Posts in Reviews
8mm Vintage Camera | iPhone video app review

Just a few hours ago Shawn asked if I've heard of the iPhone app that makes video looks like it came from a 8mm film camera. Once I got home from work I downloaded it and immediately made a first impressions video review. Excuse my tired face. It was a long day of nothingness at work.

After watching it I noticed the the audio doesn't match up with the mouth, like the bad dubbing in old kung fu movies. I noted the warning that low memory could cause unsmooth recording but I killed all the apps running in the background and I restarted my phone yet the movement of the mouth and the sound was still out of sync. I think it could be really annoying for vlogs. This app would be much better suited for filming scenery than people. Also don't watch the video in anything larger than 640x480. The quality isn't very good. When uploaded to YouTube, the highest quality available is 320p. This app does not record HD footage.

Here are some screencaps of the interface.

Even though there are some downsides to this app (out of sync audio and no HD recording), I think for $1.99 this is a great buy if you have an iPhone with video recording capabilities. You can click here to buy the app in iTunes. It's made from Nexvio, the same people who brought you the ReelDirector app, which I have reviewed before. You can read that review here.

Trip to New York City // Instagram | iPhone photography app review

Grand Central in ManhattanThis past weekend Shawn and I went to New York City to shoot with Bombshell Clothing. The last time I shot for Keriann was so awesome that I had to go to NYC to work with her again, but I'm saving all that for another post. This post will be reviewing the Instagram iPhone app. I've been using it for a couple of weeks now and I have to say it is super addicting!

iPhone screenshot of the camera taking a photo of this very blog post. Very meta.The cool thing about Instagram is that you can upload your photo directly to Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, Facebook, and Foursquare. Yes, you can even check in on Foursquare with this app. For me personally that is the feature that really sold me on this app.

You have twelve effects you can choose from. Once you pick the effect you like, you click next and it gives you the sharing options.

Another cool feature of Instagram is you can follow your friends and see their photos taken with Instagram within the app. You can also "like" and comment on their photos within the app. You can also check out the popular photos taken with Instagram and find cool new people from all over the world to follow.

So why did I bring up my trip to New York? I used the Instagram app all weekend to check into Foursquare and to take photos of the city. Here are a bunch of photos I took around Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens.

ShawnShawn and I on the trainUnion Hall in BrooklynBrownstonesThe Chip Shop in BrooklynThe light @ The Chip Shop in BrooklynWindowsBeer @ Bierkraft in BrooklynMAC PRO in ManhattanColors @ MAC PRO in ManhattanMake Up For Ever in ManhattanAll Saints Spitalfields in ManhattanNo exitBehind the scenes of Bombshell shoot with Ashton in QueensShawn making guacamole in Keriann's kitchen in QueensEvacuation Instructions in Hell (I actually checked into Hell on Foursquare when I took this photo)I think this is a great app and the best thing about it is it's free! You can download it here and be one of the thousands addicted to this iPhone app.

ReelDirector | iPhone video app review

I recently purchased the ReelDirector app after seeing the price dropped 50% from $7.99  to $3.99. I was hesitant to buy the app at its original price because I wasn't sure if it sucked or not and if I would ever use it. After using it once I can definitely say it's a good app to invest in if you are a vlogger and need to edit videos on the go. So on to the review...

First off you go to the "New Project" screen where you can input your opening and closing titles and credits, as well as choose transitions and the quality. I would recommend to keep the titles short because if it's too long it will get cut off.

Once you click the done button you move on the "Projects" panel. Here you see the movies you are working on. Click on the project you want and you will see information about your movie like the length and the last time it was modified. The "Produced" line is empty in this photo because that information only shows up when the video has been finished and exported.

When you click "done", you will be taken to the "Edit Clips" panel. Click on the green "add" button and select movie clips already recorded with your camera. Keep adding all the clips you want in your finished movie. You can also add in different transitions in between each clip.

This is where the app gets a little confusing for me. I find it easier to trim clips right in the Photos app then trimming in ReelDirector. It's hard to move the in and out points to exactly where you want to make your cut.

