While I’m not always a fan of third-party lenses, every so often, one comes along that impresses me as an alternative to an OEM lens. And the Osawa is one of those lenses that I probably would have used more if I had known what a sleeper I was sitting on. Unlike Vivitar, Osawa is a lens manufacturer in their own right and produced lenses starting in the 1970s when many SLRs were beginning to gain popularity in the consumer market, and many were clamouring for inexpensive alternatives. While working with this lens in an OM-Mount, they also produced for other major camera makers likeRead More →

Throughout these reviews, I have shied away from third-party lens makers. But I have a long history with third-party lenses and often with good results. My favourite lenses are from my first SLR system, the Minolta SR-T 102, a Kiron 70-150mm f/4 lens and a Vivitar 75-210mm f/3.5. Although that Vivitar is different from today, the Series 1 70-210mm f/3.5 in many ways. The biggest is the size and function; the Series 1 is a beast and a lens that surprised me that they even released the lens in an OM-Mount. Lens Specifications Make: Kiron Model: Vivitar Series 1 70-210mm 1:3.5 Macro Focusing Auto ZoomRead More →

When it comes to a 50mm lens, they are often overshadowed by faster fifties, the f/1.4 and f/1.2 and even crazier f/0.95. But sometimes, all you need is something at f/1.8, and the Olympus F.Zuiko, 50mm f/1.8, is a spectacular choice for your OM-System. While the lens has gone through several changes since its inception, this chrome nose version fits in nicely next to my 50mm f/1.4 chrome nose and is a tack sharp option for the more budget-minded Olympus user. Lens Specifications Make: Olympus Model: OM-System Auto-S F.Zuiko 1:1,8 f=50mm Focal Length: 50mm Focal Range: ∞ – 0.45m Aperture: f/1.8 – f/16, 6 BladesRead More →

While these days the old standbys are still excellent choices to develop your film and offer up a great deal of variety there’s something to be said about having a universal one-size-fits-all developer. I first discovered this last year with Adox FX-39 II. But I quickly fell a rabbit hole of similar developers. And I’m not talking about Diafine, but rather Rollei Supergrain. Supergrain is an updated version of Amaloco AM 74. Supergrain offers up a series of dilutions and times that will develop most films at the same associated times. Perfect if you’re shooting a whole bunch of different films but have limited timeRead More →

It’s funny how some developers just drop right into your lap. One of my readers, Jon Porter, wanted to know my thoughts on FX-39. And at the time I had never even heard of Adox FX-39, so I hopped onto my source for the rarer chemicals, Argentix.ca, and found that yes they did carry Adox FX-39 II. Is this new version any different from OG FX-39, not on the surface, it just has been adjusted to last longer. But that wouldn’t be a problem. I went through my first 500mL bottle quickly and in a couple of months. FX-39 is based on Neofin Red (createdRead More →

It’s a rumble in the mechanical jungle! Last year I pitted my Nikon F5 against the Minolta Maxxum 9, and I had a lot of fun doing that review, not to prove which camera is better but to show the difference between the two top dog professional cameras. And I have been waiting for a chance to repeat the format for some other cameras. So why not take out two iconic small-format SLRs that came out in the 1970s, sadly I had very view from that era, at least until recently when I got a pair of them. Today we’re going to compare the OlympusRead More →

The idea of a small light meter is nothing new, ever since the concept of an exposure meter that clip onto the camera through an accessory shoe (or hot shoe). When I was shooting a Barnack Leica, I used one such meter, the Voigtlander VCII. A fantastic meter, easy to use, a little restrictive at times, but never missed a beat. I don’t recall what happened to mine. It either stopped working or got lost on an adventure on in my one move. When my good friend and regular of the Toronto Film Shooters Meetup, Matt Bechberger, let me know he aimed to release hisRead More →

I’m going to come out and say it right off the bat. I’m used to handling big and bulky SLRs. Yet as I feel smaller cameras like the Nikon FE, Nikon FA, and Pentax ME Super, I realised that there needed to be a single instigator of this shift in SLR size. That camera is the Olympus OM-1, released just under two decades from the first ‘system’ SLR, the Nikon F. But the OM-1 switched the game, changed the narrative on the system camera. It showed you didn’t need a bulky camera to get results. And those who use the OM-1 or any of theRead More →