Dead Camera Thread

rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
Recently I sold off some of my 'modern' gear to shoot a couple of supposedly 'dead' cameras: the Epson RD1 and the Panasonic L1. I've also now started to notice other presumed 'dead' camera threads here, like the Olympus E1 and the Leica Digilux 2, etc. And I'll bet there are others out there today working with and enjoying similarly 'bygone' equipment. So, as a thumb in the eye to 'planned obsolescence' and the disposable digital, I thought it might be fun to start a 'dead camera' photo thread for all of us to see how beautiful images can still be made with timeless hardware. Heck, it might even turn itself into its own Forum!

So here are my thoughts on guidelines. Photos should be from:

Digital cameras at least 10 years old (give or take) and less than 10mps;
Film cameras from at latest the 90's, but hopefully earlier;
Please include lens information--that really adds to the experience;
Feel free to discuss your journey with these tools, your user experiences, and how you think they stack up against modern equipment youve used.

Lets see where it goes!
 
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rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
Let me start it off with some fairly recent shots from my RD1. This is a manual focus rangefinder 6mp digital camera. In fact it was the first such camera, coming out at a time Leica said such a feat could not be accomplished. It has a ccd sensor and a 1.5 crop, manually adjustable framelines for 28, 35 & 50mm, and the biggest brightest 1:1 viewfinder i have ever used. It has no color or focus shift with any screw mount or M glass that I know about, and goes up to iso1600, which I find lovely and useable. The second and the last photos are at 1600. I think this is a camera I will always use for my Leica glass.

Leica Summarit 50/1.5
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Leica Summarit 75/2.5
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Leica Elmarit 21/2.8
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rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
Here are a few from the 7.5mp autofocus Panasonic L1 taken this past week with the 'kit' lens, Leica Vario Elmarit 14-50/2.8-3.5 (28-100mm equivalent on the 4/3 format). This is a surprisingly big but light rig, maybe 20% smaller than a comparable 5d rig, but much lighter. The lens doesnt feel like a Leica, as its plasticky. But it has a manual aperture ring. The sensor is a hybrid ccd/cmos called 'LiveMos'. Though they may not come through here to the same degree, the colors are explosive. Skin tones are reminiscent of my Kodak Pro slr/n, spot dead on. I really like the OOF on the close up shots as well, very smooth. Though shooting into the light can give you a much busier bokeh. The camera is pretty much fully analogue, even metering modes are set on the camera body! AF is slow but accurate. There is a green confirm light for manual focus. The camera has live view on the lcd, but not on the TTL ovf. And it has a 2 position internal flash capable of 'bounce', which to me is a great feature as it maintains natural color.

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ReD

Hall of Famer

rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
i really like the first two roger. can you tell a little about these cams? what are the lenses and mps on those cams? the resolution of those two seem very good. as with these better older lower mp cams, i'm not sure why more res is needed except for lots of cropping and big prints. those are certainly pictures to be proud of.
 
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ReD

Hall of Famer
Well the first shot is probably the most processed & over sharpened.
Both 3.3 MP & have similar specs. I always used the viewfinder with these.

Both were more expensive than the Fuji F660EXR I bought in Dec 2013

Nikon E3200 3.2 MP with lens 5.8 – 17.4 39mm- 115mm (3x optical zoom) f2.8 – 4.9 - iso 80 up

Fuji A330 Similar Basic Features (actually my wife's camera)
3.2-megapixel CCD delivering image resolutions as high as 2,016 x 1,512 pixels.
  • Real-image optical viewfinder.
  • 1.5-inch color LCD monitor.
  • Fujinon 3x, 38-114mm (35mm equivalent) lens.
  • 1.6x digital zoom.
  • Automatic exposure control, plus four preset "scene" modes.
  • Adjustable white balance with seven settings.
  • Sensitivity equivalent to ISO 100.
  • Apertures from f/2.8 to f/9.5.
  • Shutter speeds from 1/2,000 to two seconds.
  • Built-in flash with six modes.
  • xD-Picture Card storage (16MB card included).
  • Power supplied by two AA-type batteries or optional AC adapter.
  • Interface software and USB drivers included for Windows and Macintosh computers.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
A couple to go on with while I charge up the battery on the C760uz. 3.2Mp, sensor 1/2.5. Teeny EVF, miniscule LCD (1.8" IIRC) max ISO 400.

