Good morning;

I am not sure what to say concerning CGW's comments about the Nikon F and F2. NikonJohn has been using mainly Nikon F and F2, usually with a motor drive, for many years now. My own Nikon F and F2 cameras are still going, although I admit that I do not have anything later than an F2AS. Finding someone to service a Nikon F or F2 is still an easy task. There are many older Nikon users who feel that the hand assembled Nikon F and F2 are still the best SLR cameras that Nippon Kogaku K. K. ever produced. I like the F2.

Then there are the Minoltas. My SR and SR-T models that have been through a CLA in the last three years are cameras that I depend on. The SR-T 102 is still my favorite in that series. They have not let me down. I admit that my feeling of security is slightly less with the later models with the increasing dependance on electronics; the X-700 (which I love with the MD-1 Motor Drive), X-570, X-370, XD-11, and others in the "X" Series, but I have not had any failures with them, and I have a lot of Minolta camera bodies around here. And, while I do like the Minolta Maxxum/Dynax 9 Auto Focusing Mount 35mm film camera, it and the lenses to go onto it may not be in the price range you suggested.

Others have spoken of the Canon FD mount cameras and their lenses. I do not need to repeat those.

In many ways, with almost any of the bodies in the manually focusing cameras and prime lenses to go on them, you really need to hunt to find a camera system that will not work for you. Try almost any of the recommendations you have here. You will not be disappointed.