ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

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The Lowdown

Together, the four pieces in the SnapGrip Creator Kit deliver a system that will take your photos and videos to a new level; they can all be used on their own, or they can all seamlessly snap together in any combination you like.

Overall
4.5

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Leverages the iPhone’s MagSafe in useful and practical ways
  • SnapGrip lets you shoot one-handed while also charging your phone
  • SnapPod is a small, portable tripod that also lets you connect the system to a standard tripod
  • SnapLight offers flexible illumination for your shots and a mirror for centering selfies
  • Each component can be used on its own or with the rest of the system

Cons

  • I wish the SnapGrip had a built-in cold shoe
ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level Listen to this article

A few years ago, I backed a Kickstarter project that was a photography grip for the iPhone. With the phone in the grip, using the iPhone felt more like using a DSLR. Now, thanks to the iPhone’s MagSafe, connecting a grip to the iPhone is easier than ever, and the ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit takes full advantage of it. The kit includes the SnapGrip, SnapPod, and SnapLight; let’s take a look.

SnapCam Creator Kit

MagSafe on the iPhone is a game changer when it comes to conveniently charging your iPhone. But, as companies are now discovering, the system can be leveraged in a variety of others ways.

The SnapGrip is one product that takes full advantage of the MagSafe and turns your iPhone into a more ergonomic camera. It’s a fairly simple design, but it works quite well; plus, the SnapGrip Creator Kit includes accessories that make it even more useful.

The SnapGrip

The SnapGrip is available in five colors; I was sent a pre-production version in pink, and while I’m not a huge fan of the color, I do love the functionality.

The grip connects to the phone using the MagSafe magnets that are built into the back of the current generation of iPhones. The connection between the grip and the phone is far stronger than you might think; so, while the grip connects to the phone in a snap, and can easily be removed when you are done, while it is on the phone, it holds tightly. I’ve yet to have a situation where the two accidentally came apart.

Mount in a snap: SnapGrip works with virtually any smartphone and is MagSafe compatible, thanks to an included magnetic ring for non-MagSafe phones.

Lest you think the SnapGrip is only compatible with MagSafe-enabled iPhones, the package also includes an adhesive ring that can be attached to the back of any phone to mimic the MagSafe functionality of the iPhone.

SnapGrip Creator Kit

At the bottom of the SnapGrip, there is a USB-C charging port. Along the side, there are six small LEDs, so you can keep an eye on the amount of charge left. At the top, there is a shutter button and a small button for pairing the SnapGrip to the phone.

 

The SnapGrip doesn’t let you change shooting modes or settings. For that, you’ll have to use the phone’s on-screen menus.

The simplicity of the SnapGrip isn’t an accident. As the company explains,

Less is More: By focusing on the essentials from a digital camera we’re able to make that optimal shape, not only portable but also quicker and easier to attach with a magnetic mounting system. Everything just snaps on.

SnapGrip Creator Kit

The SnapGrip gives you the comfort of a full-size phone grip as well as a shutter button that can be activated with the press of an index finger. That means you can now take high-quality pictures with a single hand. Without the SnapGrip, that’s almost impossible, as iPhoneography tends to be a two-handed activity.

But there’s more.

SnapGrip Creator Kit

Since MagSafe was initially introduced as a charging solution, it makes sense that the 3200 mAh battery in the SnapGrip also doubles as a wireless charger if you use an iPhone. That’s especially great if you are shooting a lot of battery-sucking videos.

ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

And, since the SnapGrip connects via magnets, it can be rotated 180 degrees if you want to shoot in portrait mode. To switch between portrait and landscape, you just twist the grip into position.

ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

When the SnapGrip is rotated, it can double as a stand for hands-free FaceTime calls.

I’m honestly not sure how long the battery in the SnapGrip lasts. I’ve used it pretty extensively and have yet to run it down.

Features:

  • Grip in a snap: The grip brings the comfort of a full-size grip and access to a shutter button.
  • Shoot in a snap: Wireless Index finger shutter that allows single shot and video shot.
  • Charge in a snap: The battery doubles as a wireless battery pack that can charge a mobile phone during shooting, so it’s always ready for the next adventure.
  • Rotate in a snap: Its 180-degree pivot system makes it simple to switch between landscape and portrait.
  • Dock in a snap: Designed with portability in mind, it fits into any pocket or bag, so it’s always on hand to capture that special family moment, make a quick TikTok, or film a music set.

I wish the SnapGrip had a cold shoe on top, but, as we will see in a moment, the company took steps to address that.

Other than the lack of a cold shoe and my review sample’s color, I really like everything about the SnapGrip. The SnapGrip holds the iPhone well, connects automatically once paired, and lets you shoot with one hand. Some may wish it provided access to various shooting modes and settings, but I appreciate the decision to keep the device as simple as possible.

