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Discussion: Are you really confident with clip-on lenses?

TomHH

MobiPassionista
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Tom
Device
Pixel
I got some not too expensive clip-on lenses for Xmas as I'd like to play around with it and see if it makes sense to maybe go for more expensive ones.

After playing around with them I find most of them not worth the money.

Decrease of quality is too heavy, usage is not good (maybe better with cases), strong distortions and CAs.

I wonder if more expensive ones do better like Moment lenses or so.

Are you really confident with your solution?
 

terse

MobiLifer
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Ted
Device
iPhone Xs
I got some not too expensive clip-on lenses for Xmas as I'd like to play around with it and see if it makes sense to maybe go for more expensive ones.

After playing around with them I find most of them not worth the money.

Decrease of quality is too heavy, usage is not good (maybe better with cases), strong distortions and CAs.

I wonder if more expensive ones do better like Moment lenses or so.

Are you really confident with your solution?
I have just a single camera iPhone 7, so I've been most interested in the 2x telephoto add-ons. Along with a no-name or two, I've used an Oowa tele, Moment tele v1, Moment tele v2, and ExoLens Zeiss. The Oowa was fairly sharp, but flared a lot. My Moment v1 was soft, especially toward the edges, and showed CA anywhere near the sun. The Moment v2 and the ExoLens Zeiss are about equal and both excellent -- low distortion, sharper at the edges, and well-controlled CA.

For wide-angles and macros, I've used the Moment v2 lenses and the ExoLens Zeiss lenses, and just as with the teles, they're about equal and all excellent. The Zeiss lenses were super expensive, but they've gone off the market now (though you can sometimes find them at knockdown prices on eBay). The main problem is that ExoLens never made a case for the Zeiss for anything later than the iPhone 7, though I've read that https://www.bitplayinc.com have cases that fit the Zeiss lenses, which have a screw thread attachment and are a bit fiddlier to attach than the Moment bayonet attachment. Also, the Moment offers a battery case that can mount their lenses, which can be handy at times.

All in all, I think the Moment lenses are the pick.
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
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Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
I got some not too expensive clip-on lenses for Xmas as I'd like to play around with it and see if it makes sense to maybe go for more expensive ones.

After playing around with them I find most of them not worth the money.

Decrease of quality is too heavy, usage is not good (maybe better with cases), strong distortions and CAs.

I wonder if more expensive ones do better like Moment lenses or so.

Are you really confident with your solution?
I am quite happy with any of the Moment lenses I have bought. I also have a clip-on Fisheye lens. The lens itself is pretty good but the mounting is quite fiddly and requires careful adjustment each time mounting it. Correct cemeteries is essential with any lens. I found I could greatly improve the centering with the addition of a couple of rubber strips glued to the clip to place guides to get it in the right place. The makers could easily do that except the position of the guides is specific to the phone model so that would graeatly complicate ordering and take away the universal nature of the mount.
I have a clip-on filter adapter and it doesn’t require the same precision in centering but you do have to look through the front to be sure it is in the right place. I added glued-on rubber strips to that one to so I can get it into position without the need to look at the front of the camera to check the positioning.
One thing that would help all camera lenses is a good lens hood. Not a silly round one but a proper rectangular hood. Excluding non-image-forming light really helps improve image quality, haze & contrast. In used to use very tight rectangular bellows lens hoods on my big cameras and even though they were sometimes a nuisance the difference in image quality made it worthwhile.
Whenever you see the sun shining directly on any part of the front of the lens you can simply shade the lens using your grey card or white balance card. Naturally this is much easier when using a tripod.
 

TomHH

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Tom
Device
Pixel
Thx to all for your comments! FundyBrian do you know if the Moment app does some processing on the images as you have to select the lens you are using in the app? Most of cameras do this to get rid or mitigate lens distortions and I wonder if this app does the same.

I'm most interested in tele lenses to get a view like a 50mm lens. If anyone has something like that I would highly appreciate to see some shots of it! :)

And yes, the mounting of the lens is the biggest problem as I don't have an iPhone I can't use the Moment cases.
But that's a solvable problem ....
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
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Real Name
Brian Townsend
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iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
Thx to all for your comments! FundyBrian do you know if the Moment app does some processing on the images as you have to select the lens you are using in the app? Most of cameras do this to get rid or mitigate lens distortions and I wonder if this app does the same.

