As much as I love my Olloclip lens, I am very much aware that not only it costs a lot of money but also it is only available for iPhones. In short, Olloclip for all its greatness can only serve a very niche market. If you happen to own a smartphone other than an iPhone, or even if you have an iPad (or other tablets) and want to take ‘funky’ photos, you are out of luck. Unless you get one one of these Conversion Lens like DCKina’s Fisheye + Macro Combo Kit.
Fun for all
The biggest advantage of the type of smartphone attachment lenses like what DCKina has here is that you can attach it to virtually any smartphone, tablet or even laptop in the market!
The trick is the way the lens is attached to the Phone, and this one is using a ‘magnetic ring‘.
The way it works is that the Lens Kit comes with a set of metal rings, 3 of them in fact are shipped with this one. Each ring is meant to be used for different devices (or just for backup). For example, for my iPhone 5, I used the one with a groove on it. This groove is there so that the ring doesn’t obstruct the LED flash when it’s stuck around the iPhone camera lens.
The ring is covered with sticky paper on one side which you need to peel off to reveal the sticky side. Then you fit the sticky side on to the phone, covering the area around the phone camera lens. To fit the Lens to the phone, you just ‘click’ the magnetic end of the lens to the metal ring, and there you have your lens attachment.
As you might have guessed, using this method of attachment, you can virtually fit the lens onto any smartphone or table, or even laptop that has camera on the lid. Very simple and effective and universal.
The strongest and weakest link
The magnet on the lens is surprisingly strong enough to hold it on the ring, so you don’t need to worry that it might fall off. The metal ring with the sticky back however is a different story.
In my opinion the ring is the ‘weakest link‘ of this method of attachment. First of all, it reduces your flexibility in a way that you are forced to use this lens all the time. Because if you want to try a different lens product, like an Olloclip for example, you will have to detach the sticky ring so that you can use this other lens.
Unfortunately the act of attaching and detaching, as you might have imagined, will wear out the adhesive on the ring, which at the end will reduce its longevity. I have experienced this personally when after taking it off and putting in on a couple times, the ring just won’t stick any more, hence it’s not strong enough to hold the lens.
This is something that you might want to consider before you decide to invest on this type of attachment lenses. Mind you, DCKina produce a comprehensive range of lenses for virtually all devices that if you want you don’t really need to use other type/brand of lenses, you can stick with them and you should be fine.
The DCKina Fisheye + Macro combo lens comes with what it says in the tin, i.e. a 2-in-1 lens that consist of a Fisheye lens, which if you screw it out will reveal the Macro lens underneath.
The Fisheye will give you a near 180 degrees view, although as usual with this type of lens you will get lens distortion which manifests in a black vignette around the image that take away a bit of image real-estate. Have a look at the example I took below.
Quality wise, the lens optic gives you quiet clear image with surprisingly not much blurring on the edge.
Macro photography has always been fascinating to me and if you haven’t tried it, the DCKina Macro lens would set you straight on the path of a new discovery. And it works quiet well too.
You can focus on your object pretty close, as close as 18mm according to DCKina. As for the quality it does a pretty good job. Images are sharp where it needs to be with quiet a good saturation. I think it works very well as you can see in the shot I took below.
What else in the box
Apart from the lens kit and the rings, you also get a plastic lens cap and a magnetic ‘hanger’ which will ‘click’ on the lens magnetic part. The string loop in this hanger makes it easy for the lens to carry around.
The DCKina Fisheye + Macro Lens combo is actually pretty good lens kit. The aluminium body is light but feels sturdy enough and the coated glass lens seems producing good pictures. The only thing is that you will need to ‘stick’ – no pun intended – with the the metal ring attachment for a while, which means your choice of mobile case is limited and you can’t freely swapping lenses without risking wearing off the adhesive. But if you have a smartphone other than an iPhone, this is probably one of the best choice your can get out there. Oh, and wait until you hear how much it costs
The DCKina Fisheye + Macro Lens kit costs a mere $14.80! This plus a flat rate International Shipping for $4 per order makes it very ‘pocket-friendly‘ deal for your first lens kit.
Alternatively you might want to check out this All-in-One Lens deal which includes:
- A Wide Angle + Macro Lens combo
- A 2x Telephoto Lens
- A Fisheye + Macro combo (one I’m reviewing here)
Check out also more review of this same lens combo with more example of photos and even videos taken with the lens down at our friend Combo Apps blog.
Here is a list of devices with which this lens is compatible (taken from DCKina.com), just in case you need to check:
- iPhone 5 / iPhone 5s / iPhone 5c
- iPhone 4 / iPhone 4s
- iPhone 1st Gen
- iPad 2 / iPad 3 / iPad 4 / iPad Air / iPad Mini / iPad Mini 2
- iPod Nano 5th
- HTC Dream / T-Mobile G1
- NDS DS-i
- Notebook / Netbook (eg. Mac / Macbook / eee-pc / laptop)
- Mobilephone / PDA / Smartphone…
- Degital Camera (for example: Ativa Mini HD)
- Kodak Ze-Series: Playfull
- Kodak Zx-Series: Playsport / Zx3, Playsport / Zx5, ZxD
- Kodak Zi-Series: Playtouch, Zi8, Zi6
- Sprint HTC Evo 4G
- Pocket Video Cam Vado HD
- Pocket Video Cam Vado HD 2nd gen
- Pocket Video Cam Vado HD 3rd gen
- Sony Bloggie MHS-PM5K
- Samsung Galaxy Tab P1000, P6800…
- Samsung Galaxy Si / i9000 / i9100 / sii / s2
- Samsung Galaxy Siii, s iii s3, i9300, GT-i9300
- Samsung Galaxy Siv, s iv s4, i9500, GT-i9500
- Samsung Galaxy Note 2 / Note II / N7100
- Samsung Galaxy Note 3 / Note III / N9000
- MacBook Pro- Samsung Galaxy S4 / S IV / SIV / GT-i9500 / GT-i9500