The iPhone 6 camera is the latest version of that which the American photographer Anne Leibovitz described as “The best compact camera”, and its 35mm f 2.2 lens is extremely versatile and suited to nearly all photographic situations.
If, however, the iPhone has become your camera of reference and you wish to push yourself a bit further in your creative photography, there will be situations in which there is not enough light to take a picture free-hand, or the subject will be too far off or too close up to get a good shot.
The Manfrotto Klyp+ kit for iPhone 6/6+ is designed to meet the needs of those wishing to widen their scope of iPhonographic action by offering the following accessories:
- a protective case designed for the attachment of other accessories (essential for using them)
- a continuous LED light
- a tripod attachment
- a polarising filter
- six additional lenses of various focal lengths
The accessories are sold in different combinations that you can view here.
The attractive, rigid polycarbonate case, available in three colours, is light, sturdy and easy to attach and remove; the buttons and jack openings of your iPhone are still accessible.
The rough surface of the case gives you good grip and there are sliding rail attachments along the sides for attaching the tripod and/or LED light.
The additional lenses use a screw attachment; whilst this may require a little more time to attach them on the one hand, on the other, it ensures that you don’t lose the accessory even in the most extreme conditions (imagine taking pictures from a rollercoaster).
The tripod attachment
With a standard ¼ screw thread, it can be attached to the case or to the LED light and mounted on any standard tripod; this little PIXI is definitely ideal in terms of portability and quick and easy use.
The SMT LED light
A portable, high-quality three LED light projects a 60° beam angle with an intensity of 225 lumens and a natural and intense CRI. The Surface Mount Technology (SMT) used to create it has enabled it to be made so small as to fit easily in your pocket. The light uses an internal battery rechargeable via USB and it can be adjusted to three levels of intensity. Tried and tested in varying situations, it is very useful for both indoor photos and for giving light to shadows outdoors, and its size vs power ratio is truly astonishing. A fully charged battery can last for a photo session of a few hours, if not used continuously. The photo of the lenses you see below was taken using the warm and pleasing LED light.
The range of six lenses covers most focal lengths, from fisheye to telephoto x3, with the additional polarising filter that can, however, only be used with the iPhone’s internal lens.
The lenses come with stylish little bags and front and rear lens caps to protect them when not in use; each lens has a serigraph of its description.
To get an idea of the how you can use the lenses, here is a series of comparative photos of the same subject:
Considering that the standard iPhone lens is already a 35mm wideangle, it goes without saying that additional wideangle lenses will be pretty extreme, in particular the Super Wideangle. This lens allows you to shoot a very wide field of vision but tends to distort shapes in the corners of the image, as you can see with the gazebo and the pine tree that “lean” inwards; this effect is typical of these focal lengths and this type of lens. The image is fairly sharp in the centre and then softens out towards the edges.
Wideangle + Macro
This dual lens is a wideangle that becomes a macro by unscrewing the outer lens.
The Wideangle is very versatile and allows you to widen the angle of the standard iPhone shot; this lens also distorts the perspective, although to a lesser degree.
With the Macro, you can take extreme close-up shots of even the tiniest subjects, such as flowers and insects; the standard iPhone 6 camera has a minimum focus distance of around 7cm, whereas, with this lens, you can move in to a centimetre away from your subject.
The Telephoto 1.5x multiplies the 35mm focal length of the iPhone, taking it to 52.5mm, more or less the standard focal length of a reflex camera. This lens creates a very sharp image in the centre, softening out slightly towards the edges. It is very effective for distant subjects or for portraits.
The Telephoto 3x corresponds to a 105mm, a true telephoto lens that allows you to capture subjects that you could never photograph effectively with a standard iPhone camera.
The fisheye is a special lens that is used for particular subjects that require a spherical effect; in this case, the image distortion is deliberate and is part of the desired effect.
The polarising filter allows you to remove reflections from glass or water surfaces, but also the glare of mist, making your photos sharper and more saturated. This filter can only be used with the standard iPhone lens. The filter has a little ring nut that is tightened to obtain the desired effect.
Klyp+ is a complete, modular accessories kit for iPhone 6/6+ that allows you to mount your smartphone on a tripod when you want to take long-exposure or HDR shots, to enhance your iPhone flash with a small but powerful and high-quality LED light, and to increase the standard focal length both for wideangle and telephoto images. The quality in terms of manufacturing and aesthetics is superior to that of other products available on the market.
Personally, my favourite accessories are the LED light – powerful yet small enough to fit comfortably in your pocket – the Wideangle lens and the Telephoto 1.5x – the latter in particular seems to be the best quality lens amongst those available and the most useful for my style of photography.
Lenses that are this small in size and so much more affordable than those for digital reflex cameras do involve some compromise in design; in this case, the distortion of shapes with the Wideangle and a certain softening of the edges of the image and a tendency towards a more amber colour with the two Telephoto lenses.
How to you get round this? First of all, remember to keep the subject in the centre of the lens, and make corrections in post-production to distortion and colour, where necessary.
You can use an app such as Skrvt to correct easily distortions in perspective; whereas colour correction can be done by most editing apps, such as Snapseed or Enlight, by using colour temperature correction and “cooling” the image slightly.
Davide Capponi is a photographer who is passionate about mobile photography and image editing. His works have been exhibited in Italy and abroad and published in Italian newspapers and magazines. He is a founding member of the New Era Museum, neweramuseum.org. You can contact David via his blog davidecapponi.com, on Instagram instagram.com/rubicorno, on Facebook www.facebook.com/davidecapponi.iphoneography and on Twitter twitter.com/Rubicorno.