Combo Apps/Noir Photo vs Tonaltopia

Noir vs Tonaltopia

The show down begins with two highly competitive tonal apps. I was asked if Noir Photo by Red Giant was the only app that gives you nice monotone results. The answer is “NO” !!! There’s another app called Tonaltopia by Appnotix. I’m going to go in details between both apps, the pros and cons and everything else in between. These two app are the best at what they do but only one will come out victorious !!!

Top right photo was edited with Noir and the top left photo was edited with Tonaltopia.

Demo Photo

This will be the demo photo that’s I’ll be using for the face off between the two apps.


I’m going to start with Noir first since people asked me about this app first. I got Noir when it first came out over 3 years ago. Not much has changed with the app since it’s been out. It’s only had 3 updates and all of them were minor. It was really great when it first came out because it was new and different at the time.

Camera Roll-5236

I’ve loaded up the photo and it’s did a black and white edit. You have you dials on the left side to control the contrast, brightness and vignette with the are you want to focus in that area of the photo.

Camera Roll-5241

When you tap on the “i” you can read how to operate the app but it’s really outdated in today’s photo app market. It’s really in need of a serious update because it’s all words with no pictures and diagrams to demonstrate the app’s operations.

Camera Roll-5237

You can change the tones of your photos on the right side and the sides of the ovals. The problem is I’ve gotten spoiled on controls of the ovals and sides with pinching and pulling on the screen with sizes of shapes.

Camera Roll-5238

You only have 4 different tones, which is ok but I would to have the ability to change the intensity or opacity with these tones. I also don’t have the options of changing the focus to soft or sharp. I’m only set at what the pAgain it’s got a lot of limitations compared to other apps on the market.

Noir Demo

This is my demo photo edited with Noir. I like the fact that this app has the closet thing to Caynotype editing. I haven’t seen another app that can Caynotypes very well nor come closet to it.

Noir Collage

Here are 4 edits done with Noir. Here are the PROS for the app, you get dramatic photos, universal to the iPad, best cyanotype editing and simple UI.

These are the CONS, expensive for what the app does at $2.99, limitations on the oval, only a few manual controls and no soft to sharp focus controls. Overall I would pass on this app and look else where. The app is in need of a serious update to bring it to 2014 standards.


Next up is Tonaltopia and there are two versions of this app, an iPhone and separate iPad version. This app has a lot of tools and pretty easy to operate. I’ll be using Tonaltopia HD iPad version.

Camera Roll-5249

If you have any JixiPix apps, Tonaltopia operates about the same way. The app does need an iOS 7 update for screen re-alinement. You can really see the top header to operate the app. I’m hoping they will do an update to fix this problem.

Camera Roll-5250

You have preset bar at the bottom of the screen and tonal slide adjustments on the right side. What I like are all the choices you have to select from and the ability to mix tones.

Camera Roll-5251

Camera Roll-5253

Now what I like is you can adjust the ovals but it’s not a smooth adjustment. You have to play with it to get it to semicircle mode, so it’s a bit glitchy. Even on my iPad 4, the app is still a bit glitchy and could run a little smoother. You can black out what’s outside the ovals in the photo if you want a very dramatic photo.

Tonaltopia Demo

Here’s my edited photo using Tonaltopia. The PROS to the app are better controls, more tools, true spilt tone edits and cost is $.99 for each for iPhone or iPad version.

Tonaltopia Collage

The CONS are you have to buy two separate versions of this app, the controls are sluggish/glitchy, no Caynotypes and needs screen re-alinement for iOS update. Overall Tonaltopia app is the WINNER over Noir Photo. The prices of Tonaltopia and Tonaltopia HD are cheaper together compared to Noir (even with Noir being universal). You have better choices, more tools, options and creative output with Tonaltopia.

App List:

Noir Photo – $2.99 universal to the iPad
Tonaltopia – $.99
Tonaltopia HD – $.99 iPad only

If you have any question please leave comments or email me Have a great day and see you soon !!!



About ashcroft54

Gallery | This entry was posted in Combo Apps: Mobile Extreme Editing, iPhoneography, Photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Combo Apps/Noir Photo vs Tonaltopia

  1. I was thinking in getting Tonaltopia. Maybe I will… The iPad version.
    Thanks for the review!

  2. imapurrson says:

    I like them both. Don’t have the Tonaltopia HD yet. Thanks for the review on them.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s