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Toy Camera Feature - NeinGrenze 5000T - Pete was given the NeinGrenze 5000T to test in our toy camera challenge. Do you think he liked the results?
Peter, the founder of ePHOTOzine, has a look at the NeinGrenze 5000T: Branded as the "Amazing Miniature Effect Camera" the 5000T is quite an odd ball. Unlike many compacts that may have a miniature effect mode, this one puts all eggs in one basket. It's a miniature effect camera and that's it - you can't take normal photos.
So why would you want this when there are so many cameras appearing with the toytown/miniature mode? The unique thing about the 5000T is the lens is actually offset in a slight tilt and shifted position so that it delivers much better results than those cameras offering a mode which is no more than a bit of clever image processing. So the results from this camera promise to be more realistic like the effects you would achieve using a proper tilt shift lens.
As a camera it feels cheap and nasty considering the £130 price tag. It compares with something you'd expect to pay £30-£50 for. But as a feature it's up against a true tilt/shift lens that can cost upwards of £1000.
For best results you need to be higher than the subject and at a distance. With a true shift lens you have the option to adjust the tilt and the shift while here it's fixed, which does limit your options slightly. To test the effect in flat Lincolnshire I had to look for bridges over motorways and go to the upper floors of two / three story buildings, I wasn't getting what I wanted so I took a trip to Lincoln and one if its multi story car parks is where I got the best height to test the effect to its full.
I found the camera frustrating. It always overexposed so I had to set exposure compensation mode to -2stops to make the camera perform better. But setting - 2 is a number of buttons away and quite a faff, especially when it defaults back to 0 whenever it's switched off.
There are a few scene modes, including a vivid scene setting, which I expected to make the miniature photos even more realistic, but they didn't work well.
To do this type of photography you need to be at the right place at the right time, people, traffic seem to work well with subjects at good angles and buildings not blocking the plane of focus and sitting behind or in front to bring emphasis on the miniature effect. It's a technique to be developed, and the NeinGrenze 5000T is a much lower priced option to do this with, but don't expect miracles, I was troubled with over exposure, blurred shots because of some shutter delay and unusually slow speeds in good light along with an overall average lens sharpness. I took about a 100 photos and got three I liked. Two of them don't look that miniature, but the blurring effect is in the Holga / Lomo territory and appeals to me.
The good thing is it's a tiny camera so you can just carry it around on the off chance you find yourself at a height looking at a subject at an ideal distance. Then you can create decent miniature photos. It's certainly one for the more creative types.
NeinGrenze 5000T Main Specifications:
- Lens 7.45mm
- Digital Zoom 8x
- Focus Fixed
- Shutter speeds 1/4 to 1/3000sec
- Pixels 5mp
- Sensor CMOS
- Internal memory 16Mb
- LCD 2.4in
- Movie -640x480
- weight 76.2g
- Dimensions 89.7x53x20.56
- Memory Card SD
- Power rechargeable lithium
- USB2 connection
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