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  1. #1
    Chrismat's Avatar
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    What camera (pleasantly) surprised you?

    What camera did you get not expecting much but you decided to check it out and were pleasantly surprised?

    For me, I have a couple of mentions:

    1. The Kodak Reflex II 620 tlr. Yes, the external focusing gears are kind of primitive, the screen is dim and you have to re-spool 120 on to 620 spools, but the lens is great. I even bought another one and using a post on Flickr that had instructions on dissembling and cleaning the shutter did my own cla.

    2. The Kodak 116 film folders from early 20th century. I bought a Kodak 1A Autographic Special from 1917 and No 1A Pocket Kodak from 1926-1932. It's easy to use 120 with them and they have taught me that plain glass lenses can take great shots if you're careful in regards to flare.
    The third image is from a No. 1A Kodak that I shot with slightly expired Velvia.

    Chris
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails img423.jpg   img661.jpg   img908.jpg  

  2. #2

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    The Olympus XA2 I recently bought: sharper lens than expected and an automatic metering system which has yielded perfectly-printable negatives.

  3. #3
    Rick A's Avatar
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    I've always had a fondness for pre 1950 Kodak Tourist folders. I love the 6x9 format on 120 film and even though they take 620 film are easily modified to shoot 120. I've modified a couple of them and ended up selling them off. I still have one unmoded that I respool 120 for.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails scan0013.jpg   scan0014.jpg  
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum

  4. #4

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    hi chris

    i hate to admit this but nearly every camera i use i am pleasantly surprised at the results
    mostly box cameras, some old ( 1930s?, ) some OLDER ( 1890s ? )
    such great simple cameras ... it makes making pictures simple because you don't have to think about anything
    but looking in the viewer ..
    i have lots of images in my gallery made by these beauties !
    john

  5. #5
    lbenac's Avatar
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    Kodak Medallist. I had mine fully converted to 120 with a CLA (don't ask for how much).
    Minolta Autocord - very sharp lens. Too bad it is only 6x6 :-)

    Cheers,

    Luc
    Field # ShenHao XPO45 - Monorail # Sinar F2
    Multi format P&S 4x5, 6x12, 6x9 # Chamonix Saber
    6x6 # Minolta Autocord, 6x9 # Kodak Medalist

  6. #6
    Rick A's Avatar
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    How about pre-1950 Mamiya 6 folder with Zuiko optics, sweet folder with uncoated optics and loads of bokeh.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails mamiya-6_003.jpg   mamiya-6_006.jpg   mamiya-6_005.jpg   mamiya-6_002.jpg  
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum

  7. #7

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    Canon 310XL.

    Stalinist little beast: all the metering system ever communicated was "too dark to shoot" or "not too dark to shoot," focused with a tape measure (or by guess) 'cos the viewfinder showed an aerial image, single speed (18 fps or none), and very short zoom range (8.5 - 25.5 mm). I hated mine, all four of them. But within their limitations they took wonderful footage, much better than my Beaulieus could do with their very nice Schneider zooms (ZM-2, 6-66/1.8; 5008S-MS, 6-70/1.4). Really very useful cameras that shot nicely with the C-8 43 mm w/a attachment too.

  8. #8
    Newt_on_Swings's Avatar
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    I've always liked the sharp images from my Olympus RC and it's little lens. Same reason why I like my canon Demi s, though the RC's neg is twice the size.

    The Nikon EM with the 50mm 1.8e series. One of my first cameras, the auto exposure was great and it was so small and light. Really really smooth wind on too.

    Om-pc/40 a double digit non professional model, the metering was great and it performed like a champ, and was what got me into mf Olympus slrs.

  9. #9
    MattKing's Avatar
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    My OM-20s (aka OM-Gs).

    And in the Canon world, my Rebel 2000s.

    They are so light!
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  10. #10
    Sparky's Avatar
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    Yeah - old stuff isn't anywhere NEAR as bad as people imagine it is...

    for myself i was surprised by the Yashica TLRs (my very first camera), Rollei 6000 equipment, my first Hasselblad and a few old (early 60s) plasmat 4x5 lenses (symmars and sironars) that I've used. With those older lenses (i.e convertible symmars etc) I'd say there is ZERO discernable difference between old and new in terms of normal practice...I think we've become a bit 'trained' by advertising to imagine that only new equipment is competent equipment...

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