Review: Keizus Quadrapod + Clamp
Accessories designed to be "cute" or "universal" generally don't interest us much -- cuteness is too often a crutch for questionable practicality, and universality often removes Apple device-specific features that we and our readers would appreciate. We've opted to review Keizus Quadrapod + Clamp ($50) despite the fact that it was built with both of those attributes: it's a novel repositionable human-shaped stand that some users might like based on looks alone, though its marketed iOS device support is less than totally thrilling.
Measuring around 6.5” long by 3.5” wide by 1.25” tall when folded down into a flat, human-like position, Quadrapod + Clamp consists of four double ball-jointed limbs and a head-shaped, rubber-padded clamp that can be tightened or loosened with a thumbscrew. Only one ball joint—the Quadrapod’s “neck”—can be truly secured in place using a pressure lock, enabling the humanoid accessory to transform into a spider-like stand. Gray rubber tips keep the limbs from slipping on a flat surface, and the ball joints come out of the box with just enough tension in their sockets to collectively prop up a small object resting on Quadrapod’s top. It’s hard to know whether the joints will still hold their positions after a year of use, but we wouldn’t rule the possibility out.
iOS users will have different experiences depending on the devices they use and the flexibility they crave. For instance, Keizus’s box shows a full-sized iPad resting on a recline within an awkwardly-posed Quadrapod, and we were able to replicate that position and verify that the iPad was respectably supported inside. However, the Quadrapod’s limbs were unable to support the weight of a full-sized iPad when it was placed in the Clamp; the Clamp was only useful for holding smaller devices, such as the iPad mini, iPhone, and iPod touch. Unfortunately, with the latter, pocket-sized devices, the Clamp actually overlaps enough of their screens to be less than ideally useful. It works, and you can still take pictures or otherwise interact with the rest of the screen, but it’s not as well-implemented as typical iPhone/iPod specific stands.
There are two offsets, however, that may appeal to some users. First, the Clamp can be unscrewed from the Quadrapod to reveal a 1/4” tripod mounting screw compatible with digital cameras. Assuming your camera is small and light enough—Keisus promises to support a pound of weight, and we had no issues with a common pocket point-and-shoot model—you’ll be able to enjoy the same repositionability with the camera as with smaller Apple devices. Second, although you’ll have to fidget with the limbs to achieve various angles, Quadrapod does at least theoretically support more and more unusual device positions than common stands or mounts.
The big problem with Quadrapod + Clamp is the $50 asking price. Joby’s highly repositionable Gorillamobile line of stands obviously inspired Keizus, and Gorillamobile Yogi shipped with both a great iPad case and a flexible stand for the same $50 price; you can also get a superb iPad mini case with a stand built in for the same price. Minus a case, Joby now sells similarly capable universal stands for $30, and there are many excellent competing stands sold at or around that price point. Nothing in Keizus’s accessory merits such a price premium; it’s a fine accessory, but too expensive by a solid $20. Even the “early adopters discount” price of $40 is too high for what it offers. Our advice would be to consider Quadrapod + Clamp only if it’s further discounted, or if you’re really drawn to a humanoid, device-agnostic mounting solution.