Revisiting the HP M627
My faithful camera fell into the water last week (which you can read about here) and is now living in a bag of rice, with the hope of it soon being functional. Without a digital SLR (well I still got the Canon, but that’s mainly for work), I searched my shelf for something to continue shooting on and experiment with. So I took out my old HP Photosmart M627, which was my first digital camera. I got it at my 14th birthday, so it’s almost 9 years old by now.
This was my first real entry into shooting digital, as I grew up shooting analogue.
First out is me going back to using my first digital camera. I got it when I turned 14, meaning it's 9 years old now pic.twitter.com/ypmLSRX8Mg
— AREKU (@AREKU_Avalinity) May 9, 2016
This evening, after visiting my grandparents grave and then my aunt, I got back just in time to head out before the sunset. It feels quite weird to be back using a camera that was always with me between the age of 14-16, and which I used to shoot pretty much all of my digital photos until I got the D3000 at age 17½. I even had my first photo exhibitions with pictures taken by this camera, which is a crazy thought when I look back at it.
This is a camera that is all automated. No settings for white-balance, no shutter or f-stop setting, zilch. Focus is somewhat decent, but pretty much a wreck when it comes to taking close-ups. But there’s a certain charm with working with such limitations – makes me almost feel like im on an episode of “Pro Tog, Cheap Cam” – and a good reminder that it’s not so much the equipment that takes the photos, but the photographer.
The photos below has followed my usual workflow of being “developed” in Lightroom (though this camera just shoots JPEG) if nothing else is stated.
Even with work in post, it’s noticeable that this camera has a bit of lack in range. The greens in many situations just blends together.
An example on how it was shooting macros with this camera: Most often it wouldn’t focus on your subject (like this thin barbed wire, were it would much rather focus on the grass) but something behind. Since this is auto-focus only, I resorted to the old trick of focusing onto my hand, locking the exposure by half-pressing the shutter, and then re-frame my picture.
I should probably not bash the dynamic rang full out though, as with a well lit scenery + some added contrast and work with whites and blacks in post, you could get a pretty decent range.
..but one problem is that the highlights gets blown out way too easy. Without .RAW-format at your disposal, this is quite the impossible fixer-upper.
All in all, this is a decent camera. Not ment for shooting more than the occasional snaps, but with the potential of actually capturing some nice photos – that is if you learn the trix needed for this camera and got some decent knowledge of post-development.
I could never see myself going back, but it was a nice trip down what once were my daily driver for a couple of years.