If you’re reading this, it’s quite likely that you are, like me, quite keen on the odd gadget or too. My most-used gadgets of choice are the iPhone 4s and iPad 2. At Christmas, what better measure of what to get others, than something you’d want too. By way of suggestions to make your present-buying a little easier, here are some items I’ve used for filming and photography this year, which I can highly recommend, and that won’t break the bank. Everything here costs less than £30.
- Camera mount. Essential for recording movies in full 1080 HD, without the inevitable shaky picture. May I introduce you to The Glif? The Glif was born from the crowdfunding site Kickstarter, which helped realise the invention of two ordinary guys. It’s an ingenious mount for your iPhone, which screws directly to any camera stand. Buy the Original Glif, for £15,49 (plus postage) or an excellent knock-off copy for just £9.49 (free delivery).
- You now need a suitable camera stand. For versatility, I initially chose the Hama Monopod Star 78 for only £11 from Amazon. This is perfect for taking very steady photos and videos, whilst on the go, and is extremely light. Additionally, I then went for a more traditional tripod, which is, of course free standing. To keep the same camera mount, I went for the Hama Star 63 tripod, which is great bargain at only £14.50.
- Whilst the iPhone 4s benefits from a much improved camera, thanks largely to the better glass lenses, you don’t have the versatility of an SLR camera. I discovered an astonishing 4 in 1 lens pack on sale on eBay. Featuring an 8x zoom lens, which screws onto the provided iphone 4 case, a fish-eye, wide-angle, and a macro lens, this gives an amazing array of new features. In addition, it comes with a camera mount and a mini desk tripod. Altogether, this lens pack from eBay costs only £29.99! (PS. If you click the link and the item has been sold, search again, as there’s loads available).
- I film everything on my iPhone, and transfer to my iPad for editing. Whilst iCloud will synchronise photos, it won’t do movies. These can easily be transferred from iPhone to iPod with Apple’s own iPad Camera Connection Kit (£25)
- This has to be the bargain of the day. The iMovie App, from the iTunes Store (£2.99), is the most user-friedly movie editor, and works well on both iPad and iPhone. Remember, if you are buying with the same iTunes account, you only need to pay once. See the iMovie Tutorial here.
- My son Zach loves filming stop-motion videos of lego characters. I was amazed when I found the iMotion App (£1.79). This app allows you to network two Apple devices (iPhones or iPads), where the first one is the camera, on a little tripod, and the second is used as the remote control. Everything the camera sees is displayed on the 2nd device, which is then used to snap frames after moving characters, without disturbing the device doing the filming. Here is a brilliant video explaining it much better.
So there you go – 8 brilliant and inexpensive gifts for under £30, that will delight anyone with an iPhone.