Mobile accessory review: Industrial Revolution Pedco Cellpod
Industrial Revolution Pedco Cellpod - compatible with most smartphones, $24.99
One of the earliest camera phone tripod designs to hit the market, the Cellpod still holds its own in the mini-tripod field, with a design that more closely resembles a full-size tripod’s than most other camera phone support options.
It’s one of the more diminutive camera phone supports with a three-leg design. Its adjustable-angle legs are topped by a little ballhead mount, and there’s a Velcro strap attached to one leg so that you can lash the Cellpod to any suitably shaped object nearby. There are also holes in two of the legs, so you could thread additional straps through them to secure the pod or even hang it from something. The Cellpod kit also includes a tripod mount adapter with adjustable-position rubber-wrapped pegs that you tighten to hold a phone of just about any size in place on a sturdy platform with a standard ¼-20 tripod socket set in the middle.
The mount adapter allows you to mount different phones and phones in cases, but it has some drawbacks: Adjusting the position of the pegs to grip the phone and then tightening them in place is a more elaborate process than a lot of other camera phone mount adapters require, and while the adapter’s grip is pretty secure, it’s not the strongest I’ve come across. I wouldn’t trust it if the phone had a long way to fall and was at an angle that would allow it to slip or be bumped out. The position of the pegs also limits the types of tripods you can use it with. The pegs protrude around the phone on the side of the mount that sits on the tripod head, so if the head’s platform has a circumference much larger than 2 inches, the pegs will get in the way and prevent you from screwing the adapter onto the head.
The whole thing is sturdily built and stable, and it does a good job of letting you adjust the angle of a mounted phone when it’s on the tabletop (although not good enough for macro shots on the tabletop). The Cellpod also offers options for attaching and suspending your phone from other supports. However, its mount adapter is too much work to use and adds too much bulk when you’re carrying it around.
If you need a sturdy little pod and already have a camera phone case with a tripod socket in it, you might want to opt for Pedco’s Ultrapod I, which is just the tripod without the mount adapter and comes at a very reasonable $14.99. And if you need the flexibility of mounting different sizes of phones or cases, but aren’t interested in macro shooting or having the sleekest design, the Cellpod might be the right option for you.
What we like: The Cellpod is sturdily built, stable and inexpensive, and its integrated hook-and-loop strip lets you attach it to other supports.
What we don't like: The Cellpod phone mount adapter is overcomplicated and doesn’t always feel completely secure. The tripod doesn’t offer as much versatility as flexible-leg mini tripods.
Aimee Baldridge is a writer and photographer based in New York. For more than a decade she has specialized in covering imaging technology, digital media, and the world of photography. You can see more of her work at www.aimeebaldridge.com.