I believe Phenix still make 35mm cameras.
They have an outlet in the UK, may not have one in the US as they seem to be little known.
Yes; I said was was worried about the availability of such people, not that it would be impossible for them to exist.
Originally Posted by Steve Smith
"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)
Originally Posted by anm
You forgot Fuji, Cosina, Chamonix, Shen Hao, Linhof, Holga, Fotoman, arca-swiss, ebony, kb canham, tachihara, toyo, cambo, horseman, sinar.
I'm not sure about Mamiya, Hasselblad, Rollei..
There is still a market for film cameras.
Go not to the elves for counsel, for they will say both yes and no.
This is exactly why I keep my m42 Spotmatic (and its beautiful glass) and bought a Hasselblad. The only other camera I'd even consider buying would be a Leica MP.
The next camera I buy? It's going to be my last.
There is a guy in France (I believe) that has made his own rangefinder camera from SCRATCH, and I think he's working on an SLR.
If someone can find that link, please post it. I'll look for it in the meantime...
Point is, I'd worry more about the availability of film than cameras.
edit: ok, that wasn't hard... http://www.collection-appareils.fr/p...art=175#p93454 and it actually isn't an RF. Still...
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I know from personal experience that LCD screens really just sort of crap out. You might have a year or so of limited or random functionality, but after a while they just stop working completely. I'd imagine it's the same with any of the other technologies that make up a digital camera. You'd also have to worry about connectivity many years down the line. My current desktop can't connect (easily) to my first digital camera because the thing was designed to use an Apple serial port. My second one likewise has trouble with my desktop because it writes to floppy disks, and... well, we know how that went.
Originally Posted by John Hermanson
Film cameras? A friend of mine asked me to fix up his 1903 Kodak "Pocket" camera, and after cleaning some of the optics, I slapped some Ilford MG in there and out came a lovely, contrast-laden image. They stopped making the film back in 1972, but I could have just as easily stuck a sheet of foamboard in there as a mask and used 120 for a faster shot. And the guy who uploaded some pictures of his film coater to Flickr proves, even old film stocks might come back if you find a guy with one of those who might be willing to make you a special 620-format batch or something.
As far as repair is concerned, optics is optics and mechanicals is mechanicals. Somebody with limited training in both can, after reading up about what to do, pop a camera open and do much less harm than good. The weak point would be microprocessors and other fiddly electronic bits, since those are a bit more difficult to diagnose than "Oh, that thing is bent so that other thing won't move."
I don't know if anyone has said this, but, technically, it is much easier to make a good mechanical camera than a good color film. Color film is the weakest link, I think...
Nikon is still selling the F6. Buy a few dozen of those I guess. They're very good.
I'm as worried about Kodak and Ilford as I am about cameras unfortunately. I guess Ilford has right sized and positioned itself ok for now but Kodak is really on shaky ground with analog. Kodak and Ilford black and white films and chemistry are the only products I want to use. They are the best and that is all there is to it, especially when it comes to quality control. Unfortunately it does not help that so many people insist on using all that crap re-hashed junk marketed by Adox, Efke, Foma etc.
I think film is safe for the next decade, as noted by others there are still a few cameras being made and there a supply of high quailty used cameras. Perhaps even demand for a new line of cameras as the used market shriks. I think the first to go will be color, both Kodak and Fuji have very large scale plants that need to make very large runs. As production moves from film to digital for movies and theaters covert to digital it will not be cost effective to make color film. Kodak and Fuji use the same plants to make B&W we may be left with Ilford and the other the smaller folks left. I dont know if Ferrina and Lucky still makeing color film.
Wishful thinking at its finest re: film camera repair. There's a 60s Bronica S holding down the trash bag at my curb this a.m. The shutter/film advance gear train is jammed. I paid $40 bucks for it 7-8 years ago, happily ran 40-60 rolls through it, and shelved it when it broke, replacing it with a new SQ-B. Repair+shipping would have easily run triple that, leaving me with a working LBJ era camera I had no emotional connection with. The DIY/survivalist urge is a bit misguided when it comes to a mass-produced item, especially an exceedingly complex one like a film SLR. My Minolta X700 suffered the capacitor crap-out that cripples so many of these. Solution? Trashed it. Not worth the bother of fixing it.
Originally Posted by Chirs Gregory
The market for film cameras is eBay. Swap meets in my area are full of delusional sellers passing of semi-functioning junk or antiques destined for display shelves. Neither of these demonstrate a market with enough upside to warrant a production revival of anything truly affordable. 1980 isn't coming back.
DIY film coating is a borderline fantasy outside glass plates and is not something I dream fondly of at night.
My take is that the future of film cameras will probably resemble the streets of Fidel's Havana, where Eisenhower-era cars clunk along in varying states of decomposition. How can it really be otherwise?
Last edited by CGW; 06-22-2011 at 12:53 PM. Click to view previous post history.