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Like this article? We recommend The OlloClip and Other Optional iPhone Photography Accessories

The OlloClip and Other Optional iPhone Photography Accessories

One easy way to extend the capabilities of the iPhone’s built-in camera when shooting still images or video is to attach an optional OlloClip ($69.95, http://www.olloclip.com). This three-in-one lens attachment adds macro (close-up), improved wide-angle and fisheye shooting capabilities to the already versatile iPhone camera. The OlloClip slips over the iPhone’s built-in lens but can easily be kept in a pocket when not in use.

To further expand the capabilities of the OlloClip lens, its developer recently introduced the free OlloClip app (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/olloclip/id646081887). This app replaces the need for the Camera app and enables you to shoot photos or videos using a different collection of filters and tools that are designed to work specifically with the OlloClip lens. However, the OlloClip continues to work perfectly with the iOS 6 or iOS 7 version of the Camera app, as well as any third-party photography app that’s available from the App Store.

In late June, the company also released the OlloClip Telephoto Lens, which enables photographers to double the zoom capability of the iPhone’s built-in camera, yet take clear, in-focus and vividly detailed images using a clip-on lens attachment that comes with a circular polarizing lens attachment. This optional $99.99 lens is available for the iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5.

One drawback to the OlloClip Lens and OlloClip Telephoto Lens (sold separately) is that they’re designed to fit snuggly onto the iPhone 4/4S or iPhone 5 (depending on which model OlloClip you purchase), but the lens attachment does not accommodate an iPhone case or screen cover. To compensate for this, the OlloClip Quick Flip Case ($49.99, http://www.olloclip.com/quick-flip-case) has been introduced. This hard shell case is ideal for iPhone photographers. It can be kept on the iPhone for protection all the time.

Not only does the OlloClip Quick Flip Case protect the back and sides of the iPhone, it also includes a flip-up corner that enables either OlloClip lens to easily be attached and detached, without compromising the iPhone’s safety because the phone remains enclosed in its hard shell casing.

Two other useful features of the OlloClip Quick Flip Case include a standard tripod mount and a cold shoe mount, which enables a standard camera tripod and/or an external flash (light) to be attached to the case to give the photographer/iPhone user additional options when shooting.

Using the tripod mount, you can use any camera tripod, such as the popular GorillaPod from Joby ($19.95, http://joby.com/gorillapod/original) to hold the iPhone steady when shooting. At the same time, if you need a stronger continuous light source than what the iPhone’s built-in flash can provide when shooting still images or video, you can easily attach an external light, such as the Kick from Rift Labs ($179.00, http://riftlabs.com/product/kick) or the Pocket Spotlight ($30.00, http://photojojo.com/store/awesomeness/pocket-spotlight).

Yet another option for attaching an external continuous LED light to the iPhone is the DLC iPhone LED Grip Kit from Adorama ($79.95, http://www.adorama.com/DLCIPLGKB.html). This is a 5-inch grip handle onto which the iPhone and a bright LED light are mounted. It’s more suited for shooting video in low-light situations while holding the camera steady, but this device works well for shooting still images as well.

If you already have a high-end digital SLR camera with interchangeable lenses, you could attach one of those Nikon or Canon EOS lenses directly to your iPhone to snap photos. Photojojo has developed a special iPhone 4/4S or iPhone 5 mount that enables full-size Nikon or Canon lenses to be used with the iPhone.

The iPhone SLR Mount ($249.00, http://photojojo.com/store/awesomeness/iphone-slr-mount) isn’t cheap, but it does enable the smartphone to take amazing pictures using professional-level, external lenses.

A more practical iPhone accessory for Canon SLR camera owners is the Satechi Bluetooth Smart Trigger ($44.99, http://www.satechi.net/index.php/camera-accessories/smart-trigger/smart-trigger-a). It transforms the iPhone into a wireless remote and timer for a digital SLR camera that’s mounted on a tripod. For digital SLR cameras with Wi-Fi functionality, a handful of remote trigger apps are available from the App Store, such as EOS Remote from Canon (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/eos-remote/id565839396).

Another specialty lens available for the iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5 is the Kogeto Dot ($50.00, http://www.kogeto.com). It too attaches over the iPhone’s built-in camera lens and enables 360-degree panoramic video to be shot without having to rotate the camera/iPhone while shooting.

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