Thursday, July 23, 2015

Camera Review: Olympus OM-10 (With Manual Adapter)

The Olympus OM-10 was the first consumer-grade OM system 35mm SLR on the market, introduced in 1979. This particular camera was given to me by my stepdad in what can only be considered a film photographer's dream scenario, namely: "Here's a big box with several cameras, lenses, and other assorted gear. Take whatever you want, I don't want it in the house anymore."

Of course, after a couple of decades none of these cameras were at 100%, though they generally only require a CLA or minor adjustment to get them back to their former glory.  The OM-10's only imperfection is a bit of an odd one.  When the ISO setting is at the highest value of 1600 and the shutter is released, the mirror flips up only half way and the camera emits a random series of chattery beeps, like an 8-bit squirrel on methamphetamine.  It won't stop until I move the ISO to a lower value, at which point the chattering stops and the mirror resets to its resting position.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Camera Review: Mamiya C330 Professional

Mamiya C-Series Cameras

The Mamiya C-series TLRs have been around for quite some time, with the original Mamiyaflex C being released in 1956 or 1957. Shortly after that, the line split into two with the C2 and the C3 (the latter being the slightly more advanced model). Subsequent generations continued in this fashion with the C22/C33, and finally C220/C330 and variants (C220f, C330f, C330s).

After the Rolleicord III stole my heart, there was very little chance that it would be my last TLR.  The
next focal point for my obsession was the Mamiya C330. After much searching on eBay and Craigslist, I found a near-perfect specimen sporting a Mamiya-Sekor 80mm f/2.8 "Blue Dot" lens pair.

This particular model (with no suffix) was in production from 1969 to 1974. It had several improvements over its predecessor the C33, including support for both 120 and 220 film (by rotating a plate on the film door), and interchangeable focus screens.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Lens Review: Olympus OM Zuiko 135mm f/2.8

Zuiko lenses in general (at least the ones I've used) are pretty excellent.  I looked around at the two 135mm primes (the f/3.5 and the f/2.8) for a while, and while the 3.5 was cheaper, they were both very reasonably priced.  Right now it looks like you can get a very clean copy of the 3.5 for around $80, while the 2.8 will run about $175 to $200.

Converting Old Lenses For Use On Digital SLRs

I first discovered this unique and often overlooked aspect to the hobby some time in 2006. I had gone fully digital a couple of years prior with the release of the first generation Digital Rebel (300D), and I had some old Olympus OM and Canon FD glass that was sitting unused. At the time there weren't too many adapters out there (now the market is overflowing with them), but I did find an OM-mount to EOS-mount adapter, and that's how it all started.

Hopefully, if you're interested in getting started with adaptation of older lenses to a newer format, something in this post will be useful to you.