Also when using the "Volume & Fade" editor, I tried changing the volume but I found that it did nothing.

You can also add photos and music to your videos. Photos are simple to add into the video and is easy to pan and zoom the photo.

Music on the other hand is a process to add. You actually need to be near a computer to add music. You first have to go back to the "Projects" screen and click on the musical note at the bottom of the screen that says "Music". Click on the plus sign up top and you will see this screen. You have to type into your browser on your computer the web address they give you (I do not know if it gives everyone a different web address to go to).

Once you do that you will see be asked to choose the song(s) you want to import into ReelDirector.

Choose the song you want. And then upload. Once it is imported the song can be added to your movie.

Once you are done editing your video, "click" on the done button. You'll see six items you can select at the bottom of the screen. When you are completely done with your video, click on "Render". This process can take awhile if your video is long but it shouldn't take longer than a couple of minutes.

Once it's rendered it is able to be played so you can watch your video, but it's still not saved. Click on the "Save" button to save it to your photo album.

Final thoughts: I think ReelDirector is a solid video editing app for the iPhone. I think it's definitely worth the $7.99 price tag but I would jump at it being on sale $3.99. Another great thing about the app is that if you have any questions you can click on the little info icon on the top of the "Projects" panel and it will give you instructions on how to do anything with the app. So like I said before if you are a vlogger and want to upload edited videos to your YouTube page straight from your iPhone, this is a must have app.

And now you can watch the final video I made with my iPhone. I know, it's Oscar worthy.


CinemaFX | iPhone photography app review

When I was thinking of a new photo app to review, I was going to do CameraBag which seems to be a pretty popular app. It's consistently in the top ten in paid iPhone apps. But as I was looking at my photo apps, I clicked on CinemaFX (which I have to admit is an app I rarely used) and realized that it is a pretty great app. It's actually better than CameraBag because not only does it give you the different style options, it actually lets you adjust the settings to your specifications.

With CameraBag, once you choose your style that's it. If the original photo wasn't perfectly exposed, maybe the style you choose will be too dark or too light and it just doesn't look the way you want it to. With CinemaFX you can use the sliders to adject the style to the way you like it.

Another cool thing is that you can layer styles. You can layer styles in other apps as well but normally you have to save the edited photo, then go back to your photo library and select the edited photo, add a new style, rinse and repeat. In CinemaFX you can add a style, click the "CinemaFX" logo up top, press done, and keep adding styles.

This the Charmed Glow style.

This is Egyptian Glow on top of Charmed Glow.

This is Surveillance Cam on top of Egyptian Glow on top of Charmed Glow.

If you just want to edit the brightness and contrast to the original photo, you have that option as well.

There are also options for image size (larger photo resolution for 3GS).

For only 99 cents, this is a pretty great photo app to get. Compared to CameraBag's $1.99, I think this app gives you a ton more options and needs a lot more recognition*.

*as on 3/29/10 it's number 71 out of the top 100 iPhone photography apps compared to CameraBag being at number 9.

ShakeItPhoto | iPhone photography app review

ShakeItPhoto could be one of my favorite apps for the iPhone. It costs $.99 and it's worth every penny. I use it practically every day. It takes photos taken with iPhone and turns them into Polaroids. I like this app more than other Polaroid apps which are available for free like Polarize because it doesn't have the bar at the bottom for writing notes. You can add text at the bottom of the photo in Polarize but since I have a personal preference to square photos (maybe since I shoot a lot of 120 film in real life), I like ShakeItPhoto better.

The great thing about this app is that you can use photos previously taken with the iPhone instead of just being able to take photos within the app. Since the app takes photos already on the iPhone, any photo can be edited. Only one of the photos used in this review was taken with the iPhone (it was taken with the Hipstamatic app). Two were taken with a Sony point and shoot, one is an iPhone wallpaper, and one is a scan of my fiancé when he was 10.

It's a fun yet simple app that I think is a must buy. It even makes the sound like Polaroid cameras and you have to shake the phone to make the photo develop faster. I give the app 5 out of 5 stars.