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Closure of Vic Oddens

Discussion in 'News - Discussion' started by PaulatUKcamera, Jun 14, 2005.

  1. I have heard today, through my trade contacts, that Vic Oddens of London Bridge Walk has closed.

    As they were featured in AP last week and are an advertiser of long standing in the magazine, I thought this may be of interest to members of this forum.

    At the beginning of June, Graham Cottrell of University Cameras Cambridge retired and closed his shop. Perhaps a sign of the times was that no purchaser came forward to take over this long established business.

    Both of these shops have been in existence for over half a century.

    Sad Times.
  2. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    If true, this is very depressing news indeed. I haven't ever visited Oddens, as it is (was?) I believe closed on Saturdays - the only day I can get to London, but we can not go on like this.
  3. MickLL

    MickLL In the Stop Bath

    Some time ago I used to work very close to London Bridge and used Oddens a lot. The people there were friendly and very clued up. They in fact had what amounted to two shops side by side. One was more or less 'amateur' (D&P, films etc) and the other was labeled 'pro' where they kept some really tasty gear.

    As you say, if true, it's really sad.

  4. I have just been emailed by Chris in Loughborough to say that Paul Moffat has posted a notice of his retirement in his the window and shut the shop. Also, the Camera House (not to be confused with the one in Oakworth Yorkshire) has also shut its doors.

    Daily the toll rises.
  5. tommyhashbrown

    tommyhashbrown Well-Known Member

    That's a great shame!

    I get loads of stuff from Vic Odden's. I haven't been down there for a month or two though.

    another one bites the dust...
  6. Mark_Norton

    Mark_Norton Well-Known Member

    Sad news indeed. I bought my very first SLR - a Praktica L with 50mm f2.8 Domiplan - from them in 1971.
  7. sey

    sey Well-Known Member

    S**T, what's happening! Our whole photographic world as we know & love it is either closing down or "passing on".

    It's been a horrendous year with the no. of photographers who've left us & now the "real" photography shops are folding one after the other.

    Everytime I was in London I would make a point of buying my film & stuff at Vic Oddens. It was a name that, for me, was synonomous with photo & it was burned into my brain from the ads. that I first saw when I started reading AP about 38 years ago in South Africa. ( & they would give me great prices)

    The younger generation will never know the magic & charm they have missed in this world of super/hyper everything.
    The "family" feeling of being able to walk into your favourite dealer & just chat about the photo world & really discuss the pro & cons of this or that new peice of equip. with people who really knew their stuff! & when making a purchase, walking away not feeling that you were pressured/ripped off into buying something you didn't want or need. The good feeling that this was the right move.
    None of the "taking a chance" feeling of ebay or suffering the arrogance/ignorance of the "supersalesman" in the hyperstore.

    Sooo sad! :(
  8. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Deserved to close, then, if they sold you a Domiplan!
  9. Re: Domiplans

    Now come on folks, what has the world got against the Cooke triplet? When did it do you any harm!

    You are just a bunch of badge name snobs! I bet you have an imitation Armani handbag!

    I guarantee you that set to f11 viewed full frame on a giant 5" X 4" enprint you could not distinguish the results from a Planar or Summicron!

    At f2.8 or thereabouts it gives you lovely definition - suitable for emulating 1920s style soft focus portraits. This saves you considerable additional expenditure on without additional filters.

    I am going to set up a Society for the prevention of abuse of the humble three element.

    Owners of Apotars, Reomars, Baldanars, Lanthars & Isconars please form an orderly queue here ............>
  10. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Re: Domiplans

    When did it ever do me any harm? Every time I used it! The Domiplan has a reputation for very dodgy QC, and mine is certainly particularly bad. Believe me, I can tell the difference between it and a Tessar at f 11 on a normal-sized 5x3.5 enprint, never mind the Pancolar, Planar or Summicron. Ghastly!