I'm most interested in tele lenses to get a view like a 50mm lens. If anyone has something like that I would highly appreciate to see some shots of it! :)

And yes, the mounting of the lens is the biggest problem as I don't have an iPhone I can't use the Moment cases.
But that's a solvable problem ....
Moment makes cases for several other types of phones besides iPhones. I don’t know the full range offhand.
As far as I can tell Moment only uses the lens selection part of their app to write the type of lens used in metadata so you can tell later in which lens you used. I think when Moment made the lenses their objective was to make them as free as possible of distortions. Their wide angle is rectilinear already without requiring corrections to straighten it out.
Of course every lens could benefit from some final corrections for residual distortions and chromatic aberrations. As far as I know the desktop version of Adobe Lightroom is the only thing capable of that sort of corrections and only if someone has done the tests to make a correction profile. There are correction profiles for many iPhone and other phone models but not all. With the dual lens models you would need a correction profile for each lens, plus each lens in combination with every Moment lens you could mount onto it. That would be a great many combinations. There is(was?) a test sequence users could use in Lightroom to create their own lens profiles but I don’t know if that is current. I dropped out of the Adobe stuff when the went creative cloud so I’m still using the last version of self contained Lightroom 6.

Moment used to make stick-on adapter plates that were usable on many types of phones but they abandoned that in favour of cases. I think some people had difficulties getting the plates stuck on exactly in the right place which sort of defeats the purpose. It looks to me that Moment has priced their cases very attractively to make up for the need for them. Also, the Moment cases have neck strap attachment points and this is the best idea since sliced bread.
The Moment camera app also has s very nice two-stage shutter release just like a regular camera. It can be shut off in preferences if you don’t want it. I really like how it works. I think it requires a phone with 3D Touch to work.
 

ImageArt

MobiLifer
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Ann
Device
iPhone 11 Pro
My 365
My MobiTog 365
I’ve just bought the Moment lenses within the last 2 months, the macro and the new tele 58mm (which I got for Xmas). It took me a while to get use to the iphone case which was thicker than my normal case but now I don’t notice it. I keep a cloth and earbud in my bag in case the lenses need cleaning but they tend to keep cleaner with this case.

What I like is that the lenses fit on quite easily and require no adjustment. Both of the lenses felt good from the moment I put them on. I love the macro and I can’t wait to test the tele lens properly. The magnification on the x2 iphone zoom plus this seems very impressive using the Moment app.

I also bought the 62mm filter mount and it fits almost too tightly so I have decided to leave it on even though it makes the lens a bit bulkier because I am likely to use it a lot with a 62mm x10 macro filter. Can’t wait to try this combo too and compare it with the actual macro lens. It might mean you actually don’t need the macro lens at all and it enables you to be further away.

Personally I wish I had bought them sooner.
 

terse

MobiLifer
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Real Name
Ted
Device
iPhone Xs
Moment has cases for several models of Pixels and Samsung Galaxy, and it's coming out with cases for the One Plus. The Moment camera app is pretty good but not necessary unless you have the Moment battery case (in which case you need it for turning charging on and off and for applying firmware updates to the case). The battery case also has a physical shutter button with a half-press-to-focus feature.
 

ImageArt

MobiLifer
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Real Name
Ann
Device
iPhone 11 Pro
My 365
My MobiTog 365
Ok, went out for a quick test and I must point out here that I was not using a tripod and the light was not good. It is pretty difficult getting the right focus distance under these conditions and I have no doubt that it would be better with tripod/light.

