Apps for Filmmaking and Cinematography

My iPhone is always with me and I’m constantly on it hence the reason I’m searching for an electric outlet for a quick charge every day.  Since it’s always handy, I’ve been using apps to assist in my filmmaking and cinematography endeavors since “Apps” became a thing.  Recently, I started wondering if Apps for filmmaking are as useful as their old school counterparts.

Are iPhones and iPads really that useful on a film set?

Suttlefilm_James_Suttles_ipad_Slate_apps_for_filmmakersI was on a shoot a few weeks back in Charleston, SC where, for the first time that I have encountered, the sound mixer showed up with an iPad Slate.  To be honest, I just don’t trust it as well as a traditional smart slate. Perhaps its just that I’m use to the standard smart slates that seem more rigid and durable than these.  Also, the fact you can quickly throw a new set of batteries in the standard smart slate vs. the slow charge capacity of any tablet seems to be an issue that has to be considered too.  (Yes, there are USB backups available but still, it is nowhere as easy as switching out a couple of AA’s.)

Aside from Slate apps, I’ve also encountered App light meters that are surprisingly accurate compared to my Sekonic that I payed 3 times the price of my phone for.  I’ve tested every one of them that I can find and they are typically within a 1/3 stop of my Sekonic.  Not bad for an app and I’ll admit that I’ve used one a number of times when I don’t have my meter handy (or forgot it on a scout).

The absolute best app available in my opinion is Sun Seeker.  I have used it on every single day of exterior shooting in the past 4 years.  It is hands down a tool that every filmmaker should have.

From the App Stores Description:  Sun Seeker provides a FLAT VIEW COMPASS and an AUGMENTED REALITY CAMERA 3-D VIEW showing the solar path, its hour intervals, its winter and summer solstice paths, rise and set times and more and a MAP VIEW showing solar direction for each daylight hour. 

It’s worth the $7, I promise.

At the end of the day though, Apps are just another tool in the bag and relying on them too much can become a distraction in my opinion.   The durability and power consumption needs to be considered.  There is nothing that looks more amateurish than having your phone die midway through the day and not having access to the basic tools of your trade.

Let me know of you have any suggestions on other Apps for filmmaking that I should try out.


iPhone / IPad Apps for Filmmaking & Cinematography

(I personally recommend the BOLD Apps)
  • Action Log Pro, 32.99
  • AJA DataCalc, Free
  • Artemis Directors Viewfinder, 29.99
  • Autostich Panorama, 1.99
  • Beam Calc, 14.99
  • CamCard, 6.99  Lite version is Free
  • Camera Angles, .99
  • Camera Order, 19.99
  • CamLock, 2.99
  • Catchlight, 2.99
  • cineCalc, 2.99
  • Cine3D Stereographer, 44.99
  • Cinemek Storyboard Composer, 29.99
  • cine TimeLapse, 1.99
  • Clinometer, .99
  • Clockit TC Slate
  • CodecCal For FCP, 1.99
  • Color Wheel, .99
  • Crew Card, 1.99
  • CrewTimeCard, .99
  • Darkroom Pro, .99
  • Dashwood 3DA1 Calculator, 14.99
  • DOFMaster, 1.99
  • DoodlePro, 1.99
  • DSLR Camera Remote Professional Edition, 19.99
  • DSLR Filmmaker Toolkit, 7.99
  • DSLR Slate, 9.99
  • DV Prompter, Free
  • Easy Release9.99
  • Exposure Assistant, .99
  • FilmCalc, 24.99
  • FilmSlate, 4.99
  • Final Cut Pro Field Guide, 3.99
  • FiRe 2 Field Recorder, 5.99
  • Flickerfree Calculator, Free
  • Gel Swatch Library, 9.99
  • Grey Card, .99
  • Helios, 29.99
  • iHandy Carpenter, 1.99
  • iLightPro, Free
  • iMotionHD, Free
  • iMovie, 4.99
  • IOD Calc, 44.99 (3D)
  • iPhilm FilmCalculator, 1.99
  • iSlate, 2.99
  • KaleidaCam, .99
  • KataData, 4.99
  • Kodak Cinema Tools, Free
  • LensSym, .99
  • Light Finder, 1.99
  • Lightmeter, 2.99
  • Lightmeter Pro, .99
  • Light Source Pro, 29.99
  • LVRUSA, Free
  • Magic Hour
  • MagicPlan
  • MatchLens, 9.99
  • Mattebox, 3.99
  • Moon+, 1.99
  • MoonPhase, 1.99
  • Movie Slate  PureBlend Software, 24.99
  • mRelease, 2.99
  • MYF Mobile, Free
  • Panascout Lite, Free
  • Pano, 1.99
  • pCam, 29.99
  • Perfectly Clear, 2.99
  • Photosynth, Free
  • Photo Tools Pro, 9.99
  • Pocket Call Sheet, 6.99
  • Pocket DIT, Free (RED)
  • PocketLD, 19.99
  • ProPrompter, 9.99
  • Radar Scope, 9.99
  • RealD Professional Stereo3D Calculator, 74.99
  • Retro Recorder, .99
  • ScriptCalc, 4.99
  • SD 3D, 24.99
  • SetLighting, 9.99
  • ShotList, 11.99
  • Shot Lister, 9.99
  • Sign-N-Send, 4.99 and Free
  • SlowMo, .99
  • Slow Shutter Cam, .99
  • Star Walk, 2.99
  • Stellarium, 1.99
  • Storyboard Composer – Cinemek, 14.99
  • Sunrays, 3.99
  • Sunrise, .99
  • Sun Scout, 9.99
  • Sun Seeker, 6.99
  • Super 8, .99
  • TechScout Touch, Free
  • 3D ST, 39.99
  • Thedolite Pro, 3.99
  • TheGripApp, 4.99
  • The Photographer’s Ephemeris, 8.99
  • The Night Sky, .99
  • 360 Panorama, .99
  • Tiffen Photo and Color FX, 2.99
  • Tilt  Meter, Free
  • Timecode Slate, 3.99
  • Timecode Toolbox, Free
  • Timelapse Helper, Free
  • Toland ASC Digital Assistant, 39.99
  • ViewFinder Cine, 23.99
  • Vis-a-vis (Red One), 9.99
  • Weather Bug Elite, .99
  • Weather Radar, 2.99
  • Wrap Time, 1.99