    Not that I'm against triplets at all. One of my (many) Rolleis is a Triotar-equipped 'Cord, which does give me precisely that 20s style definition, and yes, I love it. But I have never been able to get any kind of decent sharpness from the Domiplan - and I would honestly think it was very bad advice to someone not to spend the extra fiver on the Tessar, or a touch more for the Pentacon.
  11. AGW

    AGW Well-Known Member

    Re: Domiplans

    Are these new models of broomstick from the forthcomming Harry Potter book?

  12. Salazar

    Salazar In the Stop Bath

    Re: Domiplans

    :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D
  13. Re: Domiplans

    AGW & Salazar

    OK, so you'r element snobs! The fact that some names are not politically correct is not the be and end all of optical performance you know!

    A member of the IDCC (Paul C) decided to play with his new toy - a Canon Digital Rebel XT

    "My first outing with the Rebel was to "test" a bunch of classic normal prime lenses.

    I dug through the cupboards and pulled out the following:

    50mm f/1.4 Asahi Super-Takumar
    50mm f/1.4 Nikkor AIS
    50mm f/1.9 Schneider Retina-Xenon
    50mm f/2.8 Schneider Retina-Xenar
    50mm f/2 Voigtlander Septon
    50mm f/2.8 Voigtlander Color Skopar
    55mm f/1.9 Steinheil Quinon (M42)
    50mm f/1.9 Schneider Xenon (Exacta)
    58mm f/2.0 Zeiss Biotar (black manual M42)

    I set up in a grassy area and mounted the camera to a tripod. I set it to record images in black & white with an orange filter effect. I decided to test all the lenses at f/4 - not wide open, but wide enough to see a pronounced difference in quality (most lenses should be decent stopped
    down to f/8). Everything was kept identical (1/4000 sec shutter, focus @ infinity)."

    The results are, shall we say, "challenging" so much much so that quite a few members cannot believe the evidence of their eyes and are now challenging the methodology.

    Unfortunately, I cannot publish the link as it is a free website with severe bandwidth restrictions. I have asked Paul permission to host it so you can see the results.

    In the meantime, get your prejudices polished - which one is the winner?
  14. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Re: Domiplans

    They're not element snobs, they've just never heard of the names!

    I would personally expect one of the Xenons to win here, but the only one that would really shock me if it won would be the Nikkor. I would like to see the results - and I would also like to see a repeat on colour film
  15. Salazar

    Salazar In the Stop Bath

    Re: Domiplans

    Don't drag me into this argument.

    Read again, I just laughed at the comment about Harry Potter and brooms.
  16. Salazar

    Salazar In the Stop Bath


    Just watching BBC Breakfast breifing this morning. During the Business bit a vox pop on the high street. Asked if they would shop in Dixons, two said yes they would, one said no. She would rather shop in a camera shop for a camera.

    Now she may soon be very hard pushed to do just that.

    Ironicaly, Dixons started out as a camera shop many years ago.
  17. Dudds

    Dudds Member

    This is very sad - Vic Oddens is on my route to the office when I am in the City. All the staff were exceptionally helpful (Michael particularly, made me late for work on several occassions as he has a lot of knowledge to impart!).

    On another note though, I had a Weston lightmeter in for repair with them when they closed - anyone any ideas how I may be able to trace it!!
  18. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    BJP today notes that liquidation is being handled by Lines Henry of Altrincham. So far they haven't posted any contact details for those with repair items like yourself.

    I should add that some of the outstanding D&P work is being handled by City Drug on Borough High Street, but they don't have all of it.
  19. Ashton Lamont

    Ashton Lamont In the Stop Bath

    They always seemed pricey to me when I worked in the City many years ago. But they had a captive market in the sense that many commuters would not have much alternative. ecommerce was bound to hit them for six
  20. TimF

    TimF With as stony a stare as ever Lord Reith could hav

    Yeah, what a shame that people now seem to value saving a couple of quid over the great help and advice you can in these shops. Yes, some can be found on net forums like this, but you need to filter out the noise to get it.

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