Stop iPhone HDR from Saving Two Photos
The iPhone camera HDR mode takes great pictures, there’s no doubt about that. What might not be so great for some iPhone users is that when you have HDR mode enabled, the iPhone will store two versions of all photos you take into Camera Roll in Photos app, which at 5+ megapixels a pop can quickly consume an iPhones available storage. For some situations, the two photos look so similar that they just look like duplicates, whereas other times either the HDR version or the non-HDR version looks better. Being able to compare the two versions of the photos side by side is undeniably helpful, but if you’re concerned about storage you may want to change this setting so that two pictures aren’t created from a single photo shot with iPhone camera.
The solution is to stop iPhone from saving both the normal and HDR exposures, which instead opts the iPhone to only save the enhanced HDR version to the Photos app Camera Roll. Here’s how to do this in all versions of iOS:
How to Stop HDR Saving Two Pictures on iPhone Camera
Stopping iPhone camera from saving two photos of the same picture depends on which iOS version is on the iPhone (or iPad or iPod touch, technically).
For iOS versions including iOS 12, iOS 11, iOS 10 and later.
- Tap on “Settings” and scroll and then choose “Camera”
- Under the “HDR (High Dynamic Range)” option, locate the “Keep Normal Photo” setting and toggle the button to the OFF position
- Close out Settings
For older iOS versions including iOS 9 and earlier:
- Tap on “Settings” and scroll and tap on “Photos”
- Under the “HDR (High Dynamic Range)” option, slide the “ON” button to “OFF” next to “Keep Normal Photo”
- Close out Settings
This setting exists on all iOS versions with a camera that is HDR capable, yes the settings menu can look slightly different but the effect is the same.
From here on out, if you have choose to take an HDR photo, only the HDR exposure will be saved.
As before, if you aren’t using HDR then the normal picture will still be saved. This makes a lot more sense to some users and sometimes people can be slightly confused why the iPhone is seemingly taking two of the same photos, then storing duplicates. But upon closer inspection you will see that the two photos are actually different, and often the HDR version will include more details particularly in challenging lighting situations. Nonetheless that is not always the case, so for some users keeping the “Keep Normal Photo” turned ON is valuable, particularly if you use iPhone as a primary camera or want the best possible options when working with your photos, since you can manually compare the HDR vs non-HDR version of the same photo.
Disabling this feature prevents duplicate image storage and will save you a lot of storage space over time. If you take a lot of photos this can be helpful to you for that reason, particularly if you use iCloud Photos, though iClouds free 5GB plan won’t be holding much data so the higher tier plans may be necessary.