Question

P20 Pro DNG support for 3rd party apps on Camera2 api?

  • 27 November 2018
  • 30 replies
  • 5154 views

Userlevel 6
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Hi

I've just bought one of these phones and am amazed at the specs. However, I don't thing the DNG file format is exposed by Huawei for 3rd party apps.

The included camera software is OK, but 3rd part apps like Open Camera often offer different features to the stock app like focus bracketing etc.

For such a pro device, I'm surprised that 3rd party apps are not supported in this way.

Do Huawei have any plans to expose the DNG file format on the camera2 API?

Thanks for reading....

Steve

30 replies

Userlevel 6
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Hi Again

I've just checked a little further into this and downloaded an app from Play called Camera2 Probe which lists all the exposed capabilities of the Camera2 api.

Possibly unsurprisingly, RAW Capture is not exposed along with some others:

Auto Exposure, Auto Flash, Red Eye Reduction
Auto Focus EDOF
WB: Shade
WB: Twilight
WB: Warm Fluorescent
Burst capture

So maybe while the developers have their hand under the hood, they could expose a little more? This would really improve the usability of such excellent hardware.

Thanks

Steve
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Bump 🙂
Userlevel 6
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I have a workaround for this. If you're looking for lossless compression or uncompressed images, then alternative software, HedgeCam 2 will save images as PNG. It's not ideal as PNG doesn't support exif data tags, but it's much better software than anything else you can find as it's based on Open Camera.

Even better, it's free lol.

Back to the original question, it would be great if the DNG (RAW) format was exposed by Huawei for 3rd party apps. Then I could use Open Camera to produce DNGs whereas currently you cannot.

Cheers

Steve
Userlevel 7
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Hi picitup

Glad to see your deeply interested in the p20 pro. If you wish we do have a developer forum https://developer.huawei.com/ict/forum/index.html?lang=en and a developer support website https://developer.huawei.com/en/ .
I think you will enjoy them both and I hope you find them helpful.

Best wishes,
Max
Userlevel 6
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Hi Max

Thanks for the links but I think the dev forum is a bit of a ghost town with very few posts and many with no replies for months, I don't see any benefit in subscribing.

Is anyone considering exposing the DNG (RAW) format for 3rd party apps?

Thanks

Steve
Hi there,

I'm a user of the P20 Pro. I am extremely saddened to hear that this phone doesn't have support for these functions exposed in the camera2 api. For a phone which claims to have one of the best cameras around, this is extremely sad. I have a customized version of opencamera for use underwater, so I can't use some other tool, but the fact that I can't shoot raw is nearly a dealbreaker. I might have to go back to samsung or iphone. 😞
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Hi @3ricj yes it's a bummer. There are a number of 3rd party apps which can support .DNG so long as the developer exposes that functionality.

I was wondering did you customise opencamera yourself? If you're a bit of a techie, I was wondering about searching for a custom rom which did have .DNG support and installing that instead.

Of course that would break the warranty, but looking a Huawei on Trust Pilot, what warranty? lol.

Cheers

Steve
Userlevel 7
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Hi Steve,

You might be able to find your answer on the developer forum that I have provided to you. Alternatively, I would like to inform you that the .DNG format is not available at the moment on Huawei devices.

Nevertheless, I can forward this to our developers and this will be implemented in one of the future and frequent updates for your device.

Best wishes,
Max
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Hi Max

Yes it would be great if it could be supported in the future. A time scale for implementation would be helpful.

I see @3ricj has posed the question on the forum 4 days ago but no replies yet so we'll see what comes out of the pot. His post is here:

raw support not available in camera2 API p20 pro

Merry xmas to all..... :-)

Steve
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Does anyone have Android 9 (Pie) yet? I was wondering if someone could check it out with Camera2 Probe mentioned above and see if the RAW format has been exposed for 3rd party apps?

This would be my main reason for upgrading to Pie.

Thanks

Steve
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Don't worry, I asked the same question on the XDA forum and a nice user with Android 9 ran Camera2 Probe but the result wasn't good :-(



Apparently Android 9 still doesn't have 3rd party support for RAW. Now I've turned off updates as there's no point in Pie for me.

My heart sinks.......

I'm asking around for a method of fixing this. I'd be happy to install a custom ROM, but I think you're pretty much tied into Huawei for the specialised camera setup.

Cheers

Steve
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@3ricj Did you jetison your phone yet? There may be a partial workaround.

