- 4 Hacks for Stepping Up Your iPhone Photography Game
- Essential Tips for Better Photos With Your iPhone X
- Simple iPhone Photography Composition Tricks That Have Tons of Impact
- How to Take Good Photos With a Smartphone
Thinking about picking up a cell phone camera lens?
Before you do, doing some research on the best smartphone camera lens is well worth it.
Let's be honest - there's a lot of smartphone lenses on the market today, and most of them are not good at all. That's why you need to do your due diligence.
In this smartphone lens buying guide, I offer up a few features to look for that will help ensure you get the highest quality smartphone lens.
Editor's Note: For illustrative purposes, I use SANDMARC iPhone lenses as examples in this article. I've used these lenses for months and can personally attest to their quality and performance.
Is the Phone Camera Lens Well Constructed?
Clearly, one of the most important features to look for in a smartphone camera lens is the quality of construction.
As I noted above, quality is something that's lacking in many (if not most) smartphone lenses.
The best quality lenses have multiple elements that have multiple coatings.
What this does is ensure that images are as clear and crisp as possible.
What's more, this multi-coated and multi-element arrangement is ideal for eliminating distortion.
The result? Clean, beautiful images that are sharp, detailed, and full of contrast!
Just take a look at the photo above, which I took with my iPhone X and my SANDMARC wide-angle lens.
Notice the wider-than-normal field of view thanks to the lens. Also notice the total lack of distortion thanks to the SANDMARC lens. Not bad, right?
Is the Cell Phone Camera Lens Easy to Use?
Years ago when cell phone camera lenses first became a thing, I bought a telephoto lens for my iPhone 4.
The lens screwed into a lens case, which in itself wasn't difficult to do.
However, when I went to use the lens, the weight of it pulled the case away from the phone enough to create a gap between the telephoto lens and the native iPhone lens.
In other words, if I wanted to get a clear shot (and I use "clear" loosely...), I had to hold the telephoto lens in place with one hand while trying to compose and shoot the photo with the other.
Needless to say, I didn't get any good photos out of that lens.
Fast forward to today, and using phone camera lenses is a breeze. Just check out the video above to see what I mean...
My SANDMARC lenses attach to my iPhone X in two easy ways - by clipping it onto my phone or by using an ultra-slim case mount.
I know what you're thinking, too...
How could either mounting method actually work well enough to get good shots?
I'm not an engineer or designer, so I can't actually answer that question. All I know is that it works and works very well!
Unlike the first lens and case I used way back when, my SANDMARC case keeps the lenses right where they need to be.
On top of that, it's the thinnest case mount in the world, so the chances are that you won't even notice a difference as you carry your phone around in your pocket.
What's not to like about that?
Is the Smartphone Camera Lens Versatile?
Though some smartphone lens manufacturers are one-trick ponies, others offer tons of variety to help you improve your photos.
And that's precisely what SANDMARC has done...
I picked up their Photography Edition Kit (shown above), which includes a wide-angle lens, a macro lens, and a fisheye lens.
I definitely use the wide-angle lens the most, simply because I shoot a ton of landscapes.
But having the macro and fisheye lenses has helped me get out of my comfort zone and try different types of photography that, historically, I've avoided.
The 10mm fisheye lens offers 0.2x magnification that's been fun to use for urban scenes while the 25mm macro lens has 10x magnification that I use for getting up-close and personal with flowers, insects, and even my son's toys.
As far as the wide-angle lens goes, at 16mm with a 0.56x magnification, it's the ideal focal length for the landscapes I seek out every weekend.
Like I said earlier, not all smartphone lenses are made equal, so buyer beware when you start shopping.
But based on my personal experience, you can't go wrong with SANDMARC iPhone lenses. They're beautifully made, easy to use, incredibly versatile, and have helped me find new and interesting ways to photograph the world around me.
If that's not a ringing endorsement for these being the best smartphone camera lenses, I don't know what is!