Hands on with the DxO One Connected Camera at CES 2016



Smartphones can be great for taking quick snapshots. They’re portable, easy to use and always there when you want to take a picture. But what happens when you want to get more serious with your photography? DxO have a very elegant solution; turn your iPhone into the viewfinder of one of the best little cameras we’ve ever seen.

We met up with DxO at CES 2016 and they very kindly gave us a DxO One camera to test. 24 hours later, and the results are in…

What is the DxO One?

The DxO One is a very small, but very high quality, camera that attaches to your iPhone via the lightning port. The camera itself is about the size of a small chocolate bar – you can easily fit at least two in the palm of your hand.

It may be tiny, but good things come in small packages, as the saying goes. Inside the DxO One are enough high-quality components to rival many mid to high-end cameras. At its heart is a one inch 20MP sensor – the sort of thing you’d expect to find in a good DSLR. This is coupled with a 6-element f/1.8 lens capable of creating razor sharp images.

The camera has its own battery – it doesn’t take any power from your iPhone. This means you can actually take photos without connecting it to your iPhone, making it a great option for shooting images from the hip.

Connect the DxO One to an iPhone and it comes into its own. The camera uses a well thought out and comprehensive app to turn your phone into its viewfinder. Once its activated, you can do everything from switching between video and photography modes to take the camera out of automatic mode and start to get creative.

(Video taken with DxO One)

You have full control over all the aspects of photography that matter. Apeture, shutter speed, ISO, focus, metering and more can all be adjusted with a simple swipe. It’s easy to experiment and see the effect your choices have, so it’s as good for beginners to learn the ropes as it is for experts. The app is frequently updated through the Apple App Store, so you can expect new controls and features to be added over time.

(Image taken with DxO One)

When you take a photo, the DxO One stores it in two places. Firstly, a JPEG on your camera. This is perfect for sharing or posting on social media. Secondly, the camera stores a high quality RAW file on its Micro SD card. This lets you adjust the file in quality photo editing software packages such as Lightroom for professional results.

(image taken with DxO One)

What do we think of the DxO One?

The more we use this little camera, the more we love it. For a start, the automatic modes are really good. Simply connecting this to your iPhone and clicking away will give you impressive results even before you adjust any of the settings.

(image taken with DxO One)

We’ve been using this with an iPhone 6s Plus, and found the photos to be a clear improvement over images taken with the phone’s camera. Once you get used to having it attached to your phone, it feels really nice in your hands and the additional methods of taking a picture – touch the screen, press the button on the DxO one or press the volume down button – give you the options to choose the method that best suits you.

(Image taken with DxO One)

The lack of a zoom was interesting, but the fixed focal length actually isn’t an issue once you get used to it. In addition, the camera comes with some useful photo manipulation packages that can help you tweak and adjust to get the results you want.

(Image taken with DxO One)

We’re not professional photographers, but the images here will give you an idea what a couple of enthusiastic amateurs can achieve with this device in a few hours. Without a doubt, we’ve never seen a camera this exciting or high-quality in a package this small before. If you’re at all interested in photography and have an iPhone, this really deserves to be in your pocket at all times.

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