While many continued to use and love the all mechanical Nikon F2 the F3 was a departure of sorts for Nikon moving towards an electronic-based camera and a very stylish one at that. Designed by the noted industrial designer Giorgetto Giugiaro who introduced the red strip that still appears on Nikon SLRs today. This is the camera that got me back into semi-automatic manual focus photography after I received it as a gift from a photojournalist with a vast collection of lenses and the MD-4 motor drive. While heavily used, this camera has seen a lot of action in the past and continues to seeRead More →

It’s called “The Brick” for good reason, and was for many years the every-man camera in the United States. Aimed at the middle-income market as a solid camera with good optics that could compete with some of the higher end cameras coming out from Kodak. Special Thanks to James McFarlane for this special guest camera! The Dirt Make: Argus Model: C3 Type: Rangefinder Format: Miniature, 35mm (135) Lens: Interchangeable, Argus Thread Mount Year of Manufacture: 1939-1966 The Good Probably one of the two best things about this camera are that they’re cheap on the used market and plentiful. I’ve been to several antique stores andRead More →

The Nikon F5, at first glance you might mistake it for a digital SLR. I certainly have been asked ‘what sensor is in that camera’ and depending on my mood and my general view of the person asking I might reply with something a little more sarcastic, other times a simple response is “oh a 36x24mm or full-frame as it’s called in digital photography.” The F5 was my second grail camera after switching over to a Nikon system from Minolta, in fact, I picked up the battery grip for the F80 to make it look like an F5 because at the time the F5 wasRead More →

The Canon EOS-1N was the second iteration of Canon’s flagship autofocus 35mm professional SLR. Replacing the earlier EOS-1 the 1N improved some of the focusing issues. While a second model the 1N RS was again an improvement the 1N continued to serve in many professional’s camera arsenal. I don’t use many Canon cameras, I’m much more of a Nikon guy, but I always love exploring new systems and cameras so when I was offered a chance to use this fine machine I was more than happy to swap my F4 for the EOS-1N for a photowalk! Special Thanks to Ori Carmona for this special guestRead More →

If there is a single camera out there that most people will associate with professional film photographers, it is the Hasselblad V-System. Designed and built in Sweeden, the Hasselblad is the luxury camera of the medium format market. While the 500c is the original model to use a leaf shutter, it is a good entry point into the Hasselblad system if you can find one at the right price. Thankfully I was able to find a complete setup (lens, finder, back) for a reasonable price, but soon found that there is a certain cost to owning a Hasselblad system. And the fact you can’t justRead More →

The Signet 35 was the top dog in the Kodak 35mm line following WW2, this beautiful all metal rangefinder had it’s top lens, the Ektar mounted on the front, a shutter that could go up to 1/300″ and an accessory shoe. This was the snapshot camera for the wealthy and the elite, and today it works as great as it looks. The Signet 35 like many other Kodak cameras of the day was designed by their top designer, Arthur H Crapsey. I was loaned this camera again by Mike Bitaxi to review and I was actually really happy with the results I got out ofRead More →

When it comes to SLRs, I spent a lot of time looking for inexpensive cameras in systems that I had never touched before. I had a vague idea of Konica cameras and their SLRs. On a trip to Burlington Camera, I happened across the Autoreflex T4, and Joan told me how these were underrated but that the optics were where the camera shone. Other than that, the camera isn’t much of anything. Basic, simple, and took amazingly sharp images. Camera Specifications Make: Konica Model: Autoreflex T4 Type: Single Lens Reflex Format: 135 (35mm), 36x24mm Lens: Interchangeable, Konica Bayonet Mount II (AR Mount) Shutter: Copal SquareRead More →

The Yashica FR-I is another one of those late 20th century 35mm SLR, based on the Yashica FR and Contax RTS it’s an aperture priority camera which already gives it a plus in my books. And with the C/Y mount you have a pile of great lenses available. However the camera itself has, at least for me, some usability issues that really turned me off the camera as a whole. The Dirt Make: Yashica Model: FR-I Type: 35mm, Single Lens Reflex Lens: Interchangeable, Contax/Yashica Mount Years Manufactured: 1977-1981 The Good Over all this is a comfortable camera to work with, clean lines, nice big shutterRead More →

If there is an icon of Nikon’s durability and commitment to quality the Nikon FM2 is that camera. With one of the most extended production periods of any Nikon camera (1982-2001), the FM2 is a no-nonsense, mechanical camera that can take any punishment you throw at it. I picked up the FM2n originally as a gift to a friend, but quickly fell in love with the camera and promptly purchased an older FM for the friend and kept the FM2n for my own. The FM2n became a constant companion. The Dirt Make: Nikon Model: FM2n Type: 35mm, Single Lens Reflex Lens: Interchangeable, Nikon F-Mount Shutter:Read More →

When it comes to Nikon, you know most of the cameras in their catalogue, especially their professional offerings. But there are plenty of hidden gems in their camera line as well. Some even have a cult following, I’m thinking of course of their Nikkormat cameras. But what about the Nikon FG? Like many Nikon cameras of the 1980s, it’s often overlooked in favour of the semi-pro FE2/FM2(n) and for a good reason. The FE/FM series attracts a massive following because it followed the original Nikon design ethos of uncompromised industrial design and quality. But the late 1970s and into the 1980s brought a lot ofRead More →