My 1020 Vision Needs to REFOCUS


It’s a great thing to have a cutting edge photography technology in your pocket.  The creative freedom of having a camera with you everywhere is amazing and it has kind of been my focus while testing out this Nokia Lumia 1020 device.  This Windows Phone really delivers in imaging.

Earlier today Nokia released a new app called Refocus.  So I stepped away from usual creative thinking and have started pondering how I might use it to expand the scope of my photographs.  Please note that the Refocus app is for PureView Nokia Lumia devices with the Amber update.

Today, I just went out to the sundeck and fired up the app to see what it could do.  All of the images above are from one Refocus shot.  Let’s check it out.

I installed it on both my Nokia Lumia 920 and the Lumia 1020.   I will say that it is a bit slower on the 920 and it froze on first use.  I recommend installing it and rebooting the phone if you have a Lumia 92X device.

OK, so I went on out to the very photogenic sundeck that we have here at the building and fired up the app.  When you first run it, it takes you through a brief tutorial.  I’ll tell you that for maximum effect you want to have a subject pretty close to you while you shoot.  You can see that I had a flower close in the foreground.  When you push the shutter, the app and camera seem to quickly scan the scene and then takes a burst of shots.  This takes a couple of seconds to complete and you need to hold the camera relatively still.  If it moves, you can still get a good effect, but the positioning of the items in the shot might adjust within the frame.

After you take the shot, the camera processes the individual exposures into a Refocus photograph.  From that point you have options to poke around and see the refocus points.  You also have the option to put everything in focus, which is nice for some shots. Here is my test shot all in focus.


This is really cool.  I’m used to taking picture where the flower in front will be in crisp focus and the background would be blurred out.  I can see how this feature could be useful for some landscapes shots, as an example.

Now this next picture is what I would normally shoot.


Remember all that I did was to tap the flower with my finger and the app adjusted my perspective to this shot.

If I’m remembering correctly the app will do between 2 and 8 focus points.  For this picture it did 3.  Here is the 2nd version with the furthest focus point, in focus.


As you can see, our flower is out of focus and our attention is sent into the distance, all the way out to that building on the Sunset Strip.

Our final focus point is back closer, but just beyond the main flower.


So the twigs and smaller flowers are now in focus.  That was the final focus point, but like the infomercials say “Wait…there’s more!”.

There is also the option to use the focus points with a feature called “Color Pop”.  Yes, I pulled an example for you.  Here it is.


So for this, I had to do no editing.  I just had to go into “Color Pop” mode and tap my finger on the flower. Easy.

For each of the pictures shown above, I had to hit save in Nokia Refocus and then go to my Camera Roll and open the image in an editor. I didn’t make any changes in the editor, but I used it to save that version into the Saved Pictures folder.  Nokia Focus only displays the your most recent choice, so you will only see one of the above choices at a time.  I just saved each choice manually, so that I could share them with you.  I hope a future updates allows an “Export” like feature.

Of course, there is sharing.  The REALLY cool thing is that you can share a file that the recipient can then play with.  The app first uploads the image to SkyDrive and then gives it a url like this: <—that’s the image from the examples in this blog.  It will let you email or SMS that link.  If you choose to share via Social Media, it will do much the same thing using the Windows Phone social media integration.  The REALLY cool thing is that on Facebook, the image is playable right in the Timeline with no need to go to an external browser.  You can see it on my post here:

So that’s Nokia Refocus.  Get out there and have some fun!

About jeffdalydose

...a little bit of this, a little bit of that, and a whole lot of awesome!

Posted on November 13, 2013, in Photography, Reviews, Technology and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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