We Challenged Ourselves to Capture The Magic of Our City with Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

darling harbour sydney scenes samsung
Image: Amanda Bardas

When we decided to challenge ourselves to take some lightning-in-a-bottle pictures that help showcase the magic of Sydney using the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra’s camera, I was… sceptical. Not because of the phone, but because living in the same place for an extended period of time can make you immune to the magic that others might catch. The office I work out of literally has a perfect view of Darling Harbour, and I rarely ever look twice.

But after testing the phone’s camera at Sydney WorldPride, it surpassed my expectations, and I started to think that maybe the task wasn’t so daunting after all. The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra’s camera can seemingly do it all, from giving bright vivid images in low light to its insane 200MP resolution. So, knowing what the phone was capable of, I took it to my favourite place in Sydney — Sydney Park — and went to town.

Now, Sydney Park is beautiful at the best of times. Dogs! Dogs! More dogs! What more could you ask for?

Once you open the camera app on the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, the first thing you notice is just how clear the imagery is. It literally had me (half-jokingly) questioning my own eyesight. It also really optimised colour to make something as simple as grass seem vibrant and exciting.

sydney park sunlight grass samsung
Image: Jackson Langford

I stayed at the park from early afternoon all the way through sundown, and the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra’s ability to detect low light is amazing and something I didn’t even know was possible from a phone that slim, and portable. I’m impressed by even the slightest of technological feats, but even the tech-savvy people around the office said they’d never seen a phone pull off that clarity in low light, thanks to its Adaptive Pixel 200MP sensor.

sydney park night samsung
Image: Jackson Langford

Sorry, just wanted to be clear here, did I mention DOGS?! This is Trixie, and to capture her beautiful face the way she deserves, I switched into Expert RAW mode to see the finer details. Mission accomplished, I say.

dog sydney park samsung
Image: Jackson Langford

I wasn’t going to let the team take my word for it either, so I armed two colleagues—Angeline and Amanda—with the phone and gave them the same challenge. Naturally, they delivered.

Angeline took the phone on a stroll through Newtown for the day (she even attended a pottery class!). The pics speak for themselves, but a blue sky hits differently on a Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, probably thanks to its large image sensor.

king st newtown sunshine blue sky
Image: Angeline Barion

Beyond that, the camera puts the finesse of Angeline’s pottery work front and centre, without blurring or compromising the image in any way.

Image: Angeline Barion
pottery samsung image
Image: Angeline Barion

“Using the Samsung S23 Ultra camera was unexpectedly really great,” Angeline told me once I asked her how it went.

“What I really found surprising was the low light photography and how much it retained its colour and quality.”

Case in point.

king st night sunset
Image: Angeline Barion

Image: Angeline Barion
Image: Angeline Barion

Angeline also tested the camera’s video capabilities, and switching from photo to video mode didn’t mean a compromise in quality like what you might have come to expect. Thanks to the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra’s video stabilisation and optical image stabilisation technology, the camera massively reduced shakiness when banging against the workstation.

Once Amanda took the phone, she traversed around the Annandale area to capture some of the best views Sydney has to offer. The magic of the photos she took shows just how commonplace these locations are — these are people’s morning commutes and running routes. Yet, it turns out that just stopping to take a breath and snap a pic, means you can capture vivid, crisp images like this.

anzac bridge sunset
Image: Amanda Bardas

In fact, some of Amanda’s magic moments came from scenes as simple and as ubiquitous as trees. Using the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra’s incredible zoom capabilities (we’re talking up to 100x zoom) she was able to snap visions of pastel-tinged skies through gaps in leaves, without damaging the quality of the photo.

leaves sky sunset
Image: Amanda Bardas

Once the phone was brought back to the office, I immediately ran to the window with it to snap the aforementioned Darling Harbour view, and I found I was noticing elements I had glazed over before. I don’t often think of the water in the harbour as super vibrant, but the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has completely changed my mind.

darling harbour view samsung
Image: Amanda Bardas

I’ve seen Sydney in a completely new light, and I never thought a phone camera would have me re-evaluate what I once thought as monotonous and stale. The moral of the story: if you’re struggling to see the magic that’s right in front of you, it might be time to change the lens.

Capture the magic of your city with the new Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, available now.

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