Paradigm Shift - The iPhone 4 and real estate video

Services for Real Estate Pros with
The iPhone 4 and now the iPhone 4S are giving rise to a huge Paradigm Shift for real estate video.

Now any iPhone enabled real estate agent can instantly capture clips of a community, neighborhood, client testimonial or a home walkthrough tour without the need for loads of cumbersome hard to use gear.

The opportunity real estate video now represents is immense for those agents that re-think how they market themselves, their communities, and their listings.

First though it is important to recognize the technical limitations of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S and what can be easily done to overcome them. The iPhone 4/4S only shoot video at 40mm(which is not so wide) and photos at about 30mm(also not so wide). Remember the lower the # the wider the camera is shooting, and wide is good. Ultimately a range of 14mm - 20mm is ideal.
So the iPhone must be tweaked just a little in order to enable it to shoot in the ranges you need to shoot to capture good, smooth, wide video and wide photos.

*Most importantly.....the wider you shoot the less movement you will need to make to film any particular area. This allows you to create smoother easier to watch videos.

The iPhone Paradigm Shift!
The advantage that an iPhone enabled agent now has of course is that they have their phones for the most with them everywhere they go. So by just tweaking the iPhone camera just a bit it can be changed into a high powered video capture game changer.

So let me get started with a quick tutorial video of using the iPhone 4 with the default camera app to film a home with varying light conditions.

Now lets look at the finished video and what was produced from the method detailed in the first video above.

Amazing actually when you consider this was done with a phone in less than 5 minutes!

Notes: builds lens kit for many cameras including the iPhone 4 and 4S specifically to shoot real estate video. We highly recommend that agents not waste their time with little magnetic lens that result in foggy, distorted video. HDHat purposely uses bigger lens that pull in lots of light with results that are clear and undistorted. In order to really enjoy capturing real estate video and opening up the shifts that any agent can capitalize on from video implementation it is imperative to first get the right gear for real estate video.

A huge assortment of lens and camera kits can now be found in our store at

Feel free to contact me directly anytime with questions at or direct 7 days a week till 10 p.m. eastern at 517-896-4376. Thanks, Mark Passerby, HDHat
Christine McInerney
Great Life RE - Knoxville, TN
The McInerney Team, Knoxville TN Homes For Sale

Need trick, I have an iphone and had no idea you could adjust the lighting and exposure.

Nov 04, 2011 05:24 AM
Mark Passerby - Lansing, MI - 517-896-4376

Neither do most of the people selling the iPhone :) should see their amazement when I show them. 

The iPhone is real bad and always has been for blurring in and out of focus and going dark and light somewhat erratically so by pushing your finger on the screen in an area you choose you can 'lock' the exposure from going dark and light and 'lock' the focus from going in an out erratically.  When locked you will see AE/AF lock at the bottom of the screen.

There have been several apps around that could do it for quite some time but now in IOS5 they have built it in to the default camera app. 

Other apps that work well for locking focus and exposure:

*ProCamera - Allows you to shift 2 separate boxes around to lock focus for example on something 4 feet away and then to adjust exposure on an area 15 feet away.  This app is fantastic and also has a fantastic feature set for editing photos right in the app as well as sharing features.

AlmostDSLR is another app that you can has a free version that you can single tap a spot to lock focus on then double tap on another spot to lock exposure.  Then 3 taps on screen to reset. 

Mark Passerby, HDHat

Nov 04, 2011 05:45 AM
Steve, Joel & Steve A. Chain
Chain Real Estate Investments & Mortgage, Steve & Joel Chain - Cottonwood, CA


Well done; you're always on the cutting edge and innovating.


Nov 07, 2011 10:18 AM
Eva Aliaga
Partnership Realty Inc - Boca Raton, FL
Boca Raton & Delray Beach: SE Florida Real Estate

Hi Mark, great post! My BB just died so will need to replace like now. Think of going over to the iPhone 4s was just contemplating the iPhone 4. Also looking into a wide angle camera but not ready to $1k for a dedicated DSLR.

Nov 28, 2011 06:45 PM
Mark Passerby - Lansing, MI - 517-896-4376

The 4S with our super wide angle lens case shoots tremendous video even wider than what you will get with a DSLR even after you add a $500 10mm lens to the DSLR.  I won't go into all the technical parts of it but a DSLR has a cropped sensor so even though the box says 18mm -55mm...yes that is true the lens is in fact 18mm but the sensor(what captures the light) on that DSLR only captures 28mm(the lower the number the better and real estate video needs to be captured below 20mm) so agents quickly learn that they then have to go buy a 10mm - 24mm lens which yields 16mm.  However the final DSLR video still has the same 'curve/distorted' aspects of that 10mm lens. 

This 'curve' doesn't happen with our iPhone 4 lens setup in fact it is nice flat, clear video from edge to edge at super wide 14mm. 

I highly recommend agents stay away from DSLR's unless they really like to spend lots of time tweaking settings, and dealing with giant files that often times aren't as good once scaled back to the web version as what you can produce in less time with a Point & Shoot. 

We have agents using the iPhone's but hundreds of agents have actually opted for the Sony WX9 which right now can be gotten for like $150 and they then add our lens kit we sell for that.  The WX9(about the size of an iphone) will then shoot 17.5mm or almost as wide as a DSLR and lens that you would spend $1400 on.  The WX9 also shoots fantastic photos.  The lens kit is here along with a video that shows how to add the wide angle lens adapter and lens.  We also have the full kit in the store.

If you can only get one device though the iPhone 4S will be great for you and I am reviewing an awesome wireless mic for the iPhone 4S this week that is stunning.  I will post that to my AR blog when done.

Mark Passerby, HDHat

Dec 04, 2011 04:16 AM