How to Use HDR on iPhone


If you’re a photographer, then you probably already know what HDR means. It stands for High Dynamic Range and is used to improve photos. Thankfully, you no longer need to buy an expensive camera to be able to use this feature; iPhones have it, too. With just your iPhone, you can get beautiful shots with the help of the HDR feature.

You can use this feature to take shots with double exposure. In addition, it’s great when you’re taking photos with stark lighting. However, it can’t quite capture movement that well. Hence, it’s best to use it with a tripod or place it on a stable surface to get the perfect shot. Otherwise, your photos may turn out blurry from too much movement.

What type of shots work best with HDR?

If you want to shoot landscapes with your iPhone, turning on HDR is your best bet. It’s because of the high contrast between the land and the sky. HDR allows the photo to not look too dark because of the land or too bright because of the sky. Shooting objects in direct sunlight may also be a challenge that HDR can address. It can balance both light and shadow elements to create a good shot.

Photographers also often find it challenging to shoot scenes with backlighting. If your background is too bright, regular cameras won’t be able to take the subject as clearly. However, with the help of your iPhone’s HDR, it can brighten the foreground without making the whole shot look overexposed.

On the other hand, HDR is not for all shots. It doesn’t work well with silhouettes and dark backdrops. If you’re shooting these, it’s best to turn off the HDR feature on your iPhone. Or better yet, you can save both the HDR photo as well as the standard photo. You can enable this feature in your Settings. That way, you’ll be able to compare the two photos and choose the better version.

Depending on what iPhone model you’re using, the Settings would be different. For iPhone X or earlier, you get to decide if you want to save just the HDR photo or both versions. While it’s great that you get to compare both versions, having a lot of these may also take up valuable memory space on your iPhone. A solution for this would be to compare it right away and delete the unwanted version to free up space.

So, how do you save the HDR photo on your iPhone? What about if you want to save both the HDR photo as well as the standard photo? If your iPhone is iPhone X or earlier, here’s how to set what photos will be saved on your Camera Roll:

  1. Open your Settings app.
  2. Scroll down the list and select Camera.
  3. At the bottom of the list, you will find the HDR option. Below this, you will see Keep Normal Photo.
  4. Enable this feature if you want to save both the HDR photo as well as the standard version.
  5. Disable this feature if you only want to save the HDR photo.

Not interested in taking HDR photos? You can simply turn this feature off. If you’re not sure when you need the HDR feature, you can set it to automatic instead. For iPhone 7 Plus or earlier users, simply follow these steps:

  1. Open your Camera app.
  2. Select HDR.
  3. Select On if you want the HDR feature to be permanently on all the time.
  4. Select Auto if you want your camera to decide when you need this feature for a certain shot.
  5. Select Off if you want to permanently turn off the HDR feature.
  6. If the HDR feature is on, it’ll automatically save the photo on your Camera Roll after taking the shot.

How to Use HDR on iPhone

On the other hand, if you’re using iPhone 8 or later, the options are different. This is because your iPhone camera already automatically takes HDR photos when necessary. Hence, the only option you have is whether to turn it on or off. The following is how to change your camera settings based on your preferences:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Scroll down the list and select Camera.
  3. At the bottom of the list, you’ll find the Auto HDR or Smart HDR option. Toggle it on if you want it enabled and off if you want it disabled.
  4. If the HDR feature is on, it’ll automatically save the photo on your Camera Roll after taking the shot.

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Ayran

Ayran is an adventurous millennial always on the lookout for the latest discoveries and innovations in the digital world. She likes traveling, trying out new food, and learning about different cultures. A bookworm, she enjoys reading during her free time.

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