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robertrose
13-Apr-2015, 22:27
I have been trying to think of a way to capitalize on some of my misspent education, and I would like your comments (positive, negative, or otherwise) on this idea for an iOS iPhone/iPad App. Would you buy this? What features would you like to see included?

I have always found it difficult to visualize what a scene would look like in black & white, and how different filters (e.g., #8 yellow, #11 yellow-green, #22 orange and #25 red) will affect the final image. The app would be a virtual view camera, you will be able to specify the format (4x5 or 8x10), film speed (100, 400), lens focal length (e.g., 90, 150, 210, 300), filter (#8, #11, #22, #25), filter factor (tied as default to the filter but changeable), and exposure adjustment, and you will see a preview of the image (in B&W) and recommended exposure.

Second edition will include a histogram, development adjustment (e.g., normal, +/- 1 stop push or pull), more filters, and polarizing filter. Maybe a virtual Neutral Density Graduated filter (you could change hard/soft, strength, rotate, and position)

Third edition would take advantage of the touch screen, and build in a Zone system. Tap where you want Zone III, Zone VII.

Thanks for your comments.

Lachlan 717
13-Apr-2015, 22:47
Robert,

Nothing much new here.



I have always found it difficult to visualize what a scene would look like in black & white, and how different filters (e.g., #8 yellow, #11 yellow-green, #22 orange and #25 red) will affect the final image.

Already available - Hueless app. (http://curioussatellite.com/hueless/)


The app would be a virtual view camera, you will be able to specify the format (4x5 or 8x10), film speed (100, 400), lens focal length (e.g., 90, 150, 210, 300), filter (#8, #11, #22, #25), filter factor (tied as default to the filter but changeable), and exposure adjustment, and you will see a preview of the image (in B&W) and recommended exposure.

Second edition will include a histogram, development adjustment (e.g., normal, +/- 1 stop push or pull), more filters, and polarizing filter. Maybe a virtual Neutral Density Graduated filter (you could change hard/soft, strength, rotate, and position)

Third edition would take advantage of the touch screen, and build in a Zone system. Tap where you want Zone III, Zone VII.



Mostly done with Reciprocity Timer (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/reciprocity-timer/id459691262?mt=8) and Pocket Meter (https://itunes.apple.com/en/app/pocket-light-meter/id381698089?mt=8)

So, as I already have these apps, I really wouldn't be too interested in this idea.

Tim Meisburger
14-Apr-2015, 01:08
I would, but only for Android.

robertrose
14-Apr-2015, 11:55
Thanks. This is what I needed to know.

DrTang
14-Apr-2015, 12:09
no 5x7?

robertrose
14-Apr-2015, 17:26
If I do this, I will include 5x7

Android has an SDK separate from Xcode, and iOS 8 has some features that will be useful in building the app. Also, I can program in Objective C for iOS, but we will see how much how much trouble it is to port the C code to something SDK likes. But, that said, I won't forget the Android platforms.

I see some space for this separate from Hueless. In any case the price will be low.

I really appreciate the comments.

Jim Noel
14-Apr-2015, 18:14
It answers no needs which have not already been addressed well enough to satisfy those who use such crutches. I have absolutely no need for it since I do not use a telephone for anything other than to make calls.

Jac@stafford.net
14-Apr-2015, 18:55
I appreciate your ambition, however there are simple means to do all the same without an app.
.

robertrose
14-Apr-2015, 21:26
OK, I understand. I may build it just for the exercise and those who want it will get it. I plan to keep it cheap in any case.

StoneNYC
14-Apr-2015, 23:18
I would love this but you would need to cover lots of formats, I would personally want 2x3, 4x5, 8x10, 11x14, 14x17 and 12x20

See, there's are many like me with random formats so... You have some work on your hands, and I would only want it as a viewer.

Tim Meisburger
14-Apr-2015, 23:21
Don't listen to those curmudgeons. Some of them are old enough to remember hand-cranked telephones and party lines. Probably told ole Alex Bell the same thing. They will not be customers anyway, unless you can include a rotary dial app. They are so old they can only see in black and white, and the computers they had were made of wood:p

AlexGard
15-Apr-2015, 00:30
Sounds like a good idea...but can I ask what the advantage is of having it in the different formats like 4x5, 5x7, 8x10, 11x14 etc?

Can't the user just use basic mental calculations to figure out equivalent focal lengths? (like have the default image on the screen with "150mm@ 4x5, 300mm @ 8x10" etc on it?

Perhaps having the panoramic crop function, but I see little point in having the aforementioned formats? Or am I way off?