11806250993_ede7805982_c.jpg
[/urlSydney Harbour
by Sue Wotton, on Flickr
8262035135_9443165b6b_c.jpg

2007 - Pasha Bulker
by Sue Wotton, on Flickr

That was my second digital. I was still using film long after digital had become a thing. My first was a Kodak DC5000, weather and dust resistant because I didnt really look after my gear back then. I no longer have it but may have the odd shot somewhere in the archives. (or not. all available photos are so tiny they cannot be displayed properly)
 
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Location
Milwaukee, WI USA
Real Name
Luke
I thought this was going to be a thread for photos of dead cameras. I would actually be able to contribute to THAT one.....LOL. I've nearly bought an RD1 a couple times. ANd I've been tempted by the L1, as well. I'll enjoy this thread passively while I attempt to beat back the vintage GAS.
 

rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
well if you have vintage leica glass luke i could not recommend the RD1 more highly, for both the shooting experience and the beautiful results. the 1:1 ovf is both singular and an absolute joy. pretty much cured my manual focus GAS which had been in full bloom for about a decade. i'd put it up against a digital M any day of the week, perhaps excepting the Monochrome.

the L1 is a more ambiguous proposition. it had a few things i really wanted: AF, fully analogue hardware, a really useful zoom range lens with an aperture ring and Kodak ccd quality skin tones. the manual focus confirm played into it too, as i dont like focus peaking. i must say, it had what i expected, and i was very pleasantly surprised by the vibrancy of the colors and by the lens's sharpness. but its big, and though i dont mind, the AF is slower than the state of the art. and its high iso isnt nearly as pleasant as the rd1.
 
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Luckypenguin

Hall of Famer
Location
Brisbane, Australia
Real Name
Nic
The only camera that I still own which fits the brief of this thread is my Canon 350D which was my only camera between 2005 and 2009. I certainly got some good miles out of it back in the day and it has contributed a few of the images which I have hanging at home on 40" canvasses. Earlier this year I took it off the bookshelf and snapped a few photos but the user experience just feels too primitive compared to what I have become accustomed to.

One thing that I do find amusing in light of the recent trend to remove AA filters is that this old 8mp sensor doesn't show much evidence of anti-aliasing to begin with, despite using (in the example below) what would be considered as a fairly pedestrian Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 lens of similar vintage to the camera.

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CROP

C350D-IMG_6194-CROP_zpssjnz7fmd.jpg




Although the 350D may be just one step too far back in time for me, I am still enjoying using a pair of 'tweeners in the Panasonic GH1 and Olympus E-PL1; cameras that have been superseded numerous but are probably still too new (mid 2009 and early 2010 respectively) and have too many megapixels (12) to be considered "dead".
 

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Location
Troy, NY
What a great idea for a thread! These cameras aren't dead; they aren't on life support; given a fresh battery, they'll take us to the woodshed and give us an "attitude adjustment" in what it takes to make really excellent photographs.

Dead? I would guess that most of the pixel-peeping equipment arguers wish they were half as alive!

Here are some shots from my Olympus D-550

Image Sensor 3.0 Megapixel Effective
Size 1 /2.5” (0.4”) CCD
Focal Length/Lens Configuration Olympus multivariator 2 aspherical glass 2.8x zoom lens 5.8-16.2 mm(36-100mm equivalent in 35mm photography)
Maximum Aperture F2.9-5.6 (W) / F4.4-8.6 (T)
Display 1.8” (4.5cm) Color TFT LCD (61,000 pixels)
Viewfinder Optical real-image viewfinder with Diopter Adjustment and Autofocus /backlight LED

Coopers Pond 004-1.JPG


D550 clouds 005-001.JPG


sunrise111004.jpg


fall 2009 004-1.jpg

Cheers, Jock
 
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rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
jock, those are some nice photos, esp 1/4. i know i'm probably technically wrong, but imo there is just a different look to ccd. i always felt it, but it really hit home when i started shooting the rd1 alongside the rx1. to me that sony is the pinnacle of modern camera tech--compact, a fair amount analogue, clean crisp evf, fabulous fast for me zeiss lens, top high iso results, and FF. for awhile i was taken with the stunning resolution and biting 24mp sharpness. i knew i didnt like the b&w files, but i let it go. but once i got this lowly 6mp ccd rd1, not only did i not want to shoot without that immersive vf and fully manual experience, but i just honestly was more at home with the resulting images. the sonys became somehow 'fake' or lifeless by comparison, the colors not as 'poppy' or just not as appealing. and the rd1 b&w was just so much more nuanced, especially in the blacks. im not knocking the sony, i still think its a great camera that obviously produces top notch images. but for me, i was just much happier moving 'backwards'. when i look at those portraits i posted i still smile, every time. your photos exhibit that same wonderful color tone.

btw, i was just in your neck of the woods visiting my camera guy Al in Latham. if you ever need a camera guy, Al is THE man. he was fixing up my elmarit and cleaning my rd1. then we went over to Albany where i took all those shots with the L1 that i posted above.
 
