Review: FX Photo Studio HD for iPad

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FX Photo Studio HD

FX Photo Studio HD is a photo effects and image manipulation app for the iPad. Whether you’re just looking for a bit of image correction on a photo or to completely transform one, the app has effects that will fit the bill.

Here’s a bit of its introduction on its App Store page:

By pressing one button you can turn your shot into a retro photo or a picture drawn by a pencil or paints, or done in a Modern Art style. Alternatively, you can simply add a pretty frame of flowers or butterflies. Or whatever else you might desire – the choice is practically unlimited!

Here is just a short list of some effects contained in the application:
Vintage, Black and White, Night Vision, Pencil Paint, False Mirror, Ghost, Neon Light, Hue Green, Ripped Glass, Rainbow Palette, Scary Face, Ancient Canvas, Steamy Window, Stardust Frame, Mosaic, Burnt Paper, Explosion, Old Film Frame, Bump Mapping, Solarize, Tritone, Old Photo, Frost, Old TV and there are many many more!

The app is about to get a major update (due for release tomorrow, 2/14) and I’ve been fortunate enough to be using the new version for a few weeks now. Hit the break for my full review of the app and its latest update …

FX Photo Studio HD


FX Photo Studio HD boasts the largest collection of photo effects in any App Store app. There are currently 128, and the upcoming update takes that up to around 170.

Here are some of the other notable changes in the update due out tomorrow:

·         More sharing options
·         Documents folder for image sharing, which is visible in iTunes
·         Adjustments for every single effect
·         Printing capabilities
·         Possibility to share presets via preset codes
·         From the technical point of view, we improved time, required for generating preview and image processing
·         From now on you can apply as many effects to one image as you like

When you first open the app you can choose an image to open and work with, from any of your photo albums, from the clipboard, or from the app’s Documents folder.

All of the app’s controls and buttons are ranged along its top bar – from there you can: Load a photo, save the photo you’re working on, Undo and Redo actions, access a few basic editing tools, browse and choose effects to apply, access effects you have marked as favorites and any presets you have created.

You can create and save presets based on the combination of effects you apply within a session.

You tap on the Tools button to get access to crop, rotate, and resizing tools.

FX Photo Studio HD

When you are choosing which effects to apply, you can browse by category or see all the effects in one long list.


FX Photo Studio HD for iPad

— The interface is simple and easy to use. Everything you want to do is just one or two taps away.

— Making adjustments to applied effects is super easy – just tap and drag and it refreshes your image on the fly so you can see exactly how much or how little of an effect you want to apply.

— When you tap to apply an effect you get a status bar showing the percentage done and even an amazing fact shown in the same popover to keep you entertained, but you’ll barely have time to admire these, as the effects are rendered very quickly. When you share to an online service you also get an upload status bar.

FX Photo Studio HD for iPad

— The variety of types of effect is impressive. From image correction, color temperature, vignettes and vintage, to crazier ones like overlays of water or fire, or even scary, ghostly images.

FX Photo Studio HD

FX Photo Studio HD

FX Photo Studio HD

— There are lots of great names for effects. I don’t know much of anything about their origin or what exactly they do, but I enjoy trying out those with notable names – like many of those in the Groovy Lo-Fi category – like Bilbao, Lantana, and Sanibel.

FX Photo Studio HD

— Printing works well to any printer available via AirPrint.

— The number of save and share options is great. Save to Photo Album, Documents, or Clipboard. And share via Flickr, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, or email. You can upload to online services at up to 1600X1200 resolution – with other options being 1024X768, 800X600, and 640X480.

FX Photo Studio HD



FX Photo Studio HD offers everything you could want or need in an iPad photography app and more. Powerful features, an easy to use interface that lets you get the most out of them, and great results.

It works well even for those of us who are lousy photographers and don’t give it much to work with. It has become a real favorite for me, an app I use more and more often – and as inept as my photography skills are, I feel like this app is helping me to produce some very nice looking images.

Here’s an App Store link for FX Photo Studio HD. It’s currently priced at $4.99 – a 50% discount leading up to the big update.

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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