How to use Expert RAW on your Samsung Galaxy phone

How to use Expert RAW on your Samsung Galaxy phone

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Samsung introduced its Expert Raw app successful beta astatine the extremity of 2021; currently, it is lone disposable for the S21 Ultra. The app allows you to power manual vulnerability settings for each 4 of the rear cameras, which is nice, but the much absorbing happening it allows you to bash is sprout multi-frame RAW files. Here’s what you request to cognize astir Expert RAW – what it is, wherefore it’s useful, and however to usage it.

What is multi-frame RAW?

The abbreviated reply is that it’s RAW but better. In general, RAW shooting saves much information than a JPEG representation file, which is simply a immense payment if you similar to fine-tune things similar achromatic equilibrium and vulnerability photograph editing software. JPEGs are smaller and much easy shareable, but those kinds of settings are “baked in” to prevention space, and they’re overmuch little flexible for post-processing. Plenty of smartphones connection a accepted RAW shooting mode – but with a large disadvantage to shooting a modular JPEG image.

When you instrumentality a photograph successful your phone’s autochthonal camera app, the resulting JPEG (or HEIC) record often includes information from aggregate frames that were captured precise rapidly erstwhile you pressed the shutter button. This allows the telephone to make a azygous representation record with wider dynamic range, making a backlit taxable brighter without adding a full batch of disfigured noise, for example.

Traditional RAW mode connected a smartphone (or immoderate camera) captures a azygous framework that’s much flexible for editing than a emblematic JPEG but loses retired connected the computational benefits that travel with the multi-frame processing you’d get with the JPEG. This makes shooting RAW connected a smartphone benignant of pointless, to enactment it bluntly. Smartphones person precise tiny sensors and lenses comparative to accepted cameras, and they usage these computational tricks to seizure much representation information and compensate for that size disadvantage. As a result, it’s usually amended to conscionable fto your telephone bash its happening and instrumentality a JPEG.

Multi-frame RAW, which respective telephone manufacturers (including Apple) person introduced, makes RAW overmuch much useful, particularly erstwhile you’re taking a photograph with your phone. You get the champion of some worlds: information from aggregate frames recorded into a azygous file, positive plentifulness of flexibility for editing.

All 3 Galaxy S22 devices tin usage Expert RAW. Photo by Allison Johnson / The Verge

Which Samsung phones connection Expert RAW?

The Galaxy S22 series, including the modular S22, S22 Plus, and S22 Ultra, person each supported Expert RAW arsenic of February 25th. Samsung plans to grow enactment to immoderate older models, but determination are definite hardware requirements a telephone has to conscionable to beryllium capable to tally Expert RAW, truthful lone a fistful of different top-tier devices volition connection it. That database includes:

  • Galaxy S21 Ultra, afloat merchandise from beta expected sometime successful March
  • Galaxy Z Fold 3, enactment expected successful April
  • Galaxy S20 Ultra, Note 20 Ultra, and Z Fold 2, enactment expected successful the archetypal fractional of 2022

How bash you sprout photos successful Expert RAW?

The Expert RAW app provides manual vulnerability controls for each 3 of the S22’s rear cameras.

The diagnostic isn’t included successful the modular Samsung camera app; it’s really an wholly abstracted app that needs to beryllium downloaded from the Galaxy Store. Open the store app and hunt for Expert RAW. Once you’ve downloaded it and agreed to springiness it entree to your camera and microphone, you’re acceptable to commencement shooting multi-frame RAW files.

The Expert RAW interface is akin to the Pro mode successful the modular camera app, including the missive icons astatine the bottommost of the surface that bespeak the 0.6x, 1x, and 3x lens options. When you property the shutter, you’ll spot substance urging you to clasp the telephone inactive portion the telephone grabs aggregate frames. Related: Expert RAW isn’t thing you’ll privation to usage for moving subjects.

The resulting files are large – astir 30MB to 40MB each successful my testing. There’s a high-efficiency RAW enactment you tin toggle connected if you pat the settings icon connected the shooting screen, but it lone saved maine a mates of MBs per image. Unless you bought a telephone with monolithic storage, you’ll privation to instrumentality to utilizing Expert RAW erstwhile it volition truly marque a difference, not each the time.

How bash you edit Expert RAW images?

Expert RAW files tolerate an utmost edit similar lifting heavy shadows amended than a single-frame RAW.

Expert RAW files are saved arsenic modular DNG files, truthful you tin instrumentality them into immoderate RAW processing bundle that you like. Samsung includes a Lightroom shortcut successful the Expert RAW app, but if you privation to spell that route, you’ll request to download Lightroom from the Galaxy Store and log successful with an Adobe account. Downloading from the Galaxy Store entitles you to a two-month escaped trial, but aft that, you’ll request to pony up for the $119 yearly subscription.

In immoderate case, you tin pat the stock icon erstwhile reviewing your representation to instrumentality your photograph into a escaped app similar Snapseed oregon prevention it to unreality retention to edit connected a desktop.

With your representation successful the editing bundle of your choice, you’ll bask much state to propulsion shadows oregon propulsion backmost highlights than with a modular RAW file. I took a modular RAW and a multi-frame RAW of the aforesaid backlit country for examination purposes, and the quality is significant. Pushing the shadiness slider each the mode +100 connected some photos, there’s immoderate wide banding successful the modular RAW, portion the Expert RAW looks overmuch cleaner.

So erstwhile you’re shooting a country with a wide dynamic range, this is decidedly the amended RAW mode to usage – conscionable don’t get excessively trigger-happy if you privation to spell casual connected your phone’s storage.

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