these are my favorite slrs that are less popular and not too expensive:
topcon re super
exakta varex iia
petri penta vi
mamiya/sekor 1000 dtl
If I am working in an environment where my camera is likely to get lost, stolen, or damaged, I use an inexpensive Nikon N70/F70.
When I need to loan a camera, I loan a Nikon L35 AF.
In the past, I have used a Nikon EM and a Pentax Asahi Spotmatic as my expendable cameras. With the Spotmatic, I only had one lens – a 50mm f/1.4. With the Nikon N70 or EM, which lens or lenses I used depended on what I was shooting. For general shooting, I used a Sigma 35-70mm f/3.5 – f/4 zoom instead of my more expensive Nikon 35-70mm f/2.8.
the fujica ST705 : another robust camera seling cheap and m42 scewmount lens .... good glass too with these camera -- sleeping beauties
I'll chime in about Minoltas as well. I shoot mainly medium format these days, but still use my Minolta system frequently enough (mostly for HIE). The lenses remain a constant and I always keep my X700 and XD11 going strong. Other bodies come and go, but they're so easy to find and cheap to replace. I am currently cleaning up a pair of SRT-202s for my kids to try out as their first "very-own" film cameras. All-manual-perfect-for-beginners, right?
What they don't know is that, if they maintain an interest in photography over the years, they'll each get an old spruced-up-by-me Barnack-era Leica. Those I found in bits and pieces needing easy repairs and minor parts here and there. Overall they were dirt-cheap bargains.... by Leica standards. Still nowhere near "suicide cameras".
So true. Think of the sound of a pump shotgun ratcheting in a new round. It would be like beating someone with an ugly stick (the Koni-Omega is really ugly). The 6x7 negative is a treat, because it matches the 8x10 aspect ratio perfectly.
Originally Posted by Wayne R. Scott
Otherwise, I have a few Nikon SLRs which I bought because they were unbelievably cheap. I got a N8008s for about $40. These are great cameras, with interchangeable lenses, autofocus, and great metering.
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For use as a weapon, try a Zenit. Only camera to have been made out of single die-cast piece of metal. As used by the Soviet military (it's still a little crap).
Yashica Electro 35 is very inconspicuous and has a good strong metal chassis. The 45mm f1.7 lens is a stonker, bright and sharp (speaking from personal experience). I got my Electro for 30 pounds of eBay and it works like a dream.
The camera that really packs a punch without getting noticed at all is the Minox 35 series. Smallest 35mm full-frame cameras ever made, really tiny and the Makrolon construction makes it look really cheap. A friend of mine once though that it was a disposable camera! To the contrary, the Minox 35 had an astonishingly sharp Tessar-type Minotar lens whose results continue to astound me.
For the ultimate bang for the buck, Olympus Trip 35 available for $10. Very sharp lens for such a cheap camera.
All these available from the usual stockist (eBay).
FRANKLY, the camera body, assuming everything works and lesser name bodies tend to get used less and therefore tend to be cleaner and working, is not really as important for quality photos as is the quality of the lenses. So, I suggest you buy a lesser known body in good shape and put your money into quality lenses. Here's the problem: the generic lenses from more than 15 years ago which cost little were not terribly good. Since then the Sigmas, Tokinas, Tamrons, etc have improved, along with their prices. Currently, some of these generics are quite good and comparable to the bigtime brand name (Nikon, Canon, Pentax, etc) camera body manufacturers. You may be able to find Minolta 35mm bodies with Minolta lenses at very attractive prices and these are near top quality, but understand that the older Minoltas with manual focusing have different lens mounts from the later AF models. As luck would have it, those later Minolta AF lenses will function quite well on the current Sony DSLRs (heresy!). Whoever suggested Nikon FE/FA bodies should know that they are not all that cheap and too good to sacrifice, along with their Nikon lenses. Cheap Nikons (the EM, and their ilk) were poorly made, particularly for self defense purposes, and the F100 too nice for sacrificial use.
Last edited by jimsberg; 03-20-2010 at 04:42 PM. Click to view previous post history.
I can relate to that... I have several kmount cameras. One of which is a Sigma SA-1. So I purchased a SA-5...what the $%$%# the SA-5 has it's own proprietary lens. So to get more lenses I purchased a SA-7 which morphed into another SA-7. And before it's over my wallet is going to give birth to a SA-9... I can feel the pain.
Originally Posted by jimsberg
Seriously... when waiting for a bus late at night alone in Frisco...I started singing when suspicious persons approached. One I can't sing, two I sang Amazing Grace, Swing Low Sweet Chariot , Jesus loves me. I would mix them up together to drive the point home. They all crossed the street to avoid me. Worked everytime. Now let's keep this a secret amongst ourselves. hmmm.
I hope the OP let's us know what kit he came up with.
I was wondering why everyone around me started singing.. I thought I was going crazy. But it must be that I just look crazy!
Originally Posted by Focus No. 9
Go not to the elves for counsel, for they will say both yes and no.
Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time