Top 12 Best Phone Cameras For Night Sky Photography – Reviews and Comparison

Capturing the night sky has always held a great fascination for photographers. With the advancement of smartphone technology and the increasing popularity of astrophotography, more and more people are turning to their phones to capture images of the cosmos. In this article, we will take a look at the top 12 best phone cameras for night sky photography. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, our reviews and buying guide will help you choose the best phone camera for capturing stunning images of the night sky.

Editor’s Choice

Last update on 2023-11-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Phone Cameras For Night Sky Photography: A Quick Overview

Phone cameras have come a long way in recent years, and these days they offer an impressive range of features for night sky photography. For the best results, you’ll want a phone that has a large sensor, good low-light performance, and manual controls that allow you to adjust settings like ISO, shutter speed, and aperture. Some of the best phones for night sky photography include models like the iPhone 11 Pro, Samsung Galaxy S20, and Google Pixel 4.

When it comes to using your phone camera for night sky photography, there are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind. First, make sure you have a stable surface or tripod to prevent blurring. Next, use manual settings to adjust your exposure time and ISO to capture the details of the stars. Finally, consider downloading apps like NightCap or Star Walk which can help you locate constellations and adjust your camera settings in real-time. With the right phone and a little patience, you’ll be able to capture stunning images of the night sky that rival those taken with a professional camera.

