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Thread: cheapest rangefinder

  1. #1
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    Default cheapest rangefinder

    wanna try the system... what's a real cheap one?
    "I'm... dreaming... of a wide... angle~
    Just like the ones I used to know~"

  2. #2

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    Lomo LC-A or Holga? :P

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    The Lomo/Holga are NOT rangefinder cameras. Rangefinder cameras have a rangefinder (duh) to help you to focus. Usually, a focussing patch with 2 coincident images are deployed. You turn the focussing ring until the 2 align perfectly. When they align, the picture will be in focus.

    A good rangefinder camera to try out would be the Canon Canonet GIII QL17 or the Yashica Electro 35 or the GSN version. You can buy them off eBay for cheap.

    Regards
    CK

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    Any cheap and good range finder with Aperture Priority?
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

  5. #5

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    Originally posted by ckiang
    The Lomo/Holga are NOT rangefinder cameras. Rangefinder cameras have a rangefinder (duh) to help you to focus. Usually, a focussing patch with 2 coincident images are deployed. You turn the focussing ring until the 2 align perfectly. When they align, the picture will be in focus.

    A good rangefinder camera to try out would be the Canon Canonet GIII QL17 or the Yashica Electro 35 or the GSN version. You can buy them off eBay for cheap.

    Regards
    CK
    ckiang, the focus mechanism of the Nikon F3 was like what u described, that was the first time I used a MF camera. Does it make F3 a rangefinder too?

  6. #6
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    Originally posted by ckiang

    A good rangefinder camera to try out would be the Canon Canonet GIII QL17 or the Yashica Electro 35 or the GSN version. You can buy them off eBay for cheap.

    Regards
    CK
    GIII QL17 has a very fast F1.9 lens!
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

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    The problem with the Electro 35 is the battery.

    There are a number of decent, cheap Russian RFs out there, which accept screw thread lenses, so should you strike it rich and also lose whatever little common sense you had, you can attach those German lenses. You know, the ones with the red spot.

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    Originally posted by Tweek


    ckiang, the focus mechanism of the Nikon F3 was like what u described, that was the first time I used a MF camera. Does it make F3 a rangefinder too?
    F3 is not a rangefinder, it's a SLR with groundglass focussing. The centre thing is a split-image prism. Some of the better RF cameras has a split-image on the rangefinder patch as well. What I meant by coincident image is that you have the original image, and a fuzzy image overlapped (you can see both). When you align them perfectly, then it will be in focus.

    Regards
    CK

  9. #9
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    Originally posted by Jed
    The problem with the Electro 35 is the battery.

    There are a number of decent, cheap Russian RFs out there, which accept screw thread lenses, so should you strike it rich and also lose whatever little common sense you had, you can attach those German lenses. You know, the ones with the red spot.
    Oh, those! Well, when you strike it rich, you'll buy the Red Spot cameras as well!

    Regards
    CK

  10. #10
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    Actually, you make a very good point. I don't know how many people I've seen buy cameras for a certain feature and then when they get the chance to use their feature, they go ahead and buy a better camera after that.

    For example, saying they buy a more expensive Nikon camera so that it can still meter with their AIS lenses. But then they just go out and buy a whole new range of AF lenses eventually anyway. Okay, so the analogy isn't 100%, but close enough.

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by Jed
    Actually, you make a very good point. I don't know how many people I've seen buy cameras for a certain feature and then when they get the chance to use their feature, they go ahead and buy a better camera after that.

    For example, saying they buy a more expensive Nikon camera so that it can still meter with their AIS lenses. But then they just go out and buy a whole new range of AF lenses eventually anyway. Okay, so the analogy isn't 100%, but close enough.
    Exactly what I did.

    Buy a F100 because it can meter with AI-S lenses because I have one, and for the very remote possibility that I might get them.... heh

    Regards
    CK

  12. #12

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    Suggest you go down to a used camera shop to try out the rangefinder. I did that yesterday with a Bessa-R2. OK so it did not have a little red dot, but the viewfinder is supposed to be even better than the little red dot's.

    Can't really dig the joy of manually focusing by trying to align a ghost image with a real one. I prefer to point and shoot. Nothing beats the feeling of getting a good, fast autofocus lock on your subject (and I'm using the D30! LOL). OK the viewfinder framing was cool, but that's it. It felt like a military-spec camera, even came in khaki green, but that sort of stuff does not turn me on. I had the good sense not to touch the M6, it's like golf or heroin - just say no.

    I figure this rangefinder thing is not for me. It was interesting and entertaining reading up on them, though, especially the orgasmic gushiness of the reviews of the M6 and Voigtlanders. Heck, the cameras are not THAT small, anyway. I prefer my IXUS 330, for carrying around. It's got this little shutter click sound (you can set the volume!) to die for.

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    How about the Ricoh GR-1V? It's a rangefinder with autofocus and has a sharp fast F2.8 lens. Very small too (180g).
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

  14. #14

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    I don't quite understand that part. What's the point of having a rangefinder with autofocus? So you can focus manually? *honestly confused*.

    If I were to go for film, I would get the Olympus muj.

  15. #15

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    Originally posted by mpenza
    How about the Ricoh GR-1V? It's a rangefinder with autofocus and has a sharp fast F2.8 lens. Very small too (180g).
    I don't think that's a rangefinder if going by ckiang/Jed's definitions. The GR-1V uses a tunnel-type viewfinder, much like the Contax T2/T3. Got manual focus but got to estimate, no instant TTL feedback.

  16. #16

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    my favourite rangefinder is Mamiya 7ii ... cannot afford it
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

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    Originally posted by Tweek


    I don't think that's a rangefinder if going by ckiang/Jed's definitions. The GR-1V uses a tunnel-type viewfinder, much like the Contax T2/T3. Got manual focus but got to estimate, no instant TTL feedback.

    yar hor. It's just a compact camera with AP and other controls. I must have been reading too much Cameras like Contax G1/G2 would be rangefinders right? Saw a G1 on auction at Yahoo for $900 with a Carl Zeis lens.

    http://page.auctions.shopping.yahoo....2?aucview=0x10

    Also saw one Yashica Electron 35 GSN ($100):
    http://page.auctions.shopping.yahoo....7?aucview=0x10
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

  18. #18
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    Originally posted by StreetShooter
    I don't quite understand that part. What's the point of having a rangefinder with autofocus? So you can focus manually? *honestly confused*.

    If I were to go for film, I would get the Olympus muj.
    The muj II with F2.8 lens?
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

  19. #19
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    Originally posted by Tweek


    I don't think that's a rangefinder if going by ckiang/Jed's definitions. The GR-1V uses a tunnel-type viewfinder, much like the Contax T2/T3. Got manual focus but got to estimate, no instant TTL feedback.
    Correct!

    Regards
    CK

  20. #20

    Default Re: cheapest rangefinder

    Originally posted by denizenx
    wanna try the system... what's a real cheap one?
    Go to one of those 2nd hand camera shops or aution sites and try out the Canon/Minolta/Yashica/Olympus rangefinders. Can be any price between $80-$300 +/- , depending on condition and desirability. You may want to check out
    http://www.cameraquest.com/index.htm
    which is a popular guide for rangefinders. HTH
    Last edited by rubric; 18th October 2002 at 12:22 PM.

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