Apple's newest iPhones, the iPhone 12 mini, ‌iPhone 12‌, ‌iPhone 12 Pro, and ‌‌iPhone 12 Pro‌‌ Max, are equipped with a photography feature called Night Mode, which is designed to take crisp, clear photos even when lighting conditions are poor, such as at night.

‌Night Mode‌‌ originally debuted in the iPhone 11 series, but its use was limited to the rear-facing wide-angle camera. With ‌‌iPhone 12‌‌, however, Apple has extended ‌‌Night Mode‌‌ functionality to all the lenses, and if you have an ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌ and iPhone 12 Pro Max, you can take advantage of the LiDAR Scanner's advanced photography smarts to unlock ‌Night Mode‌ Portraits, too.

Apple nightmode demo photography 10132020
Apple's Portrait Mode has become a popular way of taking impressive shots using a depth-of-field effect known as bokeh, allowing iPhone users to shoot a photo that keeps the subject sharp with a blurred background. With the addition of ‌Night Mode‌, ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌ can automatically brighten Portrait shots while preserving the night time feeling, balancing the light and dark elements of an image.

Here's how to take a Portrait shot using ‌‌Night Mode‌ on ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌ and ‌iPhone 12 Pro Max‌‌.

  1. Launch the Camera app on your ‌iPhone 12 Pro‌ or ‌iPhone 12 Pro Max‌.
  2. Select Portrait below the viewfinder.
  3. If the flash icon is yellow in the top-left corner of the screen, tap it to turn it off.
  4. Look for the ‌Night Mode‌ icon at the top of the viewfinder – it looks like a crescent moon. If the ambient light is low, ‌‌Night Mode‌‌ will automatically engage and the icon will be yellow. If it's not engaged but you think your portrait would still benefit from ‌‌Night Mode‌‌, simply tap the button. If you don't see the ‌Night Mode‌ icon at all, there's too much light and you won't be able to use it.
    camera

  5. If you manually engaged ‌Night Mode‌, you can adjust the exposure time with the slider just above the shutter button. If ‌Night Mode‌ automatically engaged then the exposure time is already selected, but you can adjust it yourself by tapping the yellow moon icon and moving the horizontal dial.
  6. Tap the shutter button and hold your ‌iPhone‌ still while the exposure time runs and your Portrait picture is taken.

By recruiting the help of the gyroscope in your ‌‌iPhone 12 Pro‌‌, ‌‌Night Mode‌‌ can detect when the device is attached to a tripod and will present longer exposure times than normally offered, enabling you to take more detailed shots in very low light.

portrait night mode vs non night mode

‌Night Mode‌ portrait (left) vs regular portrait

When taking ‌‌Night Mode‌‌ shots during handheld use, you'll usually see 1-3 second delay and you can manually select up to a 10-second delay, but with a tripod you may see up to 30 seconds available in the Night mode dial.

Related Roundup: iPhone 12 Pro

Top Rated Comments

synergize Avatar
17 weeks ago
Took some Night Mode photos last night. The bright light in the sky is the moon and it was dark outside. The light casting shadows in the picture is from 2 street lamps about a 1/4 mile away. The camera works great and that was only my 3rd photo...I am impressed. How dark was it outside by the car? If you dropped a coin on the ground you would not be able to find it!




Attachment Image
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nozuka Avatar
17 weeks ago
Once you know what the icons mean it is pretty easy to use. But i feel like Apple doesn't really tell you in the App. (Or i missed it)
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rcooked Avatar
17 weeks ago
Night mode is great. Got this shot last night in Marblehead, OH (Lake Erie) with the Blue Moon as well.

Attachment Image
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
edk99 Avatar
17 weeks ago

Err, correct me if I’m wrong, but the regular iPhone 12 also supports night mode on the front camera....
They stated that in the article in the second paragraph...



Night Mode‌ originally debuted in the iPhone 11 series, but its use was limited to the rear-facing wide-angle camera. With ‌iPhone 12‌, however, Apple has extended ‌Night Mode‌ functionality to all the lenses, and if you have an iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max, you can take advantage of the LiDAR Scanner's advanced photography smarts to unlock Night Mode Portraits, too.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Theyayarealivin Avatar
17 weeks ago
Great article. Thank you. Will def check it out.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mindsaspire Avatar
17 weeks ago
Nice article! I was wondering how the various camera controls worked. Needed this info last night for Halloween photos. :)
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

2021 mbp sd slot feature2

Kuo: New MacBook Pro Models With HDMI Port and SD Card Reader to Launch Later This Year

