Leicaflex SL or SL2:
Spot metering, highly dampened shutter & mirror, absolutely unbeatable viewfinder (not just screen), highly reliable, probably the shortest shutter lag of any SLR and they use sort of o.k. lenses... *
* These in comparison with my Nikon FM, F & F2, which I used for decades, but have been collecting dust since getting a Leicaflex.
Last edited by Rol_Lei Nut; 06-23-2009 at 01:55 PM. Click to view previous post history.
M6, SL, SL2, R5, P6x7, SL3003, SL35-E, F, F2, FM, FE-2, Varex IIa
Leica M6 and R6.2. Metering is very very accurate. You could even use them fully manually without batteries.
Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time
I'd say a Nikkormat FT3 rather than FTn, but we're splitting hairs.
There are a few ways you can look at this. Probably the best such camera in terms of function is the Nikon FM3a. However, older cameras like the Nikkormat FT series and Pentax Spotmatic are a lot more solid and tactile. Even though they aren't as good at being cameras (no motor drive connections and more primitive metering, e.g.) they somehow make up for that with the quality and the feel they have.
Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.
Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?
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No brainer for me....
Without a doubt... the Nikon F2, second choice the "older" brother the F.
Metal that is like a tank, and about as manual and mechanical as you can get.
Any more manual and mechanical than those... well then you might as well etch it on stone, but then it would be called hieroglyphic and not photography
If you talk to a Leica repair person it's an M3, and I believe when remembering other written conversations that it's been supported elsewhere. But it is a rangefinder and certainly has it's adherents and detractors for certain usages. Another camera that set the world ablaze was the Nikon F. Usage in Vietnam by the press turned up in conversations about bodies that just wouldn't quit no matter what, but I'm sure there were others that died easily. Still it started alot of talk when it was announced, and is somewhat pricey even today for a good condition model. The FT3 mentioned above reminds me of my Dad's old 56 Oldsmobile; Heavy metal. And reminds me of the talk I've read about using a Canon F to pound your tent stakes in. All the above, and more such as the FTB(n)'s are serious mechanical cameras meant to be used, not pampered. I don't have the experience to comment on the ones already suggested but the ones I mention along with a handful of others are probably the top of the litter as already noted over the years and by various pro's.
Nikon F2 or F3 (you can just ignore the F3's aperture priority). Or Leica M3, M2 or M4, if you like a rangefinder and don't mind the absence of a meter.
Originally Posted by zenrhino
I love the Nikon FM2 and FE2, and have always wanted an Olympus OM-1 or OM-2, but these choices don't seem as rugged as the professional Nikons, somehow. They are more portable and convenient, I think, than rugged.
Or how about a Pentax?
Ah, the world is your oyster. You will have fun choosing.
Not to keep harping on the metalness of the Nikon F series... but there was a published report of a photographer in "Nam" who was saved from injury/death when a bullet/shrapnel hit his "F" rather than him.
Originally Posted by waynecrider
Talk about metal, like I said previously... metal like a tank!