|May 15, 2019|
There is a sneaky way to connect an audio cable to the iPhone XS Max to record incoming audio. Think of it making your own Mix Tape on your iPhone XS Max.
You want to connect your iPhone XS Max to a sound system and record sound.
The best way to do this is to use a cable splitter that has a connector for audio input. You basically need a TRRS connector, these are visually identified by three black marks on the Audio-In end:
This cable is more commonly found using the "old" apple headphones that had a microphone connected to it.
Using the TRRS Connector, you can plug in any 3.5 mm cable. Now you can easily bring external audio into your iPhone XS Max.
Setting up The Connector
You will need the Lighting to audio-In cable adapter from Apple. (I wouldn't recommend getting a "third party" since they may not work for this particular situation.) You can get these from any Apple store for about $10.
Connect the Lighting to the iPhone XS Max and then the TRRS splitter end to the 3.5mm slot. Now connect your audio to the right slitter. (I would recommend clearly labeling the splitter)
|May 8, 2019|
Did you know within Apple Photos, you can search for "dog," "Grass," and other objects in your picture?
Apple adds additional "smart" tags to photos that work very similar to Google Photos. The key difference is that its right there on your phone. This makes it easier when you looking for that perfect picture of the dog or beach setting.
You can search for GPS location, Date as well as objects such as "Blue House," "Dog" or "Christmas Tree."
If you have some down-time, on the train/bus/store, try to see what unique things that Apple tag your photos. Did it spot the bird in the picture? How about the clock? Try to see how much detail tagging actually get's done!
Simply open up Photos and then click on the search icon on the bottom right. As you type your search query you may get some auto-complete suggestions. Note: I find single word searches to be better.
|May 1, 2019|
Did you know that you can scan documents with your phone?
Using Apple's Preview There is an ability using the Finder and other application to scan documents with the iPhone and put the scanned image in the document.
I did a test with my iPhone 6s Plus and the iPhone XS Max and discovered that the iPhone XS Max files size were larger using the newer iPhone. I did notice some slight difference in some of the receipt scans. The iPhone XS Max scans appeared to be cleaner.
It doesn't really matter too much since there's no OCR support, perhaps that is coming in a future version of iOS?
I scanned the same receipt using an iPhone 6s Plus and the iPhone XS Max.
Right click on the Desktop, and select "Import from Phone" then "Scan Document"
Your iPhone should turn on and be ready to scan a document.
Position your phone over any size document and the phone should recognized the boundary of the document.
Click the capture button on the phone
Continue to scan additional pages that you want to include. (For example the backside of a receipt.)
Click Done when completed.
The image should appear in a PDF document on the desktop. (If you do this in an application it should be included in the application.)
You need to sync your phone with your Macintosh to get this working.
This is an easy way to scan receipts when you're writing those expense reports. Evernote's Scannable is pretty cool alternative as it has a better focus and OCR capabilities.
There is no OCR Support in scanned images. A good alternative would be the Scannable app by Evernote.
The scanning functionality is available in some third party applications; Pixelmator. It is missing in some other applications: Photoshop Elements, Affinity Photo, Affinity Designer, Artboard, Evernote, Microsoft Office and Swift Publisher 5.
|April 24, 2019|
The iPhone XS Max comes with the standard 5W USB Changer. One thing that is interesting is the power adapter doesn't have the green sticker on the back any more.
See this side-by-side comparison with the Adapter that came with my iPhone 6s Plus when I purchased it back in September 2015.
According to Apple, the green dot was put on the Power Adapter by Apple to show that the plug isn't part of the Exchange program. See full details on the Apple Exchange Program page.
As mentioned in a previous blog post, 5W might be a good option for overnight charging. However if your traveling a lot you should consider investing in a more powerful charger that will charge the iPhone XS Max in about 1/2 the time.
Ideally getting a 12w or more powerful charger will be helpful when you need a quick boot for those crazy Saturday routines.
If your looking for a unique gift idea for "someone that has everything" get a USB-C charger with a USB-C to Lighting Cable. According to Apple this will fully charge the iPhone XS Max in about 1/2 the time.
|April 17, 2019|
The iPhone XS Max comes with 29 different Wallpapers of unique types. There are Dynamic, Stills and Live variety. Lots to choose from - many people will just use a photo of a pet or child as their Wallpaper.
