Most budget smartphone lens kits offer three lenses at most. Not so with Memteq's 8-in-1 kit, which includes a 0.65x macro and wide-angle, a 0.4x super wide-Angle, a 19x macro, two fisheye lenses (235 degrees and 180 degrees), a 2x telephoto and a CPL (circular polarizing lens). Unfortunately, quality was not on a par with quantity.
It's great that Memteq provides so many choices you can go to extremes with for example, the 235-degree fisheye lens. Some of the lenses are very tiny, though, so you need to have nimble fingers to attach/detach them. (There's a small paper manual included with more details.)
One of my main gripes with the design is that the lens caps are difficult to remove; so switching lenses takes a little longer than anticipated. And, it's easy to misplace the smaller optics if you're not careful.
Despite some of the lenses being a little too small to handle easily, all are well- constructed from aluminum and should last a long time. I did, however, manage to scratch the back of one lens mount when I couldn't get it threaded on the clamp. But that didn't affect the lens' function or its ability to take pictures.
The kit also includes a lens clamp with rubberized grips to prevent damage to your cellphone, along with a drawstring pouch and a lens caps. Unfortunately, there are no back caps for the lenses, but we didn't notice any damage to the glass during regular use.
Memteq's lenses are designed to work with a wide range of smartphones, including those from Apple and Samsung; we tested it using an iPhone 8.
Wide-Angle Lens Performance
The kit comes with two wide-angle lenses: a 0.65x and a super-wide 0.4x. Both produced modestly sharp images in the center, but were blurry in the rest of the frame. Excessive blur and smudging was most noticeable on the upper left of the 0.4x lens when holding the smartphone vertically.
Both wide-angle lenses also show some curvature. Of the two, the super-wide 0.4x lens produced more extreme distortion — verging on a modest fisheye field of view.
Fisheye Lens Performance
Of Memteq's two fisheye lenses, the 180-degree model delivered a more sharply focused center, albeit one that was smaller than other budget fisheye lenses, such as VicTsing's.
Memteq's 235-degree fisheye was generally soft throughout, and has such a wide field of view that my fingers would show up in the image if I wasn't careful. With both lenses, when the sun was inside (or just outside) the frame, there was significant lens flare and sun reflections.
Macro Lens Performance
Memteq's macro lens is tiny and has a very low profile, so it takes patience and some finessing to get a focused image, especially with its very shallow depth of field.
When photographing some shiny beads, for example, the only area that was in focus was a tiny portion of the string that showed between the beads.
Telephoto Lens Performance
At its best, the 2x telephoto lens can produce a relatively sharp center area of focus, but becomes soft and blurry toward the perimeter. The outer areas also suffer from chromatic aberration and halos along high contrast edges.
At its worst, the lens produces extreme pin cushioning (inward curvature of straight lines) when photographing subjects such as a door.
CPL Lens Performance
A circular polarizing lens (CPL) seems like a nice addition to any lens kit. It's supposed to cut reflections off water and help darken skies — just turn the attachment until the filtered part of the CPL appears over the area of your choice.
Unfortunately, there is barely any difference in images with and without the CPL; a photo of some trees and the blue sky beyond showed a marginal increase in contrast, but the effect was virtually nonexistent.
For the price, Memteq gives you a wide range of lenses. Unfortunately, image quality doesn't live up to some of the other lens kits we've reviewed, such as the Aukey Ora and the Xenvo. While you'll have to spend a little more and give up some of the extra angles of the Memteq kit, ultimately you'll be better off.
Credit: Tom's Guide