Digital, Optical and Fixed. The Harinezumi 4.0
by Darek Meyer
Nothing changes here, in Indonesia, very much. Traffic also with no improvement, “horrible” is very polite expression to describe it. I`ll not make a deep dive into topic of safety, we all hear what is happening around, also in Europe. Unfortunately, Indonesia is not free from dangers, either. Rainy season is coming to an end, no serious flood this year in Jakarta. Bit of free time to refresh the webpage; update from Robert and me is already online, and as usually you can check it on http://where-were-we.com.
Luckily, camera manufacturers give us always something new to talk about. And, as result, to check how deep our pockets are. New gear from Fuji (oh, how tempting X70 is), Q (I treat it still as new camera, as availability is so poor), also lovers of DSLRs will have new beasts from Nikon and Canon very soon. As my trusted Ricoh GR died recently, there is new camera coming. But this is something for a post in future.
These days, digital camera with fixed lens, like 35mm, and optical viewfinder, does not sound any exciting anymore. Right??
Till time you realize, that among all these heavily branded cameras, with tons of functionalities and millions of ISO, you can also find tiny gem, which in addition will not force you to break the bank. I do not know whether you`ve already seen it, the tiny cam with hedgehog logo. You can be really surprised when you receive the box… Well, here it is: Harinezumi 4.0.
One can ask: why the hell bother with a camera, which has 3 (yes, three) megapixels? if you happen to have 10 years old phone somewhere in the drawer, probably it will have better resolution.
The truth is, phones are for making calls, and cameras… just kidding.
I`m not really about to write an extensive review of this camera. All technical data you can find in the net. For the ones who would like to give it a try, couple of points to remember:
– it`s all plastic. As such, it is squeaking and cracking when you just keep it in your hand, pressing the shutter makes the sound even more interesting
– shutter lag is around 1 (one) second. So think before you frame and shoot, unless you are into slow mo, like continental drift
– battery / memory card cover is very weak. Rubber part covering USB got separated from the camera at first use. Bit of super glue keeps it in place; still possible to get to slots via plastic cover
– optical viewfinder – well, it`s just plastic frame. Unless you get experience, do not count on it to help you to frame
– rear screen: if I tell you that compared to it, Leica M9 has excellent screen, then you have the picture
– ISO 100 is great, other option available is 800, which , well, for BW can still be ok
– macro mode is great
– there is no flash
– BUT it does make movies, at 1, 8, and 30 frames per second! If you have seen a movie „Begotten”, then you can get very similar look for your productions
– there is no RAW… and 16GB memory card (micro SD) will hold for you almost 5,000 shots
– battery (installed and not possible to exchange) will last for about 100 shots; charging can be done from power bank and takes 2 hours.
After reading this, you can ask – why to bother? Answer is very short: FUN!
This camera is tons of fun. Yes, it even brings attention when you try to use it on the street, BUT no one will have anything against. it simply does not look any serious. And the look of picture, already OOC, is, well, unique.
Below are some examples of what to expect. BW of course, as I`m this type of person. As a bonus, two in color, taken in small market in Jakarta. And especially here you can see, why some people call this camera “digital Lomo”.
Of course, it is not camera for everyone. But I`m not surprised, that it exists on the market, and have so many fans. Harinezumi 2+++ (older brother) has cult status among many people; and I can tell you – it can be addictive.
Enjoy the pics! Bit more from this camera on http://darekmeyer.com/LOFI.html
New York street photographer Michael Ernest Sweet has been using one of these on the streets here for years. He published a book a couple years back through Brooklyn Arts Press called “Michael Sweet’s Coney Island” and all the images in there were captured with the Harinezumi. Sweet is known or lo-fi photography and he really rocked this camera with the Coney Island shots. I’m thinking of picking up one just to mess around and try it out but they are so expensive now!
There is something fishy about this camera: Amazon prices for this low end toy camera are between $500 and $11,000 (!). What is going on here?
Much more interesting and creative than the usual dull drab posted here. Well done.
I totally agree James.
It would be nice to take a break from some of the pixelpeeping and just make some cool lo-fi images just for the pure fun of it.
It’s like playing Pacman after a weekend with the boys playing Call of Duty.
Darek, I LOVE THESE IMAGES. These are not just casual snapshots.
Old cameras film or digital can deliver some very different renderings which can be used to great creative effect – so folks who are on a quest for differentiation you can look at the super new or the old and relatively unknown for inspiration.
Excellent – I really like a departure from the usual latest-greatest-must-have nonsense! Some engaging images there, which is what it’s all about. Does seem a bit expensive though.
Some of those images do indeed look like the movie “begotten.” Fun and at times, disturbing images. you posted.
I could take my FE2 (cheapest body I have), stick on a cheap lens, Retro 400s, wave it around a bit, develop and post process or print with lots of contrast. And get better results without the plastic feel.
Better in which sense? content or style?
Love these shots, Darek. I noticed the brandname ‘Chinon’, which is an old (and cheap) analog camera producer. Didn’t know the company was still out there.
Dears, many thanks for your time to look into this description, and especially to the ones who send a comment. Appreciate! And thanks to Steve and Brandon to keep this place alive, and post also such pieces like this one.
As for camera: we have to be honest to ourselves: it is not every day camera, not hang around camera. But sometimes, the day when you pass by Starbucks and get Kopi O instead, you can get some frames with such cam. Or, alternatively, it will help you to appreciate other, older cameras, which still can deliver astonishing pictures. It is all up to us.
Nothing wrong with 3 Mp so the lens must be a bit of a dog. Pity, because it could be fun (body shape and appearance).
First thing first – it`s not every day camera. And it is SMALL, like haf box of smokes. But I find fun factor here, for the days when I want to be bit different 😉
Jacob Aue Sobol has this style sewn up. Check out his latest ongoing Road of Bones project for which he is raising funds: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/roadofbones/arrivals-and-departures-the-road-of-bones?ref=nav_search
And if you don’t know, those iPhone pics you take can be messed about in Instagram to your heart’s content. With these? Nothing, they are degraded already to the point of almost unusability.
Such poor quality would wear very thin very quickly, but I suspect the camera would break in your pocket or hand long before then
I`m not sure if bringing Sobol name here makes any sense. He knows exactly what he is doing, and he keeps the picture – the content, the look – the same way over his projects.
This one – again, you know what to expect. You get very basic look, and have some in camera options to modify it. And lets be honest: if you plan to het HiQu pictures, this cam will not be the choice.
That’s kind of a rough comparison, beyond using a camera to shoot black and white it’s not really the same at all. It’s like holding an adams print next to a copy of another country in new york.
No ones gotten a pulitzer or a nobel on penmanship.
Yes I can see why its addictive, You have a good eye for making images with this camera. Great effects. I am sure if I tried using it my photos would all look rubbish.
Thanks! Second hand H2+++ could be an option to give such toy a try. Once you learn what to expect from it, you also pick up the frame – I`d not dare to take family album photos with it.
I’ve always adored the contrast you get from small low resolution sensors and you have to respect the harinezumi crew for knowing what they are despite the abundance of giant pixelcount sensors on the market.
True. Team of passionates who created camera which is appealing to many. If you look into the history of this cam, and how many issues they had to overcome – hats down.
Are those your pics Darek? Very interesting, eye catching and dynamic!
Really like the astronaut and the green Shelby Mustang.
Yup, they are mine. Thanks!
Fun ? Indeed looks like a joke…
great for creative and totally unconventional People