An outline wallpaper is a wallpaper that has a thin border around the outer edge of the screen. It's a way to frame the content, and a way to highlight the notch on the top of the screen. It's a good way to have a distracted free home screen.
Hideaki Nakatani created a site with 32 different outline wallpapers to exclusively work with the iPhone XS Max. It's a creative wallpaper gallery that gives your smartphone a professional look.
The website main language is in Japanese - you can find English translations throughout the site.
Hideaki Wallpaper adds a simple border around the edge of the screen. This is the simple white color.
Some information about Hideaki Nakatani's website:
How about the wallpaper decorating its Home Screen? There are many beautiful wallpapers in the world. They are beautiful photos, beautiful art, beautiful graphic design. It is not product design. The origin of this site is to make Home Screen a part of the product integrated with the iPhone. I just wanted to stop looking for wallpaper that I didn't really like and use it comfortably. Although, there are many specifications not published by Apple such as the virtual size of the Parallax Effect, the rule of the color of the Dock and folders in iOS wallpaper. In addition, they are changed frequently in updates. It sounds like cryptography.
Check out the simple Hideaki Wallpaper designs at https://heyeased.weebly.com/exactly-max.html.
|April 10, 2019|
To reduce file size, capture photos and videos in the high-efficiencyHEIF/HEVC format. The "Most Compatible" option will always use JPEG H.264 format. However, you'll miss out on using 4k at 60 fps and 1080p at 240 fps because that require using the High-Efficiency settings. The main downside to selecting "High Efficiency" is that it may not be compatible with older computers.
Raw is the highest quality possible image but takes the most space. It's not part of the default Camera settings.
Camera+ offers HEIF, JPEG and TIFF formats. You can select the quality based on three criteria:
Camera+ keeps the options simple so that users aren't overwhelmed with various configurations. Yet it's way more powerful than Apple's Camera app.
One downside to Camera+2 is that there's no video support.
ProCamera offers four different file formats: Jpeg, HEIF, Tiff and Raw + JPG.
In addition, if you know your image quality you can change the compression settings for JPEG, HEIF. The default compression setting is 90%.
To enable Raw format, or any of the options:
One downside to ProCamera is the night shot configurations is hard to learn.
ProCam supports HEIF, JPEG, and RAW formats. There are no additional settings to change compression settings.
The nice thing about ProCam is that if you select to shoot Raw it does it automatically, there are no additional steps as there is in the other apps.
One downside to ProCam is that's complex and will take some time to learn. Once you learn how to use it, you'll be amaze at all the shots you make so much better.
Having more than one camera app is a good way to manage your photo quality. Simply use Apple's default Camera app for everyday photos and use the third-party apps to take higher quality pictures that you plan to edit later.
You should install these in advance to learn how to use them. Don't install these while waiting in line at Disney's Haunted Mansion. It will take time to learn how to use these apps and to get familiar with the different configurations.
This is a good use of "downtime" on an airplane or a train ride.
|April 3, 2019|
A few years ago I purchased the [Olympus XZ-2](https://www.dpreview.com/products/olympus/compacts/oly_xz2) camera to use as my primary video camera for low-light pictures. Since I got the iPhone XS Max, I haven't used the Olympus XZ-2 as much. I was thinking for my next trip, is it still worth packing the Olympus XZ-2?
A look at the specs between the two cameras. These are taken from the official spec documents from each manufacturer. (For the iPhone XS Max I am only focusing on the back lens.)
