An old Zeiss Ikon Contessa 35mm - the folding one. I'm sure most here wouldn't be surprized at the quality of the photos it gives, but this thing is in sad shape, so I wasn't expecting much.
It came to me last year from a distant cousin's musty kerosene-warmed farmhouse, where it had sat unused since the mid- to late- 60s. The leather is peeling and mottled, the meter doesn't work, it has a terrible musty smell, and a great deal of fungus on the lens. Testing it was also my first attempt Sunny 16.
In strong sun the fungus diffused the light in certain areas, causing strangely blurred regions on the film (I checked, and it is the fungus, not lens flare). However, in moderate lighting the images were excellent.
Ditto, XA as well. Slip into a pocket to go virtually anywhere anytime.
Originally Posted by jumbosilverette
Should have added the XA to the comment I made earlier: small enough to fit into a jacket pocket (without notice), great little lens and an accurate metering system (back in the day, I trusted the XA enough to run Kodachrome though it!).
Originally Posted by bobwysiwyg
Ditto. Mine was a 630. Turned my nose up at it for a long time, was simply not interested in the early EOS gear. One finally landed in my lap, I forget why (might have been that the shutter didn't depend on the battery to stay open for very long exposures, something I've never actually used it for). Felt sooooo good in the hand I ended up with three 630s and five RTs. I've since come to my senses and during a thinning of the herd disposed of all but three EOS RTs. What a great camera.
Originally Posted by baachitraka
Also the Elan IIe. Years ago I bought the original Elan when it was first introduced. Glanced at a photo magazine one day and saw the IIe with its chrome top plate and chrome face and thought "Yuck!" I picked one up last year, in my quest for something smaller and lighter than the EOS 1V, and was so impressed at its features and autofocus response that I bought three (two are actually EOS 55, all black for the Asian market). All were in EX+ condition, none cost me more than $26. At that price, why not have a few spares?
I'm going to include the Nikon N80 here. Not that I had dismissed it earlier then had my eyes opened; not being a Nikon user I wasn't even aware of the N80 until I found one for $25, brought it home and fell in love. This is a seriously nice little camera. So nice that, several months later, I declined an opportunity to buy an F100 because it was too similar to the N80 and several times more expensive.
A Werra camera which I bought because I liked the minimalist design, only to find that when that lens shade is screwed onto the lens it is the mother of all lens hoods for that 2.8 Tessar lens.