Some iPhone 12 series users say videos appear overexposed on Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat & other apps

The iPhone 12 series offers some of the best smartphone cameras right now. And the iPhone 12 Pro Max takes that up a notch with its larger sensor than what’s found on the 12 Pro.

Resulting images from the bigger sensor usually have a more natural depth of field and shots in low-light situations are a lot less grainy and contain more details than images shot on the other iPhone 12 models.

iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini

Of course, the difference isn’t mind-boggling, however, for those who love capturing images on their phones, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is the route to take.

That being said, as more users have begun getting their hands on the new iPhones and have started sharing images and videos on social media platforms, many have noticed one big problem.

And that is — overexposed videos. We’ve shared several reports from users who are noticing videos being overexposed on their new iPhone 12 series devices below.

I have a video I shot on an iPhone 12 Pro, copied to my computer as a Quicktime .MOV file. It plays fine on my Mac Mini, but when I import it into iMovie, the clip appears very washed out. Color seems to be missing, and the color-correction tools in iMovie won’t let me get it right. It seems as if the brightness is just turned way up, but using the color correction tools to turn the brightness down doesn’t fix the problem. (Source)

I uploaded an iPhone 12 movie to Lr. When I viewed it, it appeared to be very overexposed. That was not the case when viewing it directly on the phone or iPad! (Source)

Looks like the video is unprocessed. Even when sending go another iOS device. It’s still unprocessed. (Source)

I just purchased a new iphone 12 pro. When I shoot video, all my video looks normal during playback on my phone. When I play my video on any other device, (mac, pc, youtube upload) all my videos look very overexposed. Not just a little over exposed… so overexposed it looks like I shot my video on the surface of the sun. (Source)

According to users, the videos are extremely overexposed when they upload them on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook or other video-sharing platforms, as apparent in the image below.

iPhone 12 overexposed video example

However, the same video does not appear overexposed while viewing it via the Photos application directly on any iPhone 12 series device.

Naturally, many iPhone 12 series users are wondering whether this is a hardware defect or a software glitch. But it appears that this isn’t something to be worried about.

Apparently, the overexposed videos are a result of most applications not supporting HDR videos yet. Therefore, any video shot on the iPhone 12 right out-of-the-box may appear overexposed when uploaded on certain apps such as Instagram and Snapchat.

Instagram Logo

The new iPhone 12 series now supports Dolby Vision HDR video. High Dynamic Range videos capture 700 million colors compared to the 16 million colors offered by SDR (Standard Dynamic Range) videos.

And this major change in the video format is why videos uploaded on social media platforms tend to be blown out or even seem washed out as pointed out by many individuals.

This is to be expected. It’ll be up to the platforms to adopt HDR support. Does seem rushed on Apple’s side to not give a way to convert. (Source)

I think for uploading to Social media i think it’s best not to use HDR as will take time for apps to update for this. (Source)

What this basically means is that until all social media platforms add HDR video support, you would have to stick to recording SDR videos in order to share them on apps such as Instagram and Facebook.

Workarounds for iPhone 12 series overexposed videos

1) Change the video format settings:

The best and most convenient way to solve the overexposed videos issue is to change the video recording format on your iPhone 12. To do this, head to Settings > Camera > Formats > Select ‘Most compatible’.

Then, go back to the Camera settings and select ‘Record video’ and toggle off the HDR video option. Do note that doing this would prevent you from recording 4k videos at 60fps.

The Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

2) Convert your HDR videos to SDR:

In case you have already recorded videos that you want to share online, you can still do so by converting such videos to SDR format. This can be done via the iMovie application itself.

Simply load the video that you want to share on Instagram, Snapchat or any other platform that does not support HDR videos into iMovie. Then tap on ‘Done’ and tap on the ‘Share’ or ‘Export’ icon.

Now, tap on the small ‘Options’ button and set type as ‘Video’ and choose the appropriate resolution. Lastly, turn off the HDR toggle at the bottom and then hit ‘Done’.


All that’s left to do is wait for the video to be exported and then you can share it on any social media platform without worrying about it appearing overexposed or washed out.

Let us know whether these couple of workarounds helped in fixing the overexposed videos issue on your iPhone 12 series device.

Unfortunately, these aren’t the only issues found on the iPhone 12 series. We’ve previously reported on battery draining, overheating, camera lens flare and other issues on these new phones from Apple.

Therefore, we’d suggest keeping an eye out on our dedicated tracker to know the status of all bugs and issues reported by iPhone 12 series users.

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Dwayne Cubbins

I've been interested in tech for as long as I can remember. And I used to be a Windows Phone enthusiast. When I am not writing about tech, I'm on the couch playing games with my squad. Oh, I also play the guitar and drums.