Searching for really, REALLY small analog camera

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Mendewesz, May 12, 2012.

  1. Mendewesz

    Mendewesz Member

    Messages:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2012
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I want something that can be taken literally everywhere with me, I don't like modern compact cameras, the cheap and small ones make poor quality photos and my Spotmatic F is too big for carrying everywhere.

    By small I mean REALLY SMALL, pocket-size maybe, I've found Olympus XA to be quite good and small but is there something better?
     
  2. Gerry M

    Gerry M Member

    Messages:
    926
    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Rollei 35, Minox? Both have quality lens and can produce excellent images.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 12, 2012
  3. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

    Messages:
    1,069
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    Location:
    Maryland, US
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Minox, with the Minox lens, not the earlier Complan lens (which has a curved image and requires a curved pressure plate that scratches the film).

    It produces an 8mmx11mm image. Film is still available in 36-exposure rolls.

    The LX model is still in production, along with one (or more) Minox digital cameras.

    - Leigh
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    18,005
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Yashica T-4s (T-5 in Europe) with 35mm/2.8 Zeiss Tessar is one that I like.

    Voigtlander Perkeo II, which is 6x6 but smaller than some 35mm rangefinder cameras is the one I usually use for that purpose. Easily fits in a coat pocket or small pocket in a briefcase.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 12, 2012
  5. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

    Messages:
    2,265
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Location:
    Metro DC are
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Can it be a rangefinder?
    I like the Contax II followed by the Leica IIIf
     
  6. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

    Messages:
    4,334
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    Geelong/Richmond Vic AU
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The rea lstrength of the venerated Olympus XA is the lens (35/f2.8), as much so it's cheerfully pocketable size and clever, functional design. Always keep in mind the challenges that Olympus engineers overcame in fitting a 6 element /5 group lens into a tiny body! Who else had done that?? Otherwise, I can think of the Rollei and Minox 'minis' with their quirky, sometimes irritating designs. It's a matter of personal preference. And availability. Many of these old classic 'minis' are now well used (perhaps over-used) and getting one that is reliable and that will serve you for any number of years is conjectural. "Seek and ye shall find."
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 12, 2012
  7. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

    Messages:
    1,069
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    Location:
    Maryland, US
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    At the hyperfocal setting on my Minox LX, the depth of field extends from 2 meters to infinity.

    Who needs a rangefinder?

    - Leigh
     
  8. TriXfan

    TriXfan Member

    Messages:
    42
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Best quality -- smallest size -- LEICA CL
     
  9. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

    Messages:
    1,069
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    Location:
    Maryland, US
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You might also consider a Tessina.

    Very nice Swiss-made half-frame 35mm, with all the features you'd expect on a full-grown camera.

    - Leigh
     
  10. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,352
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    Shooter:
    35mm
    - Smallness is all: Olympus XA, Minox, maybe Rollei 35.

    - Very, very small but with some usual additional features: Yashica T3 (with a very good Carl Zeiss Tessar 35/2.8, a flash, a waist-level additional viewfinder and very good overall quality).

    - Very small, a bit heavier, with manual exposure and a rangefinder: almost anyone of those: http://www.cameraquest.com/com35s.htm

    - Still small, very versatile and high quality intechangeable lens, but more expensive:
    Leica CL, Minolta CLE (Leica M mount) or Contax G/G2 (Contax G mount).

    Fabrizio
     
  11. andrewc

    andrewc Member

    Messages:
    123
    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Even though it's a modern compact camera, the Olympus Stylus Epic is quite compact and has a superb 35mm f/2.8 lens. It should be a part of everyone's photo arsenal.

    Andy
     
  12. Too old to care

    Too old to care Subscriber

    Messages:
    171
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Location:
    DeLand Flori
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    My vote, Rollei 35. My SE has seen 30 years of use and abuse. Needs a service once in awhile, something most people can do with simple tools. Today it rides in my saddle bags on my bike everywhere I go.
     
