3M -- Metal, Manual, Mechanical

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by zenrhino, Jun 23, 2009.

  1. zenrhino

    zenrhino Member

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    What, in your opinion, is the best 35 mm camera that is metal, manual and mechanical? In camera metering is fine, but auto-exposure that can't be easily over-ridden (aperture priority, shutter priority, programmed exposure, etc) is out.

    Thanks!

    Clint
     
  2. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    OLYMPUS -OM3 look it up-- WOW!!!!!!!
    Rick
     
  3. Europan

    Europan Member

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  4. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    My choice of heavy metal: Nikon F2. Let Sover Wong do a CLA and you are good to go for a long while knowing it'll work as intended. 100% viewfinder and the 60/40 meter in the DP meters works well. Another choice is the Olympus Om-1. I have always wanted one, great viewfinder and nimble size.
     
  5. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    My vote is for the Canon F-1.

    Jeff
     
  6. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Spotmatic F

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  7. Q.G.

    Q.G. Inactive

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    OM-3 and OM-1.
    And of the two, probably the OM-1.
     
  8. lns

    lns Member

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    Oooh, fun. When you say mechanical and manual, do you mean a camera that needs no batteries at all? Or a camera that needs batteries only for the meter? Or a camera that has mechanical controls and manual focus, but uses batteries for the meter and shutter?

    -Laura
     
  9. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

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    Nikon FM2n, Olympus OM-1n, Minolta SRT-102, Pentax MX
     
  10. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    It is for me the Nikon FM2n. I'm basing this purely on the fact that I've shot mine for more than ten years with no issues and during that time I've never been tempted to change system or 'upgrade' the body or format.
     
  11. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Canon F1 N with the AE head if you need aperture priority metering.
     
  12. philosomatographer

    philosomatographer Member

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    Based on your criteria, I assume you want the camra to "do" as little as possible. Of course, you immediately have to decide between SLR and rangefinder.

    For SLR, my vote must also go for the Olympus OM-1. It is so much smoother, quieter, smaller, and with a bigger viewfinder, than the otherwise very nice Canon/Nikon "heavy metal" cameras like the F1.

    Of course, the OM-3 just builds upon the OM-1 by remaining manual, but by including arguably the best metering system ever put into an SLR.

    But for the essence of what you seem to be wanting here, the OM-1 it is. It is, for lack of a better word, svelte. The Canikons are bricks, good as they are. And the Olympus Zuiko lenses are legendary.

    For rangefinder, the best is surely the current Leica MP, it is built to unimaginably good standards, but then again, so are most of the M-series cameras. So, excluding the electronic M7, any Leica M is hard to beat. For a rangefinder.

    You can buy 10 good OM-1's for the price of one good Leica M, though :-(
     
  13. zenrhino

    zenrhino Member

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    Batteries for the meter is just fine. I'd just like something very fail-proof and rugged with excellent glass available.
     
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  15. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    I'll be the first Minolta voice and scream sr-T101 from the mountain tops. I love those tanks.
     
  16. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Pentax k-1000. Simply simple. Everything is digital, including exposure.
     
  17. chriscrawfordphoto

    chriscrawfordphoto Member

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    I'd say Olympus OM-3 or OM-3Ti. The spotmetering system is incredible for manual exposure. I have 3 OM-4T bodies. The 4T is metal but has an electronically timed shutter to allow for its optional aperture-priority auto mode (which I never use). In manual mode it works identically to the OM-3/OM-3Ti but the bodies cost 1/3 as much used. I could never have gotten 3 OM-3 bodies, but I could afford the 4T in triplicate! I keep different films in each at all times. The mechanical shutter's not a big deal to me, the 4T is not a battery killer.

    Another mechanical metal camera I like is the Nikon F2. Yeah, its huge and hasn't got the cool spotmeter of the Olympus 3 and 4 bodies, but it has a solid feeling that I love and it operate effortlessly. I wish I had one!
     
  18. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    And there's a good K1000 at a bargain price - $50, in the Classifieds right now :D

    Ian
     
  19. CuS

    CuS Member

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    you are all high - Voigtlander Bessa R3M - period.

    =)

    (I'm feeling opinionated today)
     
  20. nyoung

    nyoung Member

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    In reverse order of age, Nikon FM2n, FM2, FM, F2, Canon F1, Nikon F.

    There are many fewer of the Canons in the marketplace b/c they were many fewer pros using them during their era. Very good mechanical picture box if you can find one that hasn't been beaten to death.

    With all due respect to the K1000, in today's market there is little reason not to have Nikon or Canon.
     
  21. pappastratos

    pappastratos Member

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    I will go with the Nikon FM, I have one that is almost mint condition.
     
  22. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    Leicaflex SL or SL2:
    Spot metering, highly dampened shutter & mirror, absolutely unbeatable viewfinder (not just screen), highly reliable, probably the shortest shutter lag of any SLR and they use sort of o.k. lenses... *
    ;-)

    * These in comparison with my Nikon FM, F & F2, which I used for decades, but have been collecting dust since getting a Leicaflex.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2009
  23. fotch

    fotch Member

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  24. sgoetzin

    sgoetzin Member

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    Leica M6 and R6.2. Metering is very very accurate. You could even use them fully manually without batteries.

    Serge
     
  25. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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  26. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    I'd say a Nikkormat FT3 rather than FTn, but we're splitting hairs.

    There are a few ways you can look at this. Probably the best such camera in terms of function is the Nikon FM3a. However, older cameras like the Nikkormat FT series and Pentax Spotmatic are a lot more solid and tactile. Even though they aren't as good at being cameras (no motor drive connections and more primitive metering, e.g.) they somehow make up for that with the quality and the feel they have.