Night Mode Photography With the iPhone 11

Hi, this is Gary with Let’s take a look at Night Mode Photography
on the iPhone 11. MacMost is brought to you thanks to a great
group of supporters. Go to There you can read more about it. Join us and get exclusive content. I’ve been posting some Night Mode photos from
my iPhone 11 Pro to the MacMost instagram account. People really like how these photos look. I do too. Let’s take a look at how Night Mode works. Here I am in a dark room and I’m going to
take a photo here in the corner. There’s definitely not enough light for a
good photo. Night Mode goes on automatically on the iPhone
11. You’ll see it at the top or in this case the
left side. It’s this little crescent moon and it turns
yellow and gives you a number of seconds next to it. You can see it adjusting a little bit the
number of seconds as it tries to figure out the light as I move the camera around. You can turn this off by tapping there and
the yellow will go away and you end up with a little crescent moon in a white icon. You also get a slider on the right when you
tap it and that allows you to adjust the number of seconds it will take to get the photo. You can go to Automatic which is in the middle. You can move up to Maximum which will increase
the number of seconds meaning you will have to hold the phone steady longer. Or you can actually switch it all the way
to Off. Let me go and take this photo with Night Mode
turned off to see what we get. Now let’s move the slider back to the Automatic
setting which in this case will be three seconds. Then we’ll take the photo and notice the photo
slowly resolves over the three seconds and you get your result. Here you can compare the two photos. So the first part of Night Mode is the exposure,
right. Taking a three second exposure with low light
to get all the light out of it and create a nice image. However that’s not the real magic. The real magic is Stabilization because you’re
not putting your iPhone on a tripod. That’s typically how you would take long exposure
photography. You put it on a tripod so the camera is completely
stable. But when you’re holding the phone, no matter
how steady you are, it’s not completely stable. What’s happening here is the software is stabilizing
the image. So all of the photos its taking during those
three seconds it’s combining them and stabilizing them so it is like your camera was on a tripod. Of course you still can’t move your camera
wildly around. It works best if you hold your phone as steady
as possible. Now let’s take a look at actually doing this
at night outside. Here’s a nighttime photo where there’s some
very dark spots but also some very bright lit up signs. First let’s take a regular non Night Mode
photo for reference and we’ll see what we get. The iPhone doesn’t do bad at all. There’s plenty of light here on the street
even though it’s night. Now let’s try taking it in Night Mode. It’s going to recommend a one second exposure. We’ll just do that. Here is the result. The result is definitely a little bit better. Alright. So we have a long exposure. We have image stabilization. But there’s also something else because if
you try to take a picture where there are things moving, like for instance headlights
of cars, a long exposure and image stabilization is just going to get you streaks where those
lights move over the course of those few seconds. But Night Mode is going to do better than
that because it’s putting together several images and figuring out the best parts of
those images to use. So instead of the car headlights streaking
across the picture they’re actually going to appear right where they are at the beginning
of the photo. So you can end up with resolution throughout
the photo but not things being blurry and streaky. So here’s some examples. I’m going to take a photo here on the street
and you see the cars are moving. It’s going to take a one second Night Mode
exposure yet the result doesn’t show the headlights streaking. The car appears to be standing in one place. Here it is again and you see the result is
going to be pretty much the same. The car seems to be stable even though the
exposure would suggest that it moves across over the course of that one second. Here I’ll even try increasing the exposure
to two seconds to the maximum. The result still shows the car stable. It is not as perfect. You can see the car closest to me does show
a bit of streaking. But much less than you would get over the
course of the two seconds. So here’s some other shots that I got using
Night Mode during my tests. The results are great. I can see why people are really excited about
this. I think one of the best things about Night
Mode is that is just works automatically. It’s not something you need to switch on and
think about in advance. It just comes on when the conditions are basically
too bad to take a decent photo otherwise and you end up capturing something really good
when otherwise you would have gotten, pretty much, nothing. So if you just got a new iPhone 11, or 11
pro, give Night Mode a try tonight.

9 Replies to “Night Mode Photography With the iPhone 11”

  1. This is terrible! You must be able to turn it off and keep it off. Having to turn it off every time I open and close the camera app is just horrible.

  2. No option to preserve the setting as off? Cannot believe Apple would do this to us. You literally cannot pull out your camera and get a quick series of shots when the light is slightly dim.

  3. Do you have to turn off nightmode everytime you open camera or every time after taking a shot? Seems like you can't take quick shots anymore in dim light

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