Even though the iPhone 5 has a pretty awesome camera, I’m not a huge fan of the lens. Landscapes tend to get cropped, and super-close Macro shots usually come out blurry. However, when I stopped by the Olloclip booth at Macworld/iWorld 2013 a couple of weeks ago, I was pleasantly surprised with the company’s offering, which just so happens to fix these issues.
The Olloclip is essentially a clip that attaches to the the upper left-hand corner of your iPhone. The clip itself has three different lenses: fish eye, macro and wide-angle. It’s also double-sided, so you can flip from wide-angle to fish eye with ease. The macro lens is hidden under the wide-angle and can be retrieved by simply unscrewing the wide-angle lens.
The fisheye lens is probably my favorite out of the bunch. Even though the effect is a gimmick to an extent, it’s really fun to play around with. If used correctly, you can take pretty cool city shots and, in my case, cool pictures of an Americano.
The wide-angle lens is also a really helpful lens that is included with Olloclip. You can use it to take really nice wide-angle shots of just about anything without making the shot look cheesy. However, the wide-angle lens is especially useful when shooting video on your iPhone as it removes the standard video crop that is present in Camera.app’s video mode.
Macro works well for shooting very up-close shots; however, you have to be really close to your subject in order for it to work correctly. In the photo above, I was hovering less than a centimeter above my MacBook’s keyboard. Nevertheless, the macro lens is a very useful tool when needed.
The Olloclip comes with lens caps and a soft case that does a pretty good job of keeping dust and grime off of your lenses. The case is made out of a soft microfiber, so it can be used to clean your lenses and iPhone screen if needed.
As far as build quality goes, I’m impressed with the Olloclip. The device feels solid and doesn’t feel like it’s going to snap when being slid onto an iPhone. However, I do have one problem with the Olloclip’s hardware: the lens caps. I find that they almost always slip off of my Olloclip when installed. This shouldn’t be an issue if you keep your Olloclip in the included carrying case, but I’m always a bit worried about losing the caps.
All in all, I think the Olloclip is an awesome device to use if you want to make your iPhone’s photos a bit more creative. If you would like to purchase an Olloclip for your iPhone, you have a few different options. The clip is available for $69.99, and various Amazon sellers offer the clip at a comparable price. The company also makes a kit for the iPhone 4/4S and sells iPod touch 4G/5G adapters for $9.99 a pop.