Travel Loot

Make It Snappy with the Best Smartphone Camera Accessories

by Daniel Schwartz

A Moment iPhone case and lens. Photo courtesy of Moment.

Smartphone cameras just keep getting better and better. Make the most of them with the right accessories and you'll think twice about lugging around your DSLR every time you travel.

Do you really need a heavy-duty DSLR to take beautiful photos while traveling? If you shoot commercially, the answer is most likely a yes. But if your main concern is posting pretty snapshots to social media, consider relying on your smartphone's camera. It's lightweight, inconspicuous, and packed with impressive technology. Add on a few fun accessories and you have an imaging system that'll keep pace with the most Instagram-worthy of lifestyles. No shlepping involved.

A telephoto lens. Photo courtesy of Moment.

Hand-assembled, cinema-quality, mountable lenses come in fish-eye for tight interiors, wide-angle for impressive landscapes, telephoto for intimate portraits, and macro for capturing details. Attach them to the included mounting plate or buy and use their iPhone case, which comes with a built-in shutter button. (from $80)

A line-up of pro lenses. Photo courtesy of Pixter.

If your phone (or budget) is incompatible with lenses from Moment, consider alternatives from the Parisian company Pixter. Their lenses clip onto any smartphone and work with both rear- and front-facing cameras. Bring on the selfies. (from €30)

A serious camera upgrade. Photo courtesy of DxO.

A stand-alone miniature pro-quality camera is equipped with a 1-inch sensor, 20.2 megapixels, f/1.8 max aperture, WiFi connectivity, a dedicated selfie mode, and the ability to shoot in RAW. Translation: It's the best accessory your iPhone camera can currently get. Use it on its own or plug it in and turn your phone screen into a DSLR-like interface. ($479)

The ProShot interface. Photo courtesy of Rise Up Games.

Take control of your camera settings. Exposure, shutter speed, custom aspect ratio — all of them. The seamlessly designed app, compatible with iPhone, Android, and Windows phones, gives you full control over how you shoot, even while using the front-facing camera. ($4)

Let there be light. Photo courtesy of Photojojo.

An exposure bump goes a long way when shooting in low light. The portable LED plugs into iPhone and Android headphone jacks, doesn't need batteries, and gives off softer light than your phone camera's flash. ($30)

Storage expander. Photo courtesy of SanDisk.

You'll need somewhere to store all those gorgeous photos, especially if you're shooting in large formats like RAW. Automatically back them up to this iPhone flash drive. (Android users, shop the .) Manage stored files directly on your device using the accompanying app, or transfer them to your computer for heavier editing. (from $36)

Old-school sharing. Photo courtesy of Polaroid.

Go analog and share your best shots on the spot. Connect with iOS and Android devices over Bluetooth and print in under a minute using smudge-proof, ZINK zero-ink photo paper. ($130)


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