Pictar One Review: Turn Your iPhone into a Fully Functional Camera

The iPhone may be the number one camera, by use and arguably by picture quality, but it's still pretty uncomfortable to take photos with. That's where the Pictar One (starting at $99.99) from Miggo comes in. The Pictar One is a sort-of half case that your smartphone slides in to. The Pictar One adds a tripod mount, a cold shoe for lights and similar accessories, three dials, and a shutter button.

Related: iPhone Burst Mode: How to Take, View, & Save Burst Photos on iPhone

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There's no need to plug the device into your phone, so it works with Android and Apple phones. Instead, Pictar uses Bluetooth and a free companion app to make the dials and the button work. You can use a combination of on-screen gestures and the dials to manually adjust traditional photography settings such as focus, ISO control, shutter speed, split focus and exposure points, historgram, and more. The dial on the front can be pressed to toggle between selfie mode or forward-facing camera, and it zooms by rolling left or right. The shutter button makes it easier to take the shot when everything is just so. And because the Pictar One only covers half of the phone, you could also use clip-on lenses as well.

Pictar One

The Pictar One is well-built with rubbery grips and professional-style buttons and dials. It's adjustable so it should accommodate a variety of phones, unless you have a thick case; but pay attention to the different sizes offered, especially if you have a Plus-sized phone. TI like that the Pictar One is available in multiple color choices as well. 

Pictar One

Pros

  • Well-built with rubbery grips
  • Smart software
  • Professional-style buttons and dials
  • Adjustable
  • Multiple color choices
  • Wrist strap for safety

Cons

  • Make sure to order the right model for your phone
  • iPhone's Lightning port is obstructed when using the Pictar One, preventing charging or connecting a microphone for video use

Final Verdict

The Pictar One from Miggo can easily help you take some serious photos. 

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Todd Bernhard is a bestselling (6+ million downloads) award-winning (AARP, About.com, BestAppEver.com, Digital Hollywood, and Verizon) developer and founder of NoTie.NET, an app developer specializing in Talking Ringtone apps including AutoRingtone. And his profile photo is of the last known sighting of Mr. Bernhard wearing a tie, circa 2007!

An iPhone is almost always attached to his hip or in his pocket, but over the years, Mr. Bernhard has owned an Apple Newton, a Motorola Marco, an HP 95LX, a Compaq iPaq, a Palm Treo, and a Nokia e62. In addition to writing for iPhone Life, Mr. Bernhard has written for its sister publications, PocketPC Magazine and The HP Palmtop Paper.