The Best Phone Cameras For Night Sky Photography to Buy Today

SaleRANK 1
Kase 41mm Magnetic Neutral Night Filter for iPhone,Cell Phone Camera Lens Light...
  • 【Magnetic Design】The filter with clip adopt magnetic design,enable you to quickly install and replace filters to capture fleeting moments.
  • 【High Quality Filter】The filter is made of high-quality optical glass,and the size of filter is up to 41mm,easy to cover three lenses of most phones,do not...
  • 【Universal Clip】The universal clip is made of plastic + metal,compatible with most of phones(thickness is less than 20mm).To avoid light leakage,please...
  • 【Neutral Night Filter Function】Between mercury vapour, sodium, Low CRI streetlights, there are many undesirable wavelengths of light that pollute the night...
  • 【Stackable & Adjustable】Filters with different effects can be stacked according to the needs,shooting by phone can also be more professional.Due to magnetic...
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Dan Appel (Director) - Dan Appel (Writer)
SaleRANK 3
National Geographic Complete Photo Guide: How to Take Better Pictures
  • Hardcover Book
  • Perry, Heather (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 416 Pages - 10/19/2021 (Publication Date) - National Geographic (Publisher)
Snapimals: Discover Animals
  • EXPLORE distant exotic lands
  • SNAP pictures of amazing animals
  • BUILD the greatest museum on earth
  • English (Publication Language)
TOMSHOO WiFi Trail Camera, 4K 36MP Bluetooth Game Camera Sends Picture to Cell...
  • 【WiFi Bluetooth Connection & App Control】TOMSHOO WiFi Trail Camera with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology, free app, just have to be nearby, that you can view,...
  • 【Infrared No Glow Night Vision & 0.2s Trigger Speed】This hunting camera with 940nm no glow infrared LEDs provide up to 98 feet nighttime vision, 120°...
  • 【Ultra HD 4K Video & 36MP Image Resolution】The game camera captures 4K native video and 36MP HD images, nice clear picture even at night, featuring advanced...
  • 【IP66 Waterproof】The game camera with its IP66 waterproof, ensures stable performance in complex environments such as rainforests, protecting it from rain...
  • 【Easy to Operate & Multiple Applications】Initial set up was quick and easy, the screen is big enough to clearly read the settings. This menu is very easy to...
Smartphone Astrophotography: An Introduction to Photographing the Heavens
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Lodriguss, Jerry (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 249 Pages - 11/01/2021 (Publication Date) - AstroPix LLC (Publisher)
FRDM Free Fit Midweight Gloves Windproof Water Repellent Touchscreen Photography...
  • Flip back thumb and index finger caps with hidden magnets.
  • Touchscreen conductive material sewn into thumb and index fingers.
  • Windproof, water resistant, warm fleece insulation, three-layer breathable softshell repels water and snow.
  • Please refer to the UNISEX sizing guide below to measure your hands. Hands come in all sizes and shapes so making sure to get the best fit for your gloves is...
SaleRANK 8
Sky-Watcher Star Adventurer Photo Kit – Motorized DSLR Night Sky Tracking...
  • NEW FEATURES: The new, upgraded Star Adventurer 2i includes Wi-Fi, allowing for smartphone control using Sky-Watcher’s free SAM Console app.
  • PORTABLE NIGHTSCAPE TRACKING PLATFORM: Motorized portable tracking platform perfect for capturing incredible detail of the Milky Way, eclipses and other...
  • READY FOR PHOTOGRAPHY: Easily mount any photographic ball-head using the included ball-head adapter.
  • WIDE-FIELD ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY: The unique, modular design allows for integration with existing photographic tripods. Wide-field astrophotography as well as...
  • BUILT-IN ILLUMINATED POLAR FINDERSCOPE: The included illuminated polar finderscope allows for easy and accurate alignment with Polaris.
Astrophotography is Easy!: Basics for Beginners (The Patrick Moore Practical...
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Redfern, Gregory I. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 483 Pages - 10/29/2020 (Publication Date) - Springer (Publisher)
Light Pollution Filter Haida Clear-Night NanoPro Filter Optical Glass Enhances...
  • Purpose :The Clear-Night Filter from Haida is designed to reduce the appearance of light pollution in images or video that include the night sky, and to...
  • Principle :The filter can improve the results of nighttime images by absorbing the yellow light from sodium-vapor lamps, a common light source within urban...
  • Glass coating :This filter is constructed from optical glass for clarity and color fidelity. each glass surface includes multi-coating of anti-reflection...
  • Frame:Ultra slim 3.07mm an aluminum alloy ring ensures durability while allowing the filter to remain lightweight. A plastic case is included for storage and...
  • Other:Please verify your camera's lens thread size before ordering. Your camera's lens thread size will be marked somewhere on the lens barrel or printed...
Digital Camera for Photography VJIANGER 4K 48MP Vlogging Camera for YouTube with...
  • 📸4K Digital Camera with 32GB SD Card 📸: VJIANGER small digital camera for photography and video with 4k@30fps video resolution and 48 megapixel, provides...
  • 📸Point and Shoot Camera with WiFi📸: Wifi connection can turn your smart phone into a wireless remote control and you can instantly transfer photos or...
  • 📸Photography Camera with Manual Focus Function📸: VJIANGER 4k point and shoot camera supports manual focus(MF). Whether in video or camera mode, just...
  • 📸Easy to Use Beginners Camera📸: This point and shoot camera with compact size(0.57LB, 4.3*2.96*1.2 INCH) is so lightweight and portable. Pefect for...
  • 📸Perfect Gift📸: This point and shoot camera with compact size(0.57LB, 4.3*2.96*1.2 INCH) is so lightweight and portable. Easy to use makes it an ideal...
Tripod Camera Tripods, 74" Tripod for Camera Cell Phone Video Photography, Heavy...
  • 【Lightweight & Easy to Adjust】Upgraded trapezoidal flap lock tripod adjusted freely from 19" and 74" in a few seconds to meet different height requirements...
  • 【Durable & Horizontally Stable】 The professional flexible tripod for cameras and phones provides ultra stability and steadiness for various terrain. Images...
  • 【Tripod for All Camera and Phone】Additional quick-release plates and phone mount maximize the compatibility to the greatest extent. Standard 1/4" screw...
  • 【 3-Way Pan Head 360° Rotation】 JOILCAN compact camera tripod is equipped with a stable smooth ergonomic 3-way pan head: headlock, pan lock, and tilt lock,...
  • 【 Widely Application】 The heavy duty 74 inch camera tripod is suitable for photographing events and video recordings such as selfies, family portrait...

Last update on 2023-11-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Why Do You Need to Buy Phone Cameras For Night Sky Photography?

Capturing the beauty of the night sky can be a challenging yet rewarding experience for any photographer. With the advancement of phone camera technology, the possibilities for capturing stunning astrological images on the go are now more accessible than ever before. Here are some key reasons why phone cameras can be a great option for night sky photography.

Better low-light performance

One of the main challenges of night sky photography is capturing clear and detailed images in low-light conditions. This is where the quality of phone cameras comes into play. A camera with better low-light performance will have a larger sensor and aperture, allowing it to capture more light and provide a clearer image with less noise. The larger aperture also enables the camera to produce a shallower depth of field, which can be used creatively in night sky photography to blur the foreground and focus on the stars. Additionally, cameras with image stabilization technology can minimize blur and provide sharper images, even when shooting in low light. Therefore, to capture stunning images of the night sky with your phone, it is essential to have a camera with better low-light performance.

