Monday, 22 October 2012

LG Optimus 3D app DSLR Shot / Smart Focus

DSLR Shot / Smart Focus android camera app & Smart Ruler / Rangefinder app introduced at MWC2012

The promise? A standalone camera app aimed at delivering photos with the much sought after "shallow depth of field". ie keeping a foreground subject in focus whilst the backdrop is pleasingly blurred, for pseudo almost "DSLR-like" photos. How does it work?
By making clever use of the LG Optimus 3D's twin back cameras, simultaneously snapping one "in" and another "out of focus" photo. The trick is to have the app efficiently isolate the desired foreground subject  whilst blending it into the other blurred background image. Rather like how HDR blends exposures into a single end photo.

There's speculation that perhaps the 3D camera helps the software to determine what is fore/background? Otherwise we may be treading in the less sophisticated territory of having the user performing a finger-paint selection of the desired foreground.

An article found at NAG Online article that mentions this mysterious "DSLR" application demonstrated with the launch of the LG Optimus 3D Max in late Feb at the MWC2012 event.

Quote "The dual 5MP cameras also allow for better augmented reality apps to make use of the hardware, as well as doing some pretty clever things like using the camera to figure out how long something is (Smart Ruler) or to create a fake DSLR-looking shot with a greater depth of field than standard auto-focus cameras. Here I have to pause for a moment. The way LG is using these cameras is a lot like how Nokia achieves noiseless and sharper photos with the 808 Pureview. Nokia’s 41MP sensor interpolates pixels to create a smaller 5 or 8MP shot, working out which colours and angles are correct and mashing all the pixels together beautifully to create the final image. LG’s DSLR likewise does something similar, focusing the lenses at two different lengths digitally and taking their combined efforts to create good depth of field and colour reproduction, and to reduce noise. "

Mostly sharp in-focus (narrow aperture icon bottom right)

All blurred out-focus (wide open aperture icon bottom right) *Simulated

Select the foreground from the background. Note the rather loose definition of the foreground subject!

Bend for the final "DSLR-like" image with the LG bloke the focus of our attention and an otherwise distracting background all blurry.

Without a doubt its a very novel use of a 3D smartphone camera! It would have been a genuinely unique selling point for LG's 3D smartphones to have this feature! Alas... I tried but still can not find this application for download anywhere... Perhaps it was just an incomplete demo piece of software that was shown at the MWC2012 but for whatever reason, never finally released. If this app gets a general release at some point, I will gladly give it a try.

Drop me a note if you have any further info on this app!

*Credit to Bether senior member of the XDA Developer forum's LGO3D section for finding the NAG article.

In a YouTube video of the show, we catch tantalisingly glimpse of an icon for "Smart Focus" on the LG Optimus 3D Max but are not treated to a live video demo. I believe that "Smart Focus" and "DSLR Shot" are the same thing.

The "Smart Ruler", app IS demo'd in the above video that does make use of the LG Optimus 3D's twin cameras in triangulating distances. Much more elaborate than the typical ruler apps you find in the Google Play store. At the time of writing, it is available as a free download from the Korean LG World app store. If you have an LG 3D  smartphone, and have a Korean ID, please login and grab the app. Do us a favour and share the .apk installer file with the LGO3D XDA guys... we really want to have it but Korean LG World on-line registration is only available to people with a Korean social security number. Note, you NEED an LG 3D optimus smartphone to be able to search the Smart Ruler ap. Otherwise it's hidden from view.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Vintage American comic book ads

Before electronic entertainment... I remember back in the day when I were a wee lad in short trousers... at some newspaper stands of the the bigger UK train stations (must have been Picadilly) you could buy exotic imported American comic books for 12p a shot. You can tell they were imported because they had a purple ink stamp in the corner indicating the equivalent local price. That a favourite uncle of mine had a modest stack of them at my grandparents house and I'd pour over them on visits." Shogun Warriors" is a title that sticks in my memory! Giant Giant robots that transformed and combined from their elaborate smaller component vehicles. All kinds of awesome... I'll get to the robots later. Here's a nostalgic taste of those old adverts that ran in the comic. Still looking for the Sea Monkeys one.

