Not Xenon, but... Anker's new MFi flash unit reviewed

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Decent flash is something I've written about for a decade and a half, starting with the likes of the Nokia N82, then the N8, 808 PureView and Lumia 1020, all with Xenon technology. Since then we've had triple LED flash units and massive advances in light gathering and image processing, meaning that the massive light output of Xenon isn't always needed anymore. But sometimes your smartphone's flash does need a little help, which is where Anker's new accessory, last reported on a month ago, comes in. MacRumors got hold of a sample and here's their hands-on.

The idea, here for the latest iPhone 11 series, is that you have a wired flash 'cube' with internal 700mAh battery (ignore the '7000' figure in the video) and you plug it in and hold it while taking flash photos with the iPhone to experience several times the native phone LED light power:

It's a nice idea, but there are cons. Not least that plugging this in doesn't disable the built-in phone LED flash, so you get multiple light sources. I'd have thought the obvious use case here would be to light your subject from an angle other than 'straight on', by holding the accessory off to one side by a metre or so. This isn't currently possible - maybe it needs a software update from Apple (under pressure from Anker)?

Given that many AAWP readers will be in the process of considering an iPhone 11 series device as a Windows replacement and given the 'All About' site focus on imaging through the years, I thought this accessory of interest, anyway!

Source / Credit: MacRumors