Among the many cases available for the iPhone, we found several functional and clever cases created especially for iPhotographers. Interested to see how the cases could aid iPhone photography, we tried and tested four options.
We looked at a branded case from iPhone’s hippest photography app, a case that adds a fish-eye lens, one with built-in tripod attachment and another that transforms your iPhone into an underwater camera.
Take a look through the photo galleries to see our exclusive gadget photos and sample pics, and let us know in the comments which cases you’d be tempted to try — and why.
Hipstamatic Hipstacase 100
The Hipstacase 100 from Hipstamatic and Agent18 gives your iPhone that retro camera appearance, making it the perfect accessory for your cool, vintage lifestyle. It's available now for $39.95.
The Clip-On Case
The iPhone 4 snaps into the case. From the front you'd never know you'd just transformed your phone into a retro camera.
The Faux Camera Facade
The back is where it all happens. A fake flash, fake lens, fake textured band and, of course, the Hipstamatic logo are molded into the plastic .
The included "wristlet" provides an alternative way to carry your iPhone. Or is it supposed to be ironic? We're not hip enough to know, but it's bundled in, so you can decide.
The Tripod Adapter
The tripod adapter slides into a slit in the hollow "lens." In landscape mode it just about feels secure...
In Portrait Position
... but in portrait position, we would only risk using it in indoor/controlled conditions, for fear of it sliding out.
The FishEYE iPhone Cover
The Thumbs Up FishEYE iPhone Cover gives your iPhone a fish-eye view of the world. The plain black case comes with a detachable lens, available from Firebox for £21,49, 24 euros, or $35.
The case doesn't intrude on the front of the phone, leaving all ports free too.
With the lens removed, the case remains a fairly unobtrusive black cover.
The lens screws onto the case.
As one would expect, we immediately tried to capture humorous images of our pets. Don't pretend you wouldn't do the same.
The lens gives you a round perspective to play with.
We were pleased that colors and image quality weren't too altered by the addition of the lens.
The distortion means you can get creative, although it's really a novelty, rather than a useful addition to your iPhotography kit.
And of course, the classic big-nose fish eye portrait is a must-snap image.
The Joy Factory RainBallet iPhone 4 Case
The RainBallet boasts shock and waterproof protection for your iPhone 4. You can use it as a rugged case or, Joy claims, convert your phone into an underwater camera. It's available now for $49.95.
Test Before Use!
Our trepidation at submerging our perfectly good iPhone 4 in water was increased by the warning sticker on the front of the case urging us to test before use. Isn't that the manufacturer's job?
The Joy RainBallet
The RainBallet is chunky. Shown here next to the iPhone, you can see how much bulk it will add to the device, but it may be an appropriate trade-off for the protection.
The iPhone fits snugly into the front half of the case.
The Back of the Case
The back of the case locks shut with three screws.
The sturdy strap secures onto the bottom of the case, complete with a thin metal disk designed to open and close the case's screws.
The Underwater Test
Sadly the Mashable budget didn't allow for a snorkelling trip, so we dunked our iPhone 4 into a river instead. Not a drop of water got through the case.
We struggled with pressing the camera button through the case when underwater. Instead we grabbed this shot with the iPhone's camera underwater and the button out of water. Therefore, we find Joy's claim of being able to convert your phone into a fully-fledged underwater camera a little optimistic. However, the RainBallet will definitely protect your iPhone from agua, dust, dirt and to a certain extent, your own clumsiness.
The XShot iPhone 4 Case
The XShot iPhone 4 Case comes with a detachable tripod adapter for a universal 1/4" screw and a "Flex Mini Tripod." It costs $29.95.
From the Front
The case protrudes slightly over the front of the iPhone, which means your screen is slightly set back and protected if you put it face down.
The Case Is In Two Parts
With access to all ports and buttons, the case comes in two parts which snap together when on the iPhone. It feels like good quality and boasts a soft-touch finish that feels nice in the hand.
The Detachable Tripod Mount
The bundled tripod mount securely slides into a groove on the side of the case.
The Mini Tripod and Mount
The Flex Mini Tripod is sturdy, and again, feels like good quality. Overall the XShot system is a tidy, value-conscious solution for iPhotographers who desire extra stability on the go.