Is the terrible low light vid/pic quality just an Apple thing?

ACG12

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Original poster
Jun 9, 2015
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So I played with my IPP 9.7 I picked up yesterday and just like all the other iPhones/iPads I own, the low light is horrible, noise central in the video/photos. When I bought my SE last month, I thought maybe it was the low quality screen, but now I see it in my IPP model.

Not a huge deal, but for the price you pay for Apple Products, it seems Apple should give a camera that takes better low light pictures.
 

RedOrchestra

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Aug 13, 2012
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it seems Apple should give a camera that takes better low light pictures.

Ive only used my 9.7 iPP camera for document to PDF conversion so can't speak to low light but I also have an iPhone 6 and I think that camera handles low light situations very well - darkness without a flash, not so much.
 

augustya

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Feb 17, 2012
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The picture taken from an 9.7" iPP also looks pixelated and definitely has a lot of Noise ! Maybe in low light but it definitely shows !
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,216
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I've used other phones that take better low light pictures, what are you trying to get at?
The other phones taking better low light pictures will lack in other areas of the picture. Simple rule of thumb is if your taking lots of low light photos buy a decent camera that has a large sensor.
 

ACG12

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Original poster
Jun 9, 2015
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The other phones taking better low light pictures will lack in other areas of the picture. Simple rule of thumb is if your taking lots of low light photos buy a decent camera that has a large sensor.
I have a DSLR, but it's not convenient to pull out of the closet when I want to take a quick video of my 1 year old doing something I want to remember years from now. Again, it's not a huge deal, just thought that by now we'd get something better for that. Maybe the dual lense IP7 will be the one!
 

bensisko

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Jul 24, 2002
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I agree low light is still something that needs to be worked on, but it is pretty universal. My iPhone 6+ is the best I've used so far (curiously my girlfriend's 9.7 iPad Pro isn't as good even though it's supposed to be the same). There are things you can do to improve the quality of a low light photo (apps, tripod, etc.) but nothing comes to mind for the point-and-shoot convenience (I.e. Pull out of the pocket at a moment's notice and shoot).

The Nokia Lumia 1020 is pretty legand-(wait for it...)-airy when it comes to the camera. I've seen night shots taken with it and it's pretty amazing - to the point that I actually considered getting one and using it JUST as a camera.

The camera keeps improving and the leap in lens from the 5 to the 6 was pretty huge. The low light shots are pretty difficult for a camera with such a small lens, but it will keep improving! Last week I took some great shots in Paris with the 6+ - then kicked myself for not using it more for photos (i was mostly using it as a wireless hot spot).
 
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Skika

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Mar 11, 2009
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I agree low light is still something that needs to be worked on, but it is pretty universal. My iPhone 6+ is the best I've used so far (curiously my girlfriend's 9.7 iPad Pro isn't as good even though it's supposed to be the same). There are things you can do to improve the quality of a low light photo (apps, tripod, etc.) but nothing comes to mind for the point-and-shoot convenience (I.e. Pull out of the pocket at a moment's notice and shoot).

The Nokia Lumia 1020 is pretty legand-(wait for it...)-airy when it comes to the camera. I've seen night shots taken with it and it's pretty amazing - to the point that I actually considered getting one and using it JUST as a camera.

The camera keeps improving and the leap in lens from the 5 to the 6 was pretty huge. The low light shots are pretty difficult for a camera with such a small lens, but it will keep improving! Last week I took some great shots in Paris with the 6+ - then kicked myself for not using it more for photos (i was mostly using it as a wireless hot spot).
6(s)+ has optical stabilization which the ipad lacks and makes a world of difference in low light.
 
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baypharm

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Nov 15, 2007
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I've used other phones that take better low light pictures, what are you trying to get at?
I have both Android and iPhone 6s+ and all the current iPads. Not one takes acceptable low light pictures as far as I am concerned and most definitely not on par with a good digital camera. I don't buy telephones/ipads to use as cameras. I understand the convenience argument you bring up: "the best camera is the one you have on you when you need it....." To get those memories of your little one, just turn up the lights. You are expecting way too much from the iPhone/iPad small lens and associated software.
 
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smacrumon

macrumors 68030
Jan 15, 2016
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I've used other phones that take better low light pictures, what are you trying to get at?
Exactly. I think this is an Apple thing. I've used other phones before, specifically Nokia many years ago. The low light automatically was corrected in that old Nokia phone. There are some camera apps in the App store that do a better job at adjusting for low light conditions. One I've used in the past is Camera 360. I stopped using it because my device could not handle the new update.
I might be wrong, but I believe automatic low light modes use more battery power which might be why Apple has chosen a more conservative approach.
One other thing, you can tap the screen in a dark area when using the camera to adjust the white balance which can improve the lighting under certain circumstances.
 

ACG12

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Original poster
Jun 9, 2015
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Horrible compared to? DSLR? Well good point captain obvious. :D

There's this thing called physics. A phone camera sensor, based on its size, will never be able to absorb as much light as an APS-C sensor.
No horrible compared to other android phones. But I guess I shouldn't be surprised, Apple stuck a potato in their $1300 netbook.
 

pika2000

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Jun 22, 2007
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No horrible compared to other android phones. But I guess I shouldn't be surprised, Apple stuck a potato in their $1300 netbook.
Here's a good video talking about smartphone cameras:
Takeaway point is, image processing. Some manufacturers do more to massage the picture, some do less, some do different things. It's a personal preference.

I have used many Android phones, and they are not any better per se. Sure, they may be better at certain conditions, but they suffer on others. Heck, Sony, the company that makes pretty much everybody's sensors, doesn't have the best pictures themselves as shown by many reviewers. It's subjective.
 

bensisko

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Jul 24, 2002
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Are there any tablets out there now with a better low-light performing camera than the iPP 9.7".....?
Tablets? No way. Phones you can find "better" cameras (with other trade offs) than the iPhone, but you won't find a tablet that has a better camera than the 9.7" Pro.
 

ACG12

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 9, 2015
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Are there any tablets out there now with a better low-light performing camera than the iPP 9.7".....?
No, but other tablets on the market are a bit cheaper. Not really a fair comparison.
 

masotime

macrumors 68020
Jun 24, 2012
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No, but other tablets on the market are a bit cheaper. Not really a fair comparison.
To be fair, you are paying more for a camera that is unmatched within the tablet space at the moment. If there were a cheaper tablet with approachable quality, then I'd agree that Apple is currently overpriced. They appear to be "peerless" at the moment though, like when they first launched Touch ID.

I've often wondered why tablets usually had inferior cameras compared to their smartphone counterparts. Apple looks to be the first to break the trend with the iPP 9.7", hopefully other (flagship) tablets will follow suit.
 

ilman92

macrumors newbie
May 5, 2016
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Lowlight image quality is pretty decent though if you set the ISO manually using 3rd party apps.
 
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