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Thread: Serious photo editing on Android tablet?

  1. #1
    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    Serious photo editing on Android tablet?

    I would like to stop lugging a Windows laptop everywhere I go for photo review and editing. Instead, I always have a nice Samsung 10" tablet and would like to use that. Even if I take my bluetooth keyboard, it is much smaller and lighter.

    So, hence my question. Can anyone recommend photo editing software for Android that at least has all the basics? I usually use Gimp on my laptop, but even if something that comprehensive isn't available, how close can I get?

    Edit: it needs to support Canon raw files (.CR2)
    Last edited by Dazz1; 02-01-2018 at 10:44am.
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    Ausphotography Regular John King's Avatar
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    Have you tried Snapseed?
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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    Quote Originally Posted by John King View Post
    Have you tried Snapseed?
    No, but it looks promising. Thanks for the tip. I will try it.

    I should have added that I need .CR2 file support. I just read some conflicting info as to whether it does or not. I will know when I try it.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    What if I said "No-e"? (As in "Computer says...")

    For evidence, feast on this,
    a typical result from a search using "image editor for android tablet".

    You might have to continue your biceps-boosting exercises
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    It's all very ugly. Snapseed doesn't do .CR2. Adobe does.

    But it's messy trying to open files from the camera's memory card. The photo editing software I have tried so far cannot directly open files from a memory card plugged into the OTG usb interface. Have to use a separate app to copy the files to the internal storage or internal sdcard first, and THAT software just browses by filename, not image. Hard to pick the files you actually want, and storage limitations mean you don't want to copy all of them.

    Slogging through all the options trying to find something that works a little seamlessly, but...

    Sigh. Might have to deal with jpg only when not at home.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Personally, I'd be more inclined to replace the window laptop with a sleeker slimmer(say 12") notebook/ultrabook type device.

    I've played with various tablet raw file viewing/conversion/editing programs, and of the ones I've tried, the best way to describe them is not serious editing ability.
    All the editing apps seem to be geared towards the instagram/snapchat type crowd that get thrills on trying new filters .. y'know .. the add a green cast or ye olde worlde type filters.

    Haven't tried the Lightroom app for Android tho, and even knowing nothing about it, you'd have to guess that this one would actually offer some serious ability.

    I have used an app called RawDroid, which has support for almost all raw file types, but it's main feature is more as a reviewing/sorting/tagging program. I know they've updated and ceased support for Android version below 5.0, and haven't tried it post that update period.

    As I remember Snapspeed, while it says 'raw file support' I remember this was only for DNG files, ie. native raw capable smartphone/tablet photos, or converted DNG files. It doesn't open .NEFs (that I now), and I'd say .CR2, or .PEFs and so on.
    And I think you need Android v5 and up for Snapspeed too now.

    Actually! .. I did install LR(Android) on my Galaxy TabII, and I just tried it.
    I can't see the .NEF file I just uploaded, so I'm thinking it doesn't work with camera raw files(maybe).
    Irrespective of this point tho, it's just so painfully slow to do anything! Press the link to add photos, and maybe 5-10sec later it responds.
    RawDroid at least responds at the time you press the function link.
    Like I said, the only issue with RawDroid is that it doesn't do editing itself, but gives you an option to edit with a program of your choice, and I think what it then does, is create a child file of the raw file for use in that selected editor.
    That is, I opened a .nef file in RD, and then selected an option to edit in 'Photos' editing app, and an image appeared, where 'Photos' can't see camera maker raw files!
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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    Personally, I'd be more inclined to replace the window laptop with a sleeker slimmer(say 12") notebook/ultrabook type device.

    I've played with various tablet raw file viewing/conversion/editing programs, and of the ones I've tried, the best way to describe them is not serious editing ability.
    All the editing apps seem to be geared towards the instagram/snapchat type crowd that get thrills on trying new filters .. y'know .. the add a green cast or ye olde worlde type filters.

    Haven't tried the Lightroom app for Android tho, and even knowing nothing about it, you'd have to guess that this one would actually offer some serious ability.

    I have used an app called RawDroid, which has support for almost all raw file types, but it's main feature is more as a reviewing/sorting/tagging program. I know they've updated and ceased support for Android version below 5.0, and haven't tried it post that update period.
    Thanks for mentioning rawdroid. It has the nicest browsing of images of all I have tried so far. It's a bit quirky getting to my OTG drive on my Samsung 10" tablet, but it does work, and it will open the image to edit in Adobe PS Express. Got to find a better editor though. I agree with your assessment of the target audience.

