Most of the newest smartphone cameras come with a wide, ultra-wide, or both lenses. So, what’s the benefit of using an add-on wide-angle lens instead?
Well, the add-on lenses are adding quality to your phone camera’s best lens, whereas the ultra-wide camera is incompatible with these lenses. The opening of an ultra-wide lens cannot work with an add-on lens; it’s too wide. As a result, these fancy lenses are pretty useless for professional-grade mobile photography.
Comparing the Best Wide Angle Lenses for Mobile Photography
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First, let’s take note of the image gallery above where you can see the differences between telephoto, native, and wide lenses. The first thing that pops out to me is the difference in the field of view in each image. Each type of lens is designed with a style of cell phone photography in mind and it’s clear that FOV is a big part of their differences.
Wide angle lenses suit photography that focuses on leading lines, natural light, and the angle of view among other things. In short, if you like landscapes, cityscapes, or anything in between then a wide lens is for you.
So, you’ve admitted that a wide-angle lens is better than shooting with the native one. You know it’s also ideal for your style of content. Now you’re wondering where to begin.
Well, if you’re a sports enthusiast who enjoys March Madness, then you’ll love this video from Taylor Moore (even if you don’t like sports, check out the video for the content). He’s created an engaging bracket-style competition to compare eight different brands of wide-angle lenses for smartphones (we’ve compared the two most noteworthy offerings here). The video is an excellent introduction to the mobile photography industries big players.
So, what products did Moore compare in his video?
- Todi 4k
As he compares photos taken between two lenses, he points out the slightest infractions of photo quality. The problems he found mostly occur near the edges of the images, although there was one photo where the center exhibited some lens flare.
But, why did these issues occur? Well, we contribute the issues Moore experienced to clip-on lenses and their effect on the industry. A Moment style mounting option is the best way to ensure that your images are crispy. Fortunately, many of the options Moore goes over have a similar system for mounting.
In the end, Moore decides that the Sandmarc wide-angle lens offers the sharpest image from edge to edge. He declared Sandmarc the King of iPhone lenses.
He declared Moment the king of wide-angle lenses for smartphones (we did too) overall because of their great mounting system and the fact that they’re compatible with some Android phone models.
3 Top Wide Angle Lenses for Smartphones
Best Quality Option
|Title||Moment Wide Lens|
Best Deal Option
|Title||Sandmarc Wide Lens Edition|
|Attachment System||Mounted + Clip-On Options|
Best Budget Option
|Title||Rhinoshield 4K HD Wide + Macro Lens|
Moment Wide Lens
It doesn’t take long when looking for mobile photography gear to come across Moment lenses. Not only are their lenses highly rated, but their dedicated cases solve so many problems. These issues include vignetting and chromatic abhoration among other things. While compared to the Amazon budget offerings in the video, the Moment Wide Lens is expensive.
But, Moment designs all lenses with top-notch materials like cinema-quality glass; they are not plastic clip-on lenses. These are super solid pieces of equipment, heavy enough to feel expensive. Every Moment lens has a twist and lock system that offers increased stability in the mount of the lens and limits vignetting and chromatic aberration throughout the images. As a result, image quality is optimal.
When you shoot video with the Moment Wide lens, it produces all the same attributes as it does when shooting still photos. While Moore crowned Sandmarc King of the mobile photography lens world, we aren’t quite ready to take that title away from Moment just yet.
Sandmarc Wide Lens Edition
The casing of Sandmarc lenses is wholly made out of metal, so these are about as sturdy as they come. In addition, the lenses are multi-coated and constructed with grade-A materials. Sandmarc’s focus on high-quality construction provides image sharpness from corner to corner. Sandmarc lenses are made for iPhones, and, although they can be used on Android, it is recommended that you use them for iPhone because the iPhone/Sandmarc pairing gives you better precision.
Every Sandmarc lens comes with a case specially designed for your iPhone model of choice. These dedicated cases ensure the perfect phone lens to add-on lens alignment every time. There’s also a clip in every box so you can use the lens on the front-facing camera for those extra-wide selfies.
Rhinoshield 4K HD Wide + Macro Lens
First things first, let’s talk about Rhinoshield’s customizable cases because they’re the star of the show. Drop tested may be an understatement. Rhinoshield went ahead and did AP Physics level gravity experiments on their gear, and the cases stood up to the test.
While Rhinoshield’s line-up of mobile photography lenses is comparatively small, they’re also comparatively inexpensive. If you’re looking to blur the line between affordability and usability, then the Rhinoshield 4K HD Wide + Macro Lens is worth considering. That macro lens is certainly enticing too. If you want to learn more about macro, then click here.
Honorable Mention – Lemuro Wide Lens
Chances are, you haven’t heard of Lemuro, but, that changes now because their lenses are legit. Based on their website, it’s pretty clear that they like what Moment does. The content on the site – from blog posts to available products – is eerily similar.
Now, how does Lemuro compare to Moment? Well, they’re not quite at Moment’s level. But, there’s plenty to look forward to when it comes to Lemuro’s future. Is this the future Coke versus Pepsi equivalent of the mobile photography world? Only time will tell. But, as of today, Lemuro’s lenses are definitely worth a look.
How Does a Wide Angle Lens Benefit Your Mobile Photography?
A wide-angle lens gives you lots of options for your images, hence why these are commonly known as the most versatile mobile photography lenses. If you’re just starting out creating content on your cell phone, then a wide-angle offering may very well be the first addition to your toolbelt.
When you add a wide lens to portrait software, you still get that beautiful bokeh too. This style of lens is also effective on social media because they stand out.
Whether you’re set on capturing great images of landscapes or cityscapes, a wide lens is worth considering. If you travel and like to capture these kinds of photos, check out our post on capturing landscapes on your mobile. In it, you’ll see that this type of lens is ideal for dramatic natural scenes.
So what is the best wide-angle lens for your mobile photography? Well, the answer depends on your specific needs. Don’t wipe out your budget on one piece of equipment. Instead, grow your toolbox from the ground up by buying intelligently.
So, are you ready to take your mobile photography to the next level? By adding a wide-angle lens, you’re getting the most bang for your buck that can be had. If you find you like what this lens can do, you may want to add other niche lenses as well, or maybe some videography accessories. With today’s technology, creating dope content is closer than you think.