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View Poll Results: Which way do I go?

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  • Get another Canon body and an extra lens or two

    2 9.09%
  • Get one of the Medium Format bargain systems and 2 or 3 lenses

    10 45.45%
  • Get her her own choice of 35mm SLR and a few lenses regardless of brand

    9 40.91%
  • Suggest she go digital...

    1 4.55%
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Thread: My daughter wants a film camera

  1. #1
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    My daughter wants a film camera

    Actually, both of my daughters like to shoot film, and primarily B&W (). Currently they share their time "borrowing" my Canon 1V. Problems arises when they both want to shoot, so my youngest has decided she wants her own camera. So my question is what to get...

    Obvious choice is another Canon body to make use of existing lenses. However, my youngest is attracted to the older, simpler all-manual cameras. That comment then got me to thinking about Medium format options with their current bargain prices for high quality MF. So what would you do and why?

    PS Edit: I should also mention she and RF do not get along all that well, so looking primarily at SLR solutions.
    Jack
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Hassy 501cm with the equivalent lens to what she uses now. Or a mamiya 645 or 7 if she wants a rangefinder. I haven't checked prices, but I bet a manual Mamiya 645 (M1000, etc.) and a couple lenses is dirt cheap.

  3. #3
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Hi Bill, and thanks for your comment. Yes, older Mamiya 645, Pentax 645 and 6x7, and Bronica 645 and 6x6 are all pretty darn cheap, so a body and two or three lenses is definitely not outside the budget. Hassy 500 and C lenses are not really beyond reach either. I should have mentioned she is not really tuned to RF so I am looking at SLR's.
    Jack
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    Super Duper
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Can't beat an older Mamiya 645 with some stupidly cheap primes...
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

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    Senior Member Erik Five's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    How about a Hexar AF with that very nice crisp 35 f:2 lens and stealth mode? 400$ish

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    Hi Bill, and thanks for your comment. Yes, older Mamiya 645, Pentax 645 and 6x7, and Bronica 645 and 6x6 are all pretty darn cheap, so a body and two or three lenses is definitely not outside the budget. Hassy 500 and C lenses are not really beyond reach either. I should have mentioned she is not really tuned to RF so I am looking at SLR's.
    Jack, I know it sounds silly, but I would tend to look for something that either has an upgrade path or is so cheap that you can throw it in the trash and not look back. Hassy and Mamiya have an upgrade path to some degree if she wants to add to it or go digital. Pentax, Hexar, etc. not so much.

    You might also ask her what she likes/doesn't like about the Canon. If the answer is she likes the fast autofocus and metering, that changes the picture somewhat.

  7. #7
    Senior Member helenhill's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    FILM LIVES....YEA !!

    I'm the most HAPPY Camper
    w/my M2 /1958 DR Cron /1962 Lux / 35 Elmar...
    (since the Man in the House took my M4 )

    If Shes not a RF Gal then I would go for the Hasselblad 500C
    I recently saw one at B&H with an 80mm for about $900.00
    WOW, It was Grand ... just LOVED IT!!
    Crisp View & Retro Coool

    Jack, Don't you have a Leica IIIf w/ a Summar OR Summaron
    Would She like that ?

    All the Best-H

  8. #8
    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack

    This may not make any sense ..but I have three R4 bodies just sitting. My oldest daughter allison ..used one for her HS photography class about 12 years ago. I have a ton of stuff ...motors,screens etc . I also have a few lenses that would work great....like the 50/2,135/2.8 a 67mm 180/2.8 ....

    If I remember last checking these all were down in the $300 range ...some lower.


    Roger

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Another vote for the Hassy. Although it would require some adjustment and practice especially with the waist level viewfinder. On an entirely different track, how about a Holga?

  10. #10
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    If you go the Hasselblad route, nothing older than a 500 C/M, in my view. And 501CMs are not that expensive now either.

    I started with a Mamiya TLR (C220) and enjoyed using it for many, many years. Not much to go wrong with a box camera like the TLR. The TLR is also very portable (the lenses are so small, compared with any SLR type lens).

    As cheap as MF film cameras are now....it's hard to make a case for 35mm film unless she wants to use long telephoto lenses. Seeing those big images on MF film really spoils us.

    Gary Benson
    Eagle River, Alaska

  11. #11
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack

    After about half way reading your first post I started thinking about a Mamiya AFD II along with a film back. My reasoning on this you already have the lens that will go along with it so that part is easy. The other part is that she can always stick a digital back on it if the mood ever hits her.

    Then there’s the other part. Have you asked her what her preference is? Have her take a poll 35mm or medium format.

    Remember no matter what you get her it might be incorrect if she doesn’t get a say in the matter.

    Reading posts like this makes me very glad that I’m my wife’s only child!

