Terry Richardson vs. Robert Frank : The quest for the perfect camera-man.
This was the toughest comparison i had to make in a long time. Not only my search for honesty in photography was the criteria, also the workflow, quality, originality and down right charisma!
It’s absurd to compare Richardson to Frank in a literal and aesthetic way. So i will only compare their TOOLS and not the photographers themselves.
After all, any camera is available to any photographer at any given time.
Lets Change the title to Yashica T4 Super VS. Konica BigMini
Konica has been in Robert Frank’s hands since it came out, and Terry Richardson have been photographing major assignments with the Yashica for years now.
They seem to be the right tool for what they are using these cameras for. But are they the right tool for you?
P&S Rangefinders by nature, they offer tremendous ease and quality when threatened by big, heavy SLRs
Small, light, fast, quiet and unassuming. Perfect ingredients for the right photographer!
Both offer a 35mm f3.5 lens of different designs. Tessar design on the T4 seems to be slightly sharper than the Konica’s answer. Both upto par with most SLR lenses out there.
They are about the same size in general but the T4 is slightly thicker, making it a delight to hold with one hand, leaving your left hand to fondle the model you are photographing.
But you still look like a douche bag driving a Chevy Cavalier Z24 with the granny rack still attached to it. Nothing pretty about this black blob of plastic!
Konica on the other hand could have very well be designed by Pininfarina . Although there is no lens cover to protect the lens when not in use, you are not a kind of man to throw this in your leather jacket pocket along side of some change, condoms and a pipe if you use this camera daily.
Yes, Konica is prettier, but is it a better performer?
Turning them both on at the same time, Konica growls and screams into life as the lens protrudes its crevices. Its actually quite loud. I make a habit of leaving it on before a quiet performance photography. Its loud enough to make people think that you have a mechanical dick operated by servos. bzzztttt….grrrrrwwwww….thunk!
Yashica, jumps straight into action without much noise and is ready to shoot within seconds. no fuss, no fireworks.
Then you put the camera right to your face. If you are retarded like i am, you will never find the window of the T4 right away. Its not a high magnification window so your face needs to be planted to it to see through it. But once you do, its a dreamy rangefinder. Clear lines, clear image and accurate as a rangefinder can be!
Konica can be further away from your face to see through the window, yet its a shitty view once you do. Blurry and fuzzy.
Yet you get focus confirmation and close-up focus activation symbols! Which are pretty sweet.
Then the heavens open,
you want to make an image.
You see the life as it lays down in it’s birthday suit right infront of you. As fragile and pure as it can be.
you press the shutter…
And sudden whirr and clicks of both cameras startle the beauty. Flash, pop, crackle!!!
Konica, again growls like a drunken man in an italian suit driving a Maseratti, and the T4 does it with the precision of a honda v-tec engine. Very un-exciting yet, very efficient.
The controls on both cameras are stupid. No way to push them when you want to, and almost always in the wrong setting!
Buttons are very small and almost impossible to operate with fat fingers or gloves. I have shot with both cameras in -20C weather and they both performed beautifully. Good luck getting the models to pose for you naturally in those conditions anyways. So I am not even sure if this measures into the equation.
I am a big fan of exp. compensation button on the Big Mini. +- 1.5 stop exp. comp with the push of a button. Which also cancels the flash operation. Brilliant!
Perfect for instant over or under exposure for those backlit situations. Yashica also seems to do this automatically, yet you are NEVER aware of it working. So lets just assume the worst and say it doesn’t!
Flash on both cameras are excellent.. suprisingly. and both cameras can focus in near dark!
So lets say, the model was actually good and you managed to burn through 37 dreadful frames(37 frames got to be the most annoying number in the world. You cant put them in sleeves without that one frame just sticking out like a sore thumb)
Let the cameras rewind the film back into the casette. Which will render your camera useless for close to a minute! SLOOOOOWWWWW
SO this is one of those times that having both cameras helps cause you can just keep shooting. Or just buy 2 of the one you decide on!
I loaded mine up with some Kodak Tri-X.
So it needed some souping in XTOL… 1:1…for super fine grain and sharp negatives.
Konica for those days when i am out to impress the girls.
Yashica for the days when i am out to photograph the girls I already impressed with the Konica.
Konica sells for $30
Yashica selld for $200 these days
Here are some samples from both cameras.