Wednesday 28th June 2017,
Mobile Phone Photography
Spotlight

Android Phone Apps

Review: FxCamera for Android

FxCamera for Android users is another fun effects-based mobile photography app. It’s free, and produces clear, sharp images to which you can apply any of the six effects, all of which have variations you can apply on top of that. This app is free to download and works on Android 1.5 and above.

Pros: It creates several popular effects, like toy camera and Polandroid (clever wordplay on Polaroid). It also has a Warhol effect, and a fisheye lens effect that’s a lot of fun. The SymetriCam effect puts a flipped copy next to the original shot. This is great stuff for making faces and creating weird shots, like a fun-house mirror. Like most effects apps, it has a user-friendly interface. This one comes with some basic editing software, too.

Cons: One problem with this app is the resolution. If you wanted to upload your image to a photo to a mobile phone photography stock photo site the resolution for images saved with FxCamera is too low, only 960 x 640. If you just want to take weird photos to share over the Internet though, it’s just fine. You also can’t open up a photo you’ve taken previously and add an FxCamera effect on it.

Bottom line: It’s nice for playing, but the low resolution doesn’t give you the opportunity to make money from your photos by stock photography or printing them for note cards and stuff like that. I like it for vacations, where you’re just going to post your pics on Facebook or Twitter or print them for your photo album. It’s pretty neat to get your friends and family with the fisheye or SymetriCam, and the Toy Cam is cool for landscapes and buildings.

Do you have mobile pics taken with the FxCamera app? We’d love to see them! Post them here and tell us which combination of filters you used to create it.

 

 

 

Review: Vignette Demo for Android

 

Vignette Demo for Android features 85 effects and 59 frames! It’s a free, feature-packed app intended for serious mobile phone photography enthusiasts. Few other apps on the market have so many options for customizing mobile photographs. You have full control over exposure, white balance, meters, and tons more options.

Pros: Lots and lots of features for a free app. It has the usual stuff, like toy camera, digital zoom, steady shot and the like, but it also has stuff you don’t see everywhere, like pinhole camera effects and a “strip and grid” that looks like those 4-shot strips from a photo booth. You can also take panoramic shots with this app. Some other super-cool features: you can save your favorite setting combinations; you can import photos you’ve already taken and apply effects to them; and you can pre-set specs and still make adjustments even after you take the photo. Wow.

Cons: It’s not as easy to use as some other apps. You have to shuffle around a lot to find what you want, and it can take time, and there’s a lot of text-based navigation as opposed to simple graphics to guide you. It’s not that it’s difficult to use, it’s just not a point-shoot-go kind of thing. It’s also a little buggy. But hey, it’s free! Hopefully upgrades will be released that fix some of the problems.

Bottom line: It’s a must-have for the mobile photography nut using an Android. The free version has all the features, but it’s so worth the $3.99 for the full version because you can save high-resolution versions (like, 5:4). The free version only lets you do low-res. Take the time to familiarize yourself with it and the UI issues will be less of a problem, especially with the ability to save favorite settings. Get it. You’ll like it.

 

 

 

 

Review: Action Snap for Android

 

This is the perfect app to capture action and movement! All you have to do is take 4 to 9 multiple shots and combine them. You can capture photos in one click or customize the photos one by one. You also can select time intervals between 0.1 second and 5 seconds. Action Snap is free while Action Snap Pro, with additional features, is only $3.99.

Pros: It has a simple and easy user interface, so you don’t have to spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to use it. It’s great for sports games and events where you want to get some good action shots. Being able to set the time interval lets you customize it to what’s going on, like trying to catch a pitch at a baseball game where you want a smaller interval between shots versus your kids having a water fight where you don’t need to see every little movement. It also comes with some basic effects and editing tools.

Cons: Some people complain that it’s not a high-speed camera. Well, it doesn’t claim to be! It’s simply taking sequential photos while the action is happening. This can mean some blurry shots, of course. But you also get some really great pics that you can’t get from using your standard Android default photo app. There are also some complaints out there about features that went missing with the last upgrade, so if you already have it, this could be a problem for you. If you don’t already have it, you won’t notice what’s supposedly missing!

Bottom line: Definitely give the free version a try. If you like it you can pay for the Action Snap Pro version. It’s not a professional sports photographer’s high-speed camera by any means, but it’s great for the casual or semi-pro user who just wants some killer candid action shots.

 

 

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