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A child of the late ‘60s, much of my childhood was spent huddled over mom’s Super-8mm film camera, using Star Wars action figures to create homemade stop-motion animation movies. Decades later, Boinx brings the same fun to the iPad, making short work of a formerly painstaking task.
iStopMotion for iPad is a brilliantly-done app for the iPad 2 and third-generation iPad, greeting new users with a clever claymation welcome video that demonstrates what the app is capable of. Videos can be shot with front or rear cameras, or even remotely from another camera-equipped iOS device using a free companion app. And thanks to a recent update, the app now supports 1080p HD recording with the rear camera of a new iPad.
Set focus and exposure, move your subject, tap the on-screen shutter button -- and repeat, with full control over frame rate (up to 24fps). Apple’s Smart Cover becomes a handy accessory for iStopMotion, allowing an iPad to stand horizontally on a table while shooting. While animating, users see the previous frame underneath the current one, taking the guesswork out of stop-motion. Coupled with “instant gratification” playback at any point and the ability to delete or duplicate frames, the app features an excellent UI also capable of recording time-lapse video.
When finished, you can add music and share via email, YouTube, or Dropbox, or save to the Camera Roll, where videos can be assembled into longer works with iMovie. Slick and fast, iStopMotion even managed to entertain my restless three-year-old son as we attempted a quick animation of Iron Man strutting across the dining room table.
The bottom line. Nostalgia aside, iStopMotion is an app that truly shows the potential of an iPad. With deliciously detailed Retina Display graphics and 1080p HD video in the latest version, iStopMotion for iPad is a killer way to alleviate boredom on a rainy day, while remaining powerful enough to inspire the next generation of animators.
iPad 2 or new iPad running iOS 5.0 or later
Makes it drop-dead simple to get started with stop-motion animation. Beautiful UI packed with powerful feature set. Perfectly matched with new iPad thanks to 1080p video recording and Retina Display.
iPad only, although iPhone can be used as remote camera with free companion app. Camera mount required for steady work. Stitching together longer movies requires another video editing app.