Using Your iPhone as a Dirt Cheap Color Metering Solution

If you ever find yourself in a situation on set where you need to nail your camera white balance settings, but you don’t have a proper color meter at your disposal, using your iPhone instead might be an excellent alternative. The ProCam app not only offers unparalleled control and DSLR-like camera functionality on your iPhone, but it can be easily used as an extremely precise color metering tool in a wide variety of shooting situations. Utilizing the ProCam app can also be especially useful for those shooting with a camera like the Sony PXW-FS7 in Cine EI mode which doesn’t currently offer custom white balance. US-based producer, director, and cinematographer at Prairie Pictures Martin Lisius showcases this particular feature of the app in the next video.

Using an iPhone app to replace a $1000 spectrometer? from Martin Lisius on Vimeo.

Typically, a proper color meter could cost you hundreds if not thousands of dollars, whereas the ProCam 4 currently will set you back just $4.99. Once you install and launch the app, everything you need to do is point your iPhone at an 18% gray card to get the correct readings. It turns out that the white balance measuring the app provides is very accurate and reliable.

Just as a quick reminder, the app offers a multitude of other useful features such as anti-shake with adjustable sensitivity, flexible video frame rates, Full HD time-lapse recording support, manual focus, exposure compensation, shutter speed, ISO, and white balance controls and much more turning your iPhone into a full-functioning DSLR camera.

If you need even more info, you can get another professional film/video/photo application called Cine Meter II, that essentially offers a shutter-priority reflected light meter, an RGB waveform monitor, a false-color picture mode, and even required gels to reach a certain color temp.

Even though the majority of the professional cameras available today provide an abundance of measuring tools, you can still find those apps handy on certain occasions even with some of the high-end cameras. All in all, there are multiple ways to integrate your iPhone into the creative process as using it as a reliable color meter is just one of those options.

[via: Cinescopophilia, source: Martin Lisius]

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