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YASUHARA T981

Discussion in 'General Equipment Chat & Advice' started by derekwongkk, Jan 17, 2001.

  1. derekwongkk

    derekwongkk Member

    This camera may be little known outside Japan, but it was definitely responsible for the renaissance in 35mm rangefinder cameras. The Japanese designer, Mr Yashara touted his design for a rangefinder camera with a Leica "L" mount well before the arrival of the Voigtlander Bessa. The public response in Japan was immense and it was this response which convinced Voigtlander and Konica that there was a market for rangefinder cameras other than the Leica M6. The Yashura T981 is on sale in Japan for 55,000 yen (body only) and orders for the next 6 months are already filled. There are no plans to export this camera overseas at present. Details of the Yashura camera can be found on the Yasuhara homepage.

    http://www.yasuhara.co.jp/eng/products/t981/top.html

    Problems had been reported for the T981 in the focusing and shutter areas. Apparently the Copal shutter is not completely lightpoof and Yashura recommends that the lens be capped between exposure. I found out that the T981 is made by the Phoenix camera company of China. It is touted by the Chinese press as most significant event for its photographic industry ever. In China it is available as the Phoenix 981 or a commerative version known as the JG50. I might be able able to get hold of the Phoenix version in China. I want to ask the forum members whether they think there is a market for it in Europe and N. America and what would be a reasonable price for this camera, considering that there may be mechanical problems with this camera? I feel that collectors rather than real photogs will be more interested in this camera.
     
  2. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    By my reckoning, the Japanese price is just over £300. I wouldn't have thought that there would be a massive market for it at any price if there are significant problems (although the odd collector might be very interested).
    Now if they could iron these problems out and come in at a price of, say, around £200, there would be an enormous market (well OK, I would probably buy one!).
     
  3. David Stout

    David Stout Well-Known Member

    With a shutter that isn't completely light-tight and dubious chinese build quality, I'm afraid I won't be in the queue. If I've got to spend money on expensive glass to go with the "body only", I may as well save my pennies and go for a decent body to go with it.

    David Stout
    (http://image-one.org.uk)
     

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