Nokia N9 Camera Photo Samples – They Rock

There has never been a doubt in my mind that Nokia makes phones with great cameras. They had this ability since quite early when they fitted the Nokia N95 with a 5MP camera with Carl Zeiss lens. Even had a beast of a 12MP camera which was simply awesome.

Nokia N9 Images

The newly launched which runs on sports a 8MP auto focus camera with Carl Zeiss optics. Compared to the Nokia N8, this is an inferior camera but it does take some beautiful pictures.

The Nokia Conversations blog recently shared some images taken with the Nokia N9’s camera and posted the images. Most of them are brilliant and look stunning. The images have not been altered from their original form. Here are some of the image samples taken from the camera.


What do you think? You can view the entire gallery on the Nokia Conversations blog.

[Tutorial] Long Exposure Photography: Writing Your Name

In my previous article, I explained about long exposure photography, the technique involved and the important features and materials you require while shooting photos in slow shutter.  In this article, I’ll show how you can take long exposed photos. In this simple tutorial, you’ll learn how to create the following effect – Writing your own name

Long Exposure Photography

Materials Required

Flashlight or LED

You can use any kind of light source, but make sure that you can control the light. For best results, stick to a flashlight or an LED.

Setting Up Things

First things first. Get your camera and set it on your tripod or on a flat surface (make sure it does not shake). Set the focus of your camera using the auto-focus mode or AF mode. Once the camera is focused, switch it to manual mode and do the following changes:

Set your camera ISO to 100 or 200. Always use lower ISO when doing long exposure photography. It reduces the noise.

Shutter Speed
Since we’re writing a name, we require ample amount of time. Therefore, we need to keep the camera shutter open for a longer period. I took about 20 seconds to write my name. I suggest you to set the shutter speed to at least 30 seconds.

Aperture completely depends on your lens/zoom, focal, exposure etc. I generally use f/11. Depending on the conditions, figure out what aperture suits best and set the aperture.

Once you’ve changed the above mentioned settings, you’re now ready to go.

Turn off the lights and press the shutter-release button. The camera shutter is now open. Without shaking the camera, slowly go and stand in front of it. Turn on the flashlight and start writing your name in mirror image (or you can draw/scribble something). The shutter will close after 30 seconds, so you need to be as quick as possible.

You may commit a few mistakes, but repeating the steps several times will definitely give you a result.

Now you can start experimenting with different colored flashlights to get some nicely exposed pictures. Use your art and make it look colorful! Here’s something you can try as well. Turn yourself into a ghost!

Long Exposure Photography

P.S. You need to remotely trigger the shutter-release button to do this, so you will need a wireless remote.

Best iPhone Photography Apps

There are over hundreds of photography-related iPhone apps available in the iTunes app store and it’s quite hard to decide which app is the best. Here’s a list of carefully selected iPhone apps that will easily capture/edit your photos and share them with your friends.

Free Apps


Instagram lets you take quick photos or use photos that already exist in your iPhone, apply creative filters and share it with friends on Flickr, Facebook or Twitter. You can also tag your photos with location using your foursquare account.

Instagram has over 11 different custom filters you can apply to your photos.


PicPlz is similar to Instagram which allows you to quickly snap photos and share it among your online friends. In competition with Instagram, PicPlz also introduced filters to add some effect to your photos. You can view a live thumbnail preview of what your photo will look like with different filters.

PicPlz iPhone App

Old Photo Pro

With Old Photo Pro you can make your photos look old as if you captured them years ago. You can manually edit the photo or let the application do all the work.

Photoshop Express

Photoshop Express app is developed by Adobe and comes with some handful of features. You can quickly edit – adjust color, crop, straighten, rotate and flip your photos and share it with your friends.

Top features:

  • Basics: Crop, Straighten, Rotate, and Flip
  • Color: Exposure, Saturation, Tint, Black and White, and Contrast
  • Filters: Sketch, Soft Focus, and Sharpen
  • Effects: Vibrant, Pop, Border, Vignette Blur, Warm Vintage, Rainbow, White Glow, and Soft Black and White
  • Borders: Rectangle, Rounded, Oval, Soft Edge, Vignette, Rough Edge, Halftone, and Film Emulsion

Picture Effect Magic

Picture Effect Magic can transform your photos into retro photo or a picture drawn by a pencil or paints, or done in a Modern Art style by tap of a button. You can add cool filters like Vertical Quad and Subtense which you cannot find on any other app.

Paid Apps:


Camera+ shooting modes and high quality effects brings in the DSLR feeling. Camera+ has key feature like a stabilizer timer and take photos in burst mode. It has 6× higher quality zoom with ability to adjust photos by flipping, rotating and cropping it.

Camera+ lets you share your photos on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and even email.

The app is available for $0.99

Magic Shutter

Magic Shutter focuses on leaving the camera shutter open and easily take long exposure and repeated exposure photos.

