Night Time Photography Settings

Night Time Photography Settings


You will see your photos getting dark or blurred, or the images you have taken are not matched according to your desire. What is the reason? The answer is that it happens because of not giving your camera accurate nighttime photography sittings. 

The situation will happen continuously if the ISO or Shutter speed is not set accurately. Moreover, not only the ISO or shutter speed but also some issues can be the culprit for taking fade photos. 

If you never want this irritating situation happens again, then you have to look at some things. So, let’s discuss the matter. 

Things to consider for nighttime photography

These are the things you should have to keep in mind while wondering about taking a photo at night time. They are-

Manual Mode 

When you decide to take a night sky photo, then using a manual mode is the best suggestion for you. Because auto mode is best for the day, it automatically adjusts the ISO, aperture, and shutter speed settings. But at night, it fails to focus on the target. 

So, manual focus mode helps you set the target you are looking for and adjust the ISO and aperture according to your desire. 

Wide Angle Lens

The lens is another factor you might consider. A wide-angle lens is suitable for night photography because it allows much light to enter the camera, which makes the picture you have taken sharper and more accurate. Whereas in a narrow-angle lens, light does not come much. 

A wide-angle lens of 35 mm is best for a full-frame camera. However, the lens should be 24 mm if you use an APS-C camera. 


ISO controls the brightness of your picture. When the ISO is high, the image will turn bright; even when the ISO is low, then the picture will be sharp. In the daytime, ISO needs to be down while using the camera to take a picture. 

Because there is a large amount of light in the daytime, the ISO does not need to increase; if you do so, the subject will be a blur. Now you may think that the ISO should increase high in the nighttime. But the answer is ‘No.’ it should be extended to high according to the situation. 

You can set ISO to 800-1000 if your camera finds enough light to capture in the evening. Again, you may consider increasing the ISO if the light is too dark. Its range should be between 3200- 6400 for the too dark condition. 

Moreover, another problem you may face is its noise and grain. The more you extend the ISO range, the more the picture will be noisy and grainy. But you can avoid this problem by setting the range to less. 

Nowadays, the cameras available in the market are compatible with this problem. The pictures taken using modern cameras do not indicate noise and grain issues when you set the ISO to 3200- 6400. 

But it would be best to keep the setting to 1600-3200 for night photography. 


Another primary thing you have to set is the camera’s aperture. Again, this thing is a must for night shooting. The aperture is the one that controls the proportion of light to enter the camera. 

The best aperture for low light photography is the f/1.4-f/2.8. Below the condition, you will not get the actual result from your camera. 

Shutter Speed 

Shutter speed is also an important thing to understand. Shutter speed should be selected wisely according to the demand of the subject. For example, if the matter you want to capture is moving and you use a slow shutter speed, the photo will be blurred. 

Like the same thing is applied to the steady object. So if you want to shoot the thing at night that is constant, keep the shutter speed from 1/30-1/60, and for moving target, the shutter speed should be 1/125-1/1200. 


Tripod is necessary for holding your camera remain steady. During the nighttime, there is not much light for the camera to find the target, so it needs much time to adjust and find the goal. It does its job best when it is in a steady position. 

If the camera shakes, then it will not fulfill your demand. Again, holding it for a long time in the same position is challenging. 

Use a carbon fiber or aluminum-made tripod for holding the camera. 

You can also solve the shaking issues by using the stabilization feature. Now in the market, many cameras of various brands have this feature, but the characteristic is not used the same name. For example, in Nikon, this feature is known as (VR) or vibration reduction, whereas, in Canon, you will find this quality as an (IS) or image stabilizer option. 

Again, Sony named this feature a steady short inside in their cameras. 

Shutter Remote Cable

You can use a shutter remote cable for your camera while taking pictures of a night. The advantage of this thing is that it will not disturb the camera’s position, and you can control the shutter button from far. 

Take Multiple Test Photos 

When everything is set, it is time to take a multiple test shot. It helps you to understand the ISO, shutter speed, or other things are ok or not. If they are not so, increase or decrease the ISO or shutter speed to take a perfect snap. 

Take A Raw Photo

What photo should you take? Raw or JPEG format? Raw photo. Though it will take much space, the most beneficial feature you can get from it is the uninterrupted quality that you do not find in the JPEG format. 

You can later convert it into JPE or another photo and use it for post-editing matters. 


Photos will be best at night when the settings in the camera are chosen right. If you want to take the best shot at night, follow the instructions, and the night will be yours. 

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