  13. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

    Messages:
    1,626
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    How about a Minolta-16? :smile:
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. rawhead

    rawhead Subscriber

    Messages:
    580
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    CLE + Hologon. Fits in any pocket :D
     
  16. Kiron Kid

    Kiron Kid Member

    Messages:
    441
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Ricoh FF-1
     
  17. Johnkpap

    Johnkpap Member

    Messages:
    114
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Location:
    Australia
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    How about a Pentax ME Super with a 40mm F2.8 Pancake LENS

    Very small and compact


    Johnkpap
     
  18. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

    Messages:
    2,914
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2009
    Location:
    Southeastern
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    A Minox sounds like the camera for you. They are build like a tank, have a ton of features, yet are extremely small and fit right in the hand and are very light weight. If you could swing it, the most modern models like the TLX or LX may be great because they have a great coupled meter for auto exposure. The Minox C is has the same features but is a little larger in size. The Minox B is smaller that all those and has a selenium meter built in, many are not accurate anymore, and the Minox II, II, and III are "meterless". For everyday use, maybe the C would work and be at a good price for you. I don't know what you would want to spend. Good luck!
     
  19. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

    Messages:
    2,263
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2008
    Location:
    Warwickshire
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I've been on this journey for years and tried loads of cameras, however, I keep coming back to the XA. I'm on my third.

    I think all cameras have compromises so none are perfect. For me, my rule is to avoid little cameras that cost more than around £50 as I fear they'll fail one day. I'm scared off all the high-end P&S models with no warranties. I borrowed a friend's father's Ricoh GR1s for quite a while but when the opportunity came to buy it off him I turned it down - fearful that it would break one day.

    I shot with the Olympus Mju II (Stylus Epic) for a long time and it shares the clam shell design of the XA and is truly pocketable as well as being prolific so example can be found easy. However it has two short comings - it's relatively noisy and there's no way to change the ASA setting. The latter is the most important to me as I like to shoot 800ASA film at 640 - the Mju II can't do this. Other P&S cameras have the same shortcomings: relatively noisy and no ASA setting. The XA excels at all these.

    Other cameras I've tried are either fragile (Minox), noisy (Yashica T5) or arcane / expensive (Rollei 35). '70s rangefinders are normally a little bigger, the Olympus 35RC is best but still bigger than the XA. High end stuff like Contax T2/3 and Minolta TC-1 I avoid as I'd be scared they'd break.
     
  20. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

    Messages:
    4,589
    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2006
    Location:
    İstanbul
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Find a Minox Spy Camera with original AGFA based BW film and develop it with original AGFA developer , you will want to bang your head to the wall after seeing the picture quality.
     
  21. Mendewesz

    Mendewesz Member

    Messages:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2012
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Thanks you for all your propositions, I will check every one of them.

    I heard lot of good stuff about Yashica t4, is is really that great?

    Got Olympus XA2 for now since I found it in really great condition for 15$, now I need to get through all your cameras.
     
  22. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    20,728
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Voitlander Vito II
     
  23. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

    Messages:
    2,263
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2008
    Location:
    Warwickshire
    Shooter:
    35mm
    It has 'cult' status. I don't think it's that great. I bought one new in the '90s (in the UK it's called the T5) and it got stolen, I replaced it with an Olympus Mju II and I never saw any difference in my photos. Last year I printed some of my Yashica negs and comparing them to my Oly negs at 10x8, I don't think the Yashica produces a better photo.
     
  24. BobD

    BobD Member

    Messages:
    444
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2006
    Location:
    California,
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Get bigger pockets.
     
  25. Peltigera

    Peltigera Member

    Messages:
    715
    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2012
    Location:
    Lincoln, UK
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Certainly small when folded. A bit bigger when extended but very usable for street photography. I don't think I would call it a really, REALLY small camera, though.
     
  26. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,077
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    For an interesting perspective on how small an analog camera can be while still using a reasonably large format of film - though it may be difficult to get film in the future - look at one of Canon's tiny Elph APS cameras.