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Camera hacker Bhautik Joshi, who brought us the brilliant DIY tilt-shift lens hack, has produced another great optical device. Detailed instructions on his site walk you through the creation of the Phone-O-Scope, an optical coupler that allows an iPhone to accept a standard SLR lens.

Just to get the inevitable question of ‘why’ out of the way – well, why not? As far as I can tell, I think this is the first – I couldn’t find any similar SLR lens to camera phone attaching attempts anywhere else online. The Phone-O-Scope doesn’t take especially superb images, and it’s a bit clumsy to handle. On the other hand, it’s fun to shoot with and produces very analog (almost Holga-like) results. You also get the advantages of SLR lenses – that is, DOF effects, and the wide range of available focal lengths (i.e. macro to telephoto).

Adam Flaherty

Adam Flaherty

I make cool stuff and write about other people making cool stuff on If you have something you think I should see, send me a tip.

  • Sylvain

    A better way would be to stick your phone on your SLR …

    Then you would take very good shots and could phone with your SLR.


  • Ronny

    “an SLR” is grammatically correct.

    • Emily

      When determining when to use “a” or “an”, a person is supposed to do it based off of the pronunciation and not the spelling. So, since SLR is an acronym and you pronounce it “ess ell arr” the usage of “an” is correct. That’s the same reason you say “an hour” instead of “a hour”.

      • Ronny

        @Emily… you basically confirmed what I wrote, so I’m not sure why you replied to my message with a subject that states “actually…”, and an explanation that confirms what I wrote – that it should be “an” not “a”.

  • cafmike

    I think i will keep my lens on my Nikon d90