Camera+ 2.2 Update: Improved Auto-Focus and “Clarity”
One of the things I love about the excellent camera replacement app Camera+ is that the development team at tap tap tap are always improving the app and the user experience. It seems that nearly every update of the app has a Wow! feature that we didn’t even know we wanted.
The new 2.2 update is scheduled to street today, Tuesday, March 29 and it is no exception.
The big new feature of this Camera+ update is a scene mode called “Clarity.” When I received my preview copy of the app last week, I was told that “it’s a 1-tap image enhancement that makes photos look stunning. It blows away just about anything Apple does with their HDR and doesn’t have the issues that go along with multi-exposure HDR like alignment, etc.” That sums it up perfectly.
The new Clarity scene mode is part of Camera+’ standard equipment and does an amazing job of balancing luminance, enhancing the colors of images, filling in shadows and balancing overall light. It intensifies colors in your photos, adding high-dynamic color range as good as or better than most other dedicated HDR, Pseudo-HDR and Dynamic Color Correction apps currently available. It fills in shadows and colors and still does a great job of keeping noise in check — a big problem with some “HDR” and DRC apps. Details are visibly and nicely enhanced.
Here are some samples:
The new Clarity mode isn’t adjustable like dedicated DRC apps, but even with its 1-button ease, it does some great adjustments on nearly every image I tested it with. On a few images, though, I found occasional Pro HDR-like halos around some of the edges.
The viewfinder has been significantly improved in this update. It’s now clearer when the camera is autofocusing. In fact, the auto-focus target now says “Autofocus” until it fades out. A â€˜+â€™ button has been added to the touch focus control to enable you to easily split it into focus and exposure controls — much easier and more intuitive than the split two finger drag (although you can still use the two finger tap to split focus and exposure).
There are no other new filters in this update, but the Pinhole effect in the optional “I â™¥ Analog” in app upgrade has been improved again. The vignette seems to have been improved and looks more rounded and uniform, although I liked the unevenness of the 2.1 version.
Here’s a list of the other changes, bug fixes, and improvements in this update:
âœ“ multiple photos are now saved to your Camera Roll according to the order they were selected
âœ“ improved Vintage border
âœ“ fixed a bug where photos couldâ€™ve been saved to your Camera Roll with an incorrect date/time taken
âœ“ fixed a bug where the timer countdown time could get stuck on the screen
âœ“ fixed a bug where the Cancel buttons in sharing sometimes wouldnâ€™t work
âœ“ various minor bug fixes and enhancements
The new “Clarity” scene mode is an excellent new feature on its own. It definitely improves the value of Camera+ as an all-in-one. Many iPhoneographers may find themselves importing images from their photo library just to use this feature to add HDR color to their photos.
Camera+ is $1.99 in the App Store. It’s currently on sale for only $0.99. Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 3.1 or later.