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Is the 5MP iSight Camera on the new iPad Worth the Upgrade?

by Mike Perlman | March 7, 2012March 7, 2012 11:03 am PDT

ipad-isight-cameraAlong with a blazing A5X dual-core processor and 1080p-trumping Retina display, the new iPad will feature a 5-megapixel iSight camera capable of capturing 1080p HD videos. The optics system has been carried over from the iPhone 4S, which is one of the top performing camera smartphones on the market. Features like auto-exposure, auto-focus, auto face-detection built-in stabilization and even an AF lock will make their way onto the camera of the new iPad.

From a camera junkie’s perspective, this renovation in optics is definitely worth the upgrade. Yet, how many people use their iPads to capture still images and videos? For the average user, this upgraded iSight camera is not a make or break feature. Instead I’d argue that the magical Retina display is more of a selling point for the advanced photographer than anything. The ability to store one’s images and videos on a 9.7-inch device that makes a 1080p television look like an 8-bit NES game is a stellar feature.

Then let’s talk about the A5X quad-core, which has tiger blood coursing through its circuitry. Video and photo applications will be able to fly on the new iPad now, and it appears to be more of a photographer’s home base/workstation than a dedicated digital imaging device. iMovie is now capable of outlining and storyboarding in 1080p, all done natively on the iPad. And check out the new iPhoto for iPad and iPhone! The iPhone rules for taking stills and videos while the iPad rules for storing and processing those files.

So, while the iSight camera on the new iPad is a definite improvement, its processing and display upgrades will be more valuable to photographers. I don’t care if Apple strapped a Canon EOS 5D Mark III to the back of the new iPad. The bottom line is that no one likes taking pictures with a tablet. But oh man, that Retina and A5X. Tiger blood and Adonis DNA, players.


Mike Perlman

Mike Perlman grew up in Nintendo Land and developed a relationship with all things electronic and nerdy early on in his childhood career. Today,...

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