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Home / Tips and Tricks / The iPhone 11’s camera is no slouch. Here are 5 tricks to take stunning photos

The iPhone 11’s camera is no slouch. Here are 5 tricks to take stunning photos


The iPhone 11 and 11 Pro have many new camera functions.

Óscar Gutiérrez / CNET

Apples iPhone 12 lineup may be getting all the attention and praise since its release, but that’s only because it’s shiny and new. Even if you don’t upgrade to the latest and greatest from Apple, and instead use the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro or 11 Pro Max, you will no doubt be impressed by the tricks of the cameras.

All three phones have great cameras that give you enhanced zoom capabilities, a feature called Deep Fusion and the ability to take pictures at night – here’s how the The iPhone 11’s night mode blows us away.

Taking photos is as easy as ever on previous iPhones, but camera settings you can adjust and features that just work in the background like Deep Fusion are worth knowing. We will help you on your way.

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Lesser-known features in the iPhone 11


Quick settings are still there

The next time you want to take a group photo with your iPhone and use the built-in timer, it can be hard to find the switch. Apple has moved the settings switches for things like the timer and filters, because they aren’t used that often. I personally like the clean look, but at some point you will definitely need to make an adjustment before taking a picture.

To view all the switches, tap the arrow at the top of the screen while holding your iPhone vertically. The arrow will change direction revealing the various switches – flash, live photos, aspect ratio, timer and filters – and you tap the button again to hide them when you’re done. Alternatively, you can also swipe the viewfinder to reveal the switches.


Your quick settings are still there.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

Watch what the other cameras see

When the iPhone 11 was first launched, there was a special feature that allows you to zoom out on a photo after taking it. It was confusing and it wasn’t entirely clear when it would actually work, which I think is why Apple changed it to ** View Outside the Frame **. When this feature is enabled, the viewfinder on your iPhone shows what the iPhone 11’s additional cameras can see. For example, if you’re taking a group photo with the wide-angle camera, but are struggling to get everyone in the picture, you can preview what the ultra-wide camera captures.

The preview is, if you like, behind the typical black interface where the shutter button and settings are. When this feature is on and you switch between cameras, that black area will turn transparent to give you a glimpse.

While it may not be as useful as zooming out on a shot afterwards, it certainly leads to less confusion and a more consistent experience overall.

If that appeals to you, open it Settings app and select Camera. Scroll down and turn on View outside the frame.


A photo taken with the iPhone 11’s Deep Fusion technology.

Patrick Holland / CNET

Your photos will look better with Deep Fusion

Ah yes. Deep Fusion. It’s a popular term that Apple coined when it announced the iPhone 11, and it was later released in iOS 13.2. There is no Deep Fusion setting or switch you can turn on. Your iPhone 11 will take photos with the new technology as needed. CNET’s Patrick Holland explains how it works and when Deep Fusion is used in more detail.

My advice? Take a photo in a medium-lit area of ​​an object with a lot of detail, such as a pet’s face or a colorful blanket, then zoom in to see the finer details. It’s pretty impressive and luckily you don’t have to do anything.

Push night mode to the limit

The habits The new night mode of iPhone 11 is something you really don’t have to think about. Whenever your iPhone determines that there is not enough light available, the Night Mode icon (it looks like a moon with a few lines through it) will appear next to the arrow button. If it is yellow, it means that night mode is active.

The button also displays a length of time such as “1s” (one second) that indicates how long it will take to take the photo. This means how long to stay still after pressing the shutter button.

iphone 11 night mode

Adjust the night mode, including power off, by moving the slider up or down.

Screenshots by Jason Cipriani / CNET

When you take a photo in night mode, you are not at the mercy of your iPhone. You can adjust or turn off Night mode by tapping the Night mode icon and then moving the slider next to the shutter button. Set it to 0 to turn off night mode for the next photo, or adjust the amount of time to increase or decrease the amount of light in night mode.

For example, if you move the timer from 2 sec to 9 sec, your iPhone will create an overall brighter image, with the risk of overexposure. On the other hand, if you go from 5s to 1s, the end result will likely be a darker photo.

Play around with the Night mode by making those adjustments and have some fun with it.

Fine-tune the zoom

The next time you’re at a concert and want to get a better view of Taylor Swift, or make sure to capture your child’s adorable costume at a school play, you can take advantage of all three cameras and their respective zoom levels .

The iPhone 11 has an ultra-wide angle camera and a wide camera. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max have the same two cameras, along with a telecamera. All three cameras are 12 megapixels each.

Regardless of which iPhone you have, the main camera is the wide camera, which is the option labeled “1x” in the camera app. To switch between cameras, tap the zoom option – either 0.5x or 2x. Your iPhone’s viewfinder will immediately zoom in or out.

iphone 11 zoom

Scroll up or down to zoom in and out with the new iPhone 11 camera settings.

Jason Cipriani / CNET

But you can set exactly how far you want to zoom in, in either direction, by long-pressing on the zoom level and then dragging the zoom tool. You can zoom in anywhere from 0.5x to 10x with the new zoom wheel.

Just keep in mind that if you select anything other than the three fixed cameras – 0.5x, 1x, 2x – your photo quality may suffer because the camera zooms in digitally, instead of using the fixed focal lengths of built-in cameras.

If you are just starting out with your iPhone 11, read our piece on a real one easy way to set up your new iPhone 11 or 11 Pro. Once it’s set up, these are the the first five things to do with your new iPhone. And then you should probably get it everything caught up with iOS 14 adds to the equation of making the iPhone 11 a really powerful phone.

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