I'd definitely use something to see how an image would look under a certain filter, but I understand there's a lot of variables at play like film type, developer etc etc

Roger Cole
15-Apr-2015, 00:38
Don't listen to those curmudgeons. Some of them are old enough to remember hand-cranked telephones and party lines. Probably told ole Alex Bell the same thing. They will not be customers anyway, unless you can include a rotary dial app. They are so old they can only see in black and white, and the computers they had were made of wood:p

I agree. I'm 51 but still live in the 21st century and would really hate to give up my handy, always with me, multipurpose ultra-portable, Internet enabled computer/photo sketch pad, that also happens to have a VOIP ap for making phone calls.

I wasn't aware of the Hueless ap, though. That looks really sweet and indeed combined with Pocket Light Meter meets most of these needs. One thing I don't see on the web page though is the price - if it's pretty affordable I'll be getting that one!

Lachlan 717
15-Apr-2015, 01:39
Don't listen to those curmudgeons. Some of them are old enough to remember hand-cranked telephones and party lines. Probably told ole Alex Bell the same thing. They will not be customers anyway, unless you can include a rotary dial app. They are so old they can only see in black and white, and the computers they had were made of wood:p

I'm certainly more young upstart than curmudgeon.

I also stand by the opinion that I presented earlier that the functions are readily available in other [proven] Apps.

Jody_S
15-Apr-2015, 05:51
I do actually use a couple of tools that I've found with free apps (Android), such as a bellows factor calculator (Photo Tools free version). I find it convenient to have my lenses on a list and simply dial in the bellows extension. I installed another app from a member here which does a B&W rendering of a scene, though to date I've never felt the need to actually use it. I've searched for a viewfinder app but all of the Android ones have far too many features and cost far more than I'm willing to spend. I don't know if I would actually use it, as I rarely have to move my tripod after set-up (I usually guessed field of view pretty spot-on before I plant the tripod).

I think there is a small, niche market for a one-tool-does-most of the view camera work that we use in the field. If the price were low, and it were available in Android, I might go for it. Especially if you build in exposure & film type to output a projected histogram. Building in Zone system would be a functional equivalent, I suppose.

Lenny Eiger
15-Apr-2015, 08:44
Haven't updated it for a while.... but I built the zone system into PhotoToolsPro. It's there... (at least for iPhone).

Lenny

StoneNYC
15-Apr-2015, 09:25
Sounds like a good idea...but can I ask what the advantage is of having it in the different formats like 4x5, 5x7, 8x10, 11x14 etc?

Can't the user just use basic mental calculations to figure out equivalent focal lengths? (like have the default image on the screen with "150mm@ 4x5, 300mm @ 8x10" etc on it?

Perhaps having the panoramic crop function, but I see little point in having the aforementioned formats? Or am I way off?

I'd definitely use something to see how an image would look under a certain filter, but I understand there's a lot of variables at play like film type, developer etc etc

Alex,

The advantage is that you don't have to think or calculate anything (for those that aren't good at mental calculations) and to just be able to hold the phone up to the scene, chose the FL from a list of "my lenses" and then the format from "my camera" and the app will give you the appropriate visual on the back, like a mini GG, you then walk around till you find your composition you like, and then set up your camera in the spot you found by walking around with the app/camera phone and makes life a lot easier and you don't have to think and can devote your time to finding the art.

Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty good at determining FL and format by eye, but a quick composition check to see if there's a "better angle" without having to try and hold the giant 8x10 (or bigger) while viewing the scene is a huge advantage.

lecarp
15-Apr-2015, 15:37
Alex,

The advantage is that you don't have to think or calculate anything (for those that aren't good at mental calculations) and to just be able to hold the phone up to the scene, chose the FL from a list of "my lenses" and then the format from "my camera" and the app will give you the appropriate visual on the back, like a mini GG, you then walk around till you find your composition you like, and then set up your camera in the spot you found by walking around with the app/camera phone and makes life a lot easier and you don't have to think and can devote your time to finding the art.

Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty good at determining FL and format by eye, but a quick composition check to see if there's a "better angle" without having to try and hold the giant 8x10 (or bigger) while viewing the scene is a huge advantage.

From the above "The advantage is that you don't have to think" and therein lies the problem. There is far to little thinking being done.

robertrose
15-Apr-2015, 17:11
That is good info. Thank you! Setting the aspect ratio will be a simple procedure, and now I will use a pull down list to cover multiple formats. I am working on a storyboard now.

robertrose
15-Apr-2015, 17:23
Thanks. :)

robertrose
15-Apr-2015, 17:25
I think Hueless is around $3 on the App Store. Preview (what I call it today) will be priced competitively.

robertrose
15-Apr-2015, 17:36
Well, hold on there. This is taking an MS in Imaging Science from RIT, a BS in Physics, and a lifetime of walking through heat, snow, on trains, planes, and automobiles to create. The equations are not at all trivial. I am already merging analog and digital by making traditional negatives and scanning them. So what if I help someone get the result they are looking for? And, there is a ton of thinking necessary for good composition.

