I like Darkroom from Stepcase Ltd; been a long-time user of the free version. If memory serves, it was the first app to offer image stabilization using the accelerometer and for that I’ll always be grateful (even though the feature can now be found on other apps). Up for review today however is the Premium version so let’s dig right in. First and foremost, Darkroom strives to be a replacement for the Apple Camera app, an endeavor in which I feel it has succeeded save 1 minor caveat which I’ll get to in a moment. What does Darkroom Premium give you over the default camera app for your dollar?
Good stuff, that’s what:
- Steady Mode – this is the hallmark image stabilization feature using the accelerometer and works wonderfully. You can set the sensitivity from 1 to 10 to favor speed or quality respectively.
- Shutter timer - perfect for self-portraits, group photos or any other situation in which you can’t be at the device to snap the pic.
- Fullscreen shutter – instead of some tiny little button at the bottom of the screen, the whole display becomes the shutter button!
- Autosave – this skips the preview and immediately saves your shot so you can move on to the next as fast as possible.
So what about that caveat? Photos taken with Darkroom appear slightly skewed from what you saw in the DVF when viewed afterward in the Camera Roll (see the gallery for what I mean). The reason this is only a minor issue is that the photos are in fact correctly aligned after download to the computer. Far as I know this has been an issue with Darkroom since it came out and why it hasn’t been fixed several updates later is a bit puzzling. At any rate though, it’s simply not a big enough issue to condem the app (though certainly worth knowing about beforehand).
Bottom line for me is Darkroom Premium is now my default camera app. Fortunately you can check out the free version before you decide to drop a dollar on the Premium. Apart from the issue noted above, recommended.
version reviewed – 2.2
reviewed on – iPhone 3G 8GB 2.2.1