Setting Exposure and Focus independently with Android

In my previous post about the first Android apps I’m using on my new LG Nexus 5 I mentioned Camera FV-5 which allows to set focus and exposure separately but still didn’t just feel very comfortable to me. Setting focus and exposure just didn’t work really quick and sometimes I had to tap several times to get it working as desired. Also, the UI of Camera FV-5 is little too cluttered for my taste.

Please welcome Camera Awesome by SmugMug, the people behind the same-named photo sharing site. Besides some rather mediocre editing features (filters, frames..) what really makes it stand out for me is its working tapping functionality. If you tap with two fingers you split the otherwise combined focus and exposure metering sensors, allowing you for example to focus on an object in the foreground but set the exposure to fit the darker or lighter background. You can also lock focus and/or exposure, move your device around and shoot another motif with the before locked settings. Besides this highly appreciated feature I find myself using the composition guides quite frequently, which offer horizon, rule-of-thirds and golden ratio.

Attention: Tap to exposure seems to only work with certain hardware, as SmugMug states on the product description: Tap exposure points are not supported by Samsung devices or the Motorola Moto X.

I’m interested in knowing what your favorite camera replacement app on Android, feel free to leave a comment.

Official feature list of Camera Awesome:

  • Shooting modes: Big Button (tap screen to shoot), Burst, Timer, Interval, Image Stabilization, and Panorama modes
  • Composition guides: set up better shots with screen guides for horizon, rule-of-thirds, golden ratio, and more
  • Face recognition and tracking: identify and track multiple faces in the shot to keep faces in perfect focus
  • Resolution settings: shoot both photos and video in the resolution of your choice
  • Creative Editing Tools: 100+ artistic effects, crop, rotate, and insta-edit with the “Awesomize’ button
  • Selective Editing: touch to add or erase which parts of the image have filter applied
  • Sharing: in addition to sharing on Facebook, Twitter, Sinaweibo, Google+, Instagram, Photobucket, Picasa, Tumblr, YouTube and Flickr, users can now share to any other services via supporting apps installed on device
  • NVIDIA® Tegra® 4: Additional features on supported NVIDIA® Tegra® 4-powered devices including slow-motion video, enhanced HDR, and integrated stylus

Camera Awesome is available on GooglePlay (currently € 2.23 €)

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