First, plain iPhone native app with the 7+ 2x zoom.
D77E241B-5097-49C2-B059-67388FC0A15C.jpeg


Second, native app with Macro 10x lens. I took quite a few images and with such a narrow depth of field and a large area needing focus this was the best I got. This is where I’d like to try focus stacking with CameraPixels and Affinity and of course a tripod.
4BC34F35-0572-46A5-9112-72F316AAAC19.jpeg


Third, Moment Camera app, the 7+ 2x zoom, Macro 10x lens. Definitely needed a tripod for this!
C23560A3-036E-4905-B7A8-DD13A49A7C49.jpeg


Lastly, Moment Camera App, 7+ 2x zoom, Moment tele 58mm lens and adapter, Neewer 62mm +10 macro filter. I couldn’t quite work out if the iPhone’s x2 zoom was actually being used but I think it was. The ability to be further away and get a greater depth of field made it much easier to use.

Hmm, I wonder if it will turn out that by buying the tele 58mm lens, the adapter and a macro filter, I will still need the macro lens. The adapter and macro filter (actually a whole set of Neewer filters from Amazon for £16) turns out to be half the price of the macro lens. However, the macro lens gets you a little closer and with focus stacking this may well be better. I think where I am really getting excited is with macro video. With a greater depth of field it is easier to get a sharper image on the go.
DD1DF1FE-E2FE-42A1-A6D7-A9AEB39E29BA.jpeg
 

jangray

MobiLurver
Real Name
Jan Gray
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
We have both types - clip on and the moment lenses which we changed to as the clip on were a bit fiddly and I found them not so good for macro.
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
Ok, went out for a quick test and I must point out here that I was not using a tripod and the light was not good. It is pretty difficult getting the right focus distance under these conditions and I have no doubt that it would be better with tripod/light.

First, plain iPhone native app with the 7+ 2x zoom.
View attachment 118644

Second, native app with Macro 10x lens. I took quite a few images and with such a narrow depth of field and a large area needing focus this was the best I got. This is where I’d like to try focus stacking with CameraPixels and Affinity and of course a tripod.
View attachment 118645

Third, Moment Camera app, the 7+ 2x zoom, Macro 10x lens. Definitely needed a tripod for this!
View attachment 118646

Lastly, Moment Camera App, 7+ 2x zoom, Moment tele 58mm lens and adapter, Neewer 62mm +10 macro filter. I couldn’t quite work out if the iPhone’s x2 zoom was actually being used but I think it was. The ability to be further away and get a greater depth of field made it much easier to use.

Hmm, I wonder if it will turn out that by buying the tele 58mm lens, the adapter and a macro filter, I will still need the macro lens. The adapter and macro filter (actually a whole set of Neewer filters from Amazon for £16) turns out to be half the price of the macro lens. However, the macro lens gets you a little closer and with focus stacking this may well be better. I think where I am really getting excited is with macro video. With a greater depth of field it is easier to get a sharper image on the go.
View attachment 118647
When you select the 2x lens in the Monent app you are definitely on the 2x lens. Only the native camera switches to whichever lens suits the lighting conditions. Besides that, if you mount the 58 on the 2x lens and select the 1x lens in the app you get nothing but black on the screen. That way you know you’re on the wrong position.
I found that using the 58 on the 2x lens plus a 10x close-up lens I get about 95% of the magnification of the Macro lens but with 4” lens to subject distance instead of 3/4” with the Macro.
 

ImageArt

MobiLifer
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Ann
Device
iPhone 11 Pro
My 365
My MobiTog 365
When you select the 2x lens in the Monent app you are definitely on the 2x lens. Only the native camera switches to whichever lens suits the lighting conditions. Besides that, if you mount the 58 on the 2x lens and select the 1x lens in the app you get nothing but black on the screen. That way you know you’re on the wrong position.
I found that using the 58 on the 2x lens plus a 10x close-up lens I get about 95% of the magnification of the Macro lens but with 4” lens to subject distance instead of 3/4” with the Macro.
Yes, exactly.
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
Ok, went out for a quick test and I must point out here that I was not using a tripod and the light was not good. It is pretty difficult getting the right focus distance under these conditions and I have no doubt that it would be better with tripod/light.