CropDusterMan
15-Apr-2015, 17:40
I don't know about the rest of you, but when I take the time to shoot LF, the last thing I want to hear from
anyone is about another APP. Jeez.

robertrose
15-Apr-2015, 17:47
If the price were low, and it were available in Android, I might go for it. Especially if you build in exposure & film type to output a projected histogram. Building in Zone system would be a functional equivalent, I suppose.

Noted. The big news is that Apple is taking over the world with golden handcuffs. The new language (Swift), developer platform (Xcode) and operating system level camera controls (iOS 8) is making it easier to do interesting things for cameras on iOS devices, while discouraging ports to Android. Also, the multiplicity of Android flavors and manufacturer differences complicates things. But, Android represents a huge market.

Randy Moe
15-Apr-2015, 20:12
I just bought Hueless, $2.00, why not? Mostly because it's iPod 4 Touch iOS 5, and I'm not moving to any higher Apple candy. Heck I don't want a cell phone, but I do have a Droid just to talk to my brother and call for urban ambulance.

I used the iPod as phone for years, my brothers pays $10 for the Droid bill or I wouldn't have it. He gets lonely. So I talk to him. I use email for all other communication. Don't try my doorbell, it doesn't work. :)

So if you make an app that works with iOS 5 or Droid, I would buy it, but that's 1 sale. :(

I suggest you make something that millions want. I might buy that too!

StoneNYC
15-Apr-2015, 23:13
From the above "The advantage is that you don't have to think" and therein lies the problem. There is far to little thinking being done.

You know what I meant, I meant that you don't have to think about things that really have nothing to do with making a good image and really have to do with the technical side of things, that way you can focus all of your mental work on the image itself the composition, if you should even take the picture at all, those kinds of things.

I use the reciprocity timer app all the time, it's efficient, works excellently, has tons of film options, is customizable, and that way when I'm in the field I can plug in the numbers and it will tell me what my final exposure should be. I'm still metering the scene and deciding on how I want everything to look and how my national exposure it would be, all it does is help me with the bellows extension math as well as the filter factor math, of course the reciprocity calculations, all three combined are pretty mentally cumbersome and add in so many unnecessary possibilities for errors, so that app saves me a lot of time, and a lot of mistakes are saved by allowing it to do all the math for me.

It doesn't take away from the satisfaction of creating a good image, nor does it take away from the fact that I'm still creating the image still composing the image still choosing the exposure that I think would be best, and developing and processing it all by hand and when I get my darkroom up and running soon, I'll be printing as well.

This new app that's being suggested seems wonderful to me, not having to set up the camera tripod level make it the right height, add the right lens, only to discover that the image doesn't look very good, or it needs a different focal length, then you have to take out that lens but the lens caps back on put the cable release from one to the other lens then take those lens caps off then install that lens then adjust the Bellows extension again and refocus for the different focal length lens then realize that your tripod should be 1 foot lower and have to move it down. All this time fiddling around when you could simply have taken out an app and framed up your shot moved around until you found the proper composition and then set up your tripod and use the right lens from the beginning.

Just about saving time and then being able to possibly actually make even more beautiful images rather than killing all of your time doing lots of unnecessary work.

Roger Cole
16-Apr-2015, 00:01
I think Hueless is around $3 on the App Store. Preview (what I call it today) will be priced competitively.

$1.99 I think.

My elderly iPhone 4 non-S (awaiting tax refund and some odds and ends to spend before upgrading but soon) is so full of memory I need to delete some unused crap before adding much, but I like the looks of it. Well worth a two dollar gamble.

Would try out the OP's software too when available. Minus the "don't have to think" stuff I see Stone's point as a good way to find new views and such with minimal moving of the big camera. No compunctions here about using tools that make life easier!

Roger Cole
16-Apr-2015, 00:04
Noted. The big news is that Apple is taking over the world with golden handcuffs. The new language (Swift), developer platform (Xcode) and operating system level camera controls (iOS 8) is making it easier to do interesting things for cameras on iOS devices, while discouraging ports to Android. Also, the multiplicity of Android flavors and manufacturer differences complicates things. But, Android represents a huge market.

