I received these iPhone camera lenses for Christmas from my wonderful boyfriend, who knows photography is not only my career but a real passion (as is my phone). I usually take photos with a beefy DSLR and heavy 24-70mm lens but I always have my phone in my pocket for taking snaps. The iPhone 6 camera is superb, I'm really impressed with the quality of images you can achieve, and I've been thinking about trying out phone lenses for some time but I wasn't too sure what to buy. There are so many on the market to choose from, some three in one lens sets are really expensive whilst others you can find on Amazon for between £5-£10.
I don't know the exact make/model of this particular set of three lenses (as they were a gift) but Josh informs me they are from Amazon and under £10! In most sets you'll find a Fish Eye lens for fun portraits, a Macro lens for getting up close with lots of detail and a Wide Angle lens for landscape photos. It should be said that these lenses will work for many camera phone models (not just iPhone). For the past couple of weeks I've had chance to test them out but I'm still practicing. Here's my review on these lenses so far...
Each lens screws on to a chunky clip (there are two clips provided) which makes popping them on and off your iPhone camera really easy. The lenses look well made, they feel strong and durable but they are very small and quite fiddly to attach to the clips at times. The Macro and Wide Angle lenses screw together so this makes it tricky to take them apart and screw them on to the clip.
Lining the lens up over your phone camera is simple. The clip is strong enough to not slip off however it does stick up quite a way off the edge of the iPhone, which means you can easily knock the positioning if you're not careful. I imagine it's made like this to accommodate for various phone models.
At first I thought the macro lens wasn't allowing my phone to focus properly but then I realised you need to hold the camera really close to your subject for it to focus on those extra fine details. Then it works very well. The first picture above is of the fabric fibers in my jeans and the third pic is of a very teeny metal Hello Kitty which has tarnished over the years. I really enjoy using this lens and considering how expensive macro lenses are for your DSLR camera I'm over the moon I get to play around with this one. I've been photographing eyes, the cat's fur, and all sorts of different textures.
Who doesn't like a fish eye effect! True, it can be achieved in Photoshop, but where's the fun in that!? I'm keen to use this lens for group photos as you'll be able to fit everyone and their surroundings into one picture. You get the vignette effect in the corners which could be cropped out afterwards (or you can zoom in on your phone camera as you normally would) but sometimes this adds to the charm. The image quality with this lens is not as crisp as I would have liked, it adds a little extra noise and soft focus to your photos. Taking pictures outdoors with loads of natural light is always the best way to go.
And finally the wide angle lens. Above is a comparison of my iPhone camera with and without the wide angle lens attached. More of the stone wall can be seen and more tree branches are peeking down from above. This lens has the vignette bulging effect like the fish eye which disappointed me slightly but again you can always crop this out afterwards. It didn't have quite the impact I thought it might but still a handy one to have in your pocket especially if travelling to some spectacular landscapes.
For a budget set of mini lenses I've been pleasantly surprised! They're fun to use, they actually work and they're handy to have in your bag. If you want to get more creative with your iPhone photos, either to capture the memories or to give your Instagram feed a boost, these little lens kits are the way to go.
I can't go a whole blog post featuring my phone without talking about my amazing new case* from Casetify. If you haven't heard of this brand before check them out online, I think they have the best selection of artwork for phone cases, designed by real working artists and there are thousands of options to choose from. I spent a good few hours on Casetify trawling through many gorgeous designs, trying to choose just one. I went for this black & turquoise palm leaf semi-transparent case and I think I made the right decision, although I'm already adding a few new cases to my wish list!