I had been looking for a phone tripod and an external microphone for a while. When I’m out and about I often record videos on my mobile phone, but I wanted to upgrade my kit to make things easier – and better! The lovely people at JOBY sent me their Wavo Mobile Microphone and GripTight PRO TelePod to try out, and I’m very glad they did! Read on for my full Wavo Mobile microphone and JOBY TelePod review. I received a complimentary mic and TelePod in exchange for this honest review.
You may recognise the JOBY name from their popular GorillaPod flexible tripod (which I’m planning to get next). I hadn’t used any of their products before but was looking for some kit to start making more video content and was thrilled when JOBY agreed to send me these two products to try out.
According to their website they have “always tried to create functional yet playful, innovative yet easy to use products”, which get great reviews on their website as well as on other sites like Amazon.
In 2017, JOBY was acquired by the Vitec Group, who manufacture photographic accessories from major brands including Lowepro, Manfrotto, Gitzo and more so they obviously know what they’re doing!
The JOBY GripTight PRO TelePod
I hadn’t thought about the difference between a tripod and a telepod, but now I’ve tested it out I understand!
A telepod is a telescoping tripod, which means it extends to give you a taller tripod, and compacts down to an easily transportable size. At its smallest size, the JOBY TelePod is a comfortable handgrip for a phone or action camera. You can then extend it to be used as a selfie stick, and open up the legs to create a tripod with variable height for use as a desktop tripod or a stand alone tripod.
Why I Love the GripTight PRO TelePod
I use the TelePod primarily with my phone. I use it as a tabletop tripod to record videos when I’m at home or in the campervan, and as an elevated tripod when I’m out and about and want some photos of me without asking other people to take them! It also comes in very handy as a selfie stick for doing Instagram story photos and videos.
My phone fits nicely into the adjustable grips, although as my phone case has a front cover I have to take the phone out of the case to avoid getting the cover in shot. Most cases should fit in the grip without having to take the phone out, depending on the style of the case.
Once the phone is in place you can switch easily from portrait to landscape (or somewhere in between if you prefer) using same lever which tightens up the grip. You can also tilt the phone backwards or forwards to get the perfect angle for your shot.
As well as using it for my phone, the TelePod can also be used with a GoPro action camera (with the included pin joint mount) or any camera or accessory up to 1kg/2.2lbs. I haven’t tested out the weight limits as I am just using my phone and GoPro, but if you have a camera you can weigh it to see if it would be supported properly.
On top of the phone grip there is also a built-in cold-shoe mount so you can attach a light or an external microphone. I’ve been using it with the Wavo Mobile Microphone which works well – see more details about that below.
I’ve had a cheap tripod before, which screwed into the bottom of my selfie stick, but it was very unstable and fell over at the slightest breeze of wind. The GripTight PRO TelePod is much more secure, and I can set it up and walk away for the perfect picture without worrying about it falling over and damaging my phone.
When I’m not using it, the TelePod fits nicely into my backpack and is easy to carry around, and quick to set up whenever I need it. It also comes with a Bluetooth clicker remote so you can take photos and videos without having to touch your phone, which is perfect for me as a solo traveller!
The only thing I’ve found is that sometimes the phone can slip out if it’s in portrait mode and I haven’t closed the grip properly. As long as you make sure it is tightly gripping your phone you won’t have a problem with it.
The JOBY Wavo Mobile Microphone Review
I had thought the microphone on my Huawei P20 was pretty good, but now I’ve tried the Wavo Mobile Microphone I am never going back! The microphone produces a clearer and louder sound than the built-in mic, and makes a huge difference to the quality, especially on a windy day.
Why I Loved the JOBY Wavo Mobile Microphone
The microphone is very light and improves the sound quality without adding unnecessary weight to the TelePod, which is very useful if you’re holding it up as a selfie stick for long periods of time.
It’s easy to set up and it doesn’t require a battery, so you don’t need to worry about it dying on you during a day out. If you expect to spend a long time filming, I’d still recommend bringing a portable charger for your phone or camera.
I’m not a tech expert by any means, but according to the JOBY website, the Wavo Mobile mic has a cardioid directional pattern which means it will only pick up your voice and dampen sounds from other directions which could ruin your recording. The main difference I noticed when shooting video outside was the reduction in wind noise, thanks to the furry deadcat cover which had a huge impact.
I tested the microphone on a breezy day on top of a hill and was thrilled with the results – check out the video below to hear the difference in sound between the first part using my phone microphone, and the second part using the Wavo microphone.
In more extreme conditions I also tested it on a very windy day and it still performed very well compared to the phone microphone, but there was some wind noise. You can see from the video below just how windy it was to produce that level of interference!
An added extra I haven’t tested yet is the microphone’s Rycote Lyre® technology which provides superior shock absorption. Apparently, this means that you can walk, run, jump or spin, and the mic won’t pick up sound caused by your movement. Next time I take it outside I’ll be sure to test it out!
The only downsides I have found are more due to my mobile phone than the mic.
In order to use the microphone with my Huawei phone I had to buy an extra converter cable, as my phone doesn’t have a standard headphone socket. They are cheap and easy to get hold of though, I got mine for about £8 in a supermarket, and you can order them online. This isn’t the fault of the microphone design, it’s the phone’s problem – although perhaps having the connector included in the kit or available as a cheap add-on would be useful.
I was confused at first because when I plugged everything in to test the microphone, when I played it back there was no sound. At first I thought it was an issue with the Huawei phone accepting the external mic (apparently that had caused problems in the past) but now I think it was just because I needed to remove the microphone in order to play any sound.
When the mic is plugged in my phone thinks it is a mic and a speaker, so won’t play sound through the built-in speaker (unless there is a phone setting I haven’t found!). As long as I remember to remove the microphone cable when I play back the video, then plug it back in to record again its fine.
Would I Recommend JOBY Wavo Microphone & JOBY TelePod?
Absolutely! Aside from these slight issues with compatibility with my Huawei phone, I love this microphone and couldn’t believe the difference it makes to the sound quality. I’m now working on recording vlogs on my phone using the microphone and TelePod set up which is so much better than using my laptop!
Overall, I’m very pleased with both pieces of kit, and they would make an excellent addition to your vlogging gear, or to up your game for Instagram stories and TikTok. JOBY say that they design products for people who want to leave a mark with their content, and you can certainly do that with these two! Head to the JOBY website now for more information about the Wavo microphone and TelePod.
Just to let you know, this post may contain paid or affiliate links, which help to maintain Tales of a Backpacker and give me the chance to keep travelling, and to keep creating awesome content for you! I only recommend goods and services I believe are useful and reliable.Last updated: January 7, 2021