From the Archives:
Polaroid Colorpack II – Week 64 Results

The Colorpack II is a cool Polaroid, if a bit quirky.

The scale focusing is simple to use, and there is a mirror arrangement which makes the setting visible in the viewfinder. There are two apertures, marked 75 and 3000 for color and B&W film respectively.

When shooting 3000 ASA B&W film, the depth of field is so wide that the camera can be focused at 5 feet and forgotten. Alas, Fuji took that option away from us this spring. (BRING BACK FP3000b!)

The camera features a large plastic handle on the strap, which Polaroid advises to hold while pulling the tabs. This is necessary as the spreader bars provide more resistance than the rollers used on more expensive pack cameras.

Some users complain about the shutter release being located on the front standard and its causing camera shake. I feel this minor issue is offset by its use of regular AA batteries.

Although a cheap entry level model, the Colorpack II is still capable of beautiful images. It’s small and tough; I’m not afraid to carry it around. My only complaint is that I miss the ringing sound made by the rollers of the more expensive units.

Wheels

Iron

Ford

Gradall

All shot on Fuji FP100c, which is sadly the only film currently in production for these cameras.

Week 73 – Olympus OM-PC

OlympusOMPC1

Produced between 1985 and 1987, the OM-PC was the last consumer level model in Olympus’ OM line. It features program, aperture priority, and manual modes.

Aperture is selected by a standard ring on the lens. Shutter speed is adjusted using a ring on the camera body behind the lens in similar fashion to the rest of the OM cameras.
OlympusOMPC2

My example was an eBay bargain. It sports a 35-70 zoom lens. When it arrived the mirror was loose, but a quick dab of superglue fixed it. I’ve loaded a test roll of Kodak Hawkeye traffic surveillance film.

REFERENCES
Camera Wiki
Manual
eBay

Minolta X-7A – week 69 results

Many cameras leave an impression with me. I either want to use them again immediately or I really dislike them. The X-7A was neither. It feels like a perfectly adequate SLR with a few slightly odd controls. It didn’t annoy me, but I didn’t love it either. The on/off switch is odd, and I often found I’d left it in the wrong position. I liked the fact that the meter works in manual mode, unlike my XG-series cameras.

Results were mixed. It seems to have a slow shutter.  Half of my images came out like this:

201406 MinoltaX7aE

This week’s film was Lomochrome Purple, which I developed at home with a Unicolor kit.  It’s supposed to have interesting color shifts, and it did not disappoint. At slower shutter speeds, the images were fun.

The Burgermobile

The Burgermobile

Mallary

Mallary

Ericka

Ericka

Beth & Cricket

Beth & Cricket

Back on the shelf with it. It will probably end up on the Repair or Sell pile. I’m very happy with the Lomochrome however.

Week 72 – Beirette

 

This small viewfinder was manufactured in East Germany sometime between the mid 1970's and mid 1980's. I believe it is an early VSN model. It features a 1/125 shutter, f2.8 lens, and scale focus delineated in meters. Exposure is assisted by a series of symbols on the lens barrel in similar yet inverse fashion to the SMENA cameras. In this case shutter speed is varied according to the film speed, while aperture is varied according to lighting conditions.

Mine is a relatively recent eBay acquisition. I've loaded a short roll of Ilford FP4 for the week.

 

REFERENCES:

Camera Wiki

eBay

 

Week 71 – Fuji Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic

The newest addition to my collection is the Fuji Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic. This latest addition to Fuji's Instax line has a more refined look and better controls than previous Instax models, and it has the advantage of film being available in major discount stores.

It features multiple shooting modes including portrait, sport, landscape, bulb, macro, and double exposure. Flash can also be manually controlled. I've been shooting with it all week and will post as soon as I can scan some images.

REFERENCES:

Fuji website

They are in production and available from many sources.

 

Nishika N8000 – week 68 results

Well, the N8000 wasn’t a complete failure.

By that I mean it made images, and even decent ones.

As a 3D camera, I’m not impressed. The amount of time needed to make a decent animation is more than I’m willing to spend. Perhaps better software could save it.

As a camera in general, the 3D ‘function’ compromises its usefulness. It’s large and cumbersome, with limited controls. On my example there is a problem with the film advance causing it to alternately skip exposures and then to double expose. I expected to find ripped sprocket holes when the film returned from the lab, but I didn’t.

I left the images in half-frame diptychs as they came from the scanner. If you look closely near the edges you can see how the 3D effect was achieved.

201406 Nishika026

Pirsch

201406 Nishika023

Hahn

201406 Nishika021

ALFie

201406 Nishika020

Model T

Back on the shelf with it.  I can’t say I’d recommend buying one.

Brownie Starflex – Week 67 results

The Starflex was a fun little camera. I can see the attraction of Brownies. I finished the roll very quickly on a camping trip.

The shutter seems to be slow, though.  Many of my images had motion blur and all were overexposed, even using 100 ASA film.  Motion blur isn’t always bad; witness Cricket:

http://Soul of a dog 2
I just love that wagging tail!

We took a trip to Seashore Trolley Museum for their Dog Day.

Motorman
Arundel Station
Atlantic Shore Line

This was my last stashed roll of Efke R100 for 127. From now on I’ll need to cut my own film.  I haven’t worked with the Efke much, but I found it a pain to load on the reels and very curly to scan and store.

Week 70 – Yashicamat LM

Summer is here with all its attendant craziness. I've still been shooting, but finding the time to develop, scan, and write has been difficult.

For this past week I chose the Yashicamat LM, a TLR from 1958-1964. I wrote a post of first impressions with it before I'd started 52 Cameras. I loaded it with a roll of Lomography 400 ASA color and took it to a family barbecue.

REFERENCES:

Camera Wiki

Manual

eBay

 

Week 69 – Minolta X-7A

The Minolta X-7A has been hard for me to pin down. It’s a consumer level manual focus SLR from sometime in the 1980s. It appears to be an alternate version of the X-370, which in turn was a down rated version of the X-570. It features aperture priority automation as well as a full manual mode. Unlike most of its XG-series cousins the meter functions in manual mode, indicating both selected and metered speeds in the viewfinder.

Its most unique feature is the controls. The on/off switch is a large slider to the left of the viewfinder, and the shutter speeds are shown in a window to the right.

I don’t remember where I got mine, but it was probably eBay. I’ve already run a short roll of FP4 this week and have a roll of Lomochrome Purple loaded now.

 

random musings from the life of a firefighter, paramedic, train buff, photographer, family man