As any photography enthusiast will know, smartphone cameras have come a long way in the last few years, but they still struggle on a few aspects. One of the main ones I often find is lack of a proper tripod option. You do have a lot of options, but as smartphones have become bigger and heavier, most of those tripods are starting to struggle. The need for a good smartphone tripod has been answered by Manfrotto, who have the Pixi Smart, which comes with a universal smartphone attachment, but also allows you to connect any other camera thanks to the 1/4″ thread on the device.
Good quality, stable, functional and portable, this little device ticks quite a few boxes.
- Material: Aluminium, Technopolymer
- Colour: Black
- Weight: 215 g
- Max Height: 20 cm
- Min Height: 20 cm
- lateral tilt: -35° / +35°
- Panoramic Rotation: 360
- Front Tilt: -35° / +35°
220g, and 26cm when closed. This is easily carried in most bags, and being thin and light means it can easily squeeze in.
Thanks to its universal ¼” screw thread and its excellent stability, PIXI can be used with a huge variety of digital devices: from the iPhone® (with KLYP+) to Compact System Cameras and even entry level DSLR’s.
If you decide to use PIXI with an entry level DSLR please consider these basic requirements:
• Body: maximum weight of 650g/1.4lbs
• Focal length: maximum 85mm (standard non-professional lens)
• Total equipment payload: maximum 1kg/2.2lbs
Personally I have an Olympus E-420, which when it came out was the lightest DSLR. This provides it with perfect stability, and is actually quite handy for that.
On a smartphone, it is pretty much a necessary accessory for anybody who travels, or is simply interested in photography. Smartphone cameras have come a long way in the last 2 years, and having a tripod is a simple add on that anybody could and really should benefit from. Cameras may come with OIS built in, but having a tripod is still way better. Specially for videos, nothing really beats a tripod.
However, what really makes this special is the new effects you have available on phones these days. Everything from time lapse videos to light painting can really benefit from this.
Look and Feel
A premium hard plastic feel is what you notice first with this device. The top holds a 1/4″ thread, on which sits the universal smartphone adapter that comes with the device. The universal smartphone holder includes padding inside and stretches to fit in any phone you may want to. It also includes a little stand so you can detach it and use it on its own. However, I think the use for that would be more to watch films rather than any actual photography.
A little red dot in the front boasts the Manfrotto logo (which actually looks like a tripod). This is actually a button which allows you to adjust the tilt and rotation of the camera/smartphone on the tripod. It is reasonably rigid and strong, and despite constant use, it has retained its rigidity. When not pressed, the phone sits snug on top.
When closed, the tripod boasts an ergonomic design which lets you hold it in a stable fashion. Once again this is extremely handy for videos, and panaromic shots.
So, how does this rate for selfies? If you’re really thinking of selfies, you can set your camera on a timer, run away, and get a picture taken featuring yourself. If you want to use this as a selfie stick, you’re reading the wrong review!
Just mentioning this as this particularly caught my eye. Recommended care information for this device suggests using a pencil eraser to get rid of any marks. Water or other products will actually damage the finish.
More information on the Manfrotto Pixi Smart can be found on their website. It retails for £34.99 and can be bought directly from the website.
Handy, beautiful, portable and functional. This ticks all the boxes you may want in a portable tripod.