Here’s a video tutorial shared by Anistar App Studio

Magic Shutter costs $2.99


ToonPAINT allows you to easily create awesome looking cartoon-paintings with your photos and give them a fun animated look. The app offers the ability to change colors by double tapping on the color splat.

ToonPaint iPhone App

It costs $1.99


This app allows you to shoot an auto HDR just like the Apple built-in version, but allows you to capture 3 or more photos. Pro HDR captures images exposed for the highlights and another exposed for the shadows. It then merges the images to give you a 3- or 5-megapixel HDR image.

The app costs $1.99

360 Panorama

Panorama is very popular feature on most digital camera. This feature allows you to take multiple photos of a horizontal landscape which are later combined together to form one picture.

Its usually very difficult to capture multiple pictures and combining them together. This iPhone app makes your life easy. It automatically combines all the pictures for your and generates the final picture.

360 Panorama

It costs $0.99


TimeLapse is the professional choice for automating the iPhone and iPod’s camera to help create time lapse photo sequences. It is used to create HD videos on your iPhone and store full size, GPS tagged, photos in the photo library for later downloading.

TimeLapse is available for $1.99

Here’s a example Time Lapse video

iPhone Graduates as Serious Photography Tool with iOS5 Updates

Apple’s iPhone has been the weapon of choice for many photography enthusiasts. iPhone 4 has already reached second place for all the photos uploaded to Flickr.

iPhone4 is second most popular camera on Flickr photo sharing site.
iPhone4 is second most popular camera on Flickr.

With the announcement of features geared for photography in iOS5, Apple has made sure this upward trend continues.

What’s New?

Apple announced at WWDC on 6th June, these features for photography included in iOS 5:

iOS5 New Features - Access from lock screen and volume up button as shutter release.
iOS 5 New Features - Access from lock screen and volume up button as shutter release.
iOS5 New Features - Compose pictures better with zoom and focus+exposure lock
iOS 5 New Features - Compose pictures better with zoom and focus+exposure lock
  1. Most interesting is the ability to click a photo using volume-up button in iPhone 4. This may seem trivial, but it makes clicking photos in landscape (horizontal) mode much easier than before. Camera+ a third-party app had enabled this feature previously, now it is built into iOS.
  2. You can now get to the camera app from lock screen right away. No unlocking necessary. iPhone drops you into a restricted camera app, so if a friend picks up your iPhone they cannot see previously clicked photos, not even the ones they click. This feature is great to snap those brief moments of brilliance that were missed before.
  3. Pinch to zoom now works when you are shooting! Of course, it is digital zoom, but being able to compose better is an added advantage.
  4. While we’re talking about composing, iOS5 also brings in composition overlay for rule-of-thirds. To use, turn the grid overlay on and align horizontal and vertical lines in photograph along the grid lines – better composed photos guaranteed!
  5. Auto-focus and exposure lock is a feature most photographers use on a daily basis. It lets you focus on a subject and expose well for the scene by moving the frame around till you get that sweet spot and then lock the settings with a long press on the screen; now you are free to compose the frame to your liking without losing the focus and exposure settings.
  6. Photo stream sync. This will work it’s magic if you have photo stream enabled in iCloud. All the photos you take on your iPhone will be synchronized across all other devices. The only catch seems that once it is enabled, your iPhone will only keep the latest 1000 photos while the desktop computer will hold all photos.
  7. And finally, the post-production also gets an overhaul with new editing features such as crop, rotate, red-eye reduction and one-click enhance.

All these features certainly put iPhone in the league of portable cameras, and with features like in-phone editing, iCloud and iMessage to accompany the camera… it goes beyond what portable cameras can do!

London80GigaPixels: The Largest 360 Panorama In The World

A picture is worth a thousand words. How about a picture that is 80 Giga Pixels and is claimed to be the largest 360 panorama image ever created? This gigantic panorama has been created by Jeffrey Martin and captures a very large part of the city of London.

The panorama is hosted at 360Cities and provides a great opportunity to tour the city of London without leaving your couch. The best way to enjoy the image is to click on the start tour button which will then take you through different parts of the city allowing you to enjoy several landmarks and monuments. On the other hand, if landmarks are what interest you, you can also click on the landmarks button which will display a thumbnail list of around 15 different landmarks in the city of London. Clicking on any of the thumbnails will then take the image to that exact location.

You can also use the mouse arrows to move around and zoom-in and zoom-out to a great degree. The quality and clarity of the image is pretty decent even at the most detailed level. 360Cities also has panraomas from other major cities of the world giving you a 360 degree tour right from your desktop.

Adobe Will Change the Face of Photography with a New Technology

Adobe is out to change the very face of photography with a new technology that computes an image instead of simply displaying it. This new technology uses plenoptic lenses to capture a series of images over certain depth range. The result? You may have guessed by now that the images thus generated can be focused (not just zoomed) in and out after being captured.

