**This post will only be of interest to anyone who likes cameras and photography. And even they may not be interested**
I bought myself another camera last week, and it arrived this morning.
Many years ago, I saw that Minox of Germany were producing a replica of the Leica M III film camera. But it was a digital camera, in miniature.
(Photos can be enlarged, by clicking on them)
At first, it only boasted two megapixels, and had a small internal storage of 2 mb. Later versions extended the capacity to three, then four megapixels, and added a live rear screen, as well as the facility to use an SD card for storage. But it was ridiculously expensive, and little more than a collector’s item
The last manifestation of this tiny camera extended to 14 megapixels, and also allowed a 32 gb SD card. Now it was becoming more desirable, but also more expensive, at around £180. I thought about it, then forgot about it.
I looked on Ebay recently, and found an ‘open-box’, unused camera, for a fraction of the original selling price. It came with a still-wrapped charging cable, the original metal display box, and full instructions. It was for sale in Germany, from a ‘trusted seller’. So I bought it. The only downside so far is that I cannot work out how to change the menu language, so have to translate from the German shown, using Google to find the meanings of the words.
In this photo, it is next to my Sony RX 10 zoom compact. You can easily see just how tiny it is, palm-sized in fact.
The camera has metal parts alongside the plastic components, and is lovingly engineered as a replica. The film winder and self-timer levers both move, although they have no function. The lens focusing ring does work, changing focus from infinity to other settings. The metal viewfinder operates like one from the 1930s, as it is quite cloudy and distorted. However, the small screen at the rear serves as a back-up for composing photos. It also has a digital menu, allowing changes to white balance, and some other functions.
You won’t find a good review of this camera online. The tiny 1/2.3 sensor has its limitations, and most camera magazines and websites describe it as little more than a ‘toy’, with limited practical application in the modern world of photography. The lens is fixed at a full-frame equivalent of 46 mm, and the digital zoom feature is best avoided.
But I happen to think it is a thing of beauty. And it takes photos too.