Yesterday I saw an ad from a camera shop selling a Leica Ein Stuck including a 35mm F 1.4 aspherical lens, year 1996 limited edition for 6500 euro only. Second hand.

One hour later I saw a Zorki-4 (Leica II copy) including the Industar 50 (M39 f:3,5/50mm) for 45 euro. Second hand.

I know you cannot compare them, but in a way you can, both Leica (Zorki is exported Leica knowledge when the Russians took the German camera factories home after the war) but even then, the price difference is worth thinking of. In case you don´t have the ¨eye¨ you can invest what you like, but the pictures will be disappointing (or even horrible) using either camera. Would you take your 6500 euro camera out for a walk in a rough part of the city you live in or would you prefer to take your Zorki?

What I am trying to say is that the analogue market is a tricky one. You need to invest time in research to know what you are buying before you spend your 45 or 6500 euro.I bought several cameras (see my homepage) and all of them are working but I always get frustrated by the most annoying thing, the lens. Many cameras are sold with the standard or cheaper other brand zoom lenses and they are most of the time (except some) horrible. Horrible means horrible in the tests or the official reviews you find online. But then, taking your camera for a walk, you might find out that it is you and not the lens taking the pictures.

I will give you some examples:

Contax G1 28mm lens bought for 350 euro

 

Yashica 108 and cheap Albinar 28mm lens bought for 50 euro

 

Olympus 10 and standard 50mm 1.8 lens bought for 20 euro

 

Fujifilm 6×4.5 roll film bought for 200 euro

The point is that, if you do not make prints, you use software to make them right for digital publishing (or printing). And you might find that (in black and white) the quality of analogue photography in the digital world has a quality not to be found on digital photography yet. New analogue cameras are not produced except by the Lomography company who do excellent marketing for analogue photography including cameras they don´t produce themselves. I like them, but no plastic lenses in my back garden (I know they do more).

So, there we are, using old cameras in the digital world, as long cameras and lenses work in combination with a good scanner and some software you can produce a better digital quality. And..you might take less but better pictures because the films are expensive and you need more time to get the picture done.

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