People buy into the brand and that can sometimes be worth more than the physical object: you pay for the image as well as the camera. But this is also true of many 'cult' commodities; they do a job, but they also have an image. I suppose Hasselblads and Leicas are like that, I think Apple products are a good example also - functional tools with a cult following (and a high price tag).
I remember in Poland in the 1980s, when there were shortages, ration cards, and long lines for goods, there were Lubitels a-plenty sitting on the shelves of camera shops, and I'd be surprised if they had cost more than $30.
I bought my Lubitel in about 1990 and paid £16 for it. I was ripped off as the RRP was only £12:errm: The prices on Ebay shock me as does the fact I now have a cult camera:cool:
What does annoy me is the price rise in other cameras caused by the 'cheap' ones becoming so overpriced. A couple of years ago I would regularly see good Yashica TTLs going for £30 or less whereas now they seem to be going for very silly money - £200+ in some cases.
I also notice out of date film selling for more than fresh in-date stock. Is this related?
Overpriced? That is up to you.
Do you really want to shoot an LC-A or a Diana, or Holga? Is that the look you are going for or really need for your project? If that is the case, and you can afford it then the market value is there to justify the price.
Are you looking for a camera that shoots film and you can put in your pocket but don't care if your photos have the LOMO look? You can lay your hands on a nice point and shoot pocket camera made by a major name camera company for about $10, you want brand new, you can get a whole lot of Kodak or Fuji single use cameras for the same money. These cameras will all take photos on film, and you could even create art with them, but the camera and photos will not have that LOMO look. So for someone that wants that look, these are overpriced.
I have a Nikon N90s with a Tamron 28-200mm lens, the entire setup cost me around $150, that is my go to setup for most of my shooting. Some people would say that was too much. For me, this is the setup that produces photos that I like so it was worth it, I might have been willing to pay more than I did for it even.
When something is a tool the price on it is a reflection of the work that went into it to make it function the way it does, when something is a fashion item the price is a reflection of what people are willing to pay to be hip and cool. Like designer clothing that ends up in piles to be made into rags, all fashion soon goes out of favor and something new takes it's place.
Remember you can't equate your joy to the number of dollars you are willing to pay for it, but someone out there is going to try and figure out how many dollars they can get from you so that you can have something that makes you happy.
Here here bblhead,
I think you nailed it with that one. I own a Diana and probably five other of lomo's cameras. I was never so terribly bothered by the price - though I simply refused with the Lubies. I get weary of the marketing campaign - the emails are incessant. Its like a beer commercial that advertises nothing but an improved can, there is no additional value to me as a camera and it all becomes image -I think Warhol would have loved what Lomo has been able to do. I don't care to own every color available, and pay a premium for it.
However, I like to use my Diana and the gonzo attitude that they push was a real eye opener into where photography can go. I think their greatest value is in the "Damn! I can do that too" Style of inspiration
this is like one of those threads asking
why leicas are so expensive, but it is the opposite
end of the spectrum ...
they are what they are ...
i was given a lubitel about 15 years ago
it took wonderful images, almost as good
as the yashica i had years before that ..
i made the most unfortunate mistake of removing the
shutter instead of just the plastic lens, for a pinhole project
and unfortunately the camera ended up in the MIA pile ...
id rather get a sputnik stereo camera or a "sept" if i had the money for a lubitel or lomo
I like my Lubi, it gets regular use and I have no intention of selling it. I also have a Diana, a Kodak Brownie and a Cosmic somewhere. If I ever find them I might put a film in and see what all the fuss is about:D Actually I'll never used the cosmic so that will be interesting...
I can understand why Leicas are expensive (although may be a bit more expensive than they need to be) but Dianas? As others have said, it's the market setting the price - works for lomo, Leica and most other things with an 'image'.
I shot on Lubitels for as long as I can remember, which is mid-1970s. They are fun, the shutter lasts a year or so then you throw them in the landfill and buy a new one for £12. When I saw the price being asked now I assumed it was a joke. As for Diana's, my friend shot on them more than 30 years ago. He'd buy six at a time to get a good one, from the kind of places that sold water pistols, fart powder and rubber spiders. He was really cheesed off when they hit £1.99.
You can buy a nice German folder for £20 and experiment with Vaseline and filters to your heart's content if pictorialism is your thing. For the price of a plastic Lubitel you could buy a used 5 x 4 in good condition. There's something very wrong with that.
YES. Lomography is an exploitation of analogue photography. Do not support them! Support EBAY!!!!
I bought a original Diana F for $10 back in the early 80's and later on a Holga 120S as a "upgrade". They are fun to use. To me the Diana is the true Lomo camera. I have seen modern versions and other spin offs but there is something missing about them not being the original Diana that started it all. The modern fad evolution reminds me of the of Lens Baby craze and development, all stemming from what any old view camera could provide with far better results. Go figure?