First, plain iPhone native app with the 7+ 2x zoom.
View attachment 118644

Second, native app with Macro 10x lens. I took quite a few images and with such a narrow depth of field and a large area needing focus this was the best I got. This is where I’d like to try focus stacking with CameraPixels and Affinity and of course a tripod.
View attachment 118645

Third, Moment Camera app, the 7+ 2x zoom, Macro 10x lens. Definitely needed a tripod for this!
View attachment 118646

Lastly, Moment Camera App, 7+ 2x zoom, Moment tele 58mm lens and adapter, Neewer 62mm +10 macro filter. I couldn’t quite work out if the iPhone’s x2 zoom was actually being used but I think it was. The ability to be further away and get a greater depth of field made it much easier to use.

Hmm, I wonder if it will turn out that by buying the tele 58mm lens, the adapter and a macro filter, I will still need the macro lens. The adapter and macro filter (actually a whole set of Neewer filters from Amazon for £16) turns out to be half the price of the macro lens. However, the macro lens gets you a little closer and with focus stacking this may well be better. I think where I am really getting excited is with macro video. With a greater depth of field it is easier to get a sharper image on the go.
View attachment 118647
This is a nice set of examples. It’s all white and snowy outside here so it’s nice to see some plant closeups, even if they look dried out.
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
Yes, exactly.
When I was comparing the magnification of the Moment Macro and the Moment 58 and +10x close-up lens, I was using a finely printed packaging box for a product, and, the Macro showed sharpness right across the picture area while the 58, or more likely my +10 close-up lens showed softening in the corners.

One special characteristic of a Macro lens is flatness of field, or flatness of the focusing plane. When photographing flat subjects this really is important, but out in the field you seldom come across flat subjects, except maybe frost on a window.

This led me to look for a better quality +10 close-up lens. I learned that the higher magnification lenses benefit from two-element construction. Reviews I read indicated a noticeable improvement in sharpness with the two-element design. However, they are much more expensive and somewhat heavier, too. The 49mm size is $72 Cdn.

I think I will get out some graph paper to see how well it photographs.
 

ImageArt

MobiLifer
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Ann
Device
iPhone 11 Pro
My 365
My MobiTog 365
I am quite happy with any of the Moment lenses I have bought. I also have a clip-on Fisheye lens. The lens itself is pretty good but the mounting is quite fiddly and requires careful adjustment each time mounting it. Correct cemeteries is essential with any lens. I found I could greatly improve the centering with the addition of a couple of rubber strips glued to the clip to place guides to get it in the right place. The makers could easily do that except the position of the guides is specific to the phone model so that would graeatly complicate ordering and take away the universal nature of the mount.
I have a clip-on filter adapter and it doesn’t require the same precision in centering but you do have to look through the front to be sure it is in the right place. I added glued-on rubber strips to that one to so I can get it into position without the need to look at the front of the camera to check the positioning.
One thing that would help all camera lenses is a good lens hood. Not a silly round one but a proper rectangular hood. Excluding non-image-forming light really helps improve image quality, haze & contrast. In used to use very tight rectangular bellows lens hoods on my big cameras and even though they were sometimes a nuisance the difference in image quality made it worthwhile.
Whenever you see the sun shining directly on any part of the front of the lens you can simply shade the lens using your grey card or white balance card. Naturally this is much easier when using a tripod.
I don’t know much about lens hoods but this is my new set up for my Moment 58mm telephoto lens. I now keep the Moment step-up adapter on whether I’m using an additional lens or not partly because it’s a pain to get on and off but also because my Neewer lens came with a lens cap and hood. I can add a lens filter quickly too.

101FACEC-D3F1-4FEC-97A0-861CC90058E9.png

F3B2392A-D254-4AFD-8DD6-8E35FDFAFC20.jpeg

FB181C8B-CBF1-4A4E-97FF-C1E1CBFB888F.jpeg
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
I don’t know much about lens hoods but this is my new set up for my Moment 58mm telephoto lens. I now keep the Moment step-up adapter on whether I’m using an additional lens or not partly because it’s a pain to get on and off but also because my Neewer lens came with a lens cap and hood. I can add a lens filter quickly too.

View attachment 120126
View attachment 120128
View attachment 120127
It’s good you have found a way of working you like. Having the lens cap is a good idea.
Your lens hood appears to be made for a wide angle lens. If you don’t tend to remove the adapter from the 58 what do you do when you put on the wide angle lens?
My own adapter isn’t that hard to remove. It is still better to remove the lens from the case before pulling off the adapter to avoid straining the mount.

