Sharpest half frame camera available?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Athiril, Aug 16, 2012.

  1. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Toyed around with this 35mm f/3.5 enlarging lens and cropped the hell out some atp and was very impressed with.

    So I wouldn't mind getting something suitably sharp to use with atp and this lens.

    I'm guessing there is probably a half frame camera taking 35 lenses somewhere but not my area of expertise.
     
  2. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Robot cameras are great but expensive.
     
  3. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    I would think the Olympus Pen F series would be a good choice.
     
  4. 250swb

    250swb Member

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    The Olympus Pen F lenses were some of the best made in any camera system, hence their price now.

    Steve
     
  5. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    Unless the film plane is not aligned properly or the mirror vibration is too great it is the lens you count on for sharpness, not the camera. The Konica Auto Reflex can shoot either full frame or half frame. It accepts Konica AR mount lenses. The camera dates back to 1965 and has the CdS meter cell on the outside of the body, not behind the lens. If you can live with that you have a great lens selection. The 38/1.8 was standard Olympus lens for the Pen SLRs. Some nice Konica lenses which can serve as a standard with the Auto Reflex include the 35/2, 40/1.8 and 28/1.8. The 40 is not terribly expensive and is very sharp. The 28/1.8 often has oil on the aperture blades. This can be fixed. The 35/2 is usually found in good condition. It came out in about 1970 and was probably a little pricey for someone who would be buying a Konica. There are a lot more 35/2 Nikkors floating around. Some longer and still very sharp lenses to consider would be the 50/1.4 (either version), 55/3.5 Macro, 85/1.8, 135/3.2 and 200/3.5. On the shorter end, I like the later compact version of the 24/2.8 and the 21/4. You could also get a Nikon to Konica adapter and find a 55/2.8 AIS Nikkor. You would not have auto diaphragm control but infinity focus is preserved. The 55/2.8 AIS Nikkor wil give even the highest resolution film a run for the money. Adapters also allow the use of M42 and Exakta mount lenses. Greg Weber is a good source for all things Konica. You can reach him at 402-721-3873 or at gweber@webercamera.com.
     
  6. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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    Alpa. Serious money, though.

    Or Olympus Pen W. Still expensive, but cheaper than Alpa.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  7. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    I forgot to mention a very nice half frame camera which is seldom seen. It's the Konica F-1 Motor Pro Half. Konica made a conversion kit for the FT-1 which turned it into a half frame camera. The FT-1 has built-in film advance, a sensitive and fast meter and a nice finder. I have only ever seen one of these. The sharpness you get will depend more on the lens than the camera as long as the camera is in good condition and the film is flat. Some document film are coated on such thin bases that the film does not sit completely flat. That causes problems regardless of what lens is used. If you are just determined to test the limits of the enlarging lens then shoot full frame and enlarge from the center.
     
  8. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    Tessina.

    Excellent quality Swiss-made TLR, not a toy.

    - Leigh
     
  9. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    + 1

    There are two mirrors in the system and they do not move.
     
  10. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

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    i have used one of these for many years,
    great camera, sharp lens ( if you like sharp )
    and nice bookeeeey wide open if you prefer that down the road.
     
  11. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    Wow! Now when I see it - I want one :smile:. Marvelous cameras.
     
  12. Brac

    Brac Member

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    The Olympus Pens are getting on a bit now but Yashica made a series of half frame autofocus 35mm SLR's with a fixed zoom lens in the late 1980's called Samurai. They give good results. There was also one which took APS film.
     
  13. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    Some other points in support of the Tessina (I'm the head cheerleader):

    1) When sold they came with a lifetime warranty. This affected every aspect of the design and assembly of the camera, and it shows.

    2) It uses standard 35mm film, re-spooled onto the Tessina spools, yielding about 24 half-frame exposures.

    3) All standard settings: shutter 1/2 to 1/500 & B; aperture f/2.5 to f/22; focus from 1 ft to infinity with DoF scale.

    4) Flash X sync with PC connector.

    5) Waist-level and eye-level finders with optional pentaprism.

    6) Spring-powered film advance gives about six exposures per wind.

    - Leigh
     
  14. thuggins

    thuggins Member

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    Hmmm, not sure what that means. One would pretty much expect that any camera getting close to 50 years old would need a good CLA before use. The F series are wonderful little cameras with razor sharp lenses. You can't go wrong there if you are looking for half frame.
     
  15. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    I don't suppose mentioning a half frame M4 would be trolling, would it?
     
  16. lacavol

    lacavol Member

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    I have some great pictures taken while rock climbing with a Tessina carried in a (buttoned) shirt pocket. 125 PX comes out very sharp in this camera.
     
  17. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

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    I would recommend a Pen F, too. The Pen D has a nice lens, as well.

    A few unofficial, informal tests this week have shown lower resolution with the EE series in comparison. Still nice cameras, though.
     
  18. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    But 125 PX is not available any longer.
     
  19. lacavol

    lacavol Member

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    Sorry, still have bunches in the fridge and at 1/2 frame it's a lot of shots. 100 Tmax should be good. You need cassettes and a daylight loader which are sometimes harder to find than the camera.
     
  20. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    The Tessina does not produce a half-frame size image. Its image size is 14X21mm. Half-frame is 18X24mm. When you are using a format this small, every mm counts. At 16.7X25.1mm, the film size APS-C format is very close to half-frame. There were many very small cameras made for APS film but I don't know whether any of them offered full manual control. If you found one the availability of film and processing would be the next issue. Konica made a series of "eye" half frame rangefinder cameras. Some were sold under the Wards name. These are somewhat rare.
     
  21. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

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    I found both quickly, easily and cheaply for my Tessina.
     
  22. Brac

    Brac Member

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    I don't disagree but what I was pointing out is that the Yashica's are 25 years or so younger, so don't need a CLA unless you're very unlucky. Mine didn't, it worked perfectly.
     
  23. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    I was having a gas-infused ebay scrolling spree, and discovered the Zenit "Suprise" MT-1. It's pretty big and fugly, but it is a half frame camera that can take any m42 lens...