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Poll - Would the look of a camera ever affect your decision

Discussion in 'Weekly Poll' started by Richard Sibley, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. Richard Sibley

    Richard Sibley AP Deputy Editor

    as to whether you purchase it or not?

    It is human nature to find particular colours and shapes attractive. Whether we are looking at a photograph, building, car, furniture or clothing, some things we find more aesthetically pleasing than others. Many of our purchases are based on what an item looks like, often above its functionality. There are, for instance, cars I would never want to be seen in, regardless that their low fuel-consumption would save me a fortune and help the environment. But does it matter what our cameras look like?

    Take the Fujifilm X100S. Like its predecessor, it’s built in the style of a half-century-old rangefinder camera, but with all the modern conveniences of digital imaging. The images it produces are excellent (see our test on pages 51-56, AP dated 6 April 2013), but I’m drawn to the X100S just as much for the way it looks, which, of course, has no bearing on my images. Conversely, there are some cameras that aren’t the nicest to look at, yet produce great pictures.

    So while we know that appearance shouldn’t matter – a camera’s just a tool for taking photographs, after all – every once in a while there comes along one that offers the perfect combination of superb image quality and high-quality design.

    Vote on the AP Poll by visiting the home page


    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 2, 2013
  2. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    I wouldn't have too much of an issue with carrying around an ugly camera, but a bright pink one? Definitely not !
  3. 0lybacker

    0lybacker In the Stop Bath

    Am slightly ashamed to admit it, but yes!

    Having said that, to quote engineer & designer Colin Chapman (founder of Lotus Cars) "If it looks right, then it is right." :)

    The OM1 looked right ...

    ... and still does! :D
  4. Bejay

    Bejay Well-Known Member

    Yes, always
  5. BarbaraL

    BarbaraL Well-Known Member

    The older looking the better.. Don McCullin carried around a camera with a bullet hole in it for years....yes I like tatty looking cameras... :)
  6. LargeFormat

    LargeFormat Well-Known Member

    It definitely matters to me. Even to the extent that lenses have to be the same make (Sony/Zeiss acceptable) as the body. I'm embarrassed to use filters of a different make. My Rollei 35s is looking a bit tatty and in spite of the fact that I'll probably never use it again I'm toying with the idea of getting it refurbished. Don't anyone tell me it's the photograph that matters, I failed on that score ages ago.:(:D
  7. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Damien would seem to be on holiday. While the cat is away the mice might play. Should we take advantage. Like most student teachers Richard is a nice chap, but like all student teachers he is not the class commander. Should we take advantage?
  8. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Actually he retired that one; it didn't work anymore.
  9. Roger_Provins

    Roger_Provins Well-Known Member

    I don't like tatty or beaten-up but the designed look of the camera doesn't concern me - so long it works well. :)
  10. BarbaraL

    BarbaraL Well-Known Member

    Yes I know it didn't work but he said in an interview that he took it along with him on some war assignments ...so he wasn't ashamed of carrying an old warn out looking camera that might have saved his life....
  11. thornrider

    thornrider In the Stop Bath

    A Pentax compact designed by a student with a passion for Lego - no.

    A Nikkormat FT2 (which was dreadfully ugly in retrospect) - yes
  12. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    It shouldn't but it would, particularly if the thing was monumentally ugly - no way would I buy one of those Hasselblad Loony things not matter how good it is as it's far too ugly to be seen in public with...:eek:
  13. 0lybacker

    0lybacker In the Stop Bath


    If I was feeeelthy rich, and bought a Hermes Leica (not UGLY ;)), it would seem to be the worst possible version for discrete street photography ...

    ... having said which, it is said by some that the best way to hide or disguise something is to make it as blatant and openly visible as possible! :D
  14. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member

    It always adds to the pleasure.
    The fuji x100s looks the way it does because it includes all the parts many of us like to have in a small rangefinde style cameras.
    It has an optical viewfinder and all the knobs and controls needed to make manual settings.
    If they are to be included in a metal based body of modest size and wth things placed where they are easy to use, it is not surprising they end up looking like a tried and tested design.... which they are.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2013
  15. AlexMonro

    AlexMonro Old Grand Part Deux

    I was definitely put off the Pentax K-01 by the look of the thing.

    I was considering the Pentax K30 as an upgrade from my K20D, back when it was reduced in price in January, but it's looks gave me pause, and by the time I'd convinced myself that the looks didn't really matter, the price had gone back up again.

    I hope that Pentax's next model is boringly conventional in appearance, so I don't have these hard decisions! :)
  16. Scphoto

    Scphoto Well-Known Member

    Depends how hideous it is to be honest, but then again if it was the system I was using and it did what I wanted then I'd probably still get it.
  17. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member


    some cameras are born ugly
  18. Martin Erhard

    Martin Erhard Member

    I have to agree wholeheartedly with Richard Sibley. Looks shouldn't play much part in choosing a camera but maybe for those of us of a certain age the x100s, for various very good reasons just looks wonderful, even before taking any photos.
  19. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Thinking further on this one might assume that as photographers, and thereby as people of some artistic ability, we have some degree of aesthetic discrimination.

    Bearing this in mind I'd not be at all surprised if aesthetics didn't play a part in some if not all of our choices regarding cameras and other objects. Now I do agree that it should never be the principal criteria with respect to items of technology but as a deciding criteria between products of similar competence it may well provide the 'decisive moment'...
  20. nspur

    nspur Well-Known Member

    I like ugly cameras. I have six early Mirandas.

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