SynchroCam Tips

Honestly it can be a bit tricky to get the desired effect with SynchroCam. But fear not! Here are some tips to get you the best possible results. It can be pretty rewarding when you get it just right.

First, make sure both devices are on the same wi-fi network. If no wi-fi is available, you can use bluetooth. If you want to use wi-fi you'll get better results if you go into your device's Settings app and disable bluetooth on both devices. Sometimes Apple's connectivity library gets confused and will hang while trying to connect the devices. So if nothing happens within about 30 seconds to a minute, just hit the cancel "X" on both devices and try again.

Second, it really does help if you use two of the same device model. For example, two iPhone 4Ses or two 4th gen iPod Touches. I'm not just saying that to make your life difficult! :) Camera hardware can differ between devices, making it way harder to line things up.

The main goal is to get the live camera video on both devices as similar as possible. The rest will just kind of fall into place. So how do we do that?

Pro tip: hold your "host" camera in such a way that you can hover your finger over the shutter button. That way you're ready to strike quickly after you have everything lined up!

Step 1: Find a Rock

Find something stationary to focus on. Granted, SynchroCam GIFs with motion in them are way cooler (eg: scenes with glitter, confetti, piñatas, a bustling crowd, etc). But in order to get that lustful "3D" effect, you'll need to find something stationary to use as a "registration point" on both devices. This could be a rock on the ground, the corner of a desk, a clock on the wall, a door knob, a roof top, whatever. Now look at where this stationary thing falls on the grid, and try making it line up on the grid in that same exact way on your other device. Let's say I have one of the plus signs on the grid of my "host" camera hovering right in the middle of a small rock. Next, I'll try to get that same plus sign on my "extra" camera to sit right in the middle of that same rock. Perfect! That's half the battle.

Step 2: Never Trust Rocks

Double check your alignment by choosing another stationary point, eg: the amount of space between the top part of your phone's screen and a cloud, etc. Glancing between your "rock" and this other stationary thing will help keep things in check.

Step 3: Ready, Steady, Go

Try to keep things steady and carefully tap the shutter button. After you tap the shutter, you can adjust the speed, share to twitter, email it, or save it to your camera roll.

Note: If you disconnect the "extra" camera at this point, before saving or sharing your GIF, you will lose it forever! So be sure to keep your extra camera connected until you're all done. I plan on fixing this in the next version of SynchroCam.

Note Number Two: Apple's Photos app can't play animated GIFs! Don't ask me why, but yeah it's pretty ridiculous. To play your saved GIFs you can act like you're sharing it via Email and just cancel/delete the draft when you're done. The GIF will play inside the email composition screen.

Step 4: Party Hardy

You just made an awesome SynchroCam GIF. It's time to celebrate. I knew you could do it. Well, I was pretty sure anyway. If you have no means to party, simply pat yourself on the back or give yourself some words of encouragement.

Have fun!

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