For a long time, I've been tempted to get a Really Right Stuff Phone Clamp. These awesomely designed and constructed accessories look perfect for a variety of needs. However, I don't need a holder for my phone very often (I'm seldom satisfied with the image quality from my phone) and low use expectations made it hard to justify purchasing the premium-grade RRS product for this task. When the Oben ASPTA-20 Smartphone Tripod Adapter arrived on the market, I determined that it was the ideal solution — a solid quality product with a smart design for a very reasonable price.
I didn't jump on the Oben ASPTA-20 right away but then we fell under strong social distancing recommendations from our government. My youngest daughter's dance and piano lessons were moved to Facetime and that meant she needed to be able to precisely position a phone. A message to my B&H rep resulted in a no-cost evaluation unit in my hands a short time later.
The Oben ASPTA-20 met my expectations — it was just what we needed.
This adapter is solidly constructed of all metal including the base, frame, ball, ball joint, locking knob, cold shoe, etc. and that list of metal (primarily aluminum) parts encompasses much of this product's design.
Push one edge of the phone into the spring-loaded upper jaw until the jaws expand to adequately fit the phone. Releasing pressure on the spring results in the phone being securely held in place with a dense foam surface protecting the phone from scratches and helping to secure it in place. A wide range of phone sizes can be accommodated. The specs, confirmed by measurements, say from 2.4 - 3.7" (6.1 - 9.4 cm) are compatible and the jaws are sufficiently-sized to hold a medium-thickness case.
The ball design enables the phone to be rotated 360°, angled strongly in any direction, and with a notch in the top, a straight-up position is enabled. This head is rated to hold only 2.2 lb (1.0 kg), a really heavy weight for a phone. The only concern I have about mounting a heavier weight is that the ball starts to slip. The lock knob is not captive but removal requires enough rotations that inadvertent removal is unlikely.
The 1.4 x 2.0" (3.6 x 5.1 cm) base is large enough to be a stand if the load is adequately balanced (and not at risk of being toppled) and my phone is currently sitting on my desk in this manner. Ideally, the base is mounted on a tripod or stand for use. I find the Arca-type dovetail on the base the perfect option, allowing the head to be clamped into a camera ball head quick release clamp, adding significantly to the already good range of motion. A 3/8-16 and two 1/4-20 threaded holes on the base open up a world of mounting possibilities including directly to a monopod, to a light stand, to a super clamp, etc. In case those mounting options were not sufficient for your needs, the upright portion of the frame has a 3/8-16 threaded hole and the bottom jaw has a 1/4-20 threaded hole.
The top jaw has a cold shoe, ideal for adding an LED light or mic. The metal cold shoe lock screw turns into the foot of what is mounted so be careful how tight this screw is turned to avoid damage. Better is to use the lock built into most shoe-mount LED lights. When the clamp is turned upside-down, the threaded hole in the bottom jaw is positioned on top, facilitating additional attachments. The weight of these attachments can add up, making the weight rating sound modestly less significant.
The Oben ASPTA-20 Smartphone Tripod Adapter is very compact with a maximum height spec of 4.6" (11.7 cm) and it is very light in weight, weighing 4.6 oz (130.4 g). It is easy to add this small accessory to the pack for a day's adventures.
I'll still not likely use my phone for image and video capture very often, but this easy-to-use little head works great for those purposes. My family's greater use of this product will be, as mentioned, for video instruction including Facetime. The piano and dance teachers being able to see the playing and body positions from the right angles adds significant value to the lessons, quickly surpassing the cost of this device.
Solid quality and great functionality combined with a great-value price seal the Oben ASPTA-20 Smartphone Tripod Adapter deal.
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