SophieLens is an app that provides different filters for your Nokia Lumia’s camera, letting you create artistic, unique and attractive photographs.
1. Press the Search button on your Nokia Lumia and then tap Vision
2. Scan the QR code
3. Tap on the link when it appears on the screen
4. Install the application from the Windows Phone Store[/do]
The app itself is particularly easy to use, and feels like the ideal companion for your Nokia Lumia. Start SophieLens and it feels remarkably similar to using the regular Lumia camera app. The screen is dominated by the view from the camera, swiping from the left-hand side will take you to your existing images, with several different options on the right-hand side.
There’s a button to turn the flash on and off, but it’s the other two icons that are of more interest: Filters and Filter packs. SophieLens offers two filter packs to get you started – a standard pack, and a second called Lomo.
The standard set of filters includes five different options, comprising: Cinematic, Flare, Mayfair, Roid and Xpro. Press the Filters button and the pack you’ve selected pops up from the bottom of the screen. As soon as you pick a filter, the view from the camera changes so you can see exactly what your photograph will end up looking like.
Cinematic was the first filter I tried, and the end result – especially when you use a flash – looks stunning. The image looks almost devoid of colour, high on contrast, and with dark shadows around the edges that make sure the subject is the centre of attention.
Flare adds a lot more colour to proceedings, looking like you’ve taken your photograph on a particularly bright day. Mayfair is almost the opposite, giving your image a retro quality, with details taking on sepia tinge. Roid helps to give emphasis to the colours, with Xpro again adding heavy shadows around the edges.
Those five filters are offered as standard with SophieLens, but you can also add more, with different packs available to download. The Lomo pack offers an additional nine filters, called: Daisy, Pasture, Hope, Lime, Afternoon, Brilliance, Mint Haze, Halo and Virgil.
Lomo feels more suited to traditional outdoor photography, and the contrasts between filters aren’t quite so great. They do allow you to subtly change colours, however, with Brilliance offering brighter whites, and filters like Halo adding a glowing effect to images.
Owners of high-end Lumia phones like the Nokia Lumia 925 and Nokia Lumia 1020 can also opt for SophieLens PRO, which unlocks two additional filter packs, called Vintage and Life in Mono. SophieLens PRO requires 1GB of memory, however, so it’s not available for all Lumia owners.
The Vintage pack provides filters that give your photographs a time-worn quality, often reminiscent of offerings from Instagram, but with more choice when it comes to the overall colours and feel.
The pack offers nine filters, comprising: Infusion, Dream, Memory, Albert, School, Cherry Cola, Grunge, Mountain and Golden. Each are subtly different, such as the School filter with a heavy hazy over images and what appear to be scratches over the top, or Cherry Cola, which offers soft, warm colouring.
The upgrade to PRO also offers a second filter pack – Life in Mono – which does exactly what the name suggests. Once again there are nine different filters: Contrast, Nostalgia, Jane, History, Ebony, Enigma, Brushed, Yearbook and Lifeforce. All of the images you take will be shot without colour, but the filters create slightly different results, with unique textures added to photographs.
For most Lumia owners though, the standard version of SophieLens is the ideal addition for their phone. For a start, the sheer number of filters on the PRO version can be a bit overwhelming, and there are more than enough filters to create some outstanding photographs without upgrading.
Are you using SophieLens on your Nokia Lumia? If so, what’s your favorite filter? Share your ideas in the comments below.