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What Camera???

Discussion in 'General Equipment Chat & Advice' started by strugglinstudent, Jan 19, 2001.

  1. strugglinstudent

    strugglinstudent New Member

    Hello everybody I am a struggling college student who would care for some advice on what camera to get next, basically I have a Canon A1 and i am looking for info on the best autofocus slr's around/best price and if possible does anyone know about any really good and also cheap (like me) (i like to call it cost effective) Medium Format Options that provide really good quality pictures with out to much expense for when I go to Uni in a few months. Please help you guys and girls are my only hope. I lay down the challenge. Still struggling...

    SLRGIRL New Member

    u should go for pentax it's the best and u can get really good deals from jessops they even have good deals with all format cameras to . check it out.

  3. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    OK, first questions: Why go AF? What's wrong with your A1?
    Having got that out of the way, the next question is: Do you need Depth of Field Preview? If no, try a Pentax, if yes, then the Canon EOS 300. In any case, try these and other models in a shop to see which you prefer.
    The other option is to go second-hand - there are numerous bargains out there.
    As regards Medium Format, try looking for a s/h Rolleiflex/cord or Yashica 124 - pretty good quality, pretty cheap but non-interchangeable lenses. Will almost certainly produce better results than a 35mm SLR for the right subjects - budget for a hand-held meter though (or use your SLR) and a tripod.
  4. BigWill

    BigWill Gorgeous oversensitive Nikon-loving cream puff

    Dear Strugglinstudent (aren’t they all, thank you Tony Blair!) here is some advice ref camera choice. Firstly, 35mm autofocus SLR’s. Doubtless you will be snowed under with advice from various contributors advising one make against another.The fact of the matter is that they are all much of a muchness nowadays. None of them are bad and you won’t be disappointed no matter which make you choose You pays yer money and you takes yer choice. To help you decide which one has the features you would most like then read the back issues of Amateur Photographer (unashamed plug for AP there) and you can even use their faxback service if you want specific info on a particular model. As a thought, unless you have dodgy eyesight, why go for the AF option at all? Manual focus is cheaper and the A1 is an excellent camera with an abundant supply of cheap S/H lenses and is therefore ideal for the cost conscious student
    Now on to medium format. Now here I can be a bit more specific. I think the best medium format option for a struggling student would be to consider a 6x6cm TLR (twin lens reflex) model. I know the flashy single lens reflex medium format cameras may seem more appealing but their cost would be prohibitive. A typical S/H complete Bronica ETRS will set you back about £350.00 ( just think how many crates of lager… I mean “educational books” that could buy!). Starting with the cheapest option. The Lubitel 166B. A Russian TLR which can be picked up second-hand for £10-£20. The focusing screen is absolute crappola and the thing looks like it is made from recycled caviar tins but it works and is worth a try if you are really strapped for cash. A much better option, and my personal favourite (I own one), is the Yashicamat124G. This well built Japanese TLR can be bought for between £115-£200 second-hand depending on condition. It has an excellent Yashinon lens and Copal shutter and even has a built in light-meter. The only slight disadvantage with this camera is that it has a fixed lens although you can buy wideangle and telephoto converters to fit it. If you absolutely must have lens interchangeability then go for the Mamyia C220 (about £200-£250 with 80mm standard lens). Its more sophisticated sibling, the C330 offers linked shutter-film advance, but is typically about £100 dearer. Check out www.mxv.co.uk for these cameras. I have bought stuff from them before and can recommend them. Hope this is helpful.

  5. Raz

    Raz Well-Known Member

    I'll share a little seeking as i am also a struggerling student.
    i own alot of nice nikon gear, but i use medium format more, i have the yashica 124g, and its great but it is quite prone to winding and problems and oily shutters.
    i have a kiev 88, with an 80mm 2.8 lens, two 6x6 backs and a TTL prism finder and a wasit level.. all new with a 3 year warranty for £250!
    these look and handle like hasselblad 1000f's. its an amazing camera and the quilty of the glass is astounding! crystal sharp, you can also get carl zeiss jena lenses for it, dead cheap! and sharp. these camera's are produced in the ukraine and dont have a quality control, and i looked long and hard when buying one, they are also not usealy sold with a warranty. but! a particular dealer i found, repair's them tests them and sell's them with a three year warranty for £250! (its his hobby)
    you cant even get them that cheap 2nd hand most places. i just got a polaroid back for £75 new and a 45mm for £135 new. both with 3 year warranty's.
    if you want to know more, email me.

    excuse my grammer!
  6. tonymidd

    tonymidd Well-Known Member

    look at the mamiya C range of twin lens reflex cameras, solid mechanical work horses that realy produce the goods. at the local camera fair a C330f with 80 and 135 lenes £175! mint C220 with 80mm £125 medium format quality at compact prices.
  7. David Stout

    David Stout Well-Known Member

    Hi StrugglinStudent

    I think the posters here have already answered your questions (see BigWill's reply). If I were in your shoes, I would keep the A1 and get some good (and cheap) Canon FD prime lenses for it. You will learn lots about photography, have more money to spend on film and processing and, above all, get some super sharp pictures from quality Canon gear. You don't have to go for MF for quality unless you want to print to 20x24inches for exhibitions - maybe you will be studying photography at college (hence the reason) but you don't say...

    David Stout

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