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Lensmanship

Voigtlander Bessa RF

So here we are - another Voigtlander, one of nearly 300 in the collection. No particular reason for choosing this one other than its age. Gerry's collection is heavily weighted towards post-war cameras, but this Bessa RF is probably pre-war. Having tried one of the most modern cameras in the last article, I thought I'd go back to one . . .

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October 24, 2016

Contax G1

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The Contax G1 is something of an oddity. A sort of rangefinder that's actually an autofocus; a sort of point and shoot that offers only aperture priority or manual; a sort of compact that's actually quite big and has interchangeable lenses. The G1 sits in a no-man's land between modernity and tradition. At the time it was made - . . .

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September 18, 2016

Nikon S3

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This the Nikon S3, a 35mm rangefinder camera dating from the late 50s. Nippon Kogaku had been making optical equipment since 1917, but only started making consumer cameras in 1948. Nikon's most famous rival, Canon, had been making a 35mm rangefinder since 1933. Whilst Canon's models were essentially Leica knock-offs, Nikon had . . .

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June 27, 2016

Rollei Magic

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This is a Rollei Magic, dating from the early sixties. It was the first automatic exposure twin lens reflex, and, as I can't seem to find examples from any other manufacturer, possibly the only one ever. Both shutter and aperture are set automatically, amazingly without the use of batteries. Not quite sure how this works but presumably . . .

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May 11, 2016

Minolta Autocord

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The camera on the left is a Minolta Autocord from Gerry's collection. The one on the right is the same model, but it's one I've owned for twenty-seven years. Gerry gave it to me for my seventeenth birthday ( I think it also covered a Christmas present - it wasn't cheap at the time). I was staying with him in Devon and he had . . .

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April 20, 2016

Voigtlander Prominent

As well as trying out some of Gerry's cameras, what I'm really supposed to be doing is sorting them out. So far this has only meant opening the boxes and separating them into different piles according to make. And they really are piles: jumbled, chaotic, teetering heaps - I think your average collector would be horrified. The biggest . . .

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March 20, 2016

Leica Standard

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Although Leicas are the archetypal classic camera, Gerry had surprisingly few of them. Apart from his M6, which he bought new, there are only two M39 screw rangefinders and a single Leicaflex. I'm not sure why this is. Maybe it was the cost - Leica collecting can be a very expensive business, or perhaps it was the relatively limited . . .

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February 24, 2016

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