Average Camera Pro ($0.99) by Dominik Seibold is an interesting little app that can improve your iPhone’s camera performance in low light conditions. You absolutely need a tripod in order to use this app, or at least place to prop up your camera. It will not work at all if you are holding the camera in your hand.
Let’s start with a room that is not particularly well-lit, such as in the flower pictures I took. The “Before” shot was taken with the iPhone’s native camera. The “After” shot was done with Average Camera Pro. You may not see a huge difference in the lighting between the two shots. But look a little closer, particularly at the purple wall behind the flowers. The noise is significantly reduced in the shot I took with Average Camera Pro.
Next, take a look at the featured photo, the before and after shots of my chicken pitcher. These shots were taken in a very dark corner. You can see that the “Before” shot, taken with the native camera (no flash), is totally useless, entirely dark. The “After” shot, taken with Average Camera Pro, while not perfect, at least allows you to see the object in the photo.
In both cases, I used the very simplest settings. I let the app do all of the work and did not fiddle with the settings at all. The way the app works is that it takes a number of photos (the default is eight) and uses the best information from each one to get the best photo in low light that you can. I did use a tripod; as I mentioned earlier, the app will not work if you try to hold the camera in your hands.
Watch the video within the app (or go to the link here if you want to see the video now) to get more advanced instructions from the developer on how to use the app for even better results. The number of photos taken can be altered, up to 164. You can use a slider to further lighten your photos. Also, you can use a white piece of paper to set a baseline for your shot for even better lit photos and noise reduction.
If you find yourself unsatisfied with the iPhone’s low light performance and you hate the washed-out flash look, then Average Camera Pro is an app worth checking out.