I've just got back from a week in the French Alps, and as usual I've taken loads of pictures. As well as taking loads on my proper camera I also used my trusty iPhone 3GS, and namely the Instagram and Hipstamatic apps. Since I've started using the instagram app, I've barely touched hipstamatic and the multitude of other camera apps I've got installed. But I thought this little trip away would be a good chance to revisit it (it cost me money after all) give them a little head-to-head and decide once and for all if one reigns supreme.
Here are the results:
One point to note, is that all the instagram photos were taken on a sunny day, where as at least half the hipstamatic shots were taken in poor visibility and low light.
Generally I much prefer the instagram interface, not having to wait for the image to "develop" and the ability to try all the different filters out before selecting the best one. However the randomness of hipstamatic does sometimes produce nice and unexpetced results, but equally there are plenty of shots which could be much improved if there was a better viewfinder or if they could be applied retroactively. I also like the ability to edit the image in another app first (I use TiltShiftGen, quite often to tweak colours, saturation and contrast), before then applying the filters and thats before you even get onto the social aspect of instagram.
I'm not going to talk about the social aspect of instagram (which is great by the way, as you will know if you're familiar with the app), but merely comparing the usability and results as I had limited access to that whilst up in the Alps.
The main difference in the actual shots/filters seems to be the level of contrast, with it being richer in instagram and more washed out and dreamy in hipstamtic. I tend to prefer the results instagram provides - being able to browse the various results means the best filter is always selected, maybe if the same was possible with hipstamtic I'd use it more as too often the results aren't quite what I hoped for.
But then I knew all this before, which is why I hadn't used it for donkeys. But it does produce some nice images, and combining the two apps also gives some interesting and different results. So maybe I will use it a bit more from now on, if only to make my photos slightly different from all the instagram'd ones flying about.
If you want to follow me on instagram my username is bentopliss.