Photoworks HD Needs Work

Photoworks HD is a new iPad app that allows you to do basic editing and apply presets to your photos. The official description sounded pretty nice, but using it didn’t feel that nice.

Photoworks HD Editing GUI
Photoworks HD Editing GUI

In the Adjust mode you get a variety of sliders to control things such as brightness, contrast, shadows, highlights, etc. Each individual setting has a reset button which is nice. There is a reset all at the bottom. These sliders all work as expected, but the app is rather sluggish on my iPad 2 and it would often take a noticeable amount of time for the effect to be seen.

For the Effects options there are a bit more than fifty presets along with two dozen frames.

So far, so good. Now things start to go downhill.

The Tilt Shift option allows circular or liner tilt shift effects to be applied. You can adjust the direction and the “virtual” aperture value. The app is really sluggish while doing this. When you are happy with what you see you can select another option from the menu below and you’ll be asked if you want to apply the effect. You won’t be able to undo this.

If you do this with a picture in portrait mode (taller than it is wide) the image will get rotated and distorted.

There are also a number of problems with portrait images in other modes. A portrait image will also become distorted and/or rotated incorrectly if you crop, rotate, apply clarity, or use the tilt shift effect.

The serious bugs associated with portrait images need to be fixed. Another problem is that at no time can you zoom in to the image to get a better view of what the “detail” slider is really doing.

Perhaps with future updates this app will get better. Right now I’d suggest PhotoToaster as one possible alternative. It offers an equivalent amount of presets, along with similar editing features (but no tilt-shift at this time).

I recorded a video of this app and these bugs…but it has been ‘processing’ on YouTube for a long time. I’ll try to link to that tomorrow. Update: Video walkthrough is now live, although background audio track (totally unnecessary) is still processing.


Photoworks HD is currently available for $0.99 on iTunes.

Photoworks HD, the best all-in-one Photo Editing app on iPad!

Perfectly produce amazing photos with the one tool that gives you all you need! Wrapping it all up is the most addictive user experience you’ve ever had making great images.

Highlight Features:


Tilt Shift gives your images the depth-of-field and other visual effects normally seen with only professional grade DSLR cameras. Magically unleash your creative inspiration, while using tools for making great images with a mix of areas, both sharp focus and selective blurring. Further simplifying the process are settings for portraits, natural scenes, architecture and macro photography


Stretch your creatively further with Great Photo’s huge palette of Effects designed with experienced graphic designers and photographers. Simply select any photos from your album, then give full play to your creativity and imagination. Over 40 well defined Effects in various categories, including Lomo, Analog, Black and White, Classic Style, as well as 20 different styles of borders and vignettes


Clarity will quickly help transform “dull” or “bad” source photos, with a pixel by pixel enhancement, all with only one touch, amazingly analyzing brightness, contrast, saturation and exposure value, to optimize the source image, into a Great Photo!


Great Photo has some of the most powerful and easy to use Editing Tools of any photography app – including
– Brightness contrast and saturation control
– White balance control
– Color temperature control
– Tint adjustment control
– Lens correction
– Highlights/Shadow control
– Sharpen/blur control
– White/Black point control
– Cropping
– Flipping and rotation

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