YOUR OPINIONS PLEASE [McKeown's]

Discussion in 'Book, Magazine, Gallery Reviews, Shows & Contests' started by BobbyR, Dec 10, 2007.

  1. BobbyR

    BobbyR Member

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    IS Mckeown's book on old cameras worth the price?

    I have McBroom's and at the time bought probably worth the money but I see it has not been reprinted in a more current form that I know of.

    How do any of you rank the cluster of books out there, that you know of, on old cameras?
    Including all categories from: history, current value, technical details, etc.

    From best to just average or not worth it.

    The book stores here in Minnesota used to have quite an array of tech. style photo-books, but now it is either the general--how to take pictures-or-digital, with few exceptions.

    Bobby
     
  2. Shawn Rahman

    Shawn Rahman Subscriber

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  3. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    Hi Bobby,
    Like any other price reference, the information is dated as soon as it hits the printers.
    I've got an '02-'03 copy that came with the mini lllf digi cam & sold off the camera. By doing that I got a serious discount on the book.
    At over $100 it seems a bit much. When film was more popular in retail it was a good reference for the oddball stuff. Common equipment was simply figured at about 30-50% of retail depending on rarity. I don't know if he's kept up with the recent depression of prices since digital has become more popular.
    It is still an interesting book to look through & if you pick up an older copy it's no great loss of information
     
  4. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

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    I have the 1983 - 1984 edition which I got for a song in 1992 or thereabouts. Basically the pricing is obsolete unless you are working in a time warp, but the product information is still relevant.

    Another thing to remember is that the US dollar was worth quite a bit more only a short time ago, the drop in the dollar will possibly have more of an effect than most people realise.

    I actually have that Ivor Matanle book that HKR gave a link to, interesting book which I picked up on a whim at a secondhand bookshop for a quite low price.

    The bottom line is that you would probably be better off staying with what you have and using your own judgement as to what a camera will probably sell for from a seller who isn't under duress to sell at any price.

    I thought the electronic auction houses were what gave a more reliable and up to date selling price, for almost anything!

    Mick.
     
  5. BobbyR

    BobbyR Member

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    I am not doing this to break the original questions, but as I think the thread title get people looking here; do any of you live in New York, or do any of you know Martin Forscher, the Smokey Yunick of camera modification.

    If you do I believe it would be a very good idea if one sat down with him and made an abstract so as to be able to gather enough information, including others who worked with him, about the PCR shop before he dies and his knowledge goes with him.

    I am too far away and do not have the resources to track him down or I would do it myself.

    Any out there familiar with the late {i]Professional Camera Repair[/i] shop?
    -------
    Back on topic:
    Have any of you read:
    Camera Technology: The Dark Side of the Lens

    or
    Applied Photographic Optics, Third Edition
     
  6. Steve Roberts

    Steve Roberts Member

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    I'm literally just finishing the final chapter of Roger Hicks' "History of the 35mm Still Camera" and would highly recommend it. It contains a wealth of information, not just on models we know and love, but also on some weird and wonderful duds, clunkers and still-borns. The book carries Roger's personal slant on things, so it's more than just "in 1962 Minolta marketed the ST808 with double-reciprocating sprocket drive" and I found myself agreeing wholeheartedly with some views whilst thinking "..hang on a minute, Roger" for others. That tends to make it thought-provoking rather than just a case of mopping up information and all the better for it!

    My only regret was that there wasn't more of it, for the purely selfish reason that my interest in cameras extends beyond the 1968 (if I remember rightly) cut-off of the book. For me, the advent of carbon fibre SLR bodies and auto-focussing is the end of my period of interest. There's a lot that could be written about the early string-and-chewing gum attempts at auto exposure in the early 1970s, some of which were ingenious in their thinking, even if the reliability didn't live up to expectations.

    Unfortunately, the book isn't cheap when it can be found (good books rarely are), but should be a part of every historic camera enthusiast's book collection.

    Best wishes,

    Steve
     
  7. crispinuk

    crispinuk Member

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    I have a 10 year old copy of McKeown's that I got for a few quid from a 2nd hand bookshop. I've found that generally the relative prices of collectable cameras has remained reasonably consistent, so if I can find the current market price of camera A I've got a good idea of what camera B is likely to be worth. Also the 1997 dollar numbers are similar to the current Great British Pound numbers (that is, 200 USD in 1997 = about 200 GBP today).
    It's also fun just to browse through it.
    In summary, my opinion is that it can be a useful book, but probably not worth the money if bought new today.
     
  8. BobbyR

    BobbyR Member

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    Well I finally took the plunge and ordered the 2005-2006 version from Tower books for 73 dollars with free shipping.
    Can't be worse than not having it.
    Bobby
     
  9. BobbyR

    BobbyR Member

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    I have found McKeown's book to be a very interesting way to have an idea of what is out there that one may not have heard of before.

    It seems to have odd gaps with some makes getting far, far more coverage than others (especially in 35mm) with the Aero Technika being totally missing.

    It is called a guide to antique and classic cameras, which I imagine could be used as a reason to exclude, but then for heavens sake can the "toy" section.

    I am sure there are other gaps, but it is still, as far as I know, the only book out there that even comes close to showing more than a fraction of what was once available.

    I would say that a good soft-cover volume is not money wasted.
    Bobby