DxO One

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This add-on device combines the convenience of an iPhone with the quality of a professional camera
There are some photos that you just cannot capture on your cellphone, especially if you want to play with lighting and details. Cameras from Fuji Film, Nikon and Sony come in small sizes and pack a lot of power, and the iPhone can take some great pictures, but the DxO One offers an outstanding way to combine a phone with a high-quality camera.

Designed to be connected to the lightning connector of your iPhone, the DxO One lets your device act as both the screen and controls for the camera. Once connected to your phone, there is an app that needs to be installed in order to use the DxO One. This app also gives you a chance to try out different shooting modes and styles such as ‘program’, ‘aperture’ ‘priority’, ‘shutter priority’, ‘manual’, ‘full auto’ and ‘panorama’. One can also individually set the ISO, exposure compensation, focus method, exposure method, white balance, flash settings and timer. This gives you all the flexibility that you would have with a full camera. The app does need to be upgraded, though, for speed and response rate.

Another drawback is the lack of a tripod mount. Balancing the phone with the DxO One plugged in is a bit tricky, especially if you are shooting late night with a long shutter time.

Problems aside, the DxO One does manages to capture some amazing high-quality pictures, with its huge 1-inch back side illuminated sensor, which is 6.5 times bigger than the iPhone’s own. The larger sensor also allows you to shoot at f/1.8, giving you more control of your pictures and greater depth of field.

Unlike the iPhone, the DxO One can also save pictures in RAW format, and you can then edit these later on your computer. This is great for those who enjoy fine-tuning their images. The app, however, does not allow you to shut off RAW images and shoot only JPEG ones. So if you have not used RAW images before, then that is something you will have to learn. But once you have taken such shots, you will realise how good the format is in terms of both quality and detail.

At the end, the DxO One performed well beyond expectations. And it is certainly a handy device to have around. Sadly, it does mean that you will have to carry an additional accessory around with you all the time. But if you are in the mood of travelling just with your iPhone and not your big camera bag, then do give the DxO One a shot. You will be in for a surprise.