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Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Location
Troy, NY
jock, those are some nice photos, esp 1/4. i know i'm probably technically wrong, but imo there is just a different look to ccd. i always felt it, but it really hit home when i started shooting the rd1 alongside the rx1. to me that sony is the pinnacle of modern camera tech--compact, a fair amount analogue, clean crisp evf, fabulous fast for me zeiss lens, top high iso results, and FF. for awhile i was taken with the stunning resolution and biting 24mp sharpness. i knew i didnt like the b&w files, but i let it go. but once i got this lowly 6mp ccd rd1, not only did i not want to shoot without that immersive vf and fully manual experience, but i just honestly was more at home with the resulting images. the sonys became somehow 'fake' or lifeless by comparison, the colors not as 'poppy' or just not as appealing. and the rd1 b&w was just so much more nuanced, especially in the blacks. im not knocking the sony, i still think its a great camera that obviously produces top notch images. but for me, i was just much happier moving 'backwards'. when i look at those portraits i posted i still smile, every time. your photos exhibit that same wonderful color tone.

btw, i was just in your neck of the woods visiting my camera guy Al in Latham. if you ever need a camera guy, Al is THE man. he was fixing up my elmarit and cleaning my rd1. then we went over to Albany where i took all those shots with the L1 that i posted above.

Tony,

Next time you're in my neck of the woods, give a shout first; maybe we can hunt and gather some pie and coffee . . .

Also, how do I get ahold of Al if I need him?

Cheers, Jock
 
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Tilman Paulin

All-Pro
Location
Vancouver B.C.
Real Name
Tilman
while I attempt to beat back the vintage GAS.

haha, just as new cameras with all their bells and whistles aren't magic bullet solutions to solve all our photographic challenges, the old ones have their issues too :)
You can save quite a bit of money on redirecting your GAS to some of these older cameras (especially if you already have lenses for it), but some of the "vintage" ones are still quite pricey... :eek-54:

For me the E1 was a no-brainer, as I already had digital zuiko lenses for four thirds... 75$ for the body + a compact flash card and a spare battery... Not much of an investment for a bit of fun :)

I took the E1 to one of our regular haunts yesterday - Elk Creek. Much more challenging than the beach (with it's beautiful soft light). Elk Creek is in a pretty dark canyon and you get some of the most challenging conditions (foliage, sunlight and bright skies at the top and super-dark shadows).
While the E1 still performed fine, I didn't quite knock it out of the park as much this time :) I missed the ability to check focus or exposure (the E1's display is ancient - there's probably calculators out there with better displays :-D )
And I missed live-view for "low to the ground" close-ups.
Well, all part of getting to know a camera's strengths and weaknesses. :)


(all shots taken with the Olympus 12-60mm, except the last two which were taken with the digital zuiko 50mm f2)

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Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


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Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


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Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20444395418_a9238b7926_b.jpg

Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


to round it some more shots where it did really well again: :)

20639076021_a8df8484f9_b.jpg

Untitled
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


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Strobilanthes
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


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hope
by tilman paulin, on Flickr
 
D

dalethorn

Guest
haha, just as new cameras with all their bells and whistles aren't magic bullet solutions to solve all our photographic challenges, the old ones have their issues too :)
You can save quite a bit of money on redirecting your GAS to some of these older cameras (especially if you already have lenses for it), but some of the "vintage" ones are still quite pricey... :eek-54:

For me the E1 was a no-brainer, as I already had digital zuiko lenses for four thirds... 75$ for the body + a compact flash card and a spare battery... Not much of an investment for a bit of fun :)

I took the E1 to one of our regular haunts yesterday - Elk Creek. Much more challenging than the beach (with it's beautiful soft light). Elk Creek is in a pretty dark canyon and you get some of the most challenging conditions (foliage, sunlight and bright skies at the top and super-dark shadows).
While the E1 still performed fine, I didn't quite knock it out of the park as much this time :) I missed the ability to check focus or exposure (the E1's display is ancient - there's probably calculators out there with better displays :-D )
And I missed live-view for "low to the ground" close-ups.
Well, all part of getting to know a camera's strengths and weaknesses. :)


(all shots taken with the Olympus 12-60mm, except the last two which were taken with the digital zuiko 50mm f2)

20639073571_42127bd2de_c.jpg

Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20606172626_befb930160_c.jpg

Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20444411838_67b737dea1_b.jpg

Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20444395418_a9238b7926_b.jpg

Elk Creek
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


to round it some more shots where it did really well again: :)

20639076021_a8df8484f9_b.jpg

Untitled
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20387660045_c497130df5_c.jpg

Strobilanthes
by tilman paulin, on Flickr


20146560349_39417fa93d_b.jpg

hope
by tilman paulin, on Flickr
The glow in those trees is very appealing.
 

rbelyell

All-Pro
Location
NY Mtns
tilman i think those shots are very good. the color, like on my L1, just explodes. i love the leaf and the butterfly shot, but also think it held up in difficult dynamic range situations in the forest. how many mps is that E1? the L1 has live view, but the screen isnt very good, though there is a focus confirm light that is very helpful in certain situations.
 

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