camerabag helga holga filter


CameraBagThe classic iPhone photo app, CameraBag from Nevercenter, was updated to version 1.9 today. The new release doesn’t include many new features, but does include one very big one — the ability to infinitely vary each filter. With the recent release of Nevercenter’s new app, Infinicam, many feared that development of CameraBag would fall by the wayside. This new update goes far in adding a feature to this app that iPhoneographers have been asking for, but still lets it retain its own identity and feel.

CameraBag is one of the earliest iPhone “apping” apps and the app that I think really unleashed iPhoneography on the masses. Early on with my original iPhone 2G, I knew the camera was special. It was different than my previous mobile phone cameras, but until CameraBag was released, the iPhone’s camera was just a camera. There were apps that could help you take better pictures, such as Camera Genius or if your iPhone was jailbroken Snapture. You could adjust the color and tonal qualities of an image — maybe apply a few rudimentary effects — with Photogene and PhotoForge. But CameraBag was the first app to popularize “apping” an image and quickly and easily making it look like an analog retro photograph.

camerabag plastic filter

CameraBag still features its most recent set of filters, including Magazine, Helga (a great Holga filter), Lolo (a very good Lomo recreation), monochrome filters 1962 and Mono, Colorcross, Instant and others.

CameraBag 1.9 works as it always has with one new twist. To vary the effects of a filter, simply double tap the screen. This cycles through various color, tonal, and vignette changes. The effects may not be truly infinitely random, but there’s enough variation in them to keep it interesting. The new effects aren’t drastic, but just enough to give them variation in-app and keep them from looking like “the same filter”. This is a direction a lot of photo apps have been going in recently and I like it a lot. If you prefer the original effect, leaving a filter and returning back to it seems to restore the filter back to its defaults.

camerabag mono filter monochrome

The best variations I found were with the Helga, Plastic, Magazine and Mono filters. Variations on the other filters were good but not as pronounced. The Fish Eye filter showed no change, as expected — hey, it’s a fish eye.

The update now also includes high-resolution assets for devices with retina displays.

  • TIP: After downloading and installing the update, be sure to check your Output Size in the app’s settings. The update of CameraBag resets output size to 800 pixels. It also resets your Favorite Filters settings.


This update won’t please everyone. The effects are random and there’s no way for an iPhoneographer to adjust and tweak the effects. I like the variation, though, and I enjoy exploring the random combinations. The end result are Camerabag’s the beneift of the look of the app’s classic filters without the cookie cutter effects. CameraBag 1.9 is a very good update that breathes new life into this simple and venerable app.

CameraBag is old iPhone friendly and still works on any iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch running iOS 2.0 or newer. It’s $1.99 in the App Store.

CameraBag - Nevercenter Ltd. Co.