Photographer turns a Game Boy camera into an elegant “rangefinder”

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game boy rangefinder

Even though I’ve never used a Game Boy camera, projects I’ve seen using it are among my favorites. It’s incredible how creative people can get with a simple, 2bit digital camera: shooting astrophotography, macro, race cars, portraits… Even turning it into a webcam.

Photographer Christopher Graves has made yet another inspiring project using a Game Boy camera. He turned it into Camera M (or M1), a sleek and elegant rangefinder-style camera. He kindly shared some photos of his build with DIYP, as well as the details of how he created it.

game boy rangefinder

For this build, Christopher used a Game Boy Pocket a the Game Boy Camera. He used original Game Boy buttons for controls, even though they don’t come from the Game Boy Pocket he used to make the Camera M. Instead, he added buttons from the Nintendo Game Boy Advance SP.

game boy rangefinder

Christopher’s beautiful little Camera M has received a lot of attention, and many people asked if they could own one. If you’re one of them, Christopher says that his goal is to eventually sell kits for DIY builds and a small number of complete units. However, for now, this is still a prototype. Even though it’s complete, Christopher says that he still needs to refine a couple of things before this becomes a product. He needs to adjust the shell and the PCBs need some optimizing. He also wants to incorporate better components and parts, and the building process needs to be much easier.

game boy rangefinder game boy rangefinder

He also lists the specs and features of this camera, and here’s what it offers other than sleek looks and super lo-fi images:

  • Completely custom shell and form factor
  • High-quality camera leatherette covering
  • Custom circuit boards
  • Top-positioned “shutter” A button
  • Redesigned power switch
  • CS/C lens mount (pictured with a 5-50mm varifocal CCTV lens)
  • Backlit IPS display with 4x integer scaling (slightly larger than the original)
  • Shoe for mounting additional accessories
  • 1/4” mounting screw for tripod and other mounting solutions
  • Strap lugs
  • Retains Game Boy Link Port for printing, trading, etc
  • Brightness wheel
  • Unbranded glass screen lens
  • Clicky GBA SP style buttons
  • 1800 mAh battery that lasts about 8 hours on a full charge
  • USB type-c charging port
  • Retains access to original cart slot for OEM camera & other carts

Make sure to follow Christopher on Instagram and Twitter. And if you’d like to the help Camera M see the light of day, you can do it here.

game boy rangefinder

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