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    I replaced my tablet and laptop with an HP windows laptop - 2 in one (HP Spectre). I can use it as a laptop, or the screen folds right over and it goes into tablet mode. 4K screen, 500gb ssd, and it works perfectly if I want to edit a photo on the go. It weighs a little more than a tablet.. and as it Windows I could calibrate the screen using my spyder, so at least I know the colours etc are spot on. Most tablets the colours are set a little to vibrant for serious photo editing, because what you see is not necessarily what the end result will look like.
    Last edited by ricktas; 02-01-2018 at 12:49pm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    I replaced my tablet and laptop with an HP windows laptop - 2 in one (HP Spectre). I can use it as a laptop, or the screen folds right over and it goes into tablet mode. 4K screen, 500gb ssd, and it works perfectly if I want to edit a photo on the go. It weighs a little more than a tablet.. and as it Windows I could calibrate the screen using my spyder, so at least I know the colours etc are spot on. Most tablets the colours are set a little to vibrant for serious photo editing, because what you see is not necessarily what the end result will look like.
    I really need my tablet to be Android unfortunately (other software needs outside photography). I am happy to only have a subset of full functionality when not at home on my desk, so I think I will find a combo of android stuff that will keep me happy - eventually .

    I understand about calibration problems. Yet another reason to not go overboard on the tablet.

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    Tried quite a few editing apps today. Best I've like so far, in terms of features and control over everything is Photo Mate R3. I am playing with the free version at the moment, so don't have all the features and pop up ads are annoying. Still, it is the most comfortable for me in the way it works. It HAS crashed a few times. Need to play with it more and see how stable it is, or isn't.

    Full version is $8.99.

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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    So I purchased Photo Mate R3 - big investment of $9 just to get rid of the annoying advertisements. Starting to feel comfortable with it. It has very good preview/browsing of the images on the card from the camera (plugged into the OTG USB) including Canon RAW images, and it has a good selection of the basic adjustments.

    Then there's Snapseed. Also a good editor, but limited to jpg or RAW if the extra step to convert Canon CR2 to what it understands is taken.

    The issue that Rick raised, of screen calibration, may be a decider, even if I don't have a proper calibration device. Not that I fully understand it, but apparently RAW conversion makes the need for calibration more of an issue. So, maybe, I need to consider just working with jpg on the tablet. Easy to set the camera to save both.

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Microsoft Surface Pro still too big?
    If not, you’d retain full functionality and software choices of a Windows machine.
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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    Quote Originally Posted by swifty View Post
    Microsoft Surface Pro still too big?
    If not, you’d retain full functionality and software choices of a Windows machine.

    Having been burnt by a low end windows machine recently, not keen to go back there. I have an ultra slim laptop with 32GB SSD running Windows 10, and it can't even update Windows anymore because the updates are too big to install. It runs Linux now.

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dazz1 View Post
    Having been burnt by a low end windows machine recently, not keen to go back there. I have an ultra slim laptop with 32GB SSD running Windows 10, and it can't even update Windows anymore because the updates are too big to install. It runs Linux now.
    Sorry I made a mistake. I meant to say Surface Book 2, which is the latest Surface Book rather than Surface Pro.
    https://www.dpreview.com/articles/48...-book-2-review
    This link might sound a bit infomercial-ish but it looks to be quite a powerful machine, and definitely not low end.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dazz1 View Post
    Having been burnt by a low end windows machine recently, not keen to go back there. I have an ultra slim laptop with 32GB SSD running Windows 10, and it can't even update Windows anymore because the updates are too big to install. It runs Linux now.
    misplaced blame, I think.
    You can't blame M$ for the size of their updates relative to the size of your disk space.
    You can of course blame M$ for the over large bloated crap they install by default into their OS tho..

    Most likely a 2.5" SSD in that thar machine(the most common SSD type, and the cheapest form factor) .. and for about $100 you could easily update it yourself to a 256Gb drive too.

    That would be where I'd concentrate my energy on that device.

    As for any supposed speed advantage in running Linux over Windows(XP, 7 and 10) I've dual booted Linux(Mandrake and then Ubuntu) running GIMP on both OSes and I've always found that Windows runs GIMP faster.
    Never tried it on raw(NEF) files tho, only some largish tifs and mostly jpgs.

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    Former Username : Wetpixels
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    misplaced blame, I think.
    You can't blame M$ for the size of their updates relative to the size of your disk space.
    You can of course blame M$ for the over large bloated crap they install by default into their OS tho..
    Actually it IS Microsoft's fault. There own web site still claims 20GB is the requirement for a 64bit OS. Manufacturers built their machines to that spec. There are footnotes saying you will need extra storage to complete the upgrade (as opposed to later updates) to Windows 10, but as these machines come with Windows 10, that should not have been a problem.

    But , it turns out, you will also need it every 6 months or so to be able to do the mandatory updates. Their own update process can see what is available, but still it attempts to update, fails, and gets locked in a never ending cycle. A complete stuffup. All they need to do is break up the updates into smaller chunks.
    Last edited by Dazz1; 15-01-2018 at 7:07pm.

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    I'm not into the complexity here but is Faststone some sort of option here?
    Ignore me if it isn't.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark L View Post
    I'm not into the complexity here but is Faststone some sort of option here?
    ....
    Nup!(Windows only)

    .. so, consider yourself 'ignored'

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    Having a look at Faststone anyway. I think I may like it better than DPP4

    As for Android programs, I have not really found anything I like. I'll keep looking, but the best I have found are only good for viewing and some quick editing to see if the photo worked or not.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Hey, Dazz! Isn't there a Lightroom version for Android? (I I read somewhere.)

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