Camera Genius 3.4 was just released. In addition to bug fixes, the new feature is an improved focus and exposure system with a new design and controls to make using focus and exposure separately easier.
Recent Camera Genius updates have made it a much better iPhone photo app, but not perfect. Since I last looked at Camera Genius, it’s gotten several updates that have really improved the stability and the functionality of the app. With all the improvements in recent updates, it deserves another look.
Camera Genius 3.4 is a fast, all-in-one camera app. Recent updates are a huge improvement over earlier versions of the app. While the app retains all of its original functionality, CodeGoo have added a ton of features to Camera Genius, and recent updates have fixed or improved the new features.
Camera Genius 3.4 has an impressive toolset, including all six of my criteria for a good camera replacement app. Camera Genius’ features include:
- Timer & Sound Capture
- “Big Button” full screen camera button
- Burst Mode Shooting – 3 full-res shots in rapid succession.
- Video mode with torch, full screen camera button, composition guides and digital zoom (iPhone 3Gs, iPhone 4, iPod Touch 4th Gen only). Video is HD on cameras that support it.
- 20 great adjustment filters — more if you count the color effects from the Adjust tab.
- Excellent social network integration with Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Picasa, MobileMe, Tumblr, YouTube, Clipboard and Email. You can even post to multiple services at once.
The 3.x photo album access is probably the best and most powerful of any major photo app. The scroll wheel that changes the layouts and preview sizes is pretty cool! Easy adjustments to thumbnail size from 1 to 5 across make searching for images to import easier.
The separate exposure and focus have been improved in the latest update. In previous versions, it was as simple as tap once to focus, double tap an area for exposure. I didn’t really have a problem with this implementation. In version 3.4, a double-tap now moves the focal point and a more standard drag splits the exposure lock from the focus. It works well and makes it easier to move both locks onscreen.
Several recent updates in a fairly short period of time have fixed my original complaints with the app.
After the 3.3 update, the camera’s 6X digital zoom is now full resolution. Essential flip and rotate controls were added to the crop funtion in update 3.2. The latest update fixed burst and anti-shake so they can now operate at the same time.
The 3.1 update greatly improved the adjustment filters. They now save in full resolution. There’s a wide variety of one-button effects — Cross Process, Lomo, Faded, the oversaturated Color Burst, the slightly darkened and undersaturated Cinema, Sepia, Silver Oil, Aged and other retro and vintage effects. I’m glad they went with the more accurate Pseudo HDR name for their color enhancement filter. And the Grunge filter is one of my favorites of the bunch. It applies a great yellowed overall color shift, a damaged film texture and an excellent damaged border (see below). Camera Genius easily layers effects and adjustments, allowing you to process an image several times and only save your finished work — a great feature and very helpful in reducing version clutter.
The app is not perfect yet and there are still a few bugs that need to be worked out.
It still has issues with memory management. As with previous updates, you will probably need to reboot your iPhone after updating or installing. Camera Genius was still a little crash-prone after updating for me. Some of the modules didnâ€™t act right until rebooting. I found this out after it crashed. Also, the previously mentioned Grunge filter was pretty unstable for me and crashed the app more often than not.
Camera Genius is fairly fast â€” faster than most camera replacement apps. It has about a 1 second recovery time on an iPhone 4. Camera Genius works great if you’re only shooting about 3 or 4 quick shots in a row. It still bogs down with many fast shots. It wasn’t able to shoot all of my captures and took a long time to save those it did. Both ProCamera and Camera+ perform better in this area.
Overall, Camera Genius has improved a lot since the big 3.0 update. While there are still lingering bugs, CodeGoo has been releasing a steady stream of updates to address the problems. Camera Genius has great features and good performance. It’s definitely one of the better camera replacements availableâ€¦ again. Its new features put it on par with ProCamera and Camera+. Its social network and sharing integration are comprehensive and second to none — not even Instagram. It’s a good shooter and a very good all-in-one camera app. Hopefully, lingering stability issues will be resolved soon.
Camera Genius works on iPhone 4, 3GS, 3G and iPod Touch 4th Gen. It requires iOS 4.0 or later. The regular price for the previous versions was $1.99. Camera Genius is on sale now for a limited time for only $0.99.