Apple first introduced the Night Mode with the iPhone 11 two years ago. It would automatically turn on every time you’d open a camera to shoot in low light. Apparently, many users hated the automatic enabling of the feature, so Apple now finally allows you to turn it off permanently.
Apple ProRAW is Apple’s latest technological addition to the smartphone photography industry and sets a new starting point for iPhone photography with its introduction to the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max in iOS 14.3.
It is no mystery that smartphone photography is increasingly replacing cameras in many situations: myself, who have been promoting it for at least 10 years, I’ve seen a crazy evolution in this sector.
I figured it probably wouldn’t be much longer until Apple officially released ProRAW. It popped up in the beta only a few weeks ago, and Adobe already supports it in their new M1 version of Lightroom, so it seemed quite obvious that it’d become available at any moment. Well, now it is. Apple has released iOS 14.3 which provides ProRAW support to the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max.
What this change is, in reality, is that Apple’s standard iOS camera app lets you shoot DNG raw files now, too. iOS has actually had the ability to capture DNG raw files for a while now, but you were reliant upon 3rd party camera applications like the camera built into the App. Now, it’s native. But also works in conjunction with Apple’s computational photography features.
Yeah, yeah, I know. You’re sick of seeing these. But you knew it was coming, right? And to be fair, with the iPhone 12 Pro Max, Apple finally seems to have actually developed a phone with decent camera capabilities. So, a comparison was inevitable, really.
So, in this video, Jordy and the guys at Cinecom put their $40,000 RED Gemini rig against the $1,100 iPhone 12 Pro Max to see how the two stand up against each other. Unlike most such comparisons, this one’s actually quite interesting, as Jordy talks about the advantages that both cameras might have over the other when shooting in different conditions.
Apple recently announced the developer beta for iOS 14.3 which brings with it Apple’s new ProRAW photo feature. iPhones have actually had DNG RAW capabilities since iOS 10, but it’s never offered this capability in the built-in camera app before. You’ve always had to go for third party solutions, like Camera+ or Lightroom.
But now, Apple is implementing it in their own camera app and they’re calling it “ProRAW”. And according to PetaPixel, the cameras within the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max will allow it to capture 12-bit DNG files with up to 14-stops of dynamic range. Other than the capabilities of the actual camera module itself, though, I’m not sure what it offers that iPhone users couldn’t do already.