 Energised Spiderman. I never had this but I knew a kid that did. It was a massive fixed pose figure. All hard plastic with a battery operated mini light bulb gimmick in one hand and a spring loaded retractable string contraption embedded in the wrist of his permanently raised left hand. Amazing? Actually even then I found it a bit rubbish... But it was a nice big statue at least.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

3D software differences in ICS for Optimus 3D

Macro update? Seems like no flower icon in the UI to indicate new 3D macro capabilities BUT... It really does seem like we CAN focus on objects much much closer than pre-ICS with the 3D stills mode. I can get a green square with a beep that indicates a good focus lock on anything as close as 8cm!!! Mind you... The built-in alignment software can't cope so well. The range of shift it allows is insufficient I find. I'm going to need it passed through 3DSteroid to see the results of its more broader alignment functions.

Check here for the 3D macro images before and after 3DSteroid alighnment (BTW that app is a must have!)

The native screen-cap function is now disabled within the camera and gallery app... so the following was clumsily taken using another camera.

The post picture taking UI is different!

I like the scrollable photo reel along the bottom It fades away after a couple of seconds left alone. All in all a definite improvement on what we had before!

HOWEVER... from the O3D feature list specified here...
"update for Optimus 3d 3d feature (DSLR shot, ruler tag, 3d macro, manual focus, zooming while recording)."

The item I can genuinely confirm as available right now is the 3D macro improvement. If the rest of those things are in this update, despite my looking for them, they seem very well hidden. Otherwise, they were perhaps just worthless rumours after all :(

A non-3D general observation is that the screen switching, scrolling is very smooth with the ICS update. Nice...

Friday, 12 October 2012

LG 3D Optimus 3D Max / Cube OFFICIAL firmware update in progress

OK I'm Home~  woken up my laptop... plugged in the phone via USB... Prompt on laptop screen says auto-run something or another... probably a bit of software on the phone itself... Now the laptop is telling me to install something else... It's downloading it of the internet now.

Oh my... serious iTunes for Windows flashbacks... hope it's not going to bring my PC to it's knees.

Full backup... Now Update!
I can see the PC is downloading something...

The Phone just rebooted...
Oh... something on the phone screen indicates something in Korean is happening ...
Phone is rebooting again...
The wallpaper is DIFFERENT!!!
OMG the swiping between screens is SO much smoother than before... is this ICS?

YES!!! Android 4.0.4 from LG for the Optimus 3D cube! Better late then never... and a very painless upgrade it was too :) Yeah... mine is a Korean 3D Optimus cube but outside of Korea is known as the Optimus 3D Max... You probably don't have long to wait for your ICS update, sorry to rub it in your nose... Sit tight! This is a great indication LG WILL get you your update!

ICS lands on LG Optimus 3D Cube (my 1st time Android OS update!)

Jumping ship from iOS in early Aug 2012, this LG Optimus 3D MAX / Cube is my first Android phone. The OS version it came with is 2.3.6 AKA Gingerbread. It works fine but been eagerly expecting a factory provided OS refresh promised for Q3 this year. As per every morning since Sept 2012, I've been routinely clicking on the "Check for Updates". But unlike every morning up to now, this morning the 13th Oct 2012 is different, I see there is finally a prompt that there's a new OS version available for my phone. (JOY!)

I'm so hoping this update is Android 4 AKA Ice Cream  Sandwich (henceforth referred to as ICS).

I was somewhat expecting an Over The Air update but the message indicates I need a PC to do the update. Sigh...

I've been finding iTunes on Windows PC a dreadfully slow starting software for a long time and was glad to see the back of it. I was quite happy I'd never installed anything on my laptop relating to Android up to now and I'd wanted it to stay that way, what with Over-The-Air OS updates an early feature on Android (appeared before iOS) but Nooooooooo... I'm now prompted to hook up to a PC... in this Post-PC-Age...  I'm not at home right now so I have to contain my excitement till later this afternoon. Good thing it's Saturday, I've the whole weekend to play with this update.

