12 Night Photography Apps in 2019

By Ann Young 6 days ago Software Reviews

Make your Milky Way photography easier with one of these night photography apps.

night photography app

night photography app

Top 12 Night Photography Apps

Download one of these night photography apps, if you face difficulties while taking Milky Way photos at night. These astrophotography apps are recommended for picking an ideal location, time of the day or month, identifying stars and predicting weather for your next night photoshoot.

1. Dark Sky Finder

Best light pollution app for night photos

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Rank (5/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • Light pollution maps are available 
  • It is possible to editing/adding dark sites 
  • More than 1000 locations throughout the world
  • Features helpful tips and directions
Cons-
  • Users can’t pin or save locations

Because of a great amount of light pollution, finding a dark sky in the western world is quite complicated. With the Dark Sky Finder app, you can see a light pollution map on top of a regular map.

The app effectively finds dark sky in the surrounding areas for perfect night shots. View light pollution maps worldwide and dots showing suitable places for shooting.

Black color indicates an intense darkness level, a white color – an intense brightness level. Dark Sky Finder offers reviews from users, helpful tips, directions, info on weather, sky conditions, fees, parking, camping, restrooms, etc.

Any user has an opportunity to add a nice observation place, like a park without bright street lamps, along with its brief description to help other people.

2. Deluxe Moon

Best moon tracker app

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS, Android, Windows
 
Pros+
  • Altitude and brightness levels of the moon
  • Moon phase calendar
  • Sunrise and sunset time table
  • Available in 20 languages
Cons-
  • Expensive

Deluxe Moon visually defines the amount of light the Moon will be reflecting in the sky. This astrophotography app helps check whether the chosen time of shooting corresponds to the moon’s cycles and more.

Thus, you will be able to plan a photo shoot more efficiently and see if the Moon works to your advantage. I advise picking the time of the full or new moon (you can check it in the app).

This night sky photography app features a helpful Moon Parameters section. It provides the info on the Moon’s current age, full names of each moon phase, the exact time of moon phases, ecliptic latitude and longitude, moonset and moonrise time for your location, how much the Moon is illuminated (in percentages), how far the Moon is from the Earth, Moon elevation and lunar eclipse times in the Moon parameters.

As for the Sun Parameters section, it includes solar eclipse times, sunset, sunrise and zenith tap timers and countdown sun timers.

3. Nightcap Camera

Best night camera app for iPhone

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Rank (4.4/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • 4 modes available
  • AI camera controls
  • 4x ISO boost
  • 8x zoom control
  • Apple Watch support
Cons-
  • No RAW feature

In case you aren’t satisfied with the quality of your night shots and videos, NightCap can boost the camera’s capabilities on any iOS device. Unfortunately, there is no NightCap app Android.

This application produces stunning pictures and videos taken at night or in low light along with 4K time-lapse. NightCap Camera boasts an ISO Boost feature providing 4x higher ISO in comparison with similar apps. AI camera control enables automatic adjustment of optimal exposure and focus for absolutely clear and bright shots.

Your task is to maintain stability and start shooting. In case you want to modify the settings manually, take advantage of instant gesture-based adjustment. With specific modes, you may even get shots with an effect resembling DSLR.

According to NightCap Camera review, the app provides 4 camera modes for astrophotography. Pick Stars Mode for shooting starry skies or Northern/Southern Lights (Aurora). If you shoot in Star Trails Mode, you may observe the stars painting circles in the sky. Besides, you will find modes for photographing stars (meteors) and the International Space Station (ISS).

4. The Photographer's Ephemeris

Best Milky Way tracker

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS, Android, Windows
 
Pros+
  • Provides localized milky way info
  • Works accurately and precisely
  • User-friendly
Cons-
  • Android app’s feature set is incomplete

Deluxe Moon is one of the best astrophotography apps that gives users a possibility to track Milky Way, the Moon and the Sun, shows the way the light will be falling on the ground, at night and during the day, at any place.

If you want to find out the updated info on the Milky Way’s, Moon’s and Sun’s behavior for your present location or check an accurate placement of the full Moon for the shooting, TPE is ready to help you. The application provides a visual representation of the Milky Way pictures in a certain location.

The Night mode enables a 3D view of the Milky Way, important constellations and pole stars straight on top of the map. This way, you can actually see how to compose a future photograph.

This Milky Way photography app offers options for searching and saving a list of favorite sites for shooting, with 7 map types (2 offline maps included). The saved sites are instantly marked on the map.

5. Go Sky Watch

Best app for identifying stars

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Rank (4.5/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • Full 180-degree display
  • Touch-free identification
  • User-friendly
Cons-
  • The stars aren’t shown fainter than they’re seen by the naked eye
  • No integrated tips on how to use the app

This star photography app provides simple and quick search and identification of stars, constellations and planets. Users only need to point to the sky. It may be quite complicated for the human vision to find the stars, so Go Sky Watch does it instead of you.

The app sort of “connects” users with the sky and shows what exactly you are going to shoot. You will see the objects’ names, levels of distance and brightness.

Go Sky Watch boasts touch-free identification. It means that users don’t have to continue touching the screen to understand what is seen in the sky.

There is no need to be connected to the network. However, the Internet may be required for automatic location detection, loading Wikipedia info and Star Tales.

