NOTE: The post below provides information on taking photos in low light on an iPhone. For Instagram users on Android devices, try Night Camera (Free), ProCapture ($3.99), or ProCapture Free (Free).

Capturing images in low light on an iPhone can be tricky, so we wanted to share a few tips & tricks in order to capture the best image possible in a dark scene!

Taking photos indoors without much light can often result in grainy, detail-less, and unfocused photos. While fill-light will help, the iPhone flash has a long way to go before it provides even and natural looking light, and it can often leave images looking like a scene from a horror film.



The 4S performs amazingly well in low light situations, especially for a phone, but for those of you who don’t have the latest Apple gadget, or do and you simply want to achieve even better low light results, there are a few applications that may be able to help.

Night Cam ($0.99) is a great application if you don’t always have a steady hand. It provides an accelerometer-assisted mode so that the shutter will only fire when the camera is stable, ensuring your photo is focused. 

 Slow Shutter Cam ($0.99) is the best application if you have a flat surface to rest your iPhone on.  When you open the app, the scene is noticeably brighter and the settings are simple to understand. It is especially great for taking long exposures in very dark scenes since it’s equipped with a bulb function.

Additional Tips

  • Tapping your screen after you’ve perfectly balanced your iPhone can ruin the focus of your scene, and may leave your precious phone shattered on the floor. But, if you’ve upgraded to iOS 5, you can use your headphones as a cable release in order to take photos without having to touch the screen! Just plug in your Apple headphones, hit the volume up button while in the Camera application and voila! you have a great low light photo without camera shake.
  • Get rid of low light image noise with photo editing applications such as Adobe Photoshop Express (free) or Filterstorm ($3.99).
  • Buy a tripod for your phone. This iPhone tripod is sturdy, adjustable, transportable and only $5.99.
  • When all else fails, put a filter on it! Inkwell can make a dark image feel moody (just make sure it isn’t too dark), and Amaro & Valencia can lighten up the scene to bring out some lost details.