haha, OK thanks for that! I will do my best to insert that in there when it "goes live" on the site. It definitely does have that wonderful feeling...
For anyone who has ever used an electronics soldering iron, it is a 5 minute job. I am no regular solderer but have a little iron and a solder sucker, and it literally takes me a minute or two to unsolder the two legs of the old capacitor and solder the new one in. No dismantling other than taking off the base plate. (This for X300/X370) I haven't done an X700 but believe they are virtually identical
The DIY "fix" isn't a cakewalk
I bought my X700 30 years ago. I can't tell you how many rolls of film I've put through it. A lot. I've never had a problem with that camera.
I don't have bad capacitors.
I've never had to have it serviced. Nope, nothing. It's an incredible work horse. I just keep it clean and it does the rest.
Yep, 30 years and it still runs.
I have my X-700 since 1989. Never a problem. The shutter is cloth type, slow X-synchro, but very reliable, less vibration-prone.
It's the VW Beetle of cameras, they sold it in millions, it was built even after Minolta discontinued it (as far as I know, the production line was moved to South Korea, then to China, go by memory). You can find them for cheap because a huge number exists on the market. Don't be fooled by the low price, this is a fine camera.
The camera was built with an attention to cost, so it lacks some features: no mirror lock-up, no double-exposure (people uses the trick of keeping the release button on the bottom of the camera while "winding" the film with the lever which in fact only cocks the shutter, never tried that) and the lightmeter is not "fully coupled" in the viewfinder. When you use it in Manual mode, you see the aperture through the periscope and the LED bar to the right indicates you the suggested shutter speed by the light meter, NOT the actual shutter speed which is set on the camera.
It has exposure lock, self-timer, an indicator of correct film loading. The shutter release is electronic, so the camera only works with batteries. You have a spare battery compartment in the strap. An infra-red remote controller is available, and a multifunction back (for things like date-time, and working also as an intervallometer). You can apply a winder (2 frames/second) and a motor drive (3.5 frames/second).
The shutter release "feels" the electric conductivity of the finger and turns the camera on when you just put your finger on the release. This is just very good, you can keep the camera always "on" while having it on your body, it will go in stand-by after a few seconds and will instantly turn on when you put your finger on the shutter release. You have a separate threaded command for use with the flexible shutter release.
What makes this camera fantastic is the viewfinder, which is IMO just superior to anything else I have used, including Minolta XM and Nikon FE. It really is a pleasure to use. If you can get rid of the prejudice against plastic (which is a prejudice, plastic can be more robust and more reliable, and even more expensive, than metal) this is your camera.
It also has a Program mode (for the rare occurrences when this can be of help, I'm no fan of Program modes). TTL-flash is another useful feature especially if you practice macro photography.
The shutter speed is controlled by a last check during actuation. The camera performs a reading between diaphragm closing and mirror trip. If the diaphragm has a problem (doesn't close fully, or is imprecise) the camera compensates for that because it actually measures the light in stop-down mode before the mirror trip. Very neat.
The focusing screen can be substituted by a technician. The standard one has both microprism crown and stigmometre.
What it lack, it lacks. What it has, is high quality. Cost reduction was performed by stripping unnecessary functions, not by saving on quality. Highly recommended, I say. Plastic is good because weight is bad.
Last edited by Diapositivo; 06-09-2012 at 06:17 AM. Click to view previous post history.
No such camera in Minolta's ranks.
The truth is there is no such camera.
X-570 or XD-11 or XE-7 are your choices. The first is plastic. The second must be very good, provided it hasn't the shutter lag of the XD-5. The third is a pleasure to wind up but it is also the oldest and, in some cases, problems might be expected. I would go for XD-11. But!
You shoot with lenses, not with cameras. If you can stand plasticky feel, go for X570 or even X300. You absolutely MUST have the Rokkor 28/2.8 MD, better NOS than used. It will introduce color nuances to your films as well as other Rokkors (the degree of your satisfaction may vary with different lenses, of course), but you won't miss your gray Zuikos.
I had Rokkor 35/1.8 before I switched to OM-4 with 35/2 MC. I remember my disappoinment when I ran first E100VS through it ind had it developed. Accused the lab, bought another film and went for another lab. Even worse. Colors seemed DETERIORATED compared to my Rokkors.
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