Hey Everyone and Happy New Year…another year has passed and Combo Apps is 3 years old. So I’m going to start off with an app review, basic tutorial and my thoughts on Filterstorm Neue. The app has been out for almost 2 months and didn’t even know about a new version of Filterstorm. When Filterstorm Neue went FREE, I snatched it up and let others know about it by posting it on Combo Apps Instagram.
Here’s is the concept behind the app. “Filterstorm Neue provides you with all the photo editing tools you need; everything from powerful masking tools to simple pre-made filters. It has been rewritten to to be faster, easier to use, and to take full advantage of your device’s hardware. Photojournalists will enjoy features like FTP and IPTC metadata with code replacements, purists can use curves and masking to dodge and burn, and iPhoneographers of all skill levels can enjoy the set of photo effects included. Combine this feature set with the beautiful fluid new interface that changes colors to match your photos and you have a photo editing package that can’t be beat.”
I know everyone out there that reads Combo Apps want to know what I really think of the app. You will know more as the blog post progresses, so let’s begin the basic run through of Filterstorm Neue.
We open up Filterstorm Neue and you get a picture of some birds. I was like ok…I preferred the old way with a background just being blank and no photo. The birds kind of threw me off a little bit and reminded me of Repix. If you noticed Filterstorm Neue has the some new menus and the icons are gone. The menu looks really slick and clean…just take out the birds and I’ll be happy.
If you have and you’re using the iPhone version of Filterstorm Neue you get a photo of a Koi Fish Pond. Again this auto photo load up does throw me off when it’t the default start up of this app.
When you load or take a photo, it fills up the screen. I already don’t like this because it throws me off (again) of the actual ratio size of the photo or image you’re going to edit. It also made me feel the app did an auto crop (not good).
I pinched down the Hipstamatic photo so you can see what I’ll be using in the demo.
These are all your editing tools and options listed below.
Black & White
Curves RGB, individual channels, and Luminance
Histogram Display (in curves and levels tools)
Temperature with White Point Picker
Text (options include font, color, alignment, shadow blur, shadow strength, shadow offset, shadow color)
I decided to try out the Tone Map to see if anything has really changed. It has, so you will have to relearn a lot of the editing tools. You have to slide it up and down and left and right to apply how much tone map you want apply on the photo. I really liked the actual sliders than doing it this way. The main reason is you have to play and fiddle with it to get the minimum output to maximum out you want. This drove me kind of nuts because the sliding across the screen kept knocking off the numbers a lot. I don’t find this to be easier. Just really annoying because if I want to do something quick to post on Instagram or Facebook. I would be going nuts just messing with these invisible sliders.
Those are all the key features and screen shots for Filterstorm Neue.
I went into the settings to change the advance export option, so I can adjust to how I want to save my photos. At the moment I’m saving my photos to High Quality JPEG, I’m not really into saving all my edits on TIFF at the moment because not all apps can handle TIFF photos or images. They tend to crash a lot and I’ll wait to do high resolution saved images when Apple puts in 2 gigs of RAM to work with on their mobile devices.
My finished Tone Map Hipstamatic photo.
Now here’s the part that I really wanted to test out was the blur masking on Filterstorm Neue. This is one of my main types of editing a photo is to blur (mask) out a photo and only keep a one to few key things in focus.
Gradients, with various linear and circular options
First thing I like to do is turn on the “Show Color Mask” and adjust the brush and opacity in the middle.
Now let me tell you the nightmare with blur mask, first the button where to adjust the brush and opacity is gone from the bottom of the screen. You have to constantly hit the “settings gear button” to change the size of the brush and opacity. After you change the size it puts you on auto erase, so you have to click back on the brush button again. Not very user friendly and intuitive at all. Then the developer took out thee pan in and out button, you have to carefully pinch in and out with your fingers and hope you didn’t leave a mask or erase spot. Blur masking has become a total nightmare with Fliterstorm Neue, so I won’t be doing any kind of masking with this app. PLEASE BRING BACK THE PAN IN AND OUT BUTTON AND PUT THE BRUSH SIZE AND OPACITY BACK AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SCREEN !!! They were actually quite useful and made masking a photo really easy, now it’s a frustrating mess.
Here’s Vida blur, I’m not too happy with the blur masking job at all. It was really hard to get in the tight spaces, corners and edges. I’m very anal when it comes to blur masking my photos. I like them to look really clean and sharp, so I can apply the heavy layers onto the blurred background. It was really disappointing…
Vida Series 3, all edited with Filterstorm Neue on my iPhone 4S. When I was applying the blur mask on my iPhone 4S, it was really jumpy and a bit glitchy compared to my iPad 4. It was really hard to pinch in and out the photo because the screen is small and the menu takes up the screen. Overall I’m glad I didn’t pay $3.99 for Filterstorm Neue. If I did pay for this app I would of been highly disappointed because the app was really made to fit the styles of iOS 7 with a very bad UX (user experience) and lacking UI (user interface). I prefer the original Filterstorm over the Neue. I’m glad the developer will do minor updates to keep around the original Filterstorm because I will delete Filterstorm Neue until further improvements, the proper tools are back and better updates.
Filterstorm Neue is FREE until January 2nd and will be back to it’s regular price for $3.99, so you better get it quick !!! If you have any questions about this blog post please leave a comment or email me email@example.com. Happy New Year and see you soon…
Combo Apps: Mobile Extreme Editing, a group on Flickr.