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.