It has been interesting reading through the answers submitted in my Low-Light Camera Comparison Quiz published recently. Naturally, I expected a lot of people to root for the Nokia Lumia 920 because of its touted low-light capabilities – and they did! It had the highest number of votes. Here are all the nominees and how they scored:
- Nokia Lumia 920 – 6 votes
- Nokia 808 PureView – 2 votes
- Samsung Galaxy S4 – 1 vote
- Apple iPhone 5 – 1 vote
I did mention that the camera phone that took the picture in question was an 8 megapixel model. Perhaps out of excitement, there were mentions of HTC One. D’oh! Anyway, no-one got the answer right. All answers were wrong.
The phone that took the amazing night shot was none other than the Sony Xperia P, the same one that took the darker shot. [dodges shoes and tomatoes] Honest! Anyone who was present with me at FourPoints By Sheraton on that night of Mobile Web West Africa Day Two will attest to the fact that I had only the Xperia P in my hands all through. Yet, I was still able to squeeze light out of air 😉
It isn’t rocket science though. Almost any modern camera phone can produce amazing night time shots. Here was what I did:
I. In camera settings, I turned off the LED flash and selected the Night Scene mode
II. Next, I selected the Exposure Value (ISO) button
III. I adjusted the EV/ISO slider to the maximum setting and took my picture.
ISO is a measurement of the amount of sensitivity of light falling on your sensor. It is a measurement of your camera’s exposure value (EV). A higher EV/ISO requires longer exposure and a slightly longer capture time, so your hands need to be really steady so as not to mess up the shot. A higher EV/ISO also means that the resultant photo is likely to be noisier. But hey! At least, you get a picture that is not so dark that you can’t make out what is going on in there.