The lenses are bajonet mount. I might go with an me super. I want to be able to choose the shutterspeed up to a 1000 of a second. Ah well I got some time to make a decision.
Just my 2 cents.. The A-series bodies are so-so. While they have some nice features, they just dont have the same quality/elegance to them that a nikon FE or Olympus OM2 have.
The Canon F1, (and from what I hear) the EF, and FTb are much better cameras.
The FD lenses however, are top-notch and a bargain on todays market.
As far as the EOS system goes, I would imagine there are bargains to be had in the bodies. The lenses may be another story though if the digicam guys are snatching them up. I dont know I dont shoot EOS (yet).
It used to be that the Pentax K1000 was the all-around 35mm for photography students. But that was back when Nikon and Canon gear where much more expensive.
You simply cannot go wrong with a Canon FD kit. The camera bodies are cheap, and the lenses are dirt cheap. Not only are they cheap, but the variety of lenses available is insane.
I recently picked up an old F1, an A1, and 4 lenses for under $150. I found a motor drive for the F1 this week for only $30 more dollars. I've been carrying the F1 to work with me, and I'm enjoying the hell out of it.
The A1 is not so nice. It works well enough, but it does not have the same solid feel of the F1. On the other hand, you can get a working A1 with a good lens for $50 if you shop around.
The only other camera I would recommend would be the the Nikon FE. These can be had with a lens for less than $100. They are simple to use, durable, and fool-proof.
I have a full FD kit and it has cost far less than equivalent in EOS. In many cases the optical designs are pretty much the same in EOS EF mount and FD mount.
I actually prefer the feel of the FD cameras to the EOS gear. I work for Canon in Australia and will use either my F1n or A1 over an EOS 1n/v any time.
The type of meter you want will determine which camera you buy. Have a look at Canon Camera Musuem (www.canon.com/camera_museum) and if you have any questions please email me.
I had both the A series (AE1 Program & A1) and and F1. Yes the build quality of the A1 series were less than the F1, but then the F1 was a "pro" camera and built for the rigors of pro use.
Had I not had to go d****** for my job, I'd have stuck with these without question. Andrew is correct when he says you can pick up FD equipment for far less than EF - I cry at what i can get today for FD cameras! Had a lovely 300 f2.8 that I used on occasion; forget it in EF - too expensive and not worth the limited use I would get out of it now.
If you can get an F1 (even an original series one) I'd buy that, but a well looked after A1 and drive will also keep you going for years. Whichever you decide on, you'll enjoy film and all the nuances it has to offer.
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Peter, I think your cheapest route will be to get either an EOS 5 or 600 body to go with your current EOS lenses, or the ME Super to go with your Pentax lenses. Anything else (Minolta, Olympus, Canon FD, Nikon) and you'll have to buy more lenses. Given a few years, you'll probably do this anyway. We all do when we have GAS.
Just to make things difficult for you, I have a wide range of FD gear, a good selection of Minolta cameras and lenses, and a Nikon F4, in addition to my EOS. I love them all, and would be hard-pressed to choose one over the others. My favorites nevertheless are the T90 and F1N, EOS 630 and RT, XD11, and of course the F4. The only Canon A series body I actually use is the AT-1. My A1 just collects dust.
Peter Marshall: When you pat a dog on its head he will usually wag his tail. What will a goose do?
Paul Lynde: Make him bark.
If you prefer Shutter Priority get a Canon EF. They are solid and reliable.
i dont compare the a series with the eos series, i think they are two worlds.
i have both a at-1 and a eos 1v, both are great cameras, both are relieable.
i love the at-1 i learned to make photos with this camera.
but my "workinghorse" is the eos1.
i like apples and banas, both taste well.
it also depends whic lenses jou have allready
The above responses are all very good; you're going to get as many suggestions as there are experiences and personal preferences.
I recently purchased a Canon F-1N with AE finder -- in beautiful condition; this is a tremendously satisfying piece of equipment: precise, extremely solid, and stable. I also have an AE-1 purchased in the late 1970's, and STILL going strong. My prime lenses are Canon FD 35 f/2, 50 1.2L, and 100mm f/2. For me, these cover every situation I could possibly come across (I mostly photograph environmental portraits), and are just a joy to use.
The AE-1 would be a good choice for a photo class. If you could find one, an EF would also be quite good (never used one, but from what I understand, they're closer to the F-1's in build). There's still alot out there to choose from, and all the above postings have great suggestions. Don't get too bogged down in technical details and specifications; keep it as simple as possible, and go for what feels comfortable.
I would go with the FD system. I have had some problems with the EOS.
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