It will be another week before I have my fancy big boy D610 DSLR back, but there were things to photograph today and I still have my cell phone camera so I sucked it up and went. I also recently installed an open source camera app called L Camera and thought I’d give it a try to see whether the raw files coming out of the camera thanks to the new Android 5.0 camera API would be as magical as I wished it would be.
After using the app almost exclusively and editing the DNG files out of it on my Nexus 5 camera with Lollipop, the conclusion I came up with is that this has a lot of potential, but it’s not there yet. The following picture for instance had great results and I was able to edit it in Lightroom as I would my Nikon NEF files (minus the camera profile) and of course a lot less wiggle room than a full frame DSLR. I just want a little more wiggle room than a standard JPG.
The biggest problem I ran into however was the app is not really quite there as far as being a robust camera app like the one that came with my Nexus 5. The Autofocus had a lot of trouble locking on to the area I wanted it to lock on, there was no way to turn on the flash, no HDR mode, the white balance was completely wrong in many pictures, and it locked up my entire phone one time when I went to take a picture.
For comparison, here is an edited jpg using the built in camera app. I wish google would add RAW and manual settings (although exposure compensation is probably enough) to their app. For now, thanks L Camera developers and keep up the good work. When I get the chance I will check out the source code myself too.
Since I noticed this post was shared, you can click here
to see pictures (slightly better quality) of previous years.