Do I or don’t I?

OK so my title is maybe a little over dramatic but I believe there is becoming less and less need for a pocket point and shoot camera. Most of us carry our mobiles everywhere these days and therefore we always have something at hand to shoot with and the quality on phones is getting better and better. Why carry a camera and a phone and why pay the extra money for a camera?  Now I’m not talking about higher end compact cameras I’m talking more about the occasional, opportunistic shooter that keeps a camera in their bag, pocket or car. As the saying goes “the best camera is the one at hand” and the one most of us have to hand is our mobile phone.

Canon at Culzean Castle
Inside Aberdour Castle

For years now the best mobile to capture anything on has always been an iPhone, the picture quality has been great and you can make excellent prints from them. However these days there are so many good phones with really excellent cameras on them, the iPhone is no longer the only viable option. The Samsung Galaxy S7, the HTC 10,the LG G5 and the Nexus 6P, all of these are top phones and top cameras. They each have their strong points and their gimmicks and each will leave you satisfied with the snaps they take, however if I said Huawei, would any of you think of them being a true competitor to any of the aforementioned?

Inside Culzean Castle

Now this post isn’t a phone review as such, it’s about my choice of phone and how flexible I’ve found it to be. All pictures within this post have been taken on the Huawei P9.

The terraces, Aberdour Castle.
Bluebells at Calderglen

Back in May I changed my phone from my old LG G2 over to the Huawei P9. Now I spent months looking into phones and their camera’s, reading and watching review after review, playing around with the handsets and seeing which one fitted best. In the end I opted for the P9, mainly because of its camera’s. It has dual camera’s, one for RGB and one for black and white only and the quality is just fantastic. You have full manual controls as well as a host of others options to change the way you shoot and to give you certain types of shots.

Culzean Castle

I’ve been blown away by the quality and control that I have and felt it was worth sharing some shots I’ve taken on it. Now maybe my shots are not quite as good as I think, or maybe they are, you be the judge. However I do feel confident that they prove the Huawei P9 has one of the best cameras out there on a phone.

It goes to show though how far mobile cameras have come on in recent years. They’ll never replace a CSC or DSLR however a lot of modern phones shoot in RAW and they are now good enough that they can replace most point and shoot cameras.

I love the depth of field option in the camera, it allows you to be more creative. Its gives the same effect as you would get on a DSLR using a low F-stop and it can create a lovely bokeh effect.

It’s also has good low light performance. It does tend to lighten an image a little too much sometimes however most evening shots work out well.

You’ll also find some interesting options for taking shots with a slow shutter speed. Here’s a few slow shutter shots taken with the P9.

The Drumelzier Burn – 10 second exposure
The new Raith Interchange – 30 second exposure
Moon and stars – 30 second exposure.

If I’ve peaked your interest in this phone then here are some reviews worth checking out.
Pocket Now, they do a full camera review in detail and compare it to the other high end phones.

GSM Arena, a fair an honest review.

Here are some more photos.


  1. It’s nice to hear your review of the Huawei P9 Paul!

    Thanks for the following and stopping by on Instagram :). Your photos are brilliant and I’m so glad I opted for this phone too. My battery doesn’t last long though … possibly because of social media notifications and taking too many photos … Lovely family photos and I love your tabby cat. I have two tabby cats, one is like yours!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul says:

      Thank you Dawn Marie for taking the time to go through my pictures and read my blog 🙂
      You may already have done this. On your phone, you have the option to restrict what runs in the background. Go into the “phone manager” app, select dropzone manager and only leave the apps you must have running in the background as blue, all others should be grey for off. Also, go into settings, go to apps and select “advanced” at the bottom left of the screen. Everything you see here is allowed to run in the background and ignore any optimizations that Android tries to impose on them. Again I’d suggest you only leave what’s necessary and switch all others off. Just select the app and then select “don’t allow”. I normally get more than a day out of my phone and that’s with instagram and Facebook use. If I’m on a day out walking and taking pictures I’d normally have GPS on and using my camera I can still manage about 8 hours plus. Hope this helps 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This is great! Thanks so much for your help 🙂

        I was turning off apps in the notification centre and didn’t realise to go to the Dropzone manager. I had to turn off all notifications for Twitter (I have too many lol) when I was out and about taking photos. I was lucky if I was getting 3 hours of battery time … so was always charging with portable charger hanging on the end of my phone. I’ll try the advanced settings too. I should really read the manual shouldn’t I? I love your blog, great visuals and writing. I will get to read the rest of it soon.

        Thanks again 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Paul says:

        My pleasure, always happy to help.
        Thank you for your lovely comments. I’ve had a quick skip through your blog earlier, I promise I’ll have a more thorough read through soon.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thank you :). There’s never enough time to do the things we really want to. I’ve still got three blog posts to write up and my mind hasn’t quite got the words together … then there’s sorting out the photos too.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Paul says:

        I know what you mean, between family and working there’s just no time for the fun things!
        I tend to right a draft on my phone any time I have an idea and if I have an idea I think may go somewhere then I upload all the pics I may need to WordPress using the app. That way when I want them they are there and I f I don’t use them then I delete them.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Anabel Marsh says:

    Well, in my totally non-technical opinion these are great. They also prove that it can be the photographer that makes the difference because my phone snaps are exactly that – phone snaps. However, I agree with what you say. I have a small point and shoot which I bought not long before I got an iPhone. It slips into the phone pocket in my handbag and I intended it always to be there just in case I spotted something to photograph for the blog. It was hardly used and languishes in a drawer – when I do remember it, the battery is flat. Waste of money! The phone is fine.

    Your family doesn’t seem to mind being photographed but your cat looks distinctly unimpressed!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul says:

      Hi Anabel, thanks for popping by, I always look forward to your comments. I’m glad you like them although I think your selling yourself short. I’ve seen the pictures you take, you’ve a good eye for composition and your pictures are well presented. My family don’t get much choice, it’s actually the theme of one of my next posts. I’ve been subjecting most of my family to photography torture over the last couple of months 🙂 Hope your well.


      1. Anabel Marsh says:

        Thanks Paul, I’m well – hope you are too. Most of my photos are taken by John though I’ll accept some credit as the Director of Photography!

        Liked by 1 person

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