Higher resolution

Higher resolution is one of the main reasons why people opt for phone cameras for night sky photography. In photography, resolution refers to the number of pixels that a camera sensor can capture. A higher resolution camera has more pixels, which results in sharper and more detailed images.

When it comes to night sky photography, a higher resolution is crucial as it allows you to capture more details of the skies and the stars. Higher resolution cameras also offer more flexibility during post-processing, allowing you to crop and resize images without compromising quality.

Phone cameras have come a long way in terms of resolution, with some models sporting resolutions of up to 64 megapixels. This makes them a viable alternative to traditional cameras for night sky photography, especially for amateurs who may not have access to high-end camera equipment.

Long exposure capability

Long exposure capability is a critical feature for night sky photography. This feature allows you to keep the camera shutter open for an extended period, capturing more light and more detail from the dark sky. As a result, the pictures don’t come out blurry or too dark. Instead, we can get sharp, detailed images of the stars, planets, and other astronomical objects.

The time-lapse photography feature is handy as it enables you to take multiple shots in a single night, tracking the movement of celestial bodies over time. With the long exposure capability, we can also capture stunning landscapes that include both the starry sky and foreground elements, such as trees, buildings, and other objects in the scene. Overall, long exposure capability is a must-have feature in a phone camera for anyone interested in astrophotography.

What Things to Consider when Buying Phone Cameras For Night Sky Photography?

Night sky photography requires a good-quality camera that can capture the beauty of the stars, galaxies, and other celestial objects. To get the best results, there are a few key factors that you should keep in mind while purchasing a phone camera.

Sensor size

When it comes to night sky photography, having a larger sensor size can make a significant difference. A smaller sensor tends to produce more noise in low light situations, resulting in lower quality images. A larger sensor allows more light to reach the camera’s sensor, producing clearer and more detailed images with less noise. So, if you want to capture stunning images of the night sky, it’s important to consider the sensor size when choosing a phone camera.

Additionally, a larger sensor size gives you more control over depth of field. A shallower depth of field can help to isolate subjects and create a more professional look to your photographs. With a larger sensor, you can also use a wider aperture without losing depth of field, letting in more light and giving you more creative control over your images. Therefore, when selecting a phone camera for night sky photography, choosing a model with a larger sensor size can make a big difference in the quality and overall aesthetic of your images.


When it comes to night sky photography, aperture is a crucial parameter to consider before buying phone cameras. The aperture is responsible for the amount of light entering the lens. A larger aperture will allow more light to enter, creating brighter and more detailed images. Phone cameras with larger aperture sizes will produce better low-light images, which is crucial for night sky photography.

As phone cameras have smaller sensors compared to DSLR cameras, a larger aperture is vital. If a phone camera has a small aperture, it will struggle to capture the faint light of the stars in the night sky. Hence, before buying a phone camera for night sky photography, one must check the aperture value and ensure it is large enough to capture enough light for stunning night sky photography.

ISO range

ISO range is an important factor to consider when buying phone cameras for night sky photography. It refers to the camera’s sensitivity to light, which is measured in numeric values. The higher the ISO range, the more sensitive the camera is to light, allowing it to capture better quality photos in low light conditions such as those found when taking photos of the night sky. If you plan to take photos of stars away from the city lights, you need a camera with a high ISO range to capture the stars’ faint light. A low ISO range can result in dark and grainy photos, with poor image quality.

In summary, a phone camera with a high ISO range is essential for night sky photography, especially when you are taking photos in low light conditions. Because the majority of phone cameras do not have large sensors, a high ISO range is crucial for capturing quality photos in extreme settings. Therefore, a good understanding of ISO range can help you pick the phone camera for night sky photography that best fits your needs.

Shutter speed

When it comes to night sky photography, one of the key factors to consider is shutter speed. The longer the shutter stays open, the more light it lets in, which is crucial for capturing clear and detailed images of the stars and Milky Way. Therefore, when choosing a phone camera for night sky photography, it is important to select one that allows for manual control of shutter speed. This way, you can experiment with longer exposures and find the perfect settings to capture stunning night sky photos.

