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Snapzoom brings any smartphone closer to the action


The makers of Snapzoom want to bring your smartphone closer to the action without relying on your device's digital zoom. The universal adapter works with most smartphones with or with out a case, they say, and all single or dual eyepiece scopes like binoculars, spotting scopes, telescopes and microscopes. 

Snapzoom is the brainchild of Daniel Fujikake and Mac Nguyen, two surfers (and brothers-in-law) from Hawaii looking for a better way to capture and share video of their themselves riding the waves. The pair are launching a Kickstarter campaign in support of Snapzoom today.

Snapzoom offers sample images shot with the device using binoculars, a spotting scope and a telescope on their website that look interesting enough to make us want to put the device through our own thorough testing.

This video also offers a look at Snapzoom:


Total comments: 26

You may not like it, but I do. … It is like some sort of universal adapter. … Here are a few images with my iPhone 5s, and an old Nikon Coolpix Fisheye.




As a news shooter I see the advantage of this. Sure I have a trio of Canon dSLR bodies and a 300/2.8L with extenders to shoot surfing and other distance things. But having my iPhone or an iPodTouch attached to this mean easily transmitting live super-telephoto video for news events. I can't do that with my Canon dSLR as HDMI out has the overlays (yes, I can turn them off via MagicLantern), need an external HDMI monitor, Teradek or LiveU encoder/transmitter, decoder or Wowza/AWS server. So sure, for still photos I'll stick to my Canons, for live video this makes life much easier.

Edited 58 seconds after posting

Do you have to use it on a $1500 pair of Canon stabilized binoculars? Honestly, do the right thing; buy a REAL camera.

Edited 12 seconds after posting
Eddy M



I was initially as cynical as others here. If you want the best quality photos just get a proper camera and forget the contraptions. That's speaking as a photographer.

Speaking as a smartphone user, not everyone would want or see the need for a proper camera since the quality available from high end phones is stunning (for what they are). Sure there could be softness, chroma and distortion that a serious photographer might not tolerate but I can see a market for people who already have a smartphone and a scope. They may get shots with this they wouldn't otherwise get as they wouldn't go out and buy a whole camera system.

The device functionality and appeal could be improved by including a thread that would allow for tripod mounting without a scope.

Plus some attachments that would allow it to be mounted (without the scopes) on a car, bike, etc., making it simply a mounting device. 'We don't need another Hero'.

Edited 7 minutes after posting

I suppose that this is a satisfactory answer to some question for somebody, but I'm afraid I must admit that what and who escapes me altogether. :)

1 upvote

Another pat on the back for the under achieving retard child that is the smart phone. Yuppies yuppies yuppies yuppies yuppies.


How about posting useful realistic acessories for once? You know, acessories the majority would actually want to use?


Thank goodness! I was expecting some ridiculous kludge. (eyeroll)

1 upvote
Kim Letkeman

I notice that they mention compatibility with all single and dual optical path scopes but don;t mention that you only get to use one of the eyepieces, thus losing half the total light. Just something to be aware of.

I actually think this is really clever stuff and would be a lot of fun. I loved the moon shot ... but of course, putting a mirrorless Panasonic or Sony on the eyepiece would get you a similar shot and you probably already have that adapter anyway. Still, if not too pricey it open up a lot of interesting casual imaging and video at distance.

1 upvote

Meh... just get a small superzoon and use that instead... better optics, smaller and lighter setup and 1080p video....

Edited 3 minutes after posting

Now personally I dont have much interest in this. But, open your mind, reach with a scope or binoculars is different to a lens.... and to get a nice lens you need a camera.

Now sure enough you could get a point and shoot, but if you are someone who likes "watching" wildlife sports etc. clipping on this adaptor means you can get images and video right on your phone and you can share immediately.

Dont know what this will cost, and it may not work if only because it could be difficult to communicate the advantages... but for someone who enjoys viewing through binoculars (and there are lot of people) this replaces most cameras and you can share immediately... Just saying.


Oh my! They must have been out looking for birds ... or something ... and there they had a mobile phone and a pair of binoculars. And no camera. And ... then they tried to hold that %&%¤#¤ phone to that %&%¤#¤% eyepiece. They saw something on the screen ... but it was impossible to hold it steady. So ... they came up with this. Good try guys ... but get a real tele capable camera instead. Much easier to use ... and takes better images.

1 upvote

"Good try guys ... but get a real tele capable camera instead. Much easier to use ... and takes better images."

Yeah.. and costs hundreds if not thousands of dollars.. while this may run.. what... $49.95?

1 upvote

@fuego - yeah - and duct tape is even cheaper :)


It's not like digiscoping hasn't been around for over a decade... The issue is that if you purchase a smartphone with sufficient camera resolving power to actually get quality images, you probably could do as well or better either with a good bridge camera such as Canon's SX 50 HS or using your own digiscoping setup. Of course if you already have a super high resolution phone camera such as the Nokia 808 then it might be a handy way to use your stabilized binoculars to catch some closeup snaps on vacation, etc.

Joe Ogiba

Snapzoom= FAIL Anyone with binoculars, spotting scopes or telescopes is also going to have a real camera to use with them already . I have the Verizon HTC Droid DNA with 1080p 5" display and 1080p front and back cameras but if I want to use a pocket size zoom I use my Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 superzoom with 24-480mm eqiv zoom and 1080p60 that is not available on any smartphone.

If you want to come out with something useful come out with shoes without laces , It's now 2013 and using string to keep your shoes on your feet is stupid.


I agree with below why carry that? Just buy a DSLR...As they say on Dragons Den "I'm out"

1 upvote

Just holding my iPhone 4s against the rubber eyecups of my Swaro binos lets me align and hold the camera perfectly for a casual "digiscope" shot - I can't imagine why I'd want all that plastic getting in the way.



Why would I carry that instead of a superzoom camera.


Oh my, another useless: "use" for the smartphone...

I like smartphones, don't get me wrong, even sometimes use the camera...

But if I'm going to carry a pai of binocular, or any other such contraption, will have to carry a tripod (otherwise forget about such photos), carry that chunky adapter... well I might as well carry a more capable camera. Or some superzoom... and skip the rest.
Look at the samples on the page - the quality isn't exactly exciting... and if I go to such lengths, I at least want some quality.

Why is it (like this weird rotational lens grip), that people try to do smartphone-everything.
They're practical, no doubt - but most of those add-on contraptions actually help at nothing.

Edited 1 minute after posting

If you're going to carry all that gear and bolt a tiny sensor onto a big set of bins, then why the hell would you not just go and get yourself a megazoon P&S? They're cheap, smaller, and take far better pics.

I would feel embarrassed for people who have the logical processes which leads them to buy stuff like this.


Its a great idea, but not for the average smartphone user... if you are a wildlife freak and already are used to carry a lot of equipment, this would be a great add-on that will make you dust-off all those old scopes and give them new life... i guess that concept might bring back to life a lot of different old devices.

1 upvote

I disagree jcmarfilph, I think this is actually pretty cool (now, I don't have smartphone believe it or not, but I do own numerous binoculars and telescopes!).. perhaps someday I will make use of this, or a similar type of adapter. Brackets of these sorts do indeed have utility, though this is the first one I see that adapts readily to binoculars.

Edited 44 seconds after posting

Just another make-your-life-miserable accessory.

Total comments: 26
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