How to Lock Focus and Exposure Separately on iPhone in iOS 14

The stock camera app has got some notable enhancements in iOS 14 including the new exposure compensation value control. You can use this new feature to lock focus and exposure separately on iPhone running iOS 14. Times when you are unable to balance exposure and focus perfectly, the ECV feature can have a role to play in letting you snap desired shots like a pro. If you are yet to go hands-on with the ECV feature in the iPhone Camera app, let me guide you through!

Lock Focus and Exposure Separately in iOS 14

For those unfamiliar, the iOS 13 camera features a combined focus and exposure control, which is not useful especially if you want to have precise control. Though third-party camera apps offered the ability to fine-tune these two key aspects individually, its absence in the stock camera app was badly missed.

While the automatic adjustment of focus and exposure may be pretty time saving, the camera app doesn’t always get it right. And this is where the option to have precise control over these pivotal components come into the picture.

Which iPhones are Compatible with ECV Feature?

Unfortunately, ECV feature only supports the newer iPhone models. So, be sure to check out whether or not your iPhone is compatible with the ECV feature.

Only iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone SE (2nd generation), iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR support this camera feature.

Locking Focus and Exposure Individually in iPhone Camera

Keep in mind that changing ECV value in the iPhone Camera app impacts all the photos and videos captured during the session. If you find it helpful, you can also choose to save it (more on it later).

  1. Launch the Camera app on your iPhone.

Launch Camera app

2. Now, either hit the chevron icon or swipe up (from above the shutter button) to access the slightly hidden controls.

Swipe up in the camera app

3. Next, tap on “+/-” button to reveal the new ECV control.

hit the ECV button

4. Next up, simply drag the horizontal ECV slider perfectly to change the shutter speed as well as f-stop from -2 to +2.

Using ECV feature in iOS 14 camera

Pro Tips: 

  • To make the image look darker, drag the horizontal slider towards -2 or the left.
  • To make the image look brighter, drag the slider towards +2 or on the righthand side. 
  • If you want to reset the ECV adjustment, drag the slider back to zero.
  • Note that the iPhone camera automatically keeps adjusting the exposure. If you want to stop it from doing so, lock both EV and ECV variables. To do so, touch and hold a specific area of the viewfinder until “AE/AF Lock” shows up.

How to Preserve ECV Setting Across Camera Sessions in iOS 14

If you prefer to use ECV, you can choose to save the setting across camera sessions as the value automatically resets when you quit the Camera app.

1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.

Open Settings app on your iPhone or iPad

2. Scroll down and choose the Camera option.

Tap on Camera

3. Next, tap on Preserve Settings.

Choose Preserve Settings

4. Finally, turn on the switch for Exposure Adjustment.

Turn on the exposure adjustment

Lock Focus and Exposure Individually in iOS 4 with Ease

So, that’s the way you can lock exposure and focus with ease on your iPhone. As someone who prefers to have better control over these key camera components, I have found this feature very helpful. And I guess your story could be the same if you always challenge yourself to capture pro shots.

What’s your take on ECV? It would be great to have your feedback in the comments below.

comment Comments 4
  • Gelo says:

    I don’t have this feature on mg XS MAX, any explanation on that?

  • Gelo says:

    I don’t have that feature on my XS Max, any explanation on this?

    • Rajesh Mishra says:

      It’s available on iPhone Xs Max. Wait for the software update and then update your device.

  • Mark says:

    Unfortunately, the +/- button and exposure adjustment preserve settings are unavailable on my iPhone XR. I’m using IOS 14 final release.

Leave a Reply