5s camera issues in low light

zedzded

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 28, 2013
228
1
Perth, Australia
I was at a party and taking pictures during the day & evening. Had no problems during the day or at night with the flash on, but at dusk the photos were really underexposed. Even with the flash on. Actually it didn't seem to make any difference with the flash on, to the point I thought it was broken, so I borrowed my mates with the same results. Are there any settings I can adjust or is there a 3rd party app that can help with this kind of issue.
 

Macman45

macrumors G5
Jul 29, 2011
13,196
133
Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
Same thing here...even with the flash on..it will either overexpose, or under. I don't know of a fix, and tad to use my 5S's camera in daylight, using my "real" ones for more demanding light conditions.
 

Nolander07

macrumors 6502a
Oct 16, 2012
533
144
Can always edit the picture afterward. There are plenty of good apps to make your under/over exposed photos look great.
 

zedzded

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 28, 2013
228
1
Perth, Australia
Can always edit the picture afterward. There are plenty of good apps to make your under/over exposed photos look great.
Yeah I've got photoshop. I just didn't quite understand why it was underexposed when there was still quite a bit of daylight and the flash was on.

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DSLRs struggle in low light! I've had the same experience no good answer except post-process.
Really? I don't know much about DSLR's, but I remember a while back a professional photographer running around a pub taking photos at night without a flash and the photos looked great. Very little light. I was amazed he didn't even use a flash.
 

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,400
154
Americas
Yup same here. The 5c does better. I tested both side by side.


I think you have to have the flash on and not "auto". Tap somewhere that is lighter on the screen so that the sensor can focus and get it right.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
20,617
8,471
Gotta be in it to win it
Yup same here. The 5c does better. I tested both side by side.


I think you have to have the flash on and not "auto". Tap somewhere that is lighter on the screen so that the sensor can focus and get it right.
Every professional publication/website (plus apple) that has tested the 5s and 5c disagrees the 5c is better. I guess I'll take your word.
 

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,400
154
Americas
Every professional publication/website (plus apple) that has tested the 5s and 5c disagrees the 5c is better. I guess I'll take your word.
Thanks lol I read the reviews and wanted to try it out myself. My parents have the 5c and I have the 5s. I'm trying to figure out what's going on. Part of the problem I see with the 5s is when you shoot in Auto mode, the flash doesn't turn on to compensate. 5c works fine. In normal light the 5s flash is more pleasing to the skin tones than the 5c..


I think I will do a side by side test of 5s, 5c and 4s.
 

kelub

macrumors regular
Jun 15, 2010
136
45
The "Camera+" app will let you set the focus and the exposure settings at different spots - it'll give you two "targets" that you can drag around the screen so that you can focus on something, say, to the left of the screen, but have the exposure be set based on something on the right of the screen. I can't remember if the app costs (I think it does, but that it's cheap, $1 or something) and very highly recommended for that specific scenario. It has some other goodies too but I haven't gotten much farther into it than that. Anyway, it's a suggestion.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,334
1,708
I've found this to be the case as well. On New Year's Eve myself and about 10 friends went out. We got a group photo in low light at a restaurant from a 5S and it turned out terrible. Another friend was snapping pics on his 5 in the same environment and they turned out just fine. I'm more disappointed in the way that particular photo turned out though because it carried some sentimental value.

Regardless though, touching the screen on a dark area will brighten the image up some. And obviously editing after the fact helps but can make it look grainy.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
20,617
8,471
Gotta be in it to win it
Thanks lol I read the reviews and wanted to try it out myself. My parents have the 5c and I have the 5s. I'm trying to figure out what's going on. Part of the problem I see with the 5s is when you shoot in Auto mode, the flash doesn't turn on to compensate. 5c works fine. In normal light the 5s flash is more pleasing to the skin tones than the 5c..


I think I will do a side by side test of 5s, 5c and 4s.
Part of the issue might be the true tone flash, the other part might be that the 5s has to be focused first by pressing on the screen.
 

zedzded

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 28, 2013
228
1
Perth, Australia
I read a ton of "objective" reviews from a variety of credible websites, gadget magazines, newspapers etc etc and they were all glowingly positive about the 5s and it's camera. I'm a bit disappointed that reviewers aren't a bit more critical of Apple's products, in particularly the Iphone. I'm not saying the 5S is crap, but I spent a few months reading up about it, while I waited for my contract to run out and I never read anything that suggested it was p!sspoor in low light conditions. It was all positive, positive, positive.. Daylight shots are great and night with the tt flash are significantly better than the 5, but low light situations such as in a bar or at dusk are very average and it's mystifying this information is not readily available for Joe Public to read. This isn't a dig at Apple by the way, more of a dig at the sycophantic reviewers.
 

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,400
154
Americas
Nope I pressed the screen and whatever else you need to do. Grant it, I will not be using my iPhone to take a photo in low light… I will use my DSLR for that.


There are a lot of positives I found with the 5s though. The AE/AF lock is sweet. Slow motion video is fun to shoot. The shooting multiple images doesn't buffer down like most cameras.