If like me, you use your phone to shoot a lot of photos and videos, you’ll love the SnapGrip.

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SnapGrip Creator Kit

But there’s more. You see, the SnapGrip’s MagSafe ring that locks onto the iPhone is just one of the MagSafe rings on the SnapGrip. On the front of the device is a second, non-magnetic MagSafe attachment point which works in tandem with two additional included accessories in the SnapGrip Creator Kit.

The SnapPod

SnapGrip Creator Kit

Included in t.he SnapGrip Creator Kit, the SnapPod is a magnetic tripod and handle mount. At the top, a MagSafe magnet connects to the MagSafe ring on the front of the SnapGrip.

Connected to it is a three-inch metal post that ends in a standard tripod mount; this lets you mount your phone on a tripod for hands-free shooting.

The SnapPod also comes with a collapsable tripod base. With the base screwed into the SnapPod, you get a simple but stable tripod, or, if you like, you can use the SnapGrip/SnapPod combo in selfie-stick mode.

And it all comes together, and apart, in a snap.

But, here’s the thing, at the front of the SnapPod, there is ANOTHER metal MagSafe ring, and that’s where the final piece of the SnapGrip Creator Kit, the SnapLight, comes in.

The SnapLight

The SnapLight is a small LED ring light.

ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

It snaps directly onto the iPhone’s MagSafe ring, directly onto the SnapGrip, or, if you prefer, onto the SnapPod.

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SnapGrip Creator Kit

The snapLight has a USB-C charging port. Next to it is a small button that lets you toggle through four brightness levels.

The SnapLight is also “flippable.” That means you can angle the light in various ways until you get the ideal lighting for your shot.

It also means you can flip the ring up and use it to light your face for selfies. But there’s more…

ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

There is a small mirror at the center of the ring of LED lights. That way, when shooting a selfie, you can make sure your face is properly centered in the shot.

In summary, the SnapGrip Creator Kit includes:

  • SnapGrip is a portable, lightweight, compact grip, dock, and charger that allows users to shoot on a mobile phone quickly, securely, and comfortably.
  • SnapPod is a quick-release handle and tripod mount. Hold it as a selfie stick or use it as a tripod.
  • SnapLight is a magnetic LED ring for hands-free lighting. Just snap and instantly brighten up a selfie or whatever’s right there in front of you.

The SnapShoe

It’s worth mentioning one final accessory that is compatible with the SnapGrip Creator Kit; the company calls it a SnapShoe.

I wasn’t sent on to try, but I do like knowing there is a way to address the lack of the cold shoe on the SnapGrip itself. I still think the SnapGrip should have a cold shoe built into it, but thanks to this last accessory, if you need one, you can still have a cold shoe mount for a bright light or a microphone. The SnapShoe is available now for preorder at $29.99.

ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit Review: 3 Components Take Your iPhone Photos and Videos to the Next Level

The SnapGrip Creator Kit

The SnapGrip on its own is a great accessory; It makes shooting pictures and videos with your iPhone easier than ever. Add in the fact that the SnapGrip also doubles as an external battery, and you have an iPhone accessory that will let you capture your next great adventure.

That alone would earn the SnapGrip my recommendation; the fact that the SnapGrip is part of a larger system takes things to another level.

The SnapLight looks simple, but it does a great job of helping illuminate your photos and videos. The SnapPod makes the iPhone tripod-mountable while doubling as a small tripod or selfie stick. And if you need cold shoe capability, the SnapShoe fills in the gap left by the lack of a cold shoe on the SnapGrip itself.

Together, the four pieces in the SnapGrip Creator Kit deliver a system that will take your photos and videos to a new level; they can all be used on their own, or they can all seamlessly snap together in any combination you like.

The SnapGrip Creator Kit is available in Midnight, Abyss Blue, Blue Jay, Chalk Pink, or Pink Pomelo. The kit includes a SnapGrip, a SnapPod, and a SnapLight, and it ships with a complimentary storage pouch so you can keep all the pieces of the system together.

The ShiftCam SnapGrip Creator Kit will sell for $179.96 but is currently available for preorder at $129.99; it is available directly from the manufacturer.

Source: Manufacturer supplied pre-release review sample

What I Like: Easy to use; Leverages the iPhone’s MagSafe in useful and practical ways; SnapGrip lets you shoot one-handed while also charging your phone; SnapPod is a small, portable tripod that also lets you connect the system to a standard tripod; SnapLight offers flexible illumination for your shots and a mirror for centering selfies; Each component can be used on its own or with the rest of the system

What Needs Improvement: I wish the SnapGrip had a built-in cold shoe

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About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.