Giving your Note II vids some va-va-voom
The fact that anyone with a Samsung GALAXY Note II has a full HD video recorder is impressive enough, but recording HD video isn’t the extent of what you can expect to do on your S Pen toting smart phone – oh no! With its quad-core power and epic screen, the Samsung GALAXY Note II also makes for an incredibly capable movie studio.
In this concise guide to getting your Samsung GALAXY Note II’s videos looking a bit more “va-va-voom”, we’ll start off by talking you through the camera, all the various shooting modes and ways of getting the best raw footage.
Then, we’ll fill you in on a number of apps that will help turn your moving memories into vids that make you go wow.
Using the Samsung GALAXY Note II camcorder
It’s easy to start-up your Samsung GALAXY Note II’s camcorder; all you have to do is activate the camera app, flip the screen to landscape orientation and flip the toggle in the top right or left, depending on the direction you rotate the device.
Now, the red record button is all you’ll need to press to start making your masterpiece.
On the side of the screen you will see five icons. At the top is the camera switcher which toggles between your Samsung GALAXY Note II’s front and rear camera. The rear camera may be the better of the two, able to shoot full HD 1080p video, but the front facing camera still boasts a very respectable resolution of 720p.
The button below it is a video light toggle. Use this when you need to brighten up a low light scene. Underneath it sits an option to change recording modes. Here you can set your Note II to shoot slow motion and fast motion video, great for recording your kid’s relay race frame-by-frame, or speeding up your pets for some home video hilarity.
If you think that sounds like we’re getting closer to the va-va-voom we were taking about earlier, wait until you tap the magic wand icon below.
On top of allowing you to apply a range of filters to your video such as cold and warm vintage, black and white, sepia, solarize and posterize, it also includes a colour accent mode. This records everything in black and white other than one colour, perfect for making the boys in blue stand out when shooting the big game. Couple this with slow motion capture and you can make a simple goal movie shot on a phone look utterly spectacular.
There are a few other settings that can be tweaked for anyone who wants to tinker by tapping the cog icon in the bottom left, but rather than go into too much detail, it’s high time we moved onto some Samsung GALAXY Note II video editing apps.
Samsung GALAXY Note II video apps
Of course there are pre-installed applications on the Samsung GALAXY Note II to play back video, but anyone who wants to edit away, you’ll need to dip into Samsung’s Apps world or the Google Play Store.
Video app 1: FxGuru
The first app worth shouting about is called FxGuru. We could have started with something small, like an app that adds a soundtrack, filters or a simple overlay, but FxGuru is all about the big impact.
FxGuru overlays full-on 3D graphics atop your recorded video. Don’t be underwhelmed with our initial description though, with FxGuru you can choose between a satellite crash, a UFO arrival or an alien probe invading your screen and turning a run of the mill HD video clip into something all together earth-shattering.
In its free form, you can access three overlays. If you share the app on Facebook, another overlay is made available and if you stump up the cash for the £5.99 expansion pack, you gain access to thirteen more FX for your viewing astonishment.
Video app 2: Magisto
What if you’ve got more than one video you want to pull together and turn into a handsome montage?
The answer is simple – it’s Magisto. The app has been described by one reviewer on Google’s Play Store as “Like having your own little casting crew at work in your phone”, and we can see why.
Start up the app and you can choose from videos on your Note II, or record new videos. Once the choice videos are selected, Magisto prompts you to choose a theme. These can be retro and fun, soppy and sentimental or fast paced and fashionable.
Each theme has around eight soundtracks for your montage masterpiece, and Magisto doesn’t scrimp with stock sound bites you’ve never heard of. The retro theme on offer gives you legends such as Scott Joplin and Louis Armstrong to add pizzazz, and the Fashion theme takes things in an ultra current direction with the likes of Azalea Banks and Iconapop.
Thanks to the Samsung GALAXY Note II’s quad-core power, videos are processed nice and swiftly if you turn on hardware acceleration, and the results are engaging, look charming and are arranged in sync with the music of choice.
Once you process your Magisto videos, uploading them to services like Facebook and YouTube won’t cost you a penny.
If you want to save your montage offline, then you’ll need to pay a monthly or annual fee. Simple? We thought so too.
Video app 3: GifBoom
If this was a photo app round-up we’d probably include Instagram, but as it’s all about videos, mentioning GifBoom is a no brainer.
The app is considerably less full-on in terms of processing than the other two. In fact, it doesn’t really make movies per se. Instead, you use your Samsung GALAXY Note II to generate utterly charming little GIFs.
These are comprised of just thirty frames and can be shared on the GifBoom social media channel. The app is like Instagram in so far as it allows you to follow friends, with their ‘Booms’ populating your feed.
The GIFs themselves are a lot of fun to create. Simply press on the shutter release in the GifBoom camera mode and you’ll be recording. Press again to pause, and carry on recording your video from a different point of view.
Once your thirty frames are captured, you can easily overlay a filter, speed up, loop and reverse your Boom. The GIFs are by default shared on GifBoom itself, but it’s a doddle sending them over to Twitter and Facebook, and with GIFs being such universally accessible files, accessing them from a range of devices should be a walk in the park.
So there you have it, whether you’re in the mood for a motion picture styled special effect, musical movie montages or having a pop at creating your own BuzzFeed style GIF, we’ve hopefully added some va-va-voom to your Samsung GALAXY Note II videos.