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Thread: Old mechanical flim cameras

  1. #1

    Red face Old mechanical flim cameras

    Hihi newbie here

    Had a sudden interest in playing with flim cameras ever since my friend introduced me to her toy cameras. Currently using a 20+ years old Seagull 205 camera with a fixed 50mm lens.

    Was wondering abt the following:

    1) where can i buy similar (ancient haha) cameras (tlr are ok too) in s'pore? my friend suggested bugis flea market but i have not found the time to go down to check. Any suggestions? Quality of the camera is not a problem as long as the camera itself is in working conditions. price range of $25 - $50 ba.

    2) How to ascertain whether the camera is in working conditions? (light leaks, fungus,etc)

    2) What type of flim works best with these cameras?

    Haha sorry if the questions are kinda stupid. Started photography with digital so hope would have the chance to experience shooting with flim.

    Acolyte

  2. #2

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    why not an older Nikon? FG or EM not too far from your budget and can use the lenses you already own,

  3. #3

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    hi tsjcsl

    where can i get the cameras you mentioned?

    Cheers

  4. #4

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    $25-$50.........

    hard in singapore. even in london where older film cameras are awash in ebay, usually unless the camera is spoilt, body only would cost about $50-$60 sgd equivalent.

    if you are talking about slr, you can head down to camera workshop in peninsula, there are a few more around the area.

    do note that these will probably be out of your budget.

    alternatively, you can always try your luck at cash converters, that will probably match your price range possibly, but you take the chance of looking at cameras not working so well, fungused lens, etc.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    oo ok thank you night86mare.

    Hmmm seems like i need to up my budget already. How much does a nikon flim FG or EM cost body only? I don mind a lower end cam as long as it is in working condition n fully manual.

  6. #6
    Member hope107fm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Acolyte View Post
    oo ok thank you night86mare.

    Hmmm seems like i need to up my budget already. How much does a nikon flim FG or EM cost body only? I don mind a lower end cam as long as it is in working condition n fully manual.

    As night86mare mentioned, for slightly more than your budget your best bet is CashConverters. I bought a Canon EOS500n a couple of years ago for $89 with the kit lens. It was in superb condition! I guess I was lucky but you need to be patient and visit their shops often to check it out.

    Good luck!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    thanks hope107fm! Will go down to bedok cash converter to check later haha.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    just like to add something.

    To each their own interest and preference but....
    Please do not think that by using an old film camera will be saving money.

    There is a reason why this recent times digital photography has become really popular...

  9. #9

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by coolthought View Post
    To each their own interest and preference but....
    Please do not think that by using an old film camera will be saving money.
    yes, let's put it into perspective.

    my k20d body cost me $1.5K thereabouts, it has shot about 27K shutter count up to date.

    convert that to rolls of film, that's 750 rolls. buying it alone, let's say you get the cheapest negatives in BnW at unbelievable price, $3, just buying would have cost you $2.2K.

    of course film is fun and in some ways digital will never replace film.. but in the long run, it is not necessarily a "money saver" for sure.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    yes, let's put it into perspective.

    my k20d body cost me $1.5K thereabouts, it has shot about 27K shutter count up to date.

    convert that to rolls of film, that's 750 rolls. buying it alone, let's say you get the cheapest negatives in BnW at unbelievable price, $3, just buying would have cost you $2.2K.

    of course film is fun and in some ways digital will never replace film.. but in the long run, it is not necessarily a "money saver" for sure.
    But when we are holding a film camera in our hands, we don't shoot like using a DSLR. Somehow the cost, the winding lever, the film counter display, makes us think thrice before pressing the trigger. Also, we are unlikely to "switch to continuous shot mode" and shoot 3 frames for the same scene. Unless you bring 10 rolls of film in your bag and shoot them all within 1/2 a day.(10 rolls=360 shots, easily achievable with a DSLR in 3 hours).

    I guess, using back a film camera kinda forces discipline back into us when it comes to composition. "When you look through the viewfinder, imagine the shot as an enlargement hanged on your wall, ask yourself is it worth, then press the trigger or skip it ..." a really good photographer ever