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This Wooden Phone Grip Forever Changed How I Shoot Videos

As I walked around Venice Beach, California, looking for the right place to shoot video, I had a surprising amount of confidence for a first-time YouTuber. And it was all thanks to a pair of gadgets that I carry with me every single day: Studio Neat's Glif tripod mounting device and its wooden hand grip.

Sure, my travelogue wasn't going to be the greatest film ever, but I had confidence in my equipment. It all begins with a supersimple setup, which is nearly calming in practice.

You start with a simple flick of its lever, to adjust its extending arm to fit a smartphone (the Glif extends up to 3.9 inches, for even the widest phablets), and snap the lever back in. Then, you simply screw the wooden handle into one of the Glif's mounts, and you're ready to roll.

If you're thinking this is too simple to gush over, you've never used a rubber hand grip. The last time I ventured to Las Vegas to cover CES, I was in trouble. Our company-supplied grip was a black rubber device that moved and flexed, shaking too much as I held it in my hands. That made for shakier footage than I produced without the grip.

Studio Neat Glif Wood GripView Deal

The Glif and wooden grip also beat other solutions I've tried because it's impossible to screw up (pun intended). The Glif has a trio of mounts, but only two actually fit the grip correctly when they're used with a smartphone. Even though it's been a year and a half since I used the standard-issue black rubber grip, I still remember frantically trying to piece it back together, and wondering, "Who designed this thing?!"

The Glif also supports my GorillaPod, a tripod with spheric articulated joints. Its limbs have wrapped around many a metal fence pole, turning local scenery into a set. Specifically, these shots add value to the footage by mixing moving footage that's shot with the grip with stationary shots, to shake up the visual language. And those extra mounts let me attach extra accessories, such as my Mikme microphone or a light.

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My colleagues have recently raved about the DJI osmo mobile 2, a gimbal-based smartphone mount that automatically balances and steadies your phone. And while it looks nice, I'm more than happy with my current solution. Not only was mine a more affordable $55 (vs the $138 osmo mobile 2), but it doesn't require a software-based pairing process to set up. That might be the best grip if someone else is buying, but rookies on a budget should check out the Glif and its grip.

Credit: Tom's Guide

Henry T. Casey

Henry is an editor writer at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and Apple. Prior to joining Tom's Guide — where he's the self-described Rare Oreo Expert — he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. You can find him at your local pro wrestling events, and looking for the headphone adapter that he unplugged from his iPhone.