Google’s Night Sight Mode for Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 is Magical

BY Rajesh Pandey

Published 26 Oct 2018

Pixel 2 XL rear view

Earlier this month when Google unveiled the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, it briefly talked about Night Sight. The feature is supposed to make its way to Pixel 3 and Pixel 2 devices later this year with an update and its aimed at greatly improving the low-light imaging performance.

At its event, Google compared Night Sight mode on the Pixel 3 with a shot taken from the iPhone XS. The difference in quality was staggering, though many people dismissed it as a marketing gimmick.

Pixel 3 vs iPhone XS Night Sight

Well, a modded Google Camera APK floating on the internet enables Night Sight on not just the Pixel 3 and Pixel 2 but the original Pixel as well. And so, I tried out Night Sight on my Pixel 2 and the results are…..magical!

With the new ‘Night’ mode, Google is essentially setting a new benchmark in terms of mobile photography that I don’t think other smartphones would be able to match or even surpass anytime soon. What’s even more impressive is that Google is bringing Night Sight to not just the Pixel 3 but also the Pixel 2 from last year.

So, exactly how impressive is Night Sight? Well, see the sample shots below and decide for yourself. Do note that all the sample photos below were taken on a Pixel 2. The results should be even better on the Pixel 3.

With night Sight Turned Off

Without Night Sight

Night Sight on Pixel 2

With Night Sight enabled

And below is the same scene captured on a Galaxy Note 9. Remember the Note 9 comes with a significantly wider f/1.5 aperture which gives it a notable advantage hardware wise over the last year’s Pixel 2.

Note 9 Comparison vs Night Sight

Same scene shot on the Galaxy Note 9

Below are some more low-light shots to show off just how insanely good Night Sight is.

Without Night Sight

With Night Sight

Without Night Sight

With Night Sight

Note that all the photos above were taken in complete darkness. What the Pixel 2 has been able to capture with Night Sight enabled is something that I could not see with my own eyes. What’s even better is that Night Sight is not just limited to the rear camera, it works for the selfie camera as well.

Selfie without Night Sight

Selfie with Night Sight enabled

Night Sight does not turn a low-light scene into a daylight one. Instead, it takes a photo keeping the light in mind whilst still capturing all the important details and perhaps most importantly, capturing a usable photo.

The only catch? Since Night Sight mode takes up to 64 frames, you will have to wait for at least 2-3 seconds after pressing the shutter button for the camera app do its job. Thankfully, Google’s algorithms are smart enough to compensate for small shakes and jitters and it even accounts for moving subjects to a great extent.

There’s no doubt that Google has raised the smartphone photography bar to a whole new level with Night Sight.