I just installed FreedCam from the Play Store and it seems to save in RAW (DNG) format. I've only just installed it and need to play with it, but I took a photo and it's 79MB in size, so a good start.

I'll make some time today and play with it and see what I can do. What I really need, personally, is focus bracketing with RAW so fingers crossed.

Cheers

Steve
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Hi @3ricj

Just a quick update. I see the question you posted up on the developer has 194 views and no replies after a month. I think I saw some tumbleweed rolling across my visual field. Yup, it's a dead as a dodo lol.

You may be interested in a new version of OpenCamera 1.45.2 that's just been released yesterday. It has support for PNG and WebP files so you can save uncompressed images. A couple of shots in my lounge revealed a 40MP PNG was 27MB and the WebP at 100% quality was 5.5MB. Not raw, but getting closer.

You mentioned you had a modded version of OpenCamera. You could get the new one modded and maybe get support for uncompressed in your customised app?

Just a thought....

Steve
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Hi @Max it's been a couple of months on this. Have Huawei developers made any comment? Will it be fixed and do you have a date?

I've been playing with Open Camera this morning and noticed it reports only 2 cameras on the P20 Pro. I thought this might be an Open Camera issue, but I downloaded a couple of Camera2 API probe apps and the all report only 2 cameras,which are the 40MP rear and the front camera.

Why can't I see the other 2 rear cameras in 3rd party apps?

Thanks in anticipation.....

Steve
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I see the question @3ricj posted up on the Huawei developer forum remains unanswered after a couple of months.
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I have some bad news on this. I wasn't happy with the quality produced by Open Camera for PNGs. The developer tells me that Open Camera actually captures in jpeg and then converts to PNG so no real gain there.

He says that the jpegs are captured as 100% quality, but quite rightly, he pints out that even at 100% jpeg may still include some compression.

So now it's back to Huawei and RAW support for 3rd party apps. Bummer.

@Amy did you manage to get any feedback on this? Do Huawei intend to fix it?

Thanks

Steve
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Hi @Amy

This has been 3 months now and I find myself jumping through hoops trying to get around the limits of the stock software.

Did the developers offer any feedback as to whether it will be fixed and when?

The solution to *all* of my camera issues lies with exposing RAW for 3rd party apps.

If they aren't going to fix it, at least I would know so I don't have to keep banging on about it on the forum.

Thanks

Steve
Userlevel 7
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Hej Steve,

Thanks for the feedback, I will forward this to our developers and the support team. I hope that they can give you some more info.
Userlevel 6
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That would be great thanks :-)

Steve
Userlevel 7
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Hi @picitup,

Could I ask you to send me the following information in private:
  • Serial Number
  • Current Build Number
The information are needed for the escalation towards the development team.

Best regards,
Max
Userlevel 6
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Hi @Max

I've sent Amy the info you asked for although this topic is already 3 months old and you said you had forwarded it to the developers 2 months ago.

So what happens now?

Thanks

Steve
P20 Pro doesn't support camera2 api?!?!? my huawei psmart (fig-lx1) does...accordingly with camera probe it has limited support and RAW is there for 3rd party apps.
huawei p20 pro is a much better phone ...how?!?!? why?!?!?
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Hi @behemot I know it beggars belief. I've been banging on about this for months but might have a solution to all the issues I've been complaining about.

Xiaomi make the MI 9 which has a 48MP camera and development for it is very lively on the XDA forum. In contrast with Huawei, Xiaomi offer free bootloader unlocking and actually release the source code for their system to the public when they release a new phone.

Pretty cheap too at around £400.00.

I'm still investigating as it's not released in the UK yet as it's very new, but you can buy one from Spain.

So now there's a race between Huawei coming up with the goods and me ascertaining if Xiaomi devices can support RAW for 3rd parties. If they do, it's Open Camera here I come!!!!

Cheers

Steve
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Hi Huawei

I'm on my hols in Spain and kind of bought a Xiaomi Mi 9. Here's the output from Camera2 probe.

I'll do a comparison between the P20 and Mi 9 on the train on my way home.

Huawei read it and weep....

Userlevel 7
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Hey all!

Thanks for taking your time to report on this! Feedback is priceless for us in these cases. It lets us have a hindsight to these issues and missed functions. Thank you so much for cooperating.

We are always trying our best to cater to your concerns and wishes. Keep an eye on updates to see changes regarding this in the future!

Kind regards,
Max

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