App is most popular with mobile filmmakers
By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)
Ansel Adams once said that the best camera you have is the one you have with you. And with everyone these days walking around with a phone/computer/camera in their pocket, mobile filmmaking has become a bonafide art form. So much so, that Oscar winners have received accolades for films finished on their iPhones. So if you haven’t joined the mobile filmmaking revolution, but have thought about dipping your toes in the pool, there’s no time like the present, as the most popular video camera app amongst mobile filmmakers – FiLMiC Pro – is currently free in the iTunes Apps Store.
Cinegenix’s App Store description for its FiLMiC Pro video camera app begins with a shockingly bold statement. According to the company, its iOS app “beat the $5000 Sony FS100 and tied the $13,000 Canon C300 in blind audience testing” in a recent video camera shootout. Even more shocking, perhaps, is that the quality of videos captured using its popular iPhone and iPad app is so good that we absolutely believe that claim. – Zach Epstein, BGR
What makes FiLMiC Pro so popular is the amount of control it offers mobile filmmakers to create their videos. FiLMiC Pro offers the ability to not only lock in your focus, but also white balance, exposure, frame rate, aspect ratio, variable bit rate, chroma key, external audio monitoring … the list goes on and on. Check out these features:
- Real time, 4x Zoom
- 30 variable capture/output frame rates
- 3 Separate shooting modes
- 4 selectable resolutions including 2 iFrame modes
- Audio metering and monitoring
- Stereo recording support
- Event mode: with record/pause/record feature
- Customizable saved settings
- Aspect ratio overlays (2.35:1, 4:3, 16:9)
- Thirds guide for dynamic composition
- iTunes File Sharing
- 6 different upload destinations
- 4 variable bitrate options per resolution
Not bad for an app that’s regularly just $4.99. But right now, iTunes has it for free, so there’s no time like the present to download FiLMiC Pro and give it a go. And if you’ve been looking at your iPad and wondering how you can use that as a secondary camera, FiLMiC Pro is a universal app, so it works there as well. Now sure, you’re flirting with looking like an utter dork by doing so, but if you also pick up the iOgrapher iPad camera stabilizer which really makes all the difference when shooting iPad style and can turn your tablet into a bonafide studio camera for YouTubin.
Anyway, while it’s a few years old, the video below by Ryan Connolly of Film Riot has a decent breakdown of the basic functions of FiLMiC Pro and just how easy it is to use. And FiLMiC Pro’s website has several video tutorials to make it even easier. But here’s a few tips to get you started:
- Set your device to “Airplane” mode to avoid calls/interference during filming
- Shoot in “Landscape” mode with your phone or iPad horizontally, it makes the camera much easier to handle and is optimum for the FiLMiC Pro user interace
- Close all apps running in the background
- High bitrates such as FiLMiC Extreme consume more storage, but also give you a better image
- Try to use a stabilizer or tripod when shooting to avoid rolling shutter issues
- Front-facing camera on devices lower than iPhone 5 are low resolution and cannot control focus/exposure
- Use 35mm image flip when attaching traditional photo/cine lenses
- In TimeLapse preset allow extra time for image to load when setting Focus & Exposure
- Check your Audio Compression, and if using multiple devices make sure they are in sync (uniformly using 44.1 khz or 48000 khz)
- Be sure your device is as charged-up as possible. When device hits 20% battery life, recording will automatically stop and need to be restarted
What about you Android users? Well, I’m afraid that FiLMiC Pro is iOS only. But you’ve got nobody to blame for that but yourselves, as the developers of FiLMiC Pro tried to raise funds through Kickstarter for both an Android and Windows phone development but couldn’t reach their goal. But if you still want it, LET THEM KNOW!
Meanwhile, if you fancy to learn more about mobile filmmaking, might we recommend Taz Goldstein’s excellent book – Hand Held Hollywood’s Filmmaking with the iPad & iPhone.