Camera Settings and Options on Your Samsung Galaxy Tab S

By Dan Gookin

The Camera app on your Galaxy tab sports multiple features, some of which you’ll probably never use. It’s good to have variety, but without some advice, it’s difficult to know which features are important and which you can play with later. Here are many of the important features and options.

Setting the flash

Not all Galaxy Tabs feature a flash on the rear camera. If your tablet does, you can set the flash’s behavior by tapping the Flash icon on the app’s main screen. The three flash modes are described here.

Setting Description
Auto The flash activates during low-light situations but not when
it’s bright out.
On The flash always activates.
Off The flash never activates, even in low-light situations.

Tap the Flash icon to cycle between flash modes.

  • If you don’t see the Flash icon, tap the Settings icon on the Camera app’s main screen. Tap the Flash item to cycle through the modes.

  • When recording video, the tablet’s flash lamp is either on or off. Choose the Flash On icon before shooting to enable the lamp.

  • A good time to turn on the flash is when taking pictures of people or objects in front of something bright, such as a fuzzy brown kitten playing with a ball of white yarn in front of an exploding gasoline truck.

Changing the resolution

Too many people ignore the image resolution setting, not only on tablets but on digital cameras as well. Either that, or they just figure that the highest resolution is the best resolution. That’s not always the case.

High-resolution is ideal for printing pictures and for photo editing. It’s not ideal for images you plan on sharing with Facebook or sending as an email attachment. Further, the higher the resolution, the more storage space each image consumes. Don’t be disappointed when your tablet fills up with vacation photos because the resolution is too high.

Another problem with resolution is remembering to set it before you snap the photo. Here’s what to do in the Camera app to set image resolution:

  1. Tap the Settings icon.

  2. On the Tab 4, ensure that the Camera tab is chosen.

  3. Choose the Picture Size item or the Photo Size item.

  4. Select a resolution from those listed.

    Resolutions are listed by megapixels, horizontal and vertical dimensions, and then form factor. The form factor is 4:3 for a traditional image, 16:9 for widescreen, and 1:1 for square.

  5. Press the Back button to dismiss the Settings grid.

    All the images taken are captured at the new resolution.

The tablet’s front-facing camera has different resolutions than the rear camera. You must first switch to the front camera to set its resolution.

Megapixel is a measurement of the amount of information stored in an image. A megapixel is approximately 1 million pixels, or individual dots that compose an image.

Setting video quality

To set the resolution for recording video, work through the same steps presented above. For the Tab 4, choose the Video tab in Step 2. In Step 3, choose Video Size.

Video quality is presented as Full HD, HD, or VGA, ranking in quality from best to not-as-best. Aspect ratio is shown with 16:9 as widescreen and 4:3 as standard video.

Set the video quality before you shoot!

Activating the location tag

Your Galactic tablet’s camera not only takes a picture but also keeps track of where you’re located on planet earth when you take the picture. The feature is commonly called Geo-Tag, but in the Camera app it’s known as Location Tag.

To ensure that the Geo-Tag feature is enabled, or to disable the feature, carefully follow these steps:

  1. Tap the Settings icon in the Camera app.

  2. On the Tab 4, tap the Settings icon tab.

  3. Look at the Location Tag item.

    The text On or Off appears, indicating whether the feature is on or off.

  4. Switch the feature on or off.

    The first time you set this item, you may see descriptive text explaining what it does. Tap the OK button.

When the Location Tag feature is activated, the Location icon appears on the Camera’s screen.

Using modes and adding effects

Two items you can adjust in the Camera app are the shooting mode and visual effects. These are optional adjustments and it’s perfectly okay to use the Camera app without bothering with either feature.

Shooting modes are handled by the Mode button. The modes appear, lined up on the screen; swipe them to view the lot. Choose one to experiment with it; descriptive information appears explaining what the mode does and how it works.

On the Tab S camera app, visual effects are chosen by tapping the Settings icon and choosing Effects. For the Tab 4, tap the Effects chevron at the bottom of the screen. Tap a square to witness how the effect changes what you see in the viewfinder.

  • The standard shooting mode is Auto. Don’t forget to switch back to that mode when you’ve finished playing with the other modes.

  • To remove visual effects, choose No Effect from the list.

  • Additional shooting modes and visual effects can be obtained for the Galaxy Tab S by choosing the Download item. Some of the modes and effects are free, but a few must be purchased.