Tiny NiSi

Tiny NiSi

I have always been a sucker for tiny equipment – ever since I traded a Crosman CO2 pistol for a Minox B camera in 1966. The facts that the guy who got the pistol lodged a pellet into his forehead while target shooting and I never actually took a picture with the Minox are beside the point – I still think I got the best of the deal. It sensitised me to tiny photo gear*.

I never actually owned a Swiss Tessina film camera – the next stage of miniature wonder in the film  era. But I’ve seen one for sale in CE and if you were prepared to be dedicated like a watchmaker, you could take pictures. Possibly of mountain goats and chocolate factories.

And my experience with the Pentax 110 SLR and the Pentax Q digital cameras is just as a spectator. Oddly enough there is a keen enthusiast with the latter camera who turns out excellent photos.

But the NiSi lenses that are coming out now have whetted my appetite afresh – albeit with frustration, as the shop copies Carlos found for me are Nikon, Canon, and Sony E mounts. I would have been delighted to have the Fujifilm X mount to try.

Never mind, the lens itself is superb. This degree of sophistication in construction is all that professional shooters could have wanted in any lens – and the fact that it can be had for tiny cameras is a bonus.

Of course, it’s a manual lens. Those of us with film experience are never shocked by this, nor inconvenienced. Modern SLR and mirror-less cameras have enough focus aids that we need never baulk at using our own fingers to turn the focus ring. Considering the 15mm focal length and the f:22 minimum aperture, users of this lens in the real world may never need to turn anything at all. I looked up DOFmaster’s notes about these figures and found that a lens focused on 2 ft will render sharpness from infinity down to under one foot.

Beyond infinity you have to consult Buzz Lightyear.

No matter how you look at this lens; at the front, at the back, or through it – you’ll appreciate the quality they give you at a low price. And in a small package.

*   I think it sensitised him to pistol shooting…

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