Recently I wrote about how to really shoot better iPhone HDR photos. In the comments, Dale Chumbley suggested I take a closer look at True HDR, an app, I had abandoned in favor or Pro HDR. So, I decided to do some comparison tests between the two apps.
I did tests using their new “automatic” modes first. On both apps, this mode selects the light and dark extremes of the dynamic range automatically, True HDR taking three photos and Pro HDR taking two photos. But I quickly realized the only way to get a true comparison was to use the exact same base images in manual mode. So, the two images below were used to produce the comparison shots I’m sharing here today.
First I fed the two images above into the True HDR app. The app took 26.5 seconds to process the two images and returned the 2496 x 1856 pixel image you see below. Click on the image to view it at actual size.
I then fed the base images into the Pro HDR iphone app. The app took just 8.4 seconds to process the two images and returned the 2590 x 1933 pixel image shown below. Click on the image to view it at actual size.
I’ll be sticking with the Pro HDR app.
In every test I performed, including the test shown above, the Pro HDR app produced better results than the True HDR app. This was true regardless of which process I chose, including the automated processes. There seemed to be no advantage at all to the three photos used in the automated process that True HDR uses compared to the two photo process used by Pro HDR.
In addition, the difference in the time it took to process each image was dramatic, and surprising. The True HDR app took three times longer to process it’s final images. It also returned an image almost 100 pixels narrower than the original photos and the Pro HDR app.
The ability to control brightness, contrast, saturation, warmth and tint before saving out the final image gives the Pro HDR app an additional advantage. There is no ability to adjust photo settings in the True HDR. As a result, there is also no way to save various versions of a processed photo to see how one compares to another at full resolution.
Of course, your results may vary. I’d love to hear from other’s who’ve done comparisons of the Pro HDR and True HDR iPhone apps.