    Good luck

    don

    Edited to add:

    I think that film is still a very good way to begin with as you need to take images as if you only have one shot left on the roll of film.
    Don Libby
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  12. #12
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack, does your daughter (or daughters) express an interest in a particular genre of photography? IOW are you/they looking at tools for street photography, landscape, urban abstracts, all of the above? For some this may enter into the choice, i.e. if street is where the interest lies one might prefer the potentially faster and stealthier SLR (since RF is not enjoyed). Other interests might be well served by a MF kit.

    What kind of camera do they like to hold? If the MF kit seems unwieldy will it be left behind? But if the style they like to shoot is of static subjects the MF kit might feel great as one methodically composes shots, etc. That's not to say that a MF kit can't be great for street work (obviously).

    Re. SLRs: When I shot 35mm film I preferred Nikon and Pentax (older ones like KX and K2DMD) camera bodies to Canon and Olympus. That was long ago. For digital SLRs I prefer the ergonomics of Canon to Nikon. My daughter has a Canon film camera which she chose, though I suspect that was in part due to the fact that I was shooting Canon digital at the time she was deciding. It didn't hurt that there was (is) a cabinet full of Canon glass on hand.

    IOW it seems like more info is needed, and whatever we think is far less important than what your daughter(s) thinks or feels.

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    hmmm my First choice? - an Olympus 35mm film body with a few of those excellent primes they made -small, light, robust outstanding optics and would cost you an embarrassingly small amount of cash.

    Second choice - if your daughter likes the Hasselblad feel ..definately a 500 series body with an 80 - just lovely and retro cool...

  14. #14
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Thanks for all your responses so far! To clarify a bit more, she likes the idea of an all mechanical camera, so what she doesn't like about the 1V is it is mostly electronic -- she's kind of retro that way. (I know, really too bad she doesn't go for the Leica RF!) Anyway, her main genres are urban abstract and street type images, and she does like B&W over color. My main concern is to not invest too much -- she is only 15 and a still a bit careless with things.

    Dale, the idea of an AFD1 body and a film back crossed my mind, and it is a good idea.

    Peter, an OM 1 or 2 and a few lenses is probably a great idea.

    Roger, sent you a PM, but I suspect Leica gear is beyond what I want to spend until she shows she will be sticking with photography...
    Jack
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  15. #15
    cledry
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    You can actually do some nice candid street photography with an old Rolleiflex TLR. The waistlevel finder and unassuming dated look doesn't draw attention and you can often take a candid facing the other way. I have even taken them around corners, you can flip it over and hold it overhead. It is reliable and silent. You are limited to the lens that it comes with but that is a great way to learn composition albeit in a square format, exposure and technique in general. I am biased because I still own and use my first camera, a Rolleiflex from 1961. It will be the one camera I never sell.

    To go cheap you can go with one of the Rolleiflex copies, like a Yashicamat.
    Last edited by cledry; 28th December 2008 at 08:06. Reason: thought of something to add

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    i vote for the rollei and a lightmeter and tri-x. I still have mine

  17. #17
    Super Duper
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    This is cool. My daughter took a photo class in high school and enjoyed using my old Nikon F2 that I have owned since I was her age. I kept a watchful eye, however, as she is also still a little careless with things.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Amin's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    I think an OM-1 or OM-2 would be a great choice, and very affordable.

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    add a book of portraits by Avedon to the rollei kit

  20. #20
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack, I think you're lucky, in that she is interested in photography AND likes "retro" gear which is abundant and affordable. As others mentioned, the Olympus glass was excellent, though the wide primes can be hard to find now (and hence more expensive). The ergonomics of the OM-1 were not for me, but I sold a ton of them when they were new. I liked the Nikon F series, but some found it big and clunky.

    Lots to choose from at mostly reasonable prices in her area of interest.

  21. #21
    DougDolde
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    I'd vote for a Mamiya 7II or Pentax 67 (but only because it is cheaper).

  22. #22
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack:

    How about an old Pentax such as a K1000 or splurge and get her a LX. The lenses for Pentax are dirt cheap.

    Robert

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Jack,
    Just ask her what she might want to shoot.

    You know that what makes a camera "just right" is a very personal thing.
    Take her to K&S and fish around the used counter. Ask her to handle a few different bodies.
    You never know what she might go for.
    Imagine someone trying to pick out a camera something for you
    -bob

  24. #24
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by robsteve View Post
    Jack:

    How about an old Pentax such as a K1000 or splurge and get her a LX. The lenses for Pentax are dirt cheap.

    Robert
    Yeah, I was thinking something like an old Asahi Pentax and a 55mm lens.
    -bob

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Yeah, I was thinking something like an old Asahi Pentax and a 55mm lens.
    -bob
    KEH has some, including an LX. It's fun shopping with Jack's money.

  26. #26
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Jack,
    Just ask her what she might want to shoot.

