(Not) App of the Week – PhotoJojo iPhone Lenses

Portland Head Light

Portland Head Light – Standard iPhone lens, no zoom

Portland Head Light

Portland Head Light – with Telephoto lens

Portland Head Light

Portland Head Light – with wide angle lens

Portland Head Light

Portland Head Light – with fisheye lens

Church Concert - fisheye

Church Concert – fisheye

Church Concert - wide angle

Church Concert – wide angle

Ease of use: 4 (out of 5)
Fun factor: 5
Results: 3
Price: $49.00
PhotoJojo Store Link:

I was on vacation this week, so did a lot of shooting but very little editing. Instead of skipping a post I thought I’d share the results of something else I tried out this week. I used to have a Nikon P6000, which was a great little pocket camera to take everywhere. Sadly it was lost in a tragic lava accident in Hawaii, and I have yet to replace it. Since this was a family vacation, I knew I wouldn’t always want to be lugging all my gear, or taking the time to use it. Before we left I purchased a set of the cell phone lenses from PhotoJojo.com as something fun to play with.

The set of three lenses cost $49.00, or you can purchase individual lenses for $19. I almost bought just the wide angle and fisheye, figuring I’d have no real use for the telephoto. I’m very glad I changed my mind and got the set.

These first unedited images show the results from each of the lenses. You can click on any of them to see the full sized image. If you do, right away you’ll see the weakness of these lenses. The edge sharpness is very poor, so much so that using the zoom function in the iPhone camera itself would be a better choice than the telephoto lens in most cases. The wide angle is the least noticeable of the three, and the fisheye the most. I’m glad the wide angle is pretty good, as my most common frustration with the iPhone camera is not being able to zoom out.

You can still use the pinch to zoom function like you normally would, which can help the sharpness problem, but that kind of defeats the purpose of the wider angles.

Another small problem with these lenses is the mounts. You permanently attach a small metal ring to the iPhone around the camera lens. The lenses themselves have magnets that attach to the ring. This is simple enough, and make changing lens a snap. The one downside is that it’s easy for the lens to not be centered over the iPhone lens. This causes the vignetting you can see in the wide angle image, as well and the uneven vignetting in the wide angle image.

I did find a good use for the telephoto lens, which is any case where zooming isn’t allowed. The most common instance of that is when you use the panorama feature in the iPhones built in camera app. Over the course of my trip I tried this out many times with and without the PhotoJojo lenses.

Gilpin's Falls Covered Bridge

Gilpin’s Falls Covered Bridge – iPhone lens

Gilpin's Falls Covered Bridge wide angle panorama

Gilpin’s Falls Covered Bridge wide angle panorama

Gilpin's Falls Covered Bridge fisheye panorama

Gilpin’s Falls Covered Bridge fisheye panorama

You can see another interesting limit I found in testing this out. The iPhones built in panorama can result in some choppiness. take a closer look and you’ll see what I mean.

Here’s a few more samples of what I was able to do.

Jefferson Memorial vertical panorama

Jefferson Memorial vertical panorama

Lincoln Memorial vertical panorama

Lincoln Memorial vertical panorama

Sinking Creek Covered Bridge

Sinking Creek Covered Bridge

Grandfather Mountain Swinging Bridge panorama

Grandfather Mountain Swinging Bridge panorama

Glade Spring Church and Cemetery

Glade Spring Church and Cemetery