App of the Week – TinType

Ease of use: 3
Fun factor: 2
Results: 3
Price: Free
In App Purchases: yes, for additional features
Application Type: Universal (works natively on iPhone and iPad)
App Store Link: TinType

Mystic Pier - Original

Mystic Pier – Original

Mystic Pier - TinType

Mystic Pier – TinType

The TinType app has a beautiful graphic design to it. Unfortunately this significantly reduces the amount of space you have for the image you’re editing. On the iPhone this makes editing difficult. Even on the iPad it’s not ideal. I found myself frequently saving the images to my photo library and opening the full size image there to see what I had done, which is not a great workflow.

The app has an interesting sales model. In the free version you can see all of the options and apply them to your images, but you can’t save the results without purchasing the upgrade. I like this idea better than how many other apps handle this. In most cases, you’re required to purchase the add-ons first before you can see them in action.

TinType is pretty simple to use. There’s one slider that controls the contrast, and three other options. One creates a vignette blur effect. A second adds one of three dust and scratches filters. The third adds one of three frame options to give the edges of the image an aged and worn look.

Mount Vernon Slave Cabin - Original

Mount Vernon Slave Cabin – Original

Slave Cabin - TinType

Slave Cabin – TinType

Given how simple it is you might wonder why I scored it a three for ease of use. The main problem was frequent crashes. This was most common when trying to open a new image, but also happened a couple times when I tried to saved my work, forcing me to start over.

You can save to your photo library, Facebook or Instagram, in one of two resolutions – hi-res or normal The actual resolutions are the full resolution of the original and one quarter of the original respectively.

Found a bug in display of the blur function. The blurred layer appeared sideways until I saved, but did save correctly. One other issue I ran into was that the iPhone version lost the ability to open images in any of my photo library albums other than the camera roll.

The app includes a camera function, but I never like to use those. I always like to get a ‘normal’ image first, then edit later, just for flexibility.

One other nice feature is the page describing what tin types are and their history.

The Great Spirit - Original

The Great Spirit – Original

The Great Spirit - TinType

The Great Spirit – TinType

Szent Istvan Ter - Original

Szent Istvan Ter – Original

Szent Istvan Ter - TinType

Szent Istvan Ter – TinType

House of the Country - Original

House of the Country – Original

House of the Country - TinType

House of the Country – TinType

Flume Covered Bridge - Original

Flume Covered Bridge – Original

Flume Covered Bridge - Tintype

Flume Covered Bridge – Tintype

Saint Publius Cathedral - Original

Saint Publius Cathedral – Original

Saint Publius Cathedral - TinType

Saint Publius Cathedral – TinType

Overall I think this application has a good concept, but could be more fully developed. Aside from fixing the crashes, more frames and filters would be great additions. So would the ability to control the effect of the blurring vignetter, both in the area of focus and in the degree of blurriness. Most of all, I’d love to see the ability to see the image full screen during editing.

Here are some more examples of what I was able to do with TinType this week. Click on any of the images to see a larger version.