Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Night mode photography on recent phones, including the iPhone 13 Pro, the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra and a wide variety of others, allows you to take stunning, bright photos, even in the middle of the night. And the best part is, you don’t need to bother with long exposures, tripods, or flashes, like you’d have to do with a DSLR. In fact, you don’t need any extra equipment at all.

You can see just how well the iPhone 13 Pro stacks up against the 12 Pro Max in our recent shootout.

But getting an image you’re truly proud of isn’t just a case of waiting for darkness and whipping out your phone. You’ll still need to put in some work to take shots that’ll rack up those Instagram likes. 

Here are my top tips on how to get great images at night on your phone. 


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Event photography is an art form, and it takes a while to achieve what you’re looking for. Not only does shooting an event require you to be constantly on the move, but it’s also necessary to know how to fully use each setting on your camera.

For example, if you’re shooting in a dimly lit room, you’ll need to understand how to brighten up your photos. Using an automatic mode may cause your camera to set an extended shutter time, causing your photos to blur. Being familiar with your gear is more important than having the best gear.

Here is a short guide to improving your event photography.

What Are the Basic Tips for Taking Good Photographs?

There are many tips that will help you take a good photo. However, these basics will give you the perfect start toward getting an image that takes people’s breath away.

  • Move Closer
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Angela Lang/CNET

The iPhone 12 is one of the best-rated phones of all time on CNET thanks to its solid all-round performance and its 5G connectivity. It’s more “affordable” than the iPhone 12 Pro Max, lacking as it does some of the camera pizzazz, like the telephoto lens and lidar sensor. But its powerful photography software means this phone is still more than capable of taking some absolutely stunning photos.

If you’ve just gotten your hands on the iPhone 12 — perhaps a new purple model? — here are my tips on how to capture great photos. You don’t need to follow all of them, but keeping these ideas in mind will help you think more about your photography and turn otherwise forgettable snaps into memorable pieces of art. 


For this shot, I paid attention to the leaves in the foreground and the way the alleyway leads

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Starting out in photography can be really confusing. There is so much stuff to learn, so many things to do, and so many resources to read, not to mention the insane amount of people screaming opinions at you all the time. It’s hard to fight through all the noise.

To make matters worse, there are so many resources out there that — while they may have great intentions — can often guide you down the wrong path, lead you to dead ends, or influence your mindset in a particular way. For example, if you put too much emphasis on gear or settings or focus on tips that are very domain-specific to a particular category of photography and not pertinent to you, you may not learn anything valuable to creating good photos.

In the video above, I aim to solve that. This video is the answer to all of the common

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