Heavens I hope this does not take all weekend...

Friday, 28 September 2012

Read Korean?

What do I need to fill in to register for a Korean LG Smart World account. I need it to download some South Korea only 3D apps and other 3D content... the application form has several mysterious fields I have yet to fathom. HELP!i

Information of others, and fraudulent use of a Social Security number that can be charged if less than 3 years of imprisonment or a fine not exceeding ten million won. Applicable laws of the Resident Registration Act Article 37 (Penalties)

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Egg Attack Iron Man

Snapped these at ACGHK2012. Seen these available as resin kits. They look fab all painted up. Sizable too... Similar to a mighty mug I think.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

[Q] Best 3D specific software for 3D Smartphone users?

Latest gadget? I've recently acquired a 3D equipped Android Smartphone. Got it just because I wanted to evaluate the 3D features. To test out how I'd like having a 3D stills and video capturing gadget that is always with me. One that allows me to immediately review, even edit what I'd just captured in said 3D. I'd love the hear what 3D software the rest of you guys recommend that specifically makes use of a built-in glasses-free 3D parallax barrier display, and/or twin back cameras. Features that make the LG 3D Optimus/Max, the 2011 HTC EVO 3D, and the Sharp 3D phone stand out from the rest of the overcrowded Android... crowd. There are newer Android Smartphones released with faster CPU, higher resolution this, higher capacity that... I've honestly switched from iPhone to Android purely because there's no Apple iOS 3D smartphone on the market at the time of writing. Other non-3D related smartphone specs simply don't interest me at the moment. All that really matters is the 3D.

Personally I make frequent use of, and can highly recommend the following 3D software... All available on the Android Play marketplace.

3DSteroidPro can allow you to take 3D photos in cha-cha mode (like many apps can...). Useful for capturing static macro or distant 3D landscape scenes. However, its the included 3D photo editing functions that make this app really special! Not only does it allow the common horizontal shift adjustments to left right images, but uniquely, it also caters for vertical and rotational alignment tuning! The only smartphone software I can find that can do this! Somewhat let down by its lacking export of MPO, while it's Side by Side Jpegs are simply not recognised as 3D photos by my 3D Optimus photo gallery app is quite puzzling. They display in 3D under Tobidale though! Try the free version first but rest assured that 2 USD for the Pro version is worthwhile. It lets you save photos at high resolution and also unlocks the auto-alignment feature!

Tobidale3D display 3D pics both in JPS and MPO format stored on you phone's local memory or from the many public web galleries, conveniently grouped into this one handy app. Notably, you can zoom into your 3D pics, and provides a simple crop and save function that is genuinely useful.

PHEREO browse 3D photos from their big web gallery. Can upload your own 3D pics to their gallery for sharing!

Interested in 3D specific apps. Let me know of your recommendations. I want to share your findings!

Best regards

Monday, 24 September 2012

Shell Ferrari diorama pamphlet needed!

Set complete... except~ for the freebie fold-out "starting-grid-diorama" paper pamphlet!!! The petrol stations here ran out of them here early on ;_; If you can get a spare one in your country next time you see them and mail it to me, that would be so so so so awesome. I'll make a video and dedicate it to you. Lots of love and all that...

PM me for goodness sakes!

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Friday, 14 September 2012


Very informative review. Exactly what I was looking for.
Leaning towards passive 3D glasses to avoid flicker.

Sunday, 2 September 2012

7 Eleven Gundam promotion HK August 2012

What manner of Gundam tat is on offer this time?

I can only make out a Harro shaped inflatable neck pillow.

Anyone know able to read the text details in this poster let me know.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Tamashii Nations 12"PM C3P0

Saturday, 28 July 2012

The ShowMe3D App for iOS!

I love this app. If you are interested in 3D photography, have camera equipped iOS device AND have a Hasbro My3D viewer, you MUST get this App!!!

