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  1. #41

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    Let me put a word in for the Minolta SRT 102 and lenses as a value leader for good and tough. The 102 has the brightest /spit prisim finder of the SRT series. SRTs are fully mechanical. Tough, one can pound nails with it. The finder has about a .90 mag using a 55mm with 95% coverage. Eye relief is such with glasses you can see the full frame. The full line of MC and most Rokkor X metal lenses are standardized to 55mm filters. With the leather half case the camera feels good to hold and rests in the heal of the right hand for stability. All in all, the SRT is still my favorite small format metal camera.
    RJ

  2. #42

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    As much as I would love to recommend a Nikon N80 (great camera and so cheap used), I think an obviously older camera that can't be mistaken for digital would be a better idea, since you're afraid of being jumped. A modern SLR that may look like a DSLR (and thus a high resell value) could definately be a target of theft/mugging. An older camera that doesn't sport such names as Nikon or Canon would certainly draw less attention from would-be thieves. You have many more experienced people than I giving suggestions on these cameras. In fact, I'm not sure why I'm posting this at all.

  3. #43
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    Canon AE-1P with 50mm 1.8 and Yashica Electro 35 are two that immediately come to mind.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  4. #44

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    How about Yashica 14e IC ( with an f/1.4 fixed lens)

  5. #45
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    I’m going to throw my opinion in here and give a vote to the Minolta SRT-102. I only say this because many many years ago when I was very young I found myself in a situation where I did have to use my camera to defend myself. The Minolta was the only camera I owned at the time (I was 17) and being the naïve stupid kid that I was found myself in some less desirable neighborhoods of “the big city”.

    In self defense I ended up swinging the camera around over my head by the camera strap like a battle mace and even hit a guy on the shoulder with it. It hurt the guy enough to get him to back off and nearly 15 years later the camera still works.

    As others have mentioned though, these days getting a very good 35mm SLR is so cheap it almost feels like robbery.

  6. #46
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    I would also suggest the Yashica Lynx 14E as an option for a fixed-lens camera. Another good SLR series to consider are Mirandas. They had a variety of lenses for them, are quite durable, and they're very obviously not digital. They're also obscure enough to be cheap, but not so obscure as to be rare or collectible. I'd also suggest a cheap TLR like a Ciroflex or Yashicamat. The downside is you're basically stuck to one lens, but the upside is that you get those wonderful big 120 negatives. If you want a real battle weapon, a Pentax 67 really works wonders, and you can get an original P 67 without mirror lockup for cheap, just add a normal lens.

  7. #47
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    It might surprise you when I say that probably the best 35mm images I've had the privilege to print (when printing commercially) were shot with an Exacta VX100 and it's 3 Zeiss lenses - 35mm Flektagon, 50mm Pancolor & 135mm Somnnar.

    The quality was outstanding, it equaled Leica quality, very tonal rather different to Japanese lenses.

    So add Exacta to the sleepers

    Ian

  8. #48
    Lanline's Avatar
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    I agree with most above camera choices. Another one I would seriously recommend is KONICA FT-1/FS-1/TC/FC-1 or any other models really. The Hexanon lenses are very sharp and affordable due to the small market share in the USA. I bought an entire setup of Hexanons from the 21mm to 300mm all primes, the total cost was ridiculously cheap... Like under $1,000 for these lenses total. The only ones I do not have is the 50 f1.2 and the 85 f1.8

    But in the arctic Minnesota winters, I prefer to find and use late model Minolta/Canon/Pentax/Nikon AF cameras - since they generally have better lubricates than the older cameras. I got a Nikon 8008 with Tokina AT-X 28-70 for $25, Canon Rebel T2 w/28-90 for $20 and a Canon Rebel G for $8 with 35-70 lens. I just grab whatever camera based on the weather and go. I will use these in rain/snow/cold because I can replace them with little cost.

    The best thing I ever did with my photography was stop obsessing on gear (digital really). Now I just use the camera as a tool, one that for the most part is replaceable for less than almost anything digital. $300 SQ-A set-up for less an a digital flash.
    Last edited by Lanline; 01-29-2010 at 01:27 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  9. #49
    ragc's Avatar
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    Pentax Spotmatic (screwmount) for a great system, cheap, durable.

    Nikonos II if you want to knock someone out cold and not damage the camera one bit. Very cheap, with a killer 35mm f2.5 Nikkor with giant DOF that is the standard above / below water lens for it. No worry with water, sand, mud, etc. Cast aluminum body, designed to take pressure at 160 feet of depth, will take the knocks, and as a plus, no lens cap is needed as the lens is sealed behind uncoated glass. 52mm filter thread. Small, cast metal diamond grip texture for great grip. Small and easily concealed, it is a scale focuser with moving DOF brackets that allow you to set up the shot without ever putting the camera up to your face.

  10. #50
    rthomas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ragc View Post
    Pentax Spotmatic (screwmount) for a great system, cheap, durable.
    Indeed; I picked up a battered but perfectly usable old Pentax S2 screwmount body with 55/1.8, 55/2.0 (about the same as the 1.8), and 135/3.5 Super-Takumar lenses for $75 last year at an antique shop. This is the camera I take with me when I just want to shoot some black and white film for fun; I don't even bring a light meter, I just estimate the exposure using sunny 16. These cameras are very easy to use and surprisingly small. Adding a 28 (instead of the 24 and 35 lenses) to this sort of kit would probably cost less than $50, so figure on $150.
    Last edited by rthomas; 01-29-2010 at 09:51 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo



 

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