Sorry to diverge form the thread's intent, just once, for Lens-hacker -
I couldn't PM or email you.
I know lens preferences are highly subjective, but I was interested to see your comments on the Retina interchangeable lenses.
I have a Retina Reflex that needs a shutter CLA, and the only comments I ever found on the lens 50/1.9 was someone's comment that it was horrible.
With that bias, I have been ambivalent about expectations from them. I'd like to read more along the lines of the 'most excellent' comment...I think they differ from Japanese SLR lenses in being single coated, but still 6-el Planar.
I have a 126 camera and some film rolls. How do you process it? does it fit on 120 rolls? What is the difference?
JUst to make sure, I checked:
Originally Posted by jeroldharter
126 film IS 35 mm wide!
I have a Retina Reflex III (and also a Retina IIIS, which is a rangefinder camera that takes the same lenses). I would say without hesitation that the lenses are state-of-the-art late 1950s single-coated. What can be "horrible" about the camera is its very complex design, with its "Hasselblad-style" Compur shutter and loops of string inside the body linking the shutter, aperture and meter. These linkages stiffen up with time and in this state are very easy to force and break! The value of a Retina Reflex in excellent order but with a gummy shutter is about $25, estimate for CLA $200 if you can find someone willing and able to fix it!
Originally Posted by Murray@uptowngallery
The DDR Texax and Taxona cameras, I think, are cheap these days. The Tenax I was nothing special. The Tenax-II, on the other hand, is an interesting camera and was meant to go head-on-head against the Robot IIs. Mechanically its not in the league with the Robot but its got good glass and some interesting features. Robot IIs can be found for "affordable" prices--- its really the one with the F- numbers (F for Flieger or Air force) that fetch a premium--- and are cute cameras. The 1s are less usable but more expensive (similar league to the F IIs). For $100 USD one should be able to find without too much effort a nice Robot II or IIa . The IIa can take normal Kodak film cartridges and does not need the T cassettes (there is an adapter to use them since the cameras work much better with the T cassettes). For sending film out you'd need, however, still a special box since it was not until the Robot Star that they got a film rewind. Robots go all the way up to the Royals--- and in the Star format to the current OS 35 F espionage camera. The science and research version of the Royal (and all the wind-up Recorders) can even take an outboard electric or spring motor and external film magazines for 10 meters, 30 meters and even 100 meters of film. Such gear is of a quality, in my opinion, beyond what we might associate with the best of Leica. Available today for less than a (its then contemporary) M3 they are still not cheap---- and prices are moving in an upwards direction. The choice of glass is, compared to an M3, quite limited (30mm, 38mm, 40mm, 45mm, 50mm, 75mm, 90mm, 120mm, 150mm and longer, most Schneider but also the 50mm Sonnar, 28mm Enna and some telephoto Kilfitts) but all excellent (and the "better" Leica glass will anyway probably cost more than an entire Royal camera outfit).
Originally Posted by elekm
To "start off" I'd suggest a Robot II. They are cute, work well, are widely available at good prices and take great pictures. If you send film off don't forget to mark on the envelope Don't cut negative. The continuous printing machines work well but the automatic cutting machines will tend to foul up. Most labs will charge the price for the smallest end of the paper so a 10x10 will cost the same as 10x15cm, 13x13cm the same as normally a 13x18cm etc.
With modern films its a very interesting non-standard format: square, 50 pictures to a 135/36 roll and processable by nearly any large scale lab (drugstore prints).
I agree with you about the square format. It's terrific.
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My Autopak 700 arrived yesterday at the same time as the film I bought from the Frugal Photographer so I was able to start shooting right away. Exposed 2 rolls by this afternoon & had them processed by Steve at the Lighthouse & the negs look fine. Interesting that the image of each frame continues into the frame divider line, so it is really almost a continuous exposure along the length of the roll. I found a battery that fits from an old Super 8 camera (mercury 625 from memory). The battery worked fine in the Super 8 but in the Minolta it seemed to be metering about 1 stop over the spot meter I was using. I wonder if the camera meter is faulty or was it just made to read for 100 ASA? I'm using the Solaris 200.
The Autopak 700 is a very well designed camera. It has rangefinder focusing & an EV readout in the viewfinder. The shutter & aperture settings are on the lens along with a window that displays the EV setting. So you set the exposure by transferring the EV value from the viewfinder meter reading to the lens setting. It has a hotshoe, pc connection & cable release thread in the shutter button. The sensor for the light meter is a small window that sits just inside the front of the lens barrel so it will be metering all the time & running down the battery unless you keep it in the case. Very similar to the Olympus SP 35mm camera.
I'm hoping to get into the darkroom tomorrow to make some colour proof sheets for a better look at what the camera is doing. I also have a Kodak Instamatic 104 on the way which might give me more of the plastic lens look.
The one downside of the earlier Robots is that you need the special film cassettes.
The Tenax II is a very well made camera with good ergonomics, excellent Tessar and Sonnar lenses and a rangefinder focusing system that uses the tried-and-true rotating wedge prisms.
Plus, it's markedly lighter in weight than the Robot from the same era.
The Robot, on the other hand, can take rapid-fire photos and is a very cute little camera.
Today I proofed the 2 rolls of Solaris 126 & the results are beautiful. I love this format & the film. It seems that Solaris is the only stock still available, which is OK, but I'm curious to know what other stocks were available in the recent past. When were the last Kodak 126 stocks made?
Today I also received a Kodak Instamatic 104 which is a completely different beast than the Minolta 700. No exposure control. According to the manual the shutter speed is 1/90 but no mention of aperture. I'm guessing that it's f/11, that seems to be typical for a lot of instamatic type cameras. The book says it should only be used in bright or hazy sun, otherwise break out the flashcubes. Anyone have a firm idea on the aperture value?
I'm not sure of the date of the manual but it lists these Kodak films as being available
Verichrome Pan - B&W neg - 12 frames
Kodacolor-X - neg - 12 frames
Kodachrome-X - slide - 20 frames
Ektachrome-X - slide - 20 frames
There is also a 'Tips for Better Pictures' booklet with the following line
"Did you know that all cameras can take colour pictures as well as black and white?"
Originally Posted by goldie
Originally Posted by goldie
I think The Frugal Photographer has the remaining stock, the web site says several thousands rolls, I dont know if there will be a another production run or not, I still see some 110 around. Look on Ebay for older stock.