Objects of Desire: Griffin Clarifi

Feb 2, 2009
By Dan Havlik

Griffin Clarifi

When we got our iPhone 3G last summer we were surprised at how much we enjoyed the cruddy little built-in camera. Though it's pretty limited—no optical zoom or flash and only blah picture quality—having even a 2-mega-pixel camera on hand at all times has helped us catch some fun, candid, weird, and occasionally memorable shots to share with friends. (No we don't, as a rule, bring our digital SLR with us when we go to the supermarket.)

There are now a slew of apps in the iTunes App store to help take more interesting iPhone pictures including the buggy though effective CameraBag program ($2.99). But along with photo software, a couple of external devices have been created to improve iPhone quality. One new one is Clarifi from Griffin which is actually a case that slides over the iPhone 3G and includes a sort of pseudo "macro" lens. Though it certainly won't rival the finest Macro glass from Nikon, Canon and others, Clarifi does a very decent job of pulling more detail from close-up shots with the iPhone's camera. Without Clarifi you can focus approximately 18 inches from your subject but with it you can get as close as four inches. Along with helping get some nice shots of flowers, Clarifi will let you take photos of close-up text, such as business cards. If you don't want to use the close-up feature, just slide it out of the way for normal photography.

And, of course, in addition to having a close-up lens, the polycarbonate Clarifi case will help protect your iPhone while still giving you access to the power switch, headphone jack, volume controls and dock connector.

Cost: $35
Further information: www.griffintechnology.com

The latest addition to the PDN family, the PDN Gear Guide in print, has a total circulation of 30,000, and covers the latest and greatest in photographic equipment. Initially created in 2006 to be the official guide to PDN's annual flagship photography event, PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo, the PDN Gear Guide is now also available online for gear news and updates 365 days a year.
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