Now, life is not all about work. So here’s a little trivial post. I have always loved the Leica M rangefinders, but never could summon any bravado to sink savings into it.

I have used the large-format view camera, and most of all, spent most of my serious photography phase in medium-format, using the Mamiya C220 TLR (twin-lens reflex), sold to me by an old photographer during the late 1980s, and the Bronica ETRS 645. And that’s how I managed to learn about photography, the 6×6 and the 645 formats. Many cameras later, I am now perhaps too old to race in the outdoors or bake in the hot weather, just to get a good photo on film. And… film has moved on to digital, mostly.

Here I am, still nostalgic about the rangefinder (and I do have one, the Fujifilm X100, a very good camera imho), holding a smartphone for most of the workday. Then I chanced upon the Gizmon “casing”.

It is nothing more than a gimmick, and yet, it (a casing contraption) features a rangefinder-like lens that works, two mock lenses that you can use to take self-portraits, a tiny tripod adapter, a nice pouch, and 2 neck strap rings. You do have to buy your own straps.

If you use particular mobile apps that work with the volume control, you can use the volume control buttons as if you are using a real rangefinder.

One little challenge is the silence toggle switch. It will be covered by the casing and you cannot access it after using it. A small challenge for those of us who work in environments that demand putting our phones to vibration mode frequently, such as during meetings, training sessions, and conferences.

A bulky contraption that immediately takes away the elegant sleek lines of my mobile phone, but yet, slim enough to slip into my pants pocket. I love it, if at least to remind me, I like the rangefinder camera and wish I was younger – young enough to run in the outdoors to chase after a good photo. For now, this little gimmick will do.

Here’s a video on Gizmon itself:

[youtube id=”gtS6ZJH9EVo”]