Obscura 3 is, by far, my favorite camera app on the iPhone, and one of my favorite features is the ability to customize different presets for different situations.

I mainly shoot using the Pro Preset, configured to open by default when Obscura is launched. The Pro Preset has a series of settings: Camera Device, Format Settings, Capture Settings, and Display Settings.

As most of the pictures I take are Monochrome in JPEG, I configured the app to use a Monochrome Filter by default. Currently, my settings are:

  • Camera Device
    • Camera: Main Camera
  • Format Settings
    • Primary Format: None
    • Secondary Format: JPEG
  • Capture Settings
    • Flash: Off
    • Aspect Ratio: 3:2
    • Filter: M2
    • White Balance Mode: Auto
  • Display Settings
    • Grid: Thirds
    • Histogram: Off
    • Spirit Level: Spirit Level On

As mentioned, Pro Preset is configured to be used by default. This can be set in Settings > Camera Presets > Launch Settings.

Another setting I have is to save Only Filtered photos (instead of Save as Edit or Original and Filtered). This setting can be found in Settings > Filter Settings > Processed Photo Filter Saving Behavior. This step is important to keep the EXIF intact when uploading to services such as Glass.

With this setup, whenever I open Obscura, it’s already configured to take Monochrome photos in JPEG.

And when shooting, I usually set the shutter speed, ISO, and aperture manually. Rarely do I use it in Auto mode.