarly, the high resolution makes Oppo F1s more sensitive to image detail and natural lighting. This makes your selfie look less like an HDR image and more like a smooth mirror to take photos with. The high megapixel also works well in low-light conditions, for capturing nightlife scenes or distant overlooking views that would otherwise be invisible taken with other smartphones.
Filters. It’s not enough also that you can take selfies. You have to take good selfies. The primary benefit of smartphones is that you can also instantaneously edit photos and add filters so that they are good-to-upload be it on Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat. It’s great to know that Oppo F1s is armed with a blemish-reduction filter (Beautify 4.0).
Panoramic Shots. To be honest, this is the first time I heard of the Selfie Panorama! To paint a picture, it’s simply a panoramic shot taken using the front camera. Now you can take wide-angled selfies that includes not just you, but also the destination you are in. No need to take “looking away” or “zoomed out” photos (my go-to) just to capture yourself and emphasize the beauty of the landscape at the same time!
Watermarking. I never watermark my photos because it takes lots of time. If I did, I had to upload my shots on my computer and batch edit them with the watermark before sharing. Stealing of travel photos without credit are a reality for us travel bloggers. That’s why I often make do with uploading low-res versions just to protect my work. This makes instant watermarking is one of my favorite features of Oppo F1s.
Best Oppo F1s Features #2: A Sensitive Beauty (and Finger-Activated Launches!)
Whenever I carry DSLR cameras, I’m always the photographer and never the subject. With GoPro, my boyfriend is always out of the shot unless he uses monopods (which he never liked). But with smartphones, we can now be the photographer and the subject at the same time, without having to ask a stranger to take our photos!
What’s great is that the Oppo F1s is such a beauty to hold and behold. We look way more chic carrying a smartphone than any other camera, expensive as they may be.
Touchscreen Sensitivity. Oppo F1s is not as annoying as my current phone when it comes to touchscreen sensitivity. Have you ever had a problem taking selfies because your fingers can’t hit the right spot while you look away? Especially in older phones, the touchscreen sensitivity dulls with frequency of use. The 0.22s Touch Access solves that, because makes it the touchscreen more sensitive as you use it, increasing accuracy and sensitivity with every use.
Finger-Activation. Who uses voice activation nowadays? What’s more unique are the finger-activated app launches! With Oppo F1s, you can customize which of your fingers will activate existing apps — such as forefinger launching Facebook, or your thumb launching your Instagram. This makes uploading photos and launching filter apps easier and quicker. Great for action shots and events that needed to be captured and shared within seconds, and no need for prolonged searches.
Best Oppo F1s Features #3: Heavy Duty Memory
Usually, the caveat with powerful smartphone cameras is that it comes with very limited speed or memory. Space in smartphones are just gold. I can’t tell you how I annoyed I get at how I have to delete older photos and apps just to make enough room to capture new ones! (AKA goodbye, PokemonGo)
Storage Space. Oppo F1s provides enough storage not just for travel photos, but also your favorite movies, apps, music, and games to entertain you during a flight or a road trip. It comes with 32 GB room, and an expandable storage for up to 128 GB — those are way more than I needed! With that much space, I can save more inspiring travel captures that will feed my wanderlust during the week.
Speed. To top it all off, these unique features come with lightning speed. One of the most daunting feelings is having a powerful phone that can’t even handle itself! The Oppo F1s allows you open multiple apps at the same time (as for me, that will be InstaSize and Instagram!) without lagging. Armed with Octa-core 64-bit processor and 3GB RAM, it also makes switching from one app to another a breeze.
I’m genuinely excited about the Oppo F1s that’s why I shared this blog to you. Even though I consider myself a non-gadget hoarder, I research for only the best items to purchase. This one looks like a contender, especially for times when I travel.
Still dreaming of days when I have to put even my most favorite (but bulky) travel companion at home.
Update: This entry won the Oppo F1s Best Features contest! Thank you so much, Nuffnang Philippines!