Additionally, some phone cameras may struggle with noise and graininess in low light situations such as night sky photography. By having manual control over shutter speed, you can also adjust the ISO and aperture settings to balance out the exposure and reduce noise in your images, thereby producing clearer and more detailed shots of the night sky. In summary, when considering a phone camera for night sky photography, be sure to prioritize those with manual controls, particularly for shutter speed, to achieve stunning and high-quality results.

Image stabilization

Image stabilization is a critical factor to consider before buying a phone camera for night sky photography because it helps reduce camera shake or blurring, which can occur when shooting in low light. When taking pictures of stars or other celestial objects, any minor movement of the camera can result in blurry or distorted images. Image stabilization technology helps counteract these movements, allowing for sharper and clearer pictures. This technology can be especially important when using slow shutter speeds required for capturing stars or other low light conditions.

There are several types of image stabilization available, including optical and digital, each with its pros and cons. Some phones come with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) capabilities, which relies on hardware within the camera to stabilize the lens. While some phones offer digital image stabilization using software that adjusts the camera settings to reduce camera shake. In essence, image stabilization is a crucial factor to keep in mind when selecting a phone camera for night sky photography, as it can significantly improve the quality of your overall images.

Manual controls

Manual controls are important when it comes to night sky photography because they give you more control over the settings of the camera. Some phone cameras may have automatic night mode or low light capabilities, but these can often produce overexposed or underexposed images, which is not ideal for night sky photography. With manual controls, you can adjust the ISO, shutter speed, and aperture to get the best exposure for the stars and the foreground.

Additionally, manual controls allow you to focus manually, which is crucial for capturing the stars at their sharpest. Often, auto-focus can struggle in low light conditions, resulting in blurred or out of focus images. With manual focus, you can ensure that the stars are sharp and crisp, resulting in a stunning night sky photo. Therefore, it is worth considering manual controls when purchasing a phone camera for night sky photography, as they allow you to have more control over your images and produce better results.


How do I adjust the settings on my phone camera for taking photos of the night sky?

To take photos of the night sky, you’ll need to adjust several camera settings on your phone. Firstly, turn off your flash and switch to manual mode. Then, set the ISO to a high value to pick up more light, and set your aperture to the lowest value. Finally, adjust your shutter speed to a longer value, typically between 10-30 seconds depending on your phone camera. You may also want to consider using a tripod or stabilizer to minimize camera shake. Experiment with different settings to find the best results.

What type of tripod should I use for night sky photography with my phone camera?

For night sky photography with a phone camera, it is best to use a sturdy tripod with adjustable height and legs that can be spread out widely for stability. Look for a tripod that is lightweight and portable, so it can be easily carried to shooting locations. The tripod should also have a smartphone holder that securely holds the phone in place, and can be adjusted to get the right angle for capturing the night sky. It is also important to consider the maximum weight capacity of the tripod, making sure it can support the weight of the phone and any additional accessories such as a lens or a shutter remote.

Can I capture stars and planets using a phone camera or do I need a telescope?

Capturing stars and planets using a phone camera is possible, but the results may not be as clear or detailed as those captured using a telescope. Phone cameras are limited in their ability to capture distant objects, especially in low-light environments. However, with the right settings and techniques, it is still possible to capture some basic images of stars and planets using a phone camera.

A telescope, on the other hand, is specifically designed for astronomy and offers greater magnification and detail. With a telescope, you can capture much clearer and detailed images of stars and planets. Additionally, telescopes can be combined with cameras, allowing for even more advanced astrophotography. Ultimately, the choice between a phone camera and a telescope depends on the level of detail and quality of images you wish to capture.

Final Thoughts

Capturing stunning night sky photographs is no longer a challenging task thanks to the advancement of smartphone technology. With so many options available in the market, choosing the best phone camera for night sky photography can be overwhelming. However, we hope our comprehensive guide on the top 12 best phone cameras for night sky photography has made your decision-making process easier.

Remember that the best phone camera for night sky photography is the one that suits your budget, preferences, and shooting requirements. Whether you are a professional photographer or just a hobbyist, investing in the right phone camera can make a significant difference in capturing breathtaking night sky shots. So go ahead, pick the best phone camera for night sky photography that you believe will help you create exceptional memories and capture the beauty of the night sky.

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