Believe it or not, there’s a world of iPhone photography beyond food, cats and one’s own face. The iPhone 5 has a shockingly capable camera, and since the iPhone 5S can shoot 120fps for quality slow motion, so there’s potential for real visual drama.
If you wan’t an extreme close up you’re still stuck with digital zoom in all it’s grainy glory. And forget about anything beyond the standard horizontal, portrait and Instagram square shot.
That’s where the Olloclip 4-in-1 lens comes in. It’s really lenses plural, offering a fisheye, a wide-angle plus 10x and 15x macro lenses.
Slide on, slide off
Provided you’re not using a case or any sort of plastic film protector, the 4-in-1 slides easily right onto the corner of an iPhone 5 or 5s. Olloclip also sells a case of its own, which gives you easy access to the volume-as-shutter-button.
The 4-in-1 goes for $70 (£59.99), $100 with the case included – sorry, I couldn’t find British pricing for the bundle, but the case alone is $39.99 (£44.99).
Once in place it blocks the lock button. A slight bummer but the Olloclip isn’t the kind of thing you should keep on your phone once you’ve put it away.
There’s a separate 4-in-1 for the 5C, available in all five colors, of course.
The 4-in-1 also covers the flash, so you’ll be brightening up your photos in post, if need be.
The Olloclip gets four lenses in one with a reversible design. To go from fisheye to wide angle you just take it off, turn it around and put it back on.
These lenses also unscrew to reveal the macros. You’re then holding a somewhat delicate lens in your hand; luckily your Olloclip kit contains both lens caps and soft little cinch bag.
iPhone photography, upgraded
It’s a handful of kit to keep track of, but the effect seems worth it. The fisheye lens is fun in a DIY Terry Gilliam sort of way.
The wide-angle is more subtle. You really need a side by side comparison to tell the difference.
The macros are fun and effective as well, but rather difficult to focus. Olloclip also sells a dedicated set of macro only lenses, complete with glass cups that keep your subject at a perfect focal length. It’s a pity these aren’t included with the 4-in-1.
While they are a bit of a bother, the effect of the Olloclip 4-in-1 seems worth it. Stay tuned for a full review, coming soon, with video samples as well.
I’m keen to compare this $70 kit with the much more expensive $229 iPro Lens for iPhone 5/5S. We’ll see if the Olloclip should be the go to for stepping your iPhone photography game, or just the budget option.