I have a personal iPhone and work Android. I HATE the Android in comparison. If I wanted to take the time to become an expert with my phone it might be ok, but I don't. The iPhone is much better from a "just pick the thing up and use it" perspective. Also, whether the problem is with the developers or the platform, I have several of the same aps for both and the Android version is ALWAYS somehow inferior, in spite of the larger screen on my Android.

I'd really like to like Android, if for no other reason than freeing me from the tyrannical tortures of iTunes [only the worst software ever written in the history of computers.] But I can't manage to like it, so I put up with iTunes.

StoneNYC
16-Apr-2015, 00:13
I have a personal iPhone and work Android. I HATE the Android in comparison. If I wanted to take the time to become an expert with my phone it might be ok, but I don't. The iPhone is much better from a "just pick the thing up and use it" perspective. Also, whether the problem is with the developers or the platform, I have several of the same aps for both and the Android version is ALWAYS somehow inferior, in spite of the larger screen on my Android.

I'd really like to like Android, if for no other reason than freeing me from the tyrannical tortures of iTunes [only the worst software ever written in the history of computers.] But I can't manage to like it, so I put up with iTunes.

If it helps any, I agree with your assessment of iTunes (what was apple thinking?) and I'm not a fan of "subscribing" to things, but iTunes Match has been a blessing, and I highly recommend it! $25/year and no more iTunes Syncing or storing any music on my phone, it's great.

AlexGard
16-Apr-2015, 03:32
I can't wait to have an app that composes, chooses a lens and filter, takes the photo and prints it for me so I don't even have to leave the house. Someone should work on that.

Roger Cole
16-Apr-2015, 03:42
If it helps any, I agree with your assessment of iTunes (what was apple thinking?) and I'm not a fan of "subscribing" to things, but iTunes Match has been a blessing, and I highly recommend it! $25/year and no more iTunes Syncing or storing any music on my phone, it's great.

Thanks, I'll check that out.

I can't imagine what they were and are thinking either. It's widely derided even by those of us who love our iPhones as the biggest pile of steaming digital poo ever foisted off on the computing public but they still push it and require it. It's like it's the special child of someone high up at Apple and you ARE going to use it. To be fair I know precisely one person who actually really likes it. Maybe he was part of their focus group.

Tyler Boley
16-Apr-2015, 08:43
I find working briefly with the iPhone before setting up the camera helps me a lot. I tend to use it like polaroid. It has lead me to go ahead with images I was doubtful of, so reluctant to set up, that I now love. Also the reverse, allowed me to see something wasn't working without wasting setup time. Looking at the image in B&W on a flat screen not unlike the ground glass is great. An upside-down/backwards option would be great too. I see better that way.
I just tried Hueless and it seems pretty limited, and has some problems. I'd look at your app

Paul Cunningham
16-Apr-2015, 15:09
I would love a virtual viewfinder for 4x5 and various lenses.

Jim Noel
16-Apr-2015, 15:46
Don't listen to those curmudgeons. Some of them are old enough to remember hand-cranked telephones and party lines. Probably told ole Alex Bell the same thing. They will not be customers anyway, unless you can include a rotary dial app. They are so old they can only see in black and white, and the computers they had were made of wood:p

With good luck you too will be old some day. So shut up!

Lachlan 717
16-Apr-2015, 15:51
I would love a virtual viewfinder for 4x5 and various lenses.

The lens is somewhat limited in terms of the wide end. You can get a WA lens that overcomes this, but it's just another hassle in the field.

Roger Cole
17-Apr-2015, 02:20
I find working briefly with the iPhone before setting up the camera helps me a lot. I tend to use it like polaroid. It has lead me to go ahead with images I was doubtful of, so reluctant to set up, that I now love. Also the reverse, allowed me to see something wasn't working without wasting setup time. Looking at the image in B&W on a flat screen not unlike the ground glass is great. An upside-down/backwards option would be great too. I see better that way.
I just tried Hueless and it seems pretty limited, and has some problems. I'd look at your app

I would agree with this (except that I haven't yet tried Hueless but for two bucks there isn't much to lose.)

I also use mine as a kind of photographer's notebook. Unlike any dedicated camera I ALWAYS have my iPhone with me. If I see something I'd like to come back and explore with another camera I can take a few shots, jot down some notes on it, and if I feel I need it as a way to find it again even drop a pin on the GPS map. It's somewhat similar to how my wife, a writer of poetry and short fiction, uses her notebook when something catches her eye or a thought to be written out in more detail later occurs to her.

I understand criticisms of over-reliance on smartphones but I don't understand the general venom which some people seem to have for them.

Delfi_r
17-Apr-2015, 02:33
One all around app? Yes.