I particularly like that it works with the .mpo file format. Like .jpg is a widespread accepted standard format for 2D photos, .mpo does the same for 3D images. Supported by Fuji's 3D digi-cams, their 3D picture frames, Samsung, LG 3D TV's, even the Nintendo 3DS saves its pictures and is able to read .mpo 3D photos taken with other 3D devices. If you want a 3D lenticular hard copy print of your photo developed? They want a .mpo file. That showMe3D has .mpo file support from the get go is fantastic. I've been successful in downloading other people's .mpo images to view via ShowMe3D using the Hasbro My3D viewer. This App unlocks a lot of underexploited potential by allowing users to easily create images to be enjoyed using the My3D viewer.

Download my 3D picture taken by iPhone 4 (I tested this also works with the cameras of the 3GS and iPad3) samples here too

  Cross-Eyed viewing

    Red-blue anaglyph 3D

If you have a Hasbro My3D viewer then I absolutely recommend this App without any hesitation! It's a killer app to be able to make your own 3D pics with an iOS camera equipped device.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Unwanted G-AGEing chips and cards?

Send your unused AG chip and any cards to Junior 'cos he can use them to play the AGE arcade game! or just send us a postcard to say hello :)
P.O.Box No.73229
Kowloon Central Post Office
Hong Kong
Ones we already have so far (so don't need) are as follows...
Age-1 Normal, Titus & Spallow, Genoace Custom, Zedas , Age-2 Double Bullet, Adele, Age-2 Dark Hound, AGE-FX, Legilis

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

New Gundam Pepsi cans (ver GFT)

Round 1 is out in August 2012 for ¥115 a pop (groan). They're just tins of Pepsi but dec'd in a limited edition Gundam theme to promote Diver City's Gundam Front Tokyo attraction. Regardless... it's Tat I want...

Gundam Crisis original 1:1 scale attraction at Fuji-Q Amusement Park

"Gundam Crisis" is the 1st life sized 1:1 scale full-on RX-78-2 Gundam built for the enjoyment of the general public. Posed lying on its back for maintenance, sporting a very MG OYW sculpt with a mat finish weathered paint job. The game involves a group of participants in a race to seek out several scattered docking points for your Gundam PDA's registration. You get to run around it and observe this sleeping giant from a high vantage raised walkway. The first to find'm-all gets to go on a mission to pilot the Gundam! Look out for several "exclusive" on-site store merchandise including an MG RX-78-2 ver Gundam Crisis which is just the OYW version re-boxed (tell me if there are other reasons to pick this up). Also a Metal Composite GFF RX-78-2 (again in unique packaging).
This attraction has been open since 2007, being just one of the many attractions to be found at the Fuji-Q amusement park Japan. Gundam Crisis is still running at the time of posting but I do wonder how much longer it will be kept. I hope it's still there next time I'm visiting for our hike up Mount Fuji. Junior was a little too young for us to enjoy all there was on offer there (hard-core roller coasters are a major feature of this park). Pls Pls Pls still be there when we are next here again...

Gundam Crisis attraction Skip to 1:49 for the good stuff to start!

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Gundam 0079 Time Crisis!

That's what I thought too! Wish they'd release an English language version of Gundam OYW PS2 game. (and added Guncon2 support while they were at it...)

Saturday, 14 July 2012

"The Excellent" Otsumami

Otsumami: beer-snacks. In this case its sticks of cheese sandwiched between thin slivers of squid... An "Excellent" snack it is too!

Friday, 13 July 2012

Alternate Mobile Suit Gundam designs!