|Product Type||1.7" CMOS sensor|
|Aspect ratio||1.33 (4:3)|
|Lens||Olympus lens 6 to 24 mm, f1.8 to 2.5 (Equivalent to 28 to 112 mm on a 35 mm film)|
|Shutter Speed||1/2000-60 sec., Bulb shooting (Maximum 16 minutes at ISO 100)|
|Shooting Range||0.05 m (2 inch) to (W), 0.2 m (8 inch) to (T) (Normal/Macro) 0.01 m (0.4 inch) to 0.6 m (2 ft.) (super macro mode)|
|ISO sensitivity||100-12800 (1/3 EV step)|
|Type||Back-illuminated Sensor (1.4Âµm)|
|Aspect ratio||4,032 x 3,024 (4:3)|
|Resolution||7 MP Front Camera|
|Wide Lens||12 MP, f/1.8, 4.25 mm, 1/2.55", 1.4Âµm, OIS, PDAF|
|Telephoto Lens||12 MP, f/2.4, 6 mm, 1/3.4", 1.0Âµm, OIS, PDAF, 2x optical zoom|
|Lens Equivalent||26 to 55 mm on a 35 mm film|
|Aperture||Wide-angle: Æ'/1.8 and Telephoto: Æ'/2.4|
|Shutter Speed||1/22000 (Wide) 1/45000 (Telephoto)|
|Shooting Range||2.87 mm to infinity (There are additional third-party kits to purchase micro mode.)|
The best night photos require the lowest aperture. So, while the iPhone XS Max may take great pictures, if I am taking night shots, I might be better packing the Olympus XZ-2 for better quality night photos. This is especially true for low light video photography.
The Olympus XZ-2 is just slightly better in low light conditions.
The Olympus XZ-2 was announced on September 17, 2012. The iPhone XS Max looks to be a good camera replacement. I think the nice thing about the Olympus XZ-2 is how the back screen can detach making it easy to see the screen when it is high or low.
|March 27, 2019|
Google Photo allows iPhone XS Max users to change the background depth of Portrait photos. This is great news because you don't lose that ability when you upload to Google. Allowing users to safely delete the file knowing that they can alter the background at a later point. Prior to Google's change - there was no way to modify the Portrait depth other than on the phone.
To change the background blur on a Portrait Mode photo, open the picture up in Google Photos, click the editing icon, then tap again on the editing icon to bring up the focus and depth editing options.
Note if you're not seeing a change, make sure the white circle in the preview picture is center to your subject.
The feature works on all iPhones that shoot Portrait Mode photos: iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. Google Photos already offered the feature on Android phones such as Pixel 2, Pixel 3 and the Moto G6.
|March 20, 2019|
The Compass application is one of many factory installed applications that people ignore on their iPhone. People don't really need a compass to figure out where they are. They simply using Google Maps or Apple Maps.
I thought I check out to see if there are any changes to the Compass application from previous iPhone models.
iPhone 5s, iPhone 6s Plus and the iPhone XS Max in the same spot
The Compass functionality hasn't changed much between the iPhone 5s, iPhone 6s Plus, and the iPhone XS Max. The big change has been in the software - not much changed with the hardware.
I did notice that the latitude and longitude is different between the iPhone5s and the other models. (42Â°20'35" N 71Â°5'1"W) vs (42Â°20'50" N 71Â°4'53" W). The iPhone 6s Plus and Max is closer to the actual location to where I was testing.
|March 13, 2019|
One of the things Apple did with the iPhone XS Max launch is to increase the minimum space size.
Even with the "more disk space", there is still the need to monitor space to remove unused files and have space available. After all - you never know when you'll need to capture a video/photo at an event.
You can find out how much space you have available on your phone:
Go to the Settings app, then select General, then select iPhone Storage
Hot Tip: If the Settings App is buried in some folder and will take many swipes to get to, simply type "storage" in the iOS Search Box, and scroll to see the results in the settings area.
Chances are the Photos/Videos are using the most storage on your phone - unless you're a huge fan of music or movies.
There is an option to "Review Personal Videos" this is where you can check out the videos that are taking up the most space on your phone. The information is sorted by size with a nice preview icon with the date.
The problem is that the only action that you can take is to delete the video. There's no option to move the video off the phone before deleting.
Graphic Converter has a great Browse feature which gives you the ability to look at all the files on the phone. You can select the files to back up to the computer and then remove them.
What separates Graphic Converter from Apple Photos is that Apple Photos doesn't give you the ability to sort the view of by file size. So you are left to download all the files or try to guess which ones are taking the most space.
Graphic Converter is simply a better way to clean up the phone when you don't want to download everything.
Here are some of the things I learned using Graphic Converter to manage the multimedia on my phone.