REVIEW: Manfrotto TwistGrip
This universal tripod clamp for smartphones & compact cameras is high quality, but perhaps overkill for travel
If you’re determined to travel as light as possible, ditch the DSLR. Photographers who fancy themselves as something special will disagree – perhaps rightly so – but travelling is increasingly becoming about squeezing as much quality as possible from a smartphone’s camera. Cue Manfrotto’s TwistGrip.
Steady & sturdy
Clamps that attach a smartphone to a tripod are a great idea if you want to use most phone camera’s features like time-lapse, ‘silky’ waterfall modes, any kind of long-exposure, or steady-looking video. Compared to most £1 clamps, the TwistGrip is steadier, sturdier, and packs completely flat. In fact, at 104x25mm, it’s perfect for storing in a pocket.
The design is unusual, but simple; the two end-pieces fold inwards at a 90-degree angle to create a C-shape that grips any brand or model of phone – or a compact camera – and screws-in to any tripod on the bottom. There’s even a gap at the top to insert a flash-light for recording video and photos.
The TwistGrip is clearly designed to accompany the Manfrotto PIXI Mini Tripod, though it worked well with others we tried. The adjustment screw gives plenty of stability, as does the TwistGrip construction itself, and if you’re aiming for pro-quality snaps and video, this is an excellent product.
Suggestions for version 2
However, it is rather heavy, at about 80g, and I’m not convinced it offers a performance as great as it should for the money. What it does offer is a chance to steady a phone on a surface without using a tripod, though only if you can access a completely flat surface; perhaps a slight forward and backward movement would increase its usefulness, meaning a tripod wouldn’t be needed.
OK, so it’s over-priced and not as revolutionary as it thinks it is, but the Manfrotto TwistGrip is nevertheless a handy accessory if you’re set on trying to get as much photography as possible from your smartphone.