Pinhole Camera Review

No need to DIY.

by Pu on October 8, 2010

A pinhole camera, for those who don’t know, is simply a camera consisting of a light-tight box with a small aperture in one end and film or other photographic support loaded at the other end. Very often these cameras are handmade, but there are also quite a few commercial pinholes around.

The notion of pinhole camera has been known for ages. The first rudimentary examples of pinholes date back to 4th century BC, and as a matter of fact ancient Greek and Chinese  philosophers had written about them. However, the modern pinhole camera as we commonly know it is a lot more recent. It is believed the first photography with a pinhole camera was taken by Scottish inventor and scientist David Brewster in 1850. Since then pinhole cameras have become very popular especially among smaller groups of enthusiasts.

Doesn’t trying to imitate a pinhole camera on a mobile phone device totally defy its original purpose? Maybe it does, but we’re not going to start a debate about digital vs analog here. But does the app under consideration at least achieves what it was developed for?

Main Features

  • Up to a resolution of 640 x 640 pixels;
  • Double exposure on/off;
  • Three different films (color, expired color, b&w);
  • Flash on/off (iPhone 4 only);
  • Possibility to share the photos via Facebook or email.

Appotography Opinion

If we were to give an opinion only on the external aspect, Pinhole Camera would be rated much higher. The interface, at the same time very simple and easy to get used to, and the look of this app, with its cute low-fi allure, are both elements we liked. However, a photographic app must provide something more than cuteness. The shots taken with Pinhole camera, both with the double exposure turned on and off are quite neat; the available filters, although very basic, cover a small spectrum of possibilities nicely enough. What is really upsetting is the maximum available resolution of the photos taken with this app: a very modest 640 x 640 pixels. Definitely a little too small, especially for a paid app.

Pinhole Camera iPhone

A few examples of double exposures obtained with Pinhole Camera:

Pinhole Camera iPhone

Pinhole Camera iPhone

Pinhole Camera iPhone

Pinhole Camera only works with the built-in camera, not with photos previously taken and stored in the camera roll.


Name: Pinhole Camera
Developer: iA
Compatibility: iPhone, iPod Touch. iOS 3.1.2 or later.
Price: £0.59||$0.99||€0.79
Vote: 3/5

Pinhole Camera - iA

Alexander Toth October 13, 2010 at 11:09 am

Response from developer.
Thanks for such a great review,
Higher quality photo option and new effects are coming very soon, along with some new features.
Looking forward to another review then 🙂

PS: I like the pics you made, thumbs up

Pu October 13, 2010 at 7:48 pm

Thank you for your feedback! Looking forward to the upcoming updates! We’ll be sure to review the new features!

Fred Heins October 24, 2010 at 9:52 pm

I love the double exposure effect, but I want full res!

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