Jun 26, 2014
As smartphones become even more adept at serving as everyday image capture tools, having the right accessories specific to camera and video is shifting from want to need. Bonus points, obviously, for portability; if I can slip a non-bulky piece in the go bag (or even a pocket), I’m a happy guy.
Thus, having a chance to have a formal look at Arkon’s Smartphone Flexible Tripod is sure to be a fun endeavor; Arkon sent us a review package and it was on.
The package contains the main tripod assembly, and some interesting extra pieces. There universal smartphone holder, a ball pattern adapter plate, and a tightening ring for 17mm pedestals. There is also a handy black drawstring carry pouch with blue company lettering. The pieces themselves are black/mostly black, and the core is crafted out of hard plastic with greay and blue accents, with some metal in there as well.
When all compact, the item is fairly slight, but still feels solid in hand. The three legs are ribbed with foamy material, and are connected to the main frame, which itself is jointed for flexible movement. The upper parts are stiff, but the mechanical form is very similar to what seems to be standard for tripods, with user screws for tightening and a male connector piece at the top of the holding platform.
Functionally, the tripod excels, as-is and especially with the extra pieces; the phone holder screws in seamlessly to the tripod, and is adjustable all the way to phablet sizes. The ball joint allows for added flexibility along the axis. The flexible legs are simply wonderful, and allow for some atypical mounting styles. The tripod also works with other third-party thumbscrew adapters, and in every use scenario, the device felt very well secured, even during shake tests. As an added benefit, it works with smaller cameras that have the right end, and other Arkon pieces.
I would have liked some adjustability, even a little bit, in the legs; if I were picky, I’d also like the unit to be rated for one-handed device insertion.
In the end, it’s productivity that counts, and this accessory is one that can definitely contribute in a simple, portable way.
The Arkon Smartphone Tripod is available at the Arkon website for $19.95.