6. Weather Underground

Best weather forecasting app for night photos

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Rank (4.2/5)
iOS, Android, Windows
 
Pros+
  • Accurate forecasts 
  • Up-to-date design
  • The info is provided by local weather stations
Cons-
  • Ads

Weather Underground was a pioneer among weather websites on the net. The app is often considered to be one of the most reputable sources giving detailed weather data for various areas. It is an absolutely indispensable astrophotography weather app.

The application gathers information from more than 30,000 weather stations and offers localized weather forecasts. On the main page, you can see the user’s present location, location of a nearby weather station, wind speed and direction, low and high temperatures, present temperature, a radar map and precipitation.

Open the app before going outdoors to receive important and updated weather info in a convenient way.

7. PhotoPills

Best app for astrophotography

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Rank (4.5/5)
iOS, Android
 
 
Pros+
  • Extensive functionality
  • Offers Augmented Reality modes
  • Remarkable design
  • Maps are saved for offline viewing
Cons-
  • Complicated to master

This night photography app Android and iOS impresses users with extensive functionality and constant upgrades. It is a great find for all astrophotographers.

The functions of the app work smoothly. If you have just started using PhotoPills and have certain problems, the Academy with its handy video guides will help you cope with them.

Don’t expect any difficulties when trying to locate Milky Way with PhotoPills. In addition, you may even compose your future photograph with this app. Moreover, in case you have a manual lens, you are free to determine the correct shutter speed for the adjusted ISO and aperture parameters with the calculator. The app has a vast range of other helpful functions.

8. Slow Shutter Cam

Best night long exposure photography cam

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • Limitless shutter speed and manual ISO
  • Real-time preview
  • Useful self-timer
  • Supports Apple Watch
Cons-
  • The absence of a video action

This night photography app makes it possible to shoot various striking slow shutter speed effects with your iPhone, without DSLR used. Slow Shutter Cam enables effective photographing of fireworks, light trails and long exposures. The application boasts three handy capture modes:

LOW LIGHT: Perfect for shooting in low light conditions. The mode lets a camera collect each photon of light that hits the sensor.

LIGHT TRAIL: Provides an opportunity to “paint” with light, beautifully photograph different light movements, fireworks or car light trails.

MOTION BLUR: Practically identical to a DSLR’s shutter priority mode. This mode adds blur and ideally copes with taking ghost pictures, capturing all kinds of movements and waterfall effects.

In case you are eager to find out how to take night photos with iPhone, the app will become your reliable helper.

9. Scope Nights

Best night photo app for beginners

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • Precise weather forecast
  • Ability to use NASA’s light pollution map
  • Customization options
Cons-
  • For iOS users only

Even though Scope Nights has been used for some time already, it is still one of the most popular night photography apps. The application is often praised for its intuitive features that aren’t hard to figure out even for beginning users. Scope Nights offers all the features necessary for astrophotographers.

It provides the analysis of the night weather and demonstrates the exact time and places with clearest and darkest sky areas. In addition, the app presents stargazing notifications, customizable stargazing ratings corresponding to your needs and an in-depth light pollution map with marked observatories and dark sky locations in the surrounding areas. Many users like the ability to see which of their favorite Scope Sites offer the most appropriate conditions for shooting. Explore the night sky and find clear dark spots to get gorgeous shots.

10. Luminos

Best interactive app for starry sky night images

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • Star guide with interactions
  • Excellent satellite observation
  • Live sky charts and satellite alerts
  • Trackable meteor showers
Cons-
  • May confuse first-time users

You may find this application a bit puzzling after the first launch. But, over time, you will definitely figure everything out. Open the app’s menu and look for tutorials, which are quite detailed, in comparison with other camera apps. Check them out to ensure that you have correctly understood what to do and what kind of objects you are viewing.

You can either play around with Luminous just for fun or use it for night photography purposes. Enjoy observing magnificent constellations, recreate eclipses or try tracking meteor showers and let it direct you through the stars.

I highly recommend this night sky camera app because of its relevance, handy features, opportunities to explore and have fun with astronomic objects.

11. Sol: Sun Clock

Best app for twilight photography

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Rank (4.8/5)
iOS
Pros+
  • An ability to set alarms
  • Internet connection isn’t required
  • Auto location
Cons-
  • Few features

According to the current location, this night photography app demonstrates the precise phases of light that you pass through during the day.

Sol: Sun Clock displays total darkness, golden hour and daylight. It locates the starting and ending points of all three twilights (sunrise and sunset): nautical, civil and astronomical ones.

There is the possibility to tweak the app’s settings to notify you about a certain solar event, for instance, a golden hour or sunrise. The alarm time is automatically adjusted with the days and seasons changing. I personally ensure that it is precise and will assist you in organizing photo shoots at night and in dark periods of a day.

12. A Better Camera

Best night camera app for Android

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Rank (4.8/5)
Android
Pros+
  • Various types of focusing
  • RAW capture
  • Photo and video time-lapse
Cons-
  • App freezing is possible

In case you are searching for astrophotography app Android, consider this variant. Its night mode slightly modifies the operation of the camera and lets you adjust it to the night shooting needs.

Users have the ability to manage shutter speed, ISO and access the shooting mode settings to enable more low light and make other necessary modifications. Very often, a camera can’t adjust focus properly in the auto mode.

Any user can set it to fixed hyperfocal, which means that the camera will be focusing only on remote objects and won’t be refocusing all the time. Besides, A Better Camera offers options for picking de-ghosting and noise reduction levels and setting the colors’ saturation.


Ann Young

Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a professional blogger, read more