I have a list of apps of interest to LF shooters with an iPhone. One that has all covered does`t exist. Universal viewfinder, level and goniometer, tilt calculator, exposure-meter, reciprocity calculator, filter integrator, photographer's notebook. Would I pay for one, even if I've paid for some of them? YES.

Lachlan 717
17-Apr-2015, 04:17
Q

I just tried Hueless and it seems pretty limited, and has some problems.

What problems/limitations have you come across?

Tyler Boley
17-Apr-2015, 22:23
Q

What problems/limitations have you come across?

I'd been using dramatic black and white up until this, it's ok...
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dramatic-black-white/id457075492?mt=8

Hueless seems buggy, I can't load an image from the camera roll to convert to B&W using the app, won't load.. nor does it successfully load an image shot with it. All it seems to do is let you use it's tools while previewing through the camera, and then shoot. At any rate, neither of these does all the things the OP is proposing

Delfi_r
22-Apr-2015, 01:18
I would love a virtual viewfinder for 4x5 and various lenses.

This app exists, and for every camera/lens combination http://www.artistsviewfinder.com/ There is a stripped version too in the App Store.


The lens is somewhat limited in terms of the wide end. You can get a WA lens that overcomes this, but it's just another hassle in the field.

The iPhone itself is enough for a 55 horizontal lens and down. You can use it with a WA converter when you need more (up to 100). It's cumbersome, I agree, but sometimes less than any of the alternatives (my Linhof viewfinder goes only up to 62)

StoneNYC
22-Apr-2015, 16:24
This app exists, and for every camera/lens combination http://www.artistsviewfinder.com/ There is a stripped version too in the App Store.



The iPhone itself is enough for a 55 horizontal lens and down. You can use it with a WA converter when you need more (up to 100). It's cumbersome, I agree, but sometimes less than any of the alternatives (my Linhof viewfinder goes only up to 62)

I don't see options for large format framing, can you confirm it will do 8x10, 11x14, 12x20, 14x17, 4x5, 4x10 and 6x12 framing for FL's of 90mm-600mm?

Paul Cunningham
22-Apr-2015, 18:04
This app exists, and for every camera/lens combination http://www.artistsviewfinder.com/ There is a stripped version too in the App Store.

A little expensive, at least in relation to what we have come to expect, but it is just what I was hoping for. Thanks!

Paul Cunningham
22-Apr-2015, 18:07
I don't see options for large format framing, can you confirm it will do 8x10, 11x14, 12x20, 14x17, 4x5, 4x10 and 6x12 framing for FL's of 90mm-600mm?

Stone, it will certainly accommodate 4x5 and, in theory, lenses from 28mm to 1100mm, although lenses less than 115mm require a wide angle adapter. Beyond that you may need to rtfm. :)

Delfi_r
23-Apr-2015, 04:39
I don't see options for large format framing, can you confirm it will do 8x10, 11x14, 12x20, 14x17, 4x5, 4x10 and 6x12 framing for FL's of 90mm-600mm?

As Paul said, you can define any combination of camera, frames and lenses. Up to 500 cameras their lenses (insane) There are provisionss for standard frames but you can define that 5x7 is different than 13x18 and not the external dimensions but the real taking view, as the app is able to provide differences in 'full frame' camera sensors and same focal lenses (for some brands).


A little expensive, at least in relation to what we have come to expect, but it is just what I was hoping for. Thanks!

Yes is expensive, but yo have something that puts most viewfinders in the basket or at home. It was intended for the Alpa cameras, and a old iPhone 4 more the app price it's less expensive than the beautiful 120 viewer of their catalogue. I have the Alpa WideAngle attachment and for 5x7" you have enough to 72 mm, wider for 4x5".

Delfi_r
23-Apr-2015, 04:40
I don't see options for large format framing, can you confirm it will do 8x10, 11x14, 12x20, 14x17, 4x5, 4x10 and 6x12 framing for FL's of 90mm-600mm?

As Paul said, you can define any combination of camera, frames and lenses. Up to 500 cameras their lenses (insane) There are provisionss for standard frames but you can define that 5x7 is different than 13x18 and not the external dimensions but the real taking view, as the app is able to provide differences in 'full frame' camera sensors and same focal lenses (for some brands).


A little expensive, at least in relation to what we have come to expect, but it is just what I was hoping for. Thanks!

Yes is expensive, but yo have something that puts most viewfinders in the basket or at home. It was intended for the Alpa cameras, and a old iPhone 4 more the app price it's less expensive than the beautiful 120 viewer of their catalogue. I have the Alpa WideAngle attachment and for 5x7" you have enough to 72 mm, wider for 4x5".

And for the proposal I'm in!