Some of the original artwork on display at the Gundam Front 2012. I could have shot a video but I'd rather those of you who can, go fly to Tokyo to see these exhibits in person yourselves rather than have the experience spoiled in advance.
The proto-Core Fighter has a bit of a G-Force vibe to it IMO.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Transforming Gundam Cola Cubes

(Edit in progress) From way back in 200x these are 7 Eleven redeemed puzzle items? Stylised designs inspired by 4 signature mobile suits from the original MSG 0079 anime show. Cute retro looking and very easy to "transform". Minecraft - block like character designs. They have a Coca Cola branding on the back. Probably the sponsor for some promotional event. They have a hole you can use to thread the matching coloured tag that comes included. I've shown the green Zaku II Cola Cube but have since acquired the RX78-2, the GM and Char's Custom Zaku II making a complete set. Other than the printed adornments, they are all pretty much the same mold and share the same transformation. Only the command antenna of Char's custom and the Gundam's V fin being  minor physical differentiators. The coloured plastic cube is a simple blank canvas with variations in their colourful patterns printed on them. To the artist's credit, these caricatures definitely work since you can easily tell exactly what iconic MS each block is trying to represent.
They are well made. No paint chips on mine so far and the hard plastics seem pretty sturdy. Something odd for the collection. If these were ever made available outside of Hong Kong let me know.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Robocop 2 original movie stop motion puppet!

Circa 1990, for me, the most memorable piece of animated stop motion robot monster villainy to ever grace the silver screen and the last before CGI took over. Ed209 was great. Robocop2 trumps it. So much character in its movements, unfathomable detail in the miniature... I love me some metal pistons in a robot. Just jaw droppingly awesome in its design and execution in bringing it to life. The 2nd movie as a whole did not work as well as the 1st, but when I think of Robocop2, its just loads and loads of lovely meticulous labour intensive stop motion. The likes of which we will likely never see again.

Hot Toys has a figure in the pipes... Ready 2012/13??? Expect it to be massive and expensive.

I want one with an open head option and a working mini LCD screen that plays video

(Orion, 1990) The Cain puppet was designed and built by Craig Hayes (who designed ED-209) and a team of model makers and armaturists whose credits include Star Wars and The Nightmare before Christmas. It is without a doubt the most complex stop-motion armature ever built for a film. Every single part is functional, highly detailed, and shows an attention to detail bordering on obsession. Cain is
built out of machined steel, aluminum, resin and cast plastic, meticulously hand-painted and detailed.
Measures 15 in. tall x 10 wide x 9 in. deep.

Estimated value at: 30,000.00 - 50,000.00 USD
Sold at 37,500.00 USD on 2010 Dec 18 @ 18:42UTC-8 : PST

Sourced from

Failed Robocop 2 “prototype A”

(Orion, 1990) This failed Robocop 2 “prototype A” can be seen shooting himself in the head during the
film. Despite its limited animation in the scene, it is in itself a fully animatable puppet with rotating lights and a miniature face behind the helmet. This puppet is unique and was never duplicated. Measures 13 in. x 6 in. x 6 in.

Estimated At: 50,000.00 - 70,000.00 USD

Sourced from

Failed Robocop 2 "prototype B"

I want an action figure of this. In fact I'll take one of each of those failed Robocop 2 prototypes.

Stop-motion RoboCop puppet from RoboCop 2 (valued at $25,000-$35,000); This item SOLD at 2010 Dec 18 @ 18:39UTC-8 : PST for 30,000.00 USD

(Orion, 1990) This RoboCop 2 Prototype B stop-motion puppet can be seen pulling off his helmet during the film. Just like his other failed companion, this stop-motion puppet is constructed of a fully articulated and unique armature of steel and aluminum components. Measures 13 in. x 6 in. x 6 in.

Sourced from

Click here for related behind the scenes footage of from Phil Tippett's YouTube channel

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

McDonalds Food Changeables UK TV commercial late 80's

See the McRobots come to life in animated cartoon form!!! What a great find.

Monday, 28 May 2012

2old4toys t-shirts and other assorted tat!

Luvin the internets...
Keep your eyes open as there's usually some Cafe Press discount code being offered. It was a couple weeks before Fathers day and Bought an XL T-shirt (turned out a bit too big for me) and a large white mug. Both were with free postage in the UK arriving just a few days after making the order. Which was a surprise 'cos I thought CafePress had their original factory in the Americas. Do they have a similar factory in Europe too? T-shirt print quality is fine. Will report back how it stands up after a few machine washes. The mug is still at my parents house.