If we take away all the egotistical hyperbole, one of the big things that stops a lot of people from shooting more (and more serious) photos with their smartphones is the lack of available filters. Sure, there are some polarisers and NDs out there, but when have you ever seen a square filter system comparable to that which you’d use on a DSLR or mirrorless camera?
Well, NiSi’s solving that today, at least for iPhone users, with the release of their new Smartphone Filter Kit for iPhone. Technically, there are three kits. There’s the Landscape Kit, the Filmmaker Kit and the Cinema Kit, each tailored to a different type of user. And the filters themselves appear to be exactly the same (only smaller) as those which NiSi makes for regular cameras, too.
The core of the system is the NiSi IP-A holder, which comes with all three kits. This attaches to your phone and can even be used with a case. On top of this, you can attach the various round filters or the NiSi P2 holder for square filters (including ND Grads!). Ok, let’s start with the Landscape kit.
The Landscape Kit comes with the IP-A holder, the P2 holder, a polariser, a medium graduated ND, a 6-stop infrared-blocking neutral density filter and a pouch to keep them all in. The IP-A holder itself essentially clamps over your camera, which is how you can use it even with a case, but has a soft side on the clamp so that it won’t scratch your screen – a common problem with a lot of those spring-type lens/filter holders for smartphones.
The Filmmaker Kit also comes with the IP-A holder but adopts round filters instead of square. The kit includes a 1/4 Black Mist filter, a True Color ND-Vario 1-5 stop and the pouch. The variable ND filter is a common stable of filmmakers and vloggers everywhere and much needed on smartphones where you’re unable to stop down your aperture in bright conditions. The Cinema Kit is essentially the same as the Filmmaker Kit but also adds NiSi’s Allure-Streak Blue and Allure-Streak Orange filters to simulate that anamorphic look with crazy coloured lens flares.
The round filters are stackable, too, letting you mix and match the streak, mist and variable ND together. The pouch to keep the whole kit in, whichever kit you get, is very handy. If I were an iPhone shooter, I’d be jumping all over this without hesitation. Hopefully, NiSi will expand their smartphone filter kit to cover other makes and models of smartphones in the future – OnePlus 10 Pro, please, if you’re listening!
This isn’t the first smartphone filter kit that NiSi has released, but this one certainly looks very well thought out – for iPhone users – compared to its NiSi P1 predecessor. At the moment, it only appears to be available to pre-order from Amazon.de, where the landscape, filmmaker and cinema kits are available for €69.90, €149 and €199 respectively with shipping beginning in early September. No news yet on when it’ll be available on Amazon US, but I think we can probably expect similar numbers with a $ sign in front when they do.