    You know that what makes a camera "just right" is a very personal thing.
    Take her to K&S and fish around the used counter. Ask her to handle a few different bodies.
    You never know what she might go for.
    Imagine someone trying to pick out a camera something for you
    -bob
    I'm taking her to Keeble tomorrow to see if we can find something that fits for her. I admit to a secret hope she likes the feel of a Hassy V or Pentax 67 My guess is she is going to like the Oly OM's
    Jack
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Happy Hunting and Have Fun! Remember, this is for her, not you and Guy!!! If she goes for an Oly you'll have to find her a 90/2 macro at some point!!!

  28. #28
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    I admit to a secret hope she likes the feel of a.....Pentax 67
    Not a Pentax 67. Not one of these....it will break her heart....trust me on this one. Don't let her go for the P67.

    She will fall in love with the P67 lenses and then someday, eventually, she will want to go digital....then she will have to leave the P67 behind. Believe me, I know, it's a heart breaking experience.

    Gary

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    I think the Olympus will go over well -- do you think she is more interested in a daily carry camera...one for photographing her friends, things that strike her interest throughout the day etc, or do you think she wants something to use specifically for going out to do photography? If it is the former, I would say Olympus with a prime or two. The latter is well served by a 500c/m and 80mm f/2.8 CT*.
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  30. #30
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    I think the smaller, lighter daily carry camera is the logical answer, so probably a good 35mm SLR makes the most sense.

    Oh well...


    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Or...other idea ( second to Olympus) consider a Nikon F3/FM with a 28/50/105 combo - aren't these also a required right of passage? -

  32. #32
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterA View Post
    ...consider a Nikon F3/FM with a 28/50/105 combo - aren't these also a required right of passage? -
    If that's so (and I don't doubt it), I came to my F3 right of passage late in life. Just picked up an F3HP with motor drive, and 28/50/105 lenses within the past couple years. It is an excellent camera/combo and without the motor drive, not too heavy to lug around.

    Gary

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    hahah --

    maybe a great topic for a new thread...the cameras in your life..a bit of this a bit of that.. a touch of this .. but mostly ??!!

  34. #34
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Yeah, I was thinking something like an old Asahi Pentax and a 55mm lens.
    -bob
    Maybe Guy can get her a deal on an old Honeywell Pentax

    I was thinking of a Pentax MX, which is Olmpus OM size, but the lenses are much cheaper.

    Robert

  35. #35
    Super Duper
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    A good old mechanical Nikon FM (FM10 is $337. or less new)... and she can "graduate" to the Zeiss ZF 35/2 or 50/2 ... and nothing out there will beat it for B&W street stuff ... including a M ... because film is film and those specific Zeiss optics are terrific.

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    C'mon Jack, get moving - what time are you going shopping? We are all anxiously awaiting to hear about her selection!

  37. #37
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Get her a Nikon FM2, or such, and a couple of lenses. Usually beginners don't want physically large cameras.

  38. #38
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Well you are not going to believe this...

    I took my son and daughter over to my local dealer, Keeble and Shuchat, to look at cameras. My son was interested in digital and trying to decide between a mid level Canon and the little G1. THe surprise was my daughter, who upon seeing all the shiny new digital cameras and had an instant change of heart She looked at me with her big baby blues and asked, "Dad, can I just borrow you 'old' film camera when I want to shoot film?" Of course it's difficult for me to refuse her, so I replied, "Sure sweetie..."

    Anyway, she left with a Nikon kit box... So not only did she go digital, she chose a brand I no longer have any lenses for!

    Thank you for all your support and help and great advice!

    (PS: Dad couldn't resist and grabbed himself a G1... You know, since the salesman went to all that trouble of bringing the box out and all!)
    Jack
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  39. #39
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Congrats to you all, Jack. Sounds like a good day!

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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    I'm taking her to Keeble tomorrow to see if we can find something that fits for her. I admit to a secret hope she likes the feel of a Hassy V or Pentax 67 My guess is she is going to like the Oly OM's
    Jack

    If she ends up liking the Hassy V series I have both a 203FE and a 500 CM in mint condition which I would sell to her for a price consistent with her needs, not her dad's ability to pay. PM me if you are interested in either. The 500CM, by the way, is a yellow canary version.

    God bless

    Woody

  41. #41
    Workshop Member ChrisDauer's Avatar
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    LOL Congrats Jack. Though, I'm surprised you didn't point out all the spiffy features of the Canon? Specifically, like how you already have lenses for it. :-)

  42. #42
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisDauer View Post
    Specifically, like how you already have lenses for it. :-)
    Dude! I mentioned that like about ten thousand times! She said, and I quote, "I don't think I'd ever bother changing lenses and I doubt I'll need any more than the one it comes with."


    ,
    Jack
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  43. #43
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    Re: My daughter wants a film camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    Dude! I mentioned that like about ten thousand times! She said, and I quote, "I don't think I'd ever bother changing lenses and I doubt I'll need any more than the one it comes with."


    ,
    ROTFLMAO!
    Don Libby
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