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iPad 2 cameras hands-on

The iPad 2 is equipped with two cameras, a front-facing VGA camera and a rear facing 720p HD camera. Check out the video above for example footage with both cameras.

Recording video on the iPad 2 is a little awkward given it's large size, but it gets the job done. Another thing that takes some getting used to is that when using the front-facing camera to record yourself in landscape mode, the camera is positioned to the far left (or right). It feels strange looking so far from the center of the screen because I have grown accustomed to looking at the top of a device or just the screen while recording video. It's clear that you are not looking at the camera if you stare at the screen while recording.

The quality of video taken with the VGA and HD cameras are as expected. In well-lit situations, the HD camera produces excellent results and the VGA camera gives acceptable quality. Both cameras do an ok job in bad lighting situations, but admittedly do better than I was expecting. In fact, while taking footage in my daughter's poorly lit bedroom, the video looked pretty bad; but after uploading it to YouTube and watching on a computer, it didn't look too shabby.

Taking still photographs with the iPad 2 is not nearly as rewarding as video. The photographs come out mediocre even in excellent light conditions. With that said, I was actually rather impressed with the close-up photograph I took of a bush. Digital zoom with the rear-facing camera, however, is awful. It's not even worth your time to test it out.

Considering the fact that the iPad 2 is not, and should not be, regarded as a primary camera, I am content with the quality of the video and photographs obtained with the iPad 2. Of course, I would love to see better cameras, but they do a good enough job for my needs.

To check out the photos taken with the iPad 2, follow along after the break!

Side note: the video above was edited with iMovie on the iPad 2.

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Just get a new iPad 2? Here's what you need next!

Did you just get a sweet new iPad 2? Whether you added it to your collection of iOS devices or you're brand new to the platform, once you're powered up and ready to go... you might just be wondering what you need to know and do next? Don't worry, TiPb has your back!

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US online iPad orders now shipping in 3-4 weeks, in-store supplies low

After shipping almost immediately, then in a matter of days, then a week, Apple has again update their [iPad 2](http://www.imore.com/ipad-2] ordering page -- this time to 3-4 weeks. Many of you have told us that iPad 2 was selling out at Apple stores and other retailers yesterday as well. Sounds like supplies really might have been constrained again this year.

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iPad 2 online orders starting to ship

Early risers who managed to get their Apple Online Store iPad 2 orders in on Friday are letting us know that they're either preparing to ship or are shipping. We've been tracking orders in the iPad Forum so if you're waiting on that magical UPS or Fedex truck, jump on in and let us know when Apple says your iPad 2 is arriving.

[Thanks Rustyjar79 and

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Why does iMovie need location permission to see your Camera Roll?

Don't want to give iMovie for iPad the ability to know your location? Well then iMovie for iPad won't let you see your Camera Roll. No, it's not being petulant it's probably just an odd result of the way iOS handles permissions.

Camera Roll may contain geo-location data in the pictures and videos you've taken. If iMovie accesses Camera Roll, it gets access to that location data. My guess is that Apple feels it then needs permission to "see" the location data.

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Photo Booth on iPad 2 hands-on

Photo Booth on the iPad 2 is a fun application that applies silly effects to your camera when taking photos. It is similar to Photo Booth on the Mac and is entertaining for kids and adults alike.

Photo Booth is equipped with 8 different effects: Thermal Camera, Mirror, X-Ray, Kaleidoscope, Light Tunnel, Squeeze, Twirl, and Stretch. You can edit the effect before snapping the picture by pinching and dragging on the screen. As you take photos (from either front or rear camera) with Photo Booth, they are saved to your Camera Roll and you can see thumbnails of the images at the bottom of the screen. From here, you can easily email, copy, and delete multiple photos. Be careful though, deleting a photo from Photo Booth also deletes it from your Camera Roll.

The quality of the photos taken with the VGA front-facing camera are not by any means outstanding, but given the nature of these shots - fun, quirky, and silly - it isn't too big of a deal.

Check out some images taken with Photo Booth after the break!

