Classic Camera Collection
Hi there folks. My name is Matt and this is my first time writing for this blog, so please be gentle. It is a great honour to be invited to do so and I hope I can do it justice. I’m sticking with the theme of art and collectibles and writing about a topic that spans both genres; Classic Camera Collecting! This hobby is so much easier in this day of age with internet and websites such as eBay, Gumtree and Craigslist offering numerous classic cameras for sale online. http://www.for-sale.co.uk/classic-camera classified ads comparison website is also a great place to look for vintage cameras of all types. But for the purpose of this blog post, I am going to focus on some of my favourite classic cameras and give you the lowdown on each one. Just clarify, all the cameras that I am going to talk about in this post are all film cameras. Ok, Let us get started.
This is the quintessential photojournalist’s camera. Many of the iconic images from the 60’ and 70’s were shot using a Leica. It is classed as a rangefinder camera and has inspired the retro look adopted by many of today’s digital cameras such as Fujifilm and Sony. The M6 is Leica’s top mechanical, pre-electronic camera. They can be found for a relatively good price these days on the auction websites and classified ads as most people now aspire to own a digital Leica. Unfortunately, Leica has not made it’s mark on the digital world like it did on the world of film. You would be much better off buying a much cheaper Fuji than digital Leica. But in terms of collecting classic film cameras, a Leica M6 is a must for your collection and can be pick up for under £1000 on a good day.
Hasselblad 500 C/M
The daddy of medium format cameras (that means a bigger negative to the uninitiated), it was a stripped down Hasselblad 500 that was taken to the moon by Neil Armstrong in 1969 (it is still up there, litter bugs). The Hasselblad that was taken on the Apollo 15 mission did make it back and was sold at auction in recent years for approx half a million pounds! But for the less flush collector, a Hasselblad can be picked up these days for £500-£600 with a film back and lens included. It is worth owning one just appreciate the outstanding workmanship that has gone into creating it. It is a example of mechanical beauty and excellence.
This was the first offering from the Japanese company and proved the superiority of their SLRs over other manufacturers. This camera was used widely by photojournalists during the Vietnam War, such as Don Mcullin, and many of the famous images of that era were taken with the system. Nearly 900,00 of these cameras were produced before it was succeeded by the Nikon F2 in 1972.
Built in Germany, the Rolleiflex was the camera of choice prior to the introduction of the SLR or Single Lens Reflex camera. It was classed as a TLR or Twin Lens Reflex camera. One lens was used for focusing while the other was used for exposing the film. It had a top mounted viewfinder meaning that the camera was held at waist height for focusing purposes which made it difficult and cumbersome to use in unpractised hands. But the quality of the optics meant the resulting images were of a sublime standard.
Choosing A Classic Camera
Just like buying a classic Royal Enfield (discussed in a previous post) when it comes to choosing a classic camera to add to or start your collection, there are a number of things to take into account. Firstly, what can you afford? There is no point setting an unrealistic budget. At the end of the day, this is just a hobby, don’t forget. You still need to pay your rent or mortgage at the end of the month. Set a realistic ceiling to your budget and stick to it. Be sure to research the camera you are intending on buying or bidding on first. Look online to find out the pros and cons of the particular model or brand in question and for possible faults. You can also ask check the camera and lens serial number against the manufacturer's database which can be found online also. It is essential that you also do your due diligence with regards to the seller. What are their credentials? Are they reliable? What kind of reviews and feedback do they have? Do they offer insurance on delivery? Be sure that you don’t get ripped off as there are plenty of scammers out there. Here is a great website to learn more about cameras of all ages: http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/reviews.htm
I hope you have enjoyed this post folks! Until next time!