Monday February 22, 2021 8:52 pm PST by
Apple plans to release two new MacBook Pro models equipped with an HDMI port and SD card reader in the second half of 2021, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who outlined his expectations in a research note obtained by MacRumors. The return of an SD card reader was first reported by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman last month. "We predict that Apple's two new MacBook Pro models in 2H21 will have...
m1 mac mini

M1 Mac Users Report Excessive SSD Wear

Tuesday February 23, 2021 7:07 am PST by
Over the past week, some M1 Mac users have been reporting alarming SSD health readings, suggesting that these devices are writing extraordinary amounts of data to their drives (via iMore). Across Twitter and the MacRumors forums, users are reporting that M1 Macs are experiencing extremely high drive writes over a short space of time. In what appear to be the most severe cases, M1 Macs are sai...
iphone 12 pro display video

BOE Rumored to Supply iPhone 13 Display Panels After iPhone 12 Failures

Monday February 22, 2021 9:54 am PST by
Display manufacturer BOE will be one of the main suppliers of OLED panels for iPhone 13 models, according to a new report today from Taiwan's Economic Daily News. BOE is said to be working with touch panel manufacturer General Interface Solution (GIS), part of the Hon Hai Group to develop OLED panels. Multiple iPhone 12 rumors suggested that BOE would supply some panels for the devices,...
mac security privacy

Apple Takes Step to Prevent Further Spread of 'Silver Sparrow' Malware on Macs

Monday February 22, 2021 6:13 am PST by
Over the weekend, we reported on the second known piece of malware compiled to run natively on M1 Macs. Given the name "Silver Sparrow," the malicious package is said to leverage the macOS Installer JavaScript API to execute suspicious commands. After observing the malware for over a week, however, security firm Red Canary did not observe any final payload, so the exact threat to users remains a...
jon prosser imac 2021colors

Prosser: 2021 iMac to Come in Five Colors, Apple Silicon Mac Pro to Resemble 'Stacked' Mac Minis

Wednesday February 24, 2021 7:26 am PST by
Hit-and-miss leaker Jon Prosser has today alleged that the upcoming 2021 iMac models will offer five color options, mirroring the colors of the fourth-generation iPad Air, and revealed a number of additional details about the Mac Pro with Apple Silicon. In a new video on YouTube channel FrontPageTech, Prosser explained that the redesigned iMacs will come featuring options for Silver, Space ...
whatsapp privacy banner

WhatsApp Reveals What Happens to Users Who Don't Agree to Upcoming Privacy Policy Changes

Sunday February 21, 2021 1:11 am PST by
WhatsApp has revealed how it will gradually limit the features available to accounts held by users who do not accept the platform's impending privacy policy changes, due to come into effect on May 15. WhatsApp's new banner explaining the privacy policy changes According to an email seen by TechCrunch to one of its merchant partners, WhatsApp said it will "slowly ask" users who have not yet...
new airpods leaked image 52audios

Alleged Leaked Image Claims to Show Third-Generation AirPods and Case

Sunday February 21, 2021 2:49 am PST by
A new image claims to offer our first real world look at Apple's next-generation AirPods. The image, shared by 52audio, showcases both AirPods and the charging case for what the site claims to be the third iteration of the wireless earbuds. 52audio has in the past shared images claiming to showcase different parts of the third-generation AirPods. Most notably, the site in November shared...
anker magsafe powercore battery pack

Anker Releases MagSafe-Compatible Battery Pack for iPhone 12 Lineup

Tuesday February 23, 2021 7:49 am PST by
Following rumors that Apple is working on a MagSafe battery pack for iPhone 12 models, popular accessory maker Anker has beaten Apple to the punch with the release of its PowerCore Magnetic 5K Wireless Power Bank. First previewed at CES 2021, the PowerCore battery pack magnetically attaches to the back of any iPhone 12 model and provides 5W of wireless charging. With a 5,000 mAh capacity,...
iPad Pro Mini LED

New iPad Pro and MacBook Models With Mini-LED Displays Again Rumored to Launch This Year

Monday February 22, 2021 9:32 pm PST by
Taiwanese company Ennostar will begin production of Mini-LED backlight units for an upcoming 12.9-inch iPad Pro in the late first quarter or second quarter of this year, according to industry sources cited by DigiTimes. Ennostar is a holding company that was jointly established in January 2021 by LED-related manufacturers Epistar and Lextar Electronics. Apple is expected to unveil the new ...
14

iOS 14.5 to Make Zero-Click Attacks 'Significantly Harder'

Monday February 22, 2021 9:05 am PST by
Apple's impending iOS and iPadOS 14.5 update will make zero-click attacks considerably more difficult by extending PAC security provisions, according to Motherboard. Apple has made a change to the way in which it secures its code in the latest betas of iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5 to make zero-click attacks much harder. The change, spotted by security researchers, has now been confirmed by...