Sunday, April 10, 2016

Contax Tvs

The Contax T series was in the top rankings for quality, small, durable, and high performing film cameras in the nineties. There were a number in the series, the TVS was the only zoom. I thought that this camera must have been some kind of inspiration for the current fixed zoom cameras, for instance the Fuji X30. Similar limited zoom range, size, and weight.
Both are excellent cameras. Pics below are from the film camera, of course!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Fujifilm DL Super Mini

This one is definitely a collector's camera. It's tough to find one and when you do it will be at a high price.
Lovely simple design with one of those sliding front covers that is also the on/off switch (the picture shows it in the open position). Has a reputation for a high quality lens and is in the same league as the Yashica T4 and the Oly Stylus Epic.
Here is a nice description of the camera and examples of what it can do.
I was brave on the choice of film and development method with this one. The film was Fuji Sensia 100 slide film. I think it was around 10 or more years old. I've got to trust Diafine so much that I decided to use it for this out of date, color slide film! Well, if you give up the idea of color it works a treat! Nice contrasty and grainy black and white that I may have got from TriX. This was souped the normal Diafine way, 4min/4min . . . so easy!!!
This is what Wallace Koopman says about the Super Mini. His site is the proverbial treasure trove for old cameras and how they perform today.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Fujica Mini

This is one of my favorite half frame cameras. It's has a fixed focus 25mm, f2.8 lens. The exposure meter is very simple to use, so there really is no excuse not to take the Mini everywhere with you. This is not a very common camera but good old Mike Butkus has a manual for it on his very useful site (don't forget to donate if you use it).
First two are from Toronto, and the last is from Chicago.

Moskva 4

Blimey, its a year since I posted. Time to make it up. I have been using my collection and I have taken some pics. How quickly time goes when you are up to your eyeballs in work.
This is the Moskva 4 Russian 6x9 folder, a take-off of the Zeiss Ikonta, which I've just acquired but not used yet. The lens in the Moskva is very, very good - but the camera is tricky to hold. Everything seems to be on the wrong side.
These are pictures from my "studio", a small condo in the same building as my principal abode. A deal I made with my wife to keep cameras out of her hair.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Mamiya 6

Ken Rockwell says this is the best camera ever made (Ken's evaluation of the Mamiya 6 and 7. Not everyone likes Ken, but I value his "down to earth" sentiments on cameras.
The Mamiya is a rangefinder, takes 120 film and I guess is a "Texas Leica" like this one. The lenses are super sharp and are collapsible.
My Mamiya was generously given to me by an internet friend, Mike Regnier who has switched his work entirely to digital. Mike first introduced me to blending textures into images in post processing, moving the art of photography more toward the art. You can see his beautiful pics here - a lot of Mike's stuff is really large and has a very painterly persona. Check it out.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Petri Micro Compact

This camera was designed when it was "in" to sell a competent camera in the smallest package possible. Size was always a factor in the attraction of film cameras, just as it is with digital today.  Every manufacturer had something to offer in this genre, maybe the most well known being the Rollei 35 series first introduced in the mid sixties. This Petri first appeared in 1979.
This one is derived from the more expensive, better made, and feature-rich Petri Color 35 which commands high prices and is tough to get (see Steven Gandy's article here) It has automatic exposure, a pull out lens, and a simple zone focusing system.
I confess I'm a sucker for these tiny cameras - I took the picture of the Petri with my digital Ricoh GRD IV, which surprisingly is just a bit larger.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Rollei Prego 90

 This is a "point and shoot" camera, called that because they need little effort to get a good shot. Auto focus and exposure coupled with a nice zoom lens means the photographer can usually get good images with the minimum of fuss. Just about every camera manufacture did these, including the pricier brands such as Rollei. I have quite a few cameras that fit this genre. The Prego is an example dating to the mid nineties. It has infra-red auto focus and in this case an upscale Schneider-Kreuznach 28-90mm zoom lens. These camera are quite collectible now and their prices have been slowly creeping up.