Minolta XG-M Meter Problem

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by FilmOnly, Oct 15, 2008.

  1. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    I recently got my XG-M CLAed. At first, all seemed well, but in the last few days the meter has been 1.5 to three stops off. It has been consistently incorrect--I have checked it in different lighting, etc. I did a battery check, and the battery check light lit (as it should). Before I send it back to the person who did the CLA, I ask: does anyone have any idea what is going on here? I fear the problem might be serious.

    Thanks,
    Glen
     
  2. fmajor

    fmajor Member

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    It sounds like the CLA was not as thorough as it should have been.... Did your Tech use the same battery you currently have? If it is the same battery send it back!
     
  3. ath

    ath Member

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    I the correct type of batteries installed? AFAIR the XG has a CDS meter and probably requires silver oxide batteries. If the battery is alkaline the dropping voltage over lifetime will affect the metering.
     
  4. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    After further testing--with fresh Duracell 1.5-volt batteries (alkaline)--I got the same results. I have decided to send the camera back to my repairman.

    We will see what happens...

    Thanks,
    Glen
     
  5. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    Any other views out there--especially from XG-M users? How has the meter worked in your experience?

    Before I forget: the XG-M's owner's manual indicates that 1.5-volt silver oxide or alkaline batteries may be used.

    Thanks,
    Glen
     
  6. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Was your exposure compensation dial accidentally rotated away from '0'?
     
  7. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    Good question, Chris...I am fairly certain it was on zero. I guess I will know for sure when my repairman receives it.
     
  8. elekm

    elekm Member

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    The XG series uses a circuit board and armatures as part of its metering system. In one camera, I found that most of the markings on the circuit board had worn away, making it impossible for me to get any accurate speeds.

    It's possible that perhaps your camera has a similar issue. Or it might be something completely different.

    But it's one thing for the repair guy to inspect.
     
  9. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    The verdict is in, and it is not good. My repairman confirmed my findings in regard to the meter, and he replaced the capacitor in the bottom part of the camera. This improved things somewhat, but not completely. He looked further and found that the capacitor in the upper part of the camera is leaking, too. Thus, since repairing this hard-to-get-at cap would cost more than what the camera is worth, he offered to send the camera back to me. I agreed.

    This is quite disappointing. Though I like the handling and features of the XG-M--and the low cost of MC lenses--I am almost ready to give up on the Minolta system. Are the XG-Ms unreliable? I have heard that they are good cameras, but I welcome any user input here. What makes this harder is that I have another XG-M body on the way (I picked it up last week very inexpensively on eBay...original box and all), and two more Minolta lenses on the way--the MC 28/2.5 and an MD 50/2 (again, both were very inexpensive and appear to be in great shape)...

    Thanks,
    Glen
     
  10. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Did you check the aperture coupling? It may be sticky. Malfunction meter generally off by the same amount and not sometimes 1.5 and sometimes 3 stops. Don't have an XG-M but my brother has one and he said that its meter is very accurate.
     
  11. elekm

    elekm Member

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    Camera bodies generally are cheap ... and for the most part plentiful. I'd also look at the XD-11 and possibly the X-700.

    The MC/MD lenses will work on either of these bodies.
     
  12. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    I thank you for the input...

    I have thought about the XD11, but I do not like the viewfinder. I like to see the entire frame in the finder. The XD11, like a few other cameras, has an information "bulge" on the right. This blacks out a small part of the scene on the right.

    I have heard the X-700 is nice, but have also heard complaints (as with the XG-M) about its capacitor failure rate. I also do not like buying used black cameras that have those silly "passed" stickers on the prism--which many used X-700s seem to have. When removed--even if removed cleanly--the sticker leaves an ugly "shadow" behind...on the most noticeable part of the camera, too (i.e. the prism).
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 20, 2008
  13. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    I have the XD-11. It's a decent camera. I prefer it to the XG-M. Meter is accurate and is consistently about 1/3 stop over(low reading). Good for neg, for slide one may need to compensate a bit. Shutter is accurate to 1/1000 with less than 1/3 stop error at 1/1000. Other speeds are right on. The controls are a bit confusing to me. The meter is protruding into the view and is difficult to read the shutter speed/aperture next to the LEDs. I used the X-700 only once and it seems OK. The X-700 can generally be bought for significantly less than the XD-11.
     
  14. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    The XG-M's are workhorses. But as with all electronic equipment, they wear with age and yours is pushin' thirty, no doubt. Another body is cheaply obtained on eBay if you want to keep the system. If you have a lot to go with it that would be my suggestion. Or any X/sr camera for that matter. Kick it old school and get an sr-T101. Can be used fully mechanical. Take the battery out and the only thing that won't work is the needle meter. That's what I did.
     
  15. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    Thanks, Chris...I am aware of this--and enjoy being "old school"--but I prefer having a camera that offers a motor or winder. If the SRTs did offer this feature, I would have bought one already.
     
  16. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Hey, I get that. I just got a new (for me) Nikon N65. Never had AF and gizmos before so I'm in pig-frickin-heaven right now. Gadgets and gizmo's are not overrated.
     
  17. FilmOnly

    FilmOnly Member

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    I, too, like having a few gadgets. I much prefer the build quality of some of the older cameras, but I guess I like the late 70s early 80s cameras best. These cameras seem to retain the good build quality and yet add things such as a winder, motor, etc. I prefer manual focus, too.
     
  18. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    My brother is selling his XG-M in perfect condition for $80 with the 50mm f/1.7 lens.
     
  19. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Chan, tell him not to get his hopes up. I got my Nikon N65 with a Nikkor-D mount Quantaray 28-90 AF for $37.73 from eBay. If he holds out he MIGHT get $50.00. But he'll miss a lot of $40.00 sales. Though the XG-M is an EXCELLENT camera, the depreciation of 27 year old electronic technology puts a damper on selling older photography to fund a jump up or on.
     
  20. darinwc

    darinwc Subscriber

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    If your body has exposure compensation you could just set it to correct the meter.. as long as the meter is {NOT} consistently off.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 25, 2008
  21. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Actually I think my brother will get his $80. He has been consitently doing so.