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Friday, 03 December 2010


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Too cool, thanks for the pictures!

I bet that Zoerk can get all kinds of interesting "light leak" photos that the Lomo crowd would love :D

One could easily write a book on how the Minox revolutionized spying during the cold war. For the first time a field operative could accurately duplicate documents/blueprints without having to commit them to memory or stealing the originals. Intelligence gathering would never be the same, originals would remain seemingly unmolested in a safe. All with a camera not much bigger than your index finger.

Imagine a camera design so successful it was used on both sides of the "Iron Curtain" for exactly the same clandestine purpose.

Many people owe their lives to this camera, though we will never actually know the details.

Good gravy, what the heck is that on the bottom of that poor Canon? At that size extreme, might it not make more sense to just bodge three F1s together in a vertical stack and force them to shoot in sequence?

Digital camera buyers take note: all these rarified cameras
are mechanical and analogue 'cept one.

Seems unlikely in say 20 years or so any of
present or recent past digital cameras will gain
enough value to warrant a trip to an esteemed auction
house. 'Cept maybe the house of EBay which is fast
becoming a junkyard / cemetery.

Sadly moving to digital has reduced the craft of making
cameras & the craft of printing film images to an ever
quicker march toward depreciated value of the art and the
lost tradition of its techne.

That Zorki is quite cool. There's something steampunkish about it.

I don't think those people see the cameras really as cameras but more as "collector's items". The NASA Hasselblad starting price: 14000 Euros. OTOH, Canon F-1, 1300 Euros starting price.

I would say just a few of the cameras on offer sneak down into the "potential user" category. For the most part, they're for collections. Especially since, with most collectibles, usage wear decreases their value--you wouldn't want to use most of these if you did buy them.

Although you might take a few pictures with one once in a while just to give it a little exercise and prove it's still working.


"Seems unlikely in say 20 years or so any of
present or recent past digital cameras will gain
enough value to warrant a trip to an esteemed auction house."

Neely - I don't see why that's sad or a problem in any way.

It's probably also not correct. Things like the Kodak DCS cameras are already somewhat collectible as the first of their kind. And I'd imagine that over the next 50-100 years all kinds of different digital cameras will be collectible. Probably for slightly different reasons that the current collectible cameras, but sought after all the same.

The thing that will likely hurt compared to old mechanical cameras is that most digitals are produced in huge quantities (as photography has exploded). The lack of rarity will probably make most models look ho-hum to collectors.

Foto-Rahn, the premiere Leica shop in Frankfurt, has a once-a-year auction that ran last Sunday (28 Nov). Fairly fabulous stuff, and for the very first time, I bid (via Fax on Thursday, as I knew I'd be busy when the auction was running.

Here is the link to their site:


To my vast surprise, I am now the owner (once I've paid) of a Leica Telyt-R 400 f6.8 lens. Got it for less than it has gone for on eBay (where they appear once in a month of blue moons), and it will work nicely with my 4/3 and m4/3 equipment. Gonna be a fun lens to play with!

I also bid on an Olympus Pen FT 42mm f1.2 lens, but someone bid higher. :-(

And I checked: the Pen 42mm f1.2 went for €360! Goodness...all the Pen FT lenses went for well more than the original guesstimate...

That Minox/Riga is cool, but for captured documents these days, I use the camera on my BlackBerry.

If I recall correctly, that mojo-motor Canon could zip through a roll of film in under 2 seconds, which is coincidentally the longest time anyone could hand-hold it. Must have been designed to shoot the finish-line of the 100-meter dash. Doesn't it have a special mirror that didn't have to flip out of the way for each shot?

and I read 'Cool Cameras from Wishlist'...

Hey, that looks like a Pen FV that I painted...

The FVs were not available in black from the factory.

ooooo...that Witness is pretty. me likey.

"'Cool Cameras from Wishlist'"



I work in the used department of B&H and I have to point out that we have a near mint condition Deardorff 8x10 WITH A GOLD DOT Dagor. 360mm I think. It was $3,800 last time i checked.

Please buy it and USE IT.

Thats just...cruel. I didn't even know about the Witness existing, and now, there's two lost rangefinders I'll never have (the Kodak Ektra being the other). Just....cruel.

If the Riga Minox is, as is engraved, from 1941, it's not a Soviet-made camera since at that time Germany was holding the Baltic states and AEG officially took over VEF Minox.

For those interested in the history of Zapp and Minox up to the late 1980s I recommend Morris Moses, Spy Camera - the Minox story, Hove Foto Book, 1990.

If you have no problem reading German there's also Rolf Kasemeier's Kleine Minox - Große Bilder. Originally published by Heering in 1970 and 1974 [for the Minox C] it has been reprinted 1989 by Lindemanns [at least two editions]. It's a how-to getting the best photos out of the tiny camera.

Hey Mike - every time you link to one of these auctions or KEH, the prices are gonna get jacked. Do I have to send a Soprano round for you to keep it zipped?


You could be spot on in your optimism. I would love to own the Kodak DCS monochrome digital camera.

But photography has gone thru many explosions and present day digital p&s are not that different marketing wise in making picture taking available to the masses: the $1 buck Kodak brownie sold millions.

My point being that film had (has?) more tangible staying power because analogue is well analogue. Most, if not all of the cameras Mike listed can still shoot film and produce stellar results.

Time will tell on the digital front. I just suspect my Leica digital cameras will not be treated so well as a salable artifact of the craft of photography as the Leica MP I hope to own before the price goes up (again).

Wow. Are you transitioning to a camera porn site?

Another "Thank God I can't afford those things or I would be camera rich and money poor" threads.

On the Leica S1, the copy of "Leica. The Program" which I've had since maybe 2002 shows the S1 Pro as the fully optioned model of the three available with the others being the HighSpeed and Alpha. The maximum resolution for the Pro model is listed as 5140 x 5140 with a 152mb output file in 48-bit format. Pretty cool stuff for a scanning type camera for the world of prepress, pro studio, and archive work back in 1996. One Internet source lists the total production number as 160.

"Do I have to send a Soprano round for you to keep it zipped?"

Please don't--I don't care for opera.


This was the perfect read to accompany a cup of fresh coffee on a rainy Saturday morning.

I have one of those Kodak Stereo cameras. They're quite a nifty piece of design, although so far I've only run one film through it to get the hang of using it. That was negative film which I scanned in and combined to red/green anaglyphs.
Apparently there is a third party market of slide holders and viewers, so next year I'm planning on getting hold of those and running a slide film through it.

I do really like the look of that Ilford Witness, and it is a splendid name.

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