The breakthrough was presented at a keynote speech at the Nvidia’s GPU Technology Conference. The technology is more of a proof of concept that ready for mass production but hey, it works! This can also make it
possible for the camera to capture 3-D images.

The concept has been proven and what remains is creating software for the cameras to do this magic. There is no word on when that will happen though, the concept is already enthralling to photographers.

See the video at this YouTube page.


ViewAt: Explore/Share Panoramic Photos Online

You don’t have to be a photography expert to appreciate the beauties in panoramas. These wide angle photographs encompass the view so amazingly that it looks almost real. If you have an interest in panoramic images, ViewAt is a great website to check out.

ViewAt has a large collection of panoramic photos that can be views, shared and rated. The images with highest ratings are automatically displayed on the home page along with their creators. You can browse through the images using categories like nature,  technology, historical places e.t.c. or search for them by location. Once you click on a panorama to view, it does take a few seconds to load but the wait is worth it. You can click and move your mouse in any direction to see that side of the panorama. The image allows you to zoom in and zoom out to get a closer look.

Panoramic Images

You can view the image in regular or high resolution, post comments on it, share it with your friends or find other panoramas for nearby locations.  You can also sort the  collection  by ratings or add the ones you like to your favorites. Each listing also includes a brief description of the location/event and the type of equipment use to capture the image. You can click on the creator of the panorama to see more of their work. If you like something, share it with the world by email or by embedding it on your web page. Embedded below is an example of a panoramic photo from ViewAt:

It is a great site for photography inspiration and to share your amazing work with the world.

Tech Gift Ideas for your Valentine

Well, the famous (or infamous if you live in Mumbai) Valentine’s Day is around and it’s time you decided to give a gift to that special someone. However, what if your boyfriend/girlfriend is a tech maniac? What if he/she likes to stay in the latest buzz or have a new gadget to show off (and hopefully do the same for you next year)? Those murmurs of acquiescence tell me that you do have such a companion and that choosing a gift for him/her without formidably denting your wallet is quite a nuisance. Fear not! For Techie Buzz is here to save your day once again!

For the Photography Lover

No, we are not going to tell you to buy him/her a dSLR (but if you have the money to spend, go ahead!), but the Nikon Coolpix L20 is a formidable point-and-shoot camera that comes for under $100. With a lacquered plastic finish this one is a good-looking winner!


However, if your Valentine already has a decent camera and uploads and shares them online, the best way to gift him/her is by buying a premium subscription package for the service they use. Both deviantART and Flickr offer subscription gifts with messages that add an extra bit of love to the gift!


With deviantART, all you have to do is browse to the person’s profile and click on the Givebutton followed by the Give subscriptionbutton and following the on-screen instructions. With Flickr, just navigate to the gift page and buy a subscription. The person who receives it has to redeem the gift code. Simple!


For the Music Lover

While the iPod Touch would be the preferred gift idea of the rich, it will not be a gift idea from Techie Buzz. We like it when awesome things are bundled at a low price! The favored music player that is pretty cheap is the Sansa Clip from Sandisk. This David of a player laughs at the Goliaths like Apple and Samsung with its beautifully rich sound reproduction. Supporting MP3, WMA, secured WMA and Audible eBooks, this is one player that does everything in a tiny package. Best part? It’s dirt cheap at around $50 for the 4GB version. The Clip+ which supports microSD extendable memory is also around the same price. Verdict: Get the Clip+ you will not regret it!


However, if your Valentine is an Apple fan, the new 3rd Gen iPod Shuffle is quite the formidable player. With its sleek looks and beautiful array of colors and the amazing Apple sound quality to boot, this one is a sure-fire winner at $79 or less. Since I personally use this player, I would recommend it to anyone who travels via public transport. The earphone controls are a godsend even though the sound is not all that great via the headphones. However, you can get an adapter for the controls and use your own earphones if you want.


If your loved one uses quite a lot, you can even gift the radio subscription for him/her! Just click on the subscribe button and click on the For friendtab and do the rest! Or, just click here for giving the gift of a subscription.


For the Gamer

Ah, the Gamer. So many games and hardware to choose from what do you exactly buy him (mostly)/her? There is the constant fear of your Valentine saying Oh I have this gameor Aw, this game sucks!. However, knowing gamers as I do, most of the hardcore gamers truly enjoy retro games. So one of the favorite gaming devices is the GP2X Wiz. Though it is pricey, it is a godsend for retro gamers and has a touch-screen and emulators for quite a few gaming devices of yore.


As for real games, there is always a sale on Steam or Direct2Drive regarding games and you can give the gift of a game on both these websites. Good Old Games also has the option of gifting games, but the fact of the matter is that is DRM-free completely and has amazing old games that still fail to bore you! So if your boyfriend/girlfriend likes gaming, these are the places to be!

Do tell us what you bought for your Valentine and how it was received in the comments!