Today I am going to take a look at the Action Life Media (ALM) mCAMLITE for the iPhone. The mCAMLITE for iPhone improves ergonomics and protects your phone when used for photography and video work. The mCAMLITE can be used to mount your iPhone to a tripod or shoulder rig and so that your can stabilize your shots. The body is made from billet aluminum so it is strong an study. It’s shaped like a camera body with one side having a machined like a camera grip.
The mCAM has 2 1/4 20 mounts on the bottom and an additional one on the top. The bottom 1/4 mounts can attach to a tripod, quick release or cheese plate to mount to whatever rig you are using. The additional 1/4 20 mounts can be used for accessories. The top of the body had a cold shoe mount that can be used to attach a light, flash, microphone, or other cold shoe accessory.
The front of the mCAMLITE it threaded so you can also attach 37mm lenses. ALM sells a combination wide angle – macro lens, a telephoto, and fisheye lens to get different shots.
ALM sells the mCam in different kits and configurations. The ALM mCAMLITE Starter Kit for the iPhone 6 retails for $129 and includes:
- Billet Aluminum Body
- 37mm Wide Angle/Macro Combo Lens
- Silicone Case
- Accessory Pouch
Other kits include:
- one or more lens
- 180 degree external microphone
My mCAMLITE is for the iPhone 5/5s. ALM makes specific kits for the iPhone 4/4s, iPhone 5/5s, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus. They also made kits for the iPod Touch and some Samasung phones I think. But I am not sure they still manufacture kits for iPod Touch and Samsung though you may find them in stock at some resellers.
To use the mCAMLITE, you put your phone into the supplied TPU case. Press the phone into the mCAMLITE with the lens on the phone aligned on the mCam. You should get a snug fit. You can then attach mounts, lenses, and accessories.
My mCAMLITE came with their 180 degree external microphone. It’s a short little microphone that attaches to your iPhone’s microphone port. The microphone is jointed an can be rotated 180 degrees.
I have used the mCAMLITE to record indoor sports events and competitions and outdoor time lapse videos. It does a great job stabilizing and protecting the iPhone. I used the external microphone as well and it really improves the audio quality compared to the built in microphone. I am certain you can get a better video microphone but this one is small and portable so its worth having in your kit. I find I don’t use external lenses to often, mostly just because I have to take more time to experiment and look at the results they produce. I have the macro / wide angle lens but need to do more test shots.
ALM recommends the mCAMLITE for photographers, students / education, journalists, and filmmakers. I really like the mCAMLITE. I think it is great for filmmakers. I could see it as part of a mobile field reporting rig. I don’t thin I’d use it for general photography though. At 11 oz, the body weighs more than the iPhone. And while the grip on the side does add some stabilization, I wouldn’t want to carry my phone around in the body. For extended time lapse work or mounting the phone to a tripod for long periods of time its definitely an option. You can buy the mCAMLITE from Adorama.
http://amzn.to/2G0pnMs (iPhone 6)
http://amzn.to/2DpfZjT (iPhone 7 & 8)