Friday 13 September 2013

ENFOJER – The New Portable Smartphone Photographic Enlarger

Phone-owning humans’ love affair with digital photography continues charging along at full tilt — fuelled by the ubiquity of camera-phones and the apps that allow easy digital photo remixing, whether it’s Instagram filters, or Frontback‘s dual aspect, or Rando‘s serendipity. All that snapping means a mountain of photos on mobile devices and social networks (not to mention sitting unloved on servers in the cloud).

Sure you can browse them digitally, and repurpose a few as e-wallpaper, but this kind of photography is mostly a communication medium. The photos keep flowing to keep the conversation going. But what if you want to stop and linger on a few choice shots — and maybe even see real-world photo filters in action?

Billed as a way to bring back the romance of the darkroom in the smartphone era, Enfojer is an indiegogo project which promises to make your smartphone into an enlarger to create real prints. Part app and part hardware, Enfojer enlarges the image displayed on a smartphone's LCD, projecting it onto real photo paper.

It's a simple case of finding the image you want to print and displaying it (after making any desired edits in the accompanying app) on your phone's screen. You then insert it into the Enfojer's enclosure screen side down. Adjustable lenses focus the image from the screen onto photographic paper placed underneath, and, at the push of a button, development commences. The Enfojer is compatible with any smartphone under 141 x 71 mm (5.55 x 2.80 in) in size.

It can enlarge images from any smartphone (the cradle is compatible with phones up to 141 mm x 71 mm) or film up to 6×6 format. Prints can be created up to 20x20cm. The smartphone photo enlarger uses the phone’s own LED screen as the light source to expose the photographic paper.

The device also has a wide angle polycarbonate “toy camera style meniscus lens” -which blurs the image slightly so it doesn’t end up looking pixilated. Think of it as an analogue filter (to go with your digital filters); “we tried sharper and better ones, but the results were too sterile,” note Enfojer’s creators.  The rest of the required kit is classic darkroom stuff like photo developing trays, fluids and a red LED light to work to.

Why Enfojer?
We love photography, as it once was. Smell of chemicals, red lights in small darkrooms, lines on which developed prints are drying. The moment of magic when the photo appears on the pristine white of photosensitive paper. Now obsolete, this printing process is something romantic, beautiful and magical, worth preserving for future generations.

All we need for this little trip down the photographic history lane to be available to all, is a bit of your help. Be a pal. Help us jumpstart Enfojer and get a bit of history repeating. Contribute what you can. Share this with your fellow photo enthusiasts, invite friends, and foes alike - they can use the Enfojer to print photos too.

Technical Specifications:
The Enfojer Enlarger comes with a universal cradle compatible with any iOS, Android or Windows smartphone up to 141 mm x 71 mm size. It works fine, you just need to place your phone carefully in the center. Precision inclined people can get custom made cradles for Apple iPhone 4, iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, and the new models, Samsung Galaxy S3 and Galaxy S4, HTC One and One X, Nokia Lumia 925 and Lumia 1020, Sony Xperia Z and Xperia SP and enjoy the cradle snugness to the max.

283 mm long x 260 mm wide x 408 mm tall

Tray rack with trays
286 mm long x 370 mm wide x 250 mm tall
285 long mm x 265 mm wide x 45 mm tall

If you really posses interest in analog photography and want to experience the magic of the moment when a photo appears on the photo paper in your own small dark room, go ahead and support them and bring analog photography back to life.

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