Everything You Need to Know About the iPod touch Camera

6th generation iPod touch
image copyright Apple Inc.

Like its more powerful sibling, the iPhone, the iPod touch has a pair of cameras that can be used to take photos, videos, and even have video chats using Apple's FaceTime video chatting technology. The 4th generation touch was the first model to have cameras and in every model Apple has released since then, the cameras have been substantially improved. Here's what you need to know about the hardware features of these cameras and how to use them.

6th Gen. iPod touch Camera: Technical Details

Back Camera

  • Megapixels: 8 megapixels
  • Resolution:
  • Panoramic photos: 43 megapixels
  • Video: 1080p HD at 30 frames/second
  • Slo-mo video: 120 frames/second

User-Facing Camera

  • Megapixels: 1.2 megapixels
  • Resolution: 1280 x 960
  • Video: 720p HD at 30 frames/second

5th Gen. iPod touch Camera: Technical Details

Back Camera

  • Megapixels: 5 megapixels
  • Resolution: 2560 x 1920
  • Panoramic photos: Yes
  • Video: 1080p HD

User-Facing Camera

  • Megapixels: 1.2 megapixels
  • Resolution: 1280 x 960
  • Video: 720p HD

4th Gen. iPod touch Camera: Technical Details

Back Camera

  • Megapixels: 1 megapixel
  • Resolution: 960 x 720
  • Panoramic photos: No
  • Video: 720p HD

User-Facing Camera

  • Megapixels: under 1 megapixel
  • Resolution: 800 x 600
  • Video: standard-definition video at 30 frames/second

Other iPod touch Camera Features

  • Camera flash: Yes (6th gen., 5th gen.)
  • Digital zoom: Yes (all models)
  • Autofocus: Yes (all models)
  • Image stabilization: Yes (6th gen.)
  • Burst mode: Yes (6th gen.)
  • HDR support: Yes (6th gen., 5th gen.)

How to Use the iPod touch Camera

Auto Focus
The iPod touch camera can both focus on any area of a picture (tap an area and a target-like box will appear where you've tapped; the camera will focus the photo there).

Camera Zoom
The camera can also be used to zoom in and out on some models. To use the zoom feature, tap anywhere on the image in the Camera app and a slider bar with a minus on one end and a plus on the other will appear (on some versions of the operating system, pinch the image with your fingers, instead). Slide the bar to zoom in and out. When you have just the photo you want, tap the camera icon at the bottom center of the screen to take the photo.

Camera Flash
On the 5th and 6th gen. iPod touch models, you can take better images in low-light situations by using the built-in camera flash. To turn on the flash, tap the Camera app to launch it. Then tap the Auto button in the top left corner. There, you can either tap On to turn the flash on, Auto to automatically use the flash when needed, or Off to turn the flash off when you don't need it.

HDR Photos
To capture images that are made even higher quality and more appealing through software, you can turn on HDR, or High Dynamic Range, photos. To do that, in the Camera app, tap Options at the top of the screen. Then slide HDR to On. In recent versions of the iOS, HDR photos are enabled by default.

Panoramic Photos
If you've got the 5th or 6th gen. iPod touch, you can take panoramic photos — photos that let you capture an image much, much wider than a standard photo taken with the touch. To do that, open the Camera app and swipe the set of options above the shutter button. Tap Panorama. Tap the photo button and then slowly move your touch across the panorama you want a photo of, making sure to keep the arrow on the screen level and centered with the line at the center of the screen. When you're done taking your photo, tap the Done button.

Recording Video
To use the iPod touch camera to record video, open the Camera app and swipe along the set of options above the shutter button. Tap Video (or Slo-Mo, if you want to capture your video in slow-motion).

Tap the red circle button in the bottom center of the screen to begin recording video. When you are recording video, that button will blink. To stop recording, tap it again.

Switching Cameras
To switch the camera being used to take a photo or video — for a selfie, for instance — just tap the icon of the camera with the curved arrows in the Camera app. Tap it again to reverse which camera is being used.