Moment adopted the 62mm adapter size because they wanted one size to fit all their lenses. That means the widest lens is the one calling the shots. The 58 really doesn’t need such a big filter size. 37mm is a perfect size for it but that would mean different adapters for each lens.
I’m anxious to post something about my new +10 close-up lens - when I get time. It took a while to arrive from Japan. I ordered it on Amazon and it seemed the supplier was in the US but that was just for show I guess.
The +10 seems to be excellent, especially compared to my old one. Very good lens coatings the two element design fixes the usual aberrations that become a problem at +10. It is deeper than my other close-up lenses at 16mm thick.
 

ImageArt

MobiLifer
MobiSupporter
Real Name
Ann
Device
iPhone 11 Pro
My 365
My MobiTog 365
It’s good you have found a way of working you like. Having the lens cap is a good idea.
Your lens hood appears to be made for a wide angle lens. If you don’t tend to remove the adapter from the 58 what do you do when you put on the wide angle lens?
My own adapter isn’t that hard to remove. It is still better to remove the lens from the case before pulling off the adapter to avoid straining the mount.

Moment adopted the 62mm adapter size because they wanted one size to fit all their lenses. That means the widest lens is the one calling the shots. The 58 really doesn’t need such a big filter size. 37mm is a perfect size for it but that would mean different adapters for each lens.
I’m anxious to post something about my new +10 close-up lens - when I get time. It took a while to arrive from Japan. I ordered it on Amazon and it seemed the supplier was in the US but that was just for show I guess.
The +10 seems to be excellent, especially compared to my old one. Very good lens coatings the two element design fixes the usual aberrations that become a problem at +10. It is deeper than my other close-up lenses at 16mm thick.
I seldom use the wide angle lens only the macro.

This new +10, what’s the make?
 

FundyBrian

MobiLifer
Mobi Veteran
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Real Name
Brian Townsend
Device
iPhone 8 Plus
My 365
My MobiTog 365
I seldom use the wide angle lens only the macro.

This new +10, what’s the make?
It is Kenko Tokina Co., Ltd. You probably recignize the name Tokina as being a major maker of lenses for DSLR cameras. I have 3 myself. I think in the Amazon listings it just shows Kenko
 

gwphotos73

MobiStarter
Device
Pixel
For Android phones, Moment has great stuff. The cases make lens placement simple and consistent. Reminds me a lot of the Samsung Galaxy S7 lens cover. S7 lens cover produced vignetting around the edges but was otherwise solid.
 

JillyG

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Jilly
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iPhone 11 Pro Max
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My MobiTog 365
For Android phones, Moment has great stuff. The cases make lens placement simple and consistent. Reminds me a lot of the Samsung Galaxy S7 lens cover. S7 lens cover produced vignetting around the edges but was otherwise solid.
Yes, I agree - the case is great and the Moment app is well worth the £6 or $6 cost. The lenses are great quality (so they should be, of course, for the money!) and are easy to attach to the case. The tele lens turns into a 4X with the app. I’m very pleased with my gifts of Moment lenses. :D
 

JillyG

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Jilly
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terse

MobiLifer
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Real Name
Ted
Device
iPhone Xs
Actually I think about getting the Sirui portrait lens which is said to be better than the Moment lens: https://www.amazon.com/Sirui-TL-400-3-Telephoto-Bluetooth-Smartphones/dp/B07KD37VXM
I have both the v1 and v2 Moment portrait lenses. In that first review on Amazon, the guy is comparing to the v1 Moment lens (I'm certain because of the purple fringing you can see around the white wood -- that's a flaw of v1). The v2 is noticeably better. But the Sirui looks quite good in the sample photo, the price is less than 2/3 of the Moment, and it fits the Moment cases, so it looks like a good choice to me.
 

TomHH

MobiPassionista
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Tom
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Pixel
Yes, I also have seen some other examples which were quite good. Only drawback for me is the price of the Moment case. 45€ is quite a lot. Maybe I find something else to attach the lens.
 
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