Review: New Moment Wide Lens (updated for 18mm 2017 Version)

One thing I missed a little when I made the switch to iPhone photography was the ability to use a wide-angle lens, especially for landscape photography. Back then, when I still used a DSLR, I had a 16mm wide-angle lens (that was around $1000,-) just for that purpose.

The same time, the first lenses for the iPhone made it to the market. But they were bad. Especially wide-angle lenses suffered from notable blurriness at the edges of the frame.

I tried to overcome that limitation by using something that I called "faux wide-angle mode," and it was basically about creating a kind of 2x2 mini panorama utilizing an app that's no longer available. That worked to some extent as long as there was absolutely no movement in the scene.

Then I read about a new wide-angle lens on Kickstarter that was made by a company named Moment. Meanwhile, a few years later, I have and use the improved second iteration of the Moment Wide Lens. Moment simple calls it the New Wide Angle Lens.

I've been using the Moment lens now for almost 5 years and took 1000s of photos with it. My conclusion: I don't want to miss it.

But first, to give you an impression and demonstrate the difference between the built-in wide-angle lens and the Moment Wide Lens, here are some sample Photos. I guess you can clearly see how much more you're able to capture with the Moment Wide Lens.

Sample Photos taken with the Moment Wide Angle Lens

Here are three sample photos I took in Slovakia, Iceland, and Yosemite that clearly demonstrate the power of the Wide Lens.

Moments touts that the Wide Angle Lens will allow you to capture 2x more image of a scene. While I didn't precisely measure that, you can judge for yourself:

 
Gulfoss waterfall in Iceland photographed with Moment Wide Angle Lens

Gulfoss waterfall in Iceland photographed with Moment Wide Angle Lens

Tunnel view in Yosemite photographed with Moment Wide Angle Lens

Tunnel view in Yosemite photographed with Moment Wide Angle Lens

A snapshot taken in Bratislava with Moment Wide Angle Lens

A snapshot taken in Bratislava with Moment Wide Angle Lens

Gulfoss waterfall in Iceland photographed without Moment Wide Angle Lens

Gulfoss waterfall in Iceland photographed without Moment Wide Angle Lens

Tunnel view in Yosemite photographed without Moment Wide Angle Lens

Tunnel view in Yosemite photographed without Moment Wide Angle Lens

A snapshot taken in Bratislava without the Moment Wide Angle Lens

A snapshot taken in Bratislava without the Moment Wide Angle Lens

 

I've also published a blog post in which I photographed the same scene using all the three Moment Lenses I have plus the built-in wide an angle lens. So you can compare how much of a scene you can capture with different Moment Lenses

Using the new Moment Wide Angle Lens

The new wide-angle lens from Moment is a lens made of multi-element aspherical glass in a metal housing - just like a big lens for DSLRs. Photos taken with this lens will have edge-to-edge clarity, unlike many other smartphone lenses that add notable blurriness to the edges of your photo.

Compared to the original wide-angle lens, the new one is slightly bigger and a little more substantial.

Because of the real glass and the metal housing, the lens is also a little heavier than other plastic smartphone lenses.

What's also new with the new Moment Wide Angle Lens is the mounting system. Gone are the days when you needed to attach a small plate with an adhesive to your iPhone and need to make sure it's perfectly aligned with the iPhone lens (because otherwise, you'd get dark corners).

Moment now makes and sells affordable, protective, cases with an integrated bayonet mount for attaching all lenses to your iPhone. Moreover, the Moment iPhone cases have a great feature that I was looking for since I turned to iPhone photography: You can attach a wrist strap to those cases. So even if you don't use a Moment lens, such a case is a good investment. Check out my review of the Moment Cases in the blog.

Tip for quickly mounting any Moment Lens to the case

If this is your first Moment lens, it may feel a little fiddly to mount the lens to the cast. Since I have done it roughly a 1000 times, here's a little tip that makes mounting any Moment lens to the case a little easier:

Hold your iPhone in landscape format. Look for the 18mm label on your wide-angle lens and make sure it's pointing upwards Plug the lens to the bayonet connector and turn it to the left.

Conclusion

I don't have any complaints about the Moment Wide Angle lens. Really. I carried and used the original and the new wide-angle lenses on many trips from Iceland to Italy and from Spain to Ukraine. I just love it.

Though the lens may seem a little pricey at $99 + $20 for the case; rest assured: It's worth every cent.

Meanwhile, I've also purchased the Moment Tele Lens and the Moment Superfish Lens and all three of those lenses perfectly perform outstanding and, most importantly, are still small, so they fit into the pocket of any jacket. It doesn't get more convenient than that.

If you're convinced, now is the perfect time to get your Moment Wide lens from the Moment online shop or, alternatively, buy the Moment Wide Lens from Amazon.

And now, let's take some fantastic wide-angle iPhone photos together.

Here’s a list of all the Moment iPhone Lenses I recommend and use. You’ll find reviews of all of those Moment Lenses in the blog.