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iMovie for iPad 2 hands-on

One of the new apps for iPad 2 is iMovie. It was originally released for the iPhone 4 this past June, but Apple recently updated it as a universal app for iPhone 4, iPad 2, and iPod touch 4. On the iPad 2, iMovie is fantastic.

The editing screen is set up similar to iMovie on the Mac and split into 3 different screens. On the bottom of the screen, you find the timeline for your movie, on the top left, you find available media, and video preview is located in the top right. The "My Projects" screen is beautifully designed to look like a vintage movie theater.

Editing movies is very easy on the iPad 2. You can preview clips by dragging your finger across them and trim the edges before adding them to your project. To move clips around in your timeline, simply drag it to where you want. If you want to split a clip, position the curser, select the clip, and swipe down along the curser. You can also easily record audio and video directly into the timeline.

iMovie is stocked with 8 different themes, each of which comes with its own title screen format, transitions, and theme music. It also comes with a plethora of sound effects to add to your movies. Sadly the new Trailer templates from iMovie '11 on Mac didn't make it into the iPad version but hopefully we'll see those in an update.

Sharing your movies is a breeze and iMovie is equipped the the ability to send directly to YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, and CNN iReport. Just tap the familiar sharing arrow from the projects screen and make your selection.

I am very impressed with how well iMovie runs on the iPad 2. It responds well and performs tasks quickly. iMovie on the iPad may well become my primary video editing software - yes, I will chose it over iMovie '11 on my Mac.

To check out the movie I created in the video above, follow along after the break!

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Infinity Blade and Angry Birds on 50" HDTV via iPad 2 HDMI video mirroring

Take an iPad 2 and HDMI adapter-enabled video mirroring and what do you get? Well in this quick test you get Infinity Blade and Angry Birds Seasons on a 50" HDTV screen. Sure on a 1080p display apps are letter- and pillar-boxed (black bars on all four sides) to maintain pixels (no blurry/aliased extrapolations that we could see) but video outputs full screen as always so it wasn't a huge deal. Playing iOS games at that size was.

No using iPad 2 as a big, tethered game controller probably isn't ideal and yes, business and educational institutions will likely be far more productive with video mirroring, but boy was this fun.

Anyone else trying out their apps and games on the big scr

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iPad 2 tear down

Right on schedule the feisty folks at iFixit got their hands on an iPad 2 and tore it down to its constituent parts. Doesn't look like there's any word yet on whether or not it uses an ARM Cortex A9 and PowerVR SGX 543 but hopefully that's forthcoming. Highlights include:

  • The thickness of these components -- especially that of the glass -- could drastically reduce the durability of the device, especially the glass' resistance to shattering. We'll see in due time if the percentage of folks with broken iPad 2 front glass is dramatically different than that of the original iPad.
  • Lifting off the LCD exposes the iPad 2's battery. We found a 3.8V, 25 watt-hour unit. That's just a hair more than the original iPad's 24.8 watt-hours, so any improved battery performance should be attributed to software and other hardware improvements.
  • We confirmed via software that the iPad 2 indeed has 512 MB of RAM.
  • The markings on the 1 GHz Apple A5 dual-core processor appear to be Samsung's, but Chipworks will investigate in the forthcoming days to find out for sure.
  • Other components that power the iPad 2:
    • Toshiba TH58NVG7D2FLA89 16GB NAND Flash
    • Broadcom BCM5973KFBGH Microcontroller
    • Broadcom BCM5974 CKFBGH capacitative touchscreen controller
    • Texas Instruments CD3240B0 11AZ4JT touchscreen line driver
    • Broadcom BCM43291HKUBC Wi-Fi/Bluetooth/FM tuner combo chip
    • S6T2MLC N33C50V Power Management IC
    • ST Micro AGD8 2103 gyroscope
    • ST Micro LIS331DLH accelerometer
  • There's also an Apple-branded 338S0940 A0BZ1101 SGP chip. This looks like the Cirrus audio codec Chipworks found in the Verizon iPhone, but they'll have to get it off the board to make sure!

What you expected or did Apple slap any surprises inside iPad 2?

[iFixit]

Video after the break!

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