Shoot your photos in high ProRAW quality

Apple iPhone 12

Every photographer knows that you have to shoot photos in RAW format, in order to be able to edit the images properly later without compromising photo quality. Apple also wants you to be able to take high-quality photos with your iPhone and offers support for a similar format called ProRAW.

Since iOS 14.3, you can shoot photos in the ProRAW format, provided you also have an iPhone 12 Pro or iPhone 12 Pro Max. Photos are stored in a kind of RAW format, but with more fine editing options offered by Apple. Think of noise reduction, multiple exposure and color adjustments.

Because the most essential edits are performed automatically, you will spend less time editing photos after your photo shoot. But keep in mind that it is a closed file format from Apple, so that you can only benefit from ProRAW with Apple (licensed) programs.

Enable ProRAW

Before you can shoot photos in ProRAW format, you must first enable the option. You do this (as you might expect) not with the Camera app, but via the Settings app. In the settings, scroll to Camera and tap it. Here you can set, among other things, the quality in which you record your videos and whether you want to activate a grid when shooting photos. Go to Structures and turn on the switch at Apple ProRAW.

Does your iPhone not support ProRaw?  No drama!  There are plenty of alternative camera apps that will help you out, such as Halide.

Then go to the Camera app on your iPhone and make sure you are in Photo mode. You can now activate the ProRAW option by pressing the relevant icon at the top right of the screen. This also works with the selfie camera on the front. In the Photos app on your phone, you can then see at the top of a photo whether it was taken in ProRAW format. Also keep in mind that Pro-RAW photos take up more space on your phone, about 25MB versus just over 1MB normal. So only shoot in this format if you actually plan to edit the photo later.

RAW photos on an older iPhone

Until Apple comes with an update that makes the feature available for the standard iPhone 12 or older models, you can only shoot photos in Pro-RAW format with an iPhone 12 Pro (Max). If you do not have the latest model, then there is also no man overboard because iOS has been offering the option of photographing in RAW format for some time. Not via the standard Camera app, but via alternative apps such as Halide or, if necessary, the camera module in Lightroom for iOS. Keep in mind that you will miss the automatic editing that Apple does with ProRAW, so you will probably spend a little longer editing your photos afterwards.

Perspective correction can come in handy now and then.


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