Older cameras are better???

Discussion in 'Antiques and Collecting' started by jcorll, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. jcorll

    jcorll Member

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    Crisper pictures?

    A couple months ago I acquired a 1955 Argus 21 Markfinder. This was my first "Old" (pre 1960) 35mm camera I had bought. So being curious about the quality of it, I wanted to run it through my own little test against one of my other newer cameras. The main objective I had thought of was if a uncoated lens would affect the picture in contrast to a coated one.

    I loaded a cheap roll of CVS brand color 35 in the Argus and a roll into my Nikon FM.

    So, I just got both rolls developed at the same place at the same time, and the pictures from the Argus are clearly more vivid and crisper apposed to the pictures from my Nikon. I've shot my Nikon without a 1A filter on it and it still doesn't produce such crisp pictures.
    Why is this?

    I'm thinking it has to do with the amount of layers of glass from the object to the film.
    But, then again, I could be way off in my speculation!

    Any help here?
     
  2. ricksplace

    ricksplace Member

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    Might be time to get your Nikon checked out.

    Could be the lab too.
     
  3. Andy38

    Andy38 Member

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    Hello ; are you sure the two rolls (the same rolls ?) were developped in the same bath ?
    A different quality in process may produce a great difference in pictures quality .
     
  4. Dave_ON

    Dave_ON Member

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    I was born in 1951....I'm offended. :D

    My guess is the exposures didn't match up exactly. Probably one more stop over exposed on the Nikon. Or as mentioned earlier, a different development bath.

    Dave
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2010
  5. jcorll

    jcorll Member

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    Andy- No, I'm not sure that they were both used in the same bath. They should be of similar quality though, Right? I got them quickly developed at CVS because I didn't feel like waiting until I got back to school to develop them. (I am still saving up for the equipment to make my own)

    Dave- My parents don't like me using that "O" word around the house either. :D
     
  6. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    I was born in 1970 and . . . it's not the years, it's the mileage.

    I have noticed a tendency in my own photography that when I am out with a camera I am 'playing' with and do not normally use that I might slack off on my exposure quality a smidge, perhaps. Personally, historically, I would think that the off camera would yeild lesser results than my daily beater. Recently, that is not the case. And I would think others exhibit the same mentality to a certain degree.

    So, in long, I second ricksplace's thoughts. Check out the Nikon.

    Oh, and OT a bit, where in western PA? I grew up in East liverpool, OH. Just curious.
     
  7. jcorll

    jcorll Member

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    I tried to make sure the exposure and aperture was consistent.

    I guess I have to give in and get my Nikon to the doctors for a checkup!

    I live near Pittsburgh. I know exactly where East Liverpool is! My grandparents live in New Springfield!
    small world eh?
     
  8. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    What lens did you have on the Nikon, did you shoot both cameras at the same f/stop?

    Some old cameras can produce better results than some new cameras, but it's not the result I'd expect from the two you've compared.
     
  9. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    Yup, West on 30 and fall off the end of the Earth. Hit ELO on the way down.

    Small world indeed.
     
  10. Dave_ON

    Dave_ON Member

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    Well...since we're checking, I'd have the shutter speed checked on both cameras. If one is 10-20% over and one 10-20% under....Voila!
     
  11. Nicholas Lindan

    Nicholas Lindan Advertiser Advertiser

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    Compare the negatives. The chances are the Argus' shutter is slow and it is overexposing. Overexposed color negative film will be more 'vivid'. Since you got it processed at the drugstore they may be expecting the typical overexposure that the average P&S or disposable produces and a properly exposed roll from the Nikon threw them for a loop.

    Or it could be the other way round: the Argus is OK and the Nikon is (most likely) underexposing. I take it the Nikon's lens is free of fingerprints and fog...
     
  12. jcorll

    jcorll Member

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    bdial - I used a variety of lenses on my Nikon. Mostly i used my Nikkor 50mm, mainly b/c the lens on the Argus is also 50mm. The only difference between the two is the aperture and probably the quality of glass. (Nikkor = f/1.4, Argus = f/3.5)

    Nicholas - I think that's it. I checked the negs and they are just like the prints (imagine that!) The Argus negs are 'vivider' than the Nikon negs.

    I was cruising the forum a little trying to dig up some old threads on shutter accuracy and turned up this little tid-bit of info.
    http://www.apug.org/forums/forum147/38369-shutter-tester.html

    do you think i could just use a microphone held up to the shutter?

    -jcorll
     
  13. Dave Pritchard

    Dave Pritchard Member

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    Yes. I was really impressed the first time I realized that someone had used Audacity to record their camera shutter firing to time the opening. Way cool! Cheap, too.
     
  14. mopar_guy

    mopar_guy Subscriber

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    Wow. Testing Nikon vs. Argus. Why didn't I think of that?:rolleyes:
     
  15. Joe Grodis

    Joe Grodis Member

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    If you had your film developed at CVS you can pretty much be assured it's their fault. One good thing CVS did for me was motivate me to learn to develop my own film. After they routinely screwed up my negs with streaks and tractor marks I had it! Now, I develop my own film and the results are much much better than CVS.
     
  16. wclark5179

    wclark5179 Member

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    Older photographers are better?
     
  17. ricksplace

    ricksplace Member

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    I like to think so.
     
  18. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    That means I'm getting better and better.
     
  19. Pupfish

    Pupfish Member

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    The sound-card shutter tester idea works a lot better using a very simple phototransistor circuit and a light source instead of a microphone. I found a bunch of plans on the web for these and built one using a very sophisticated phototransistor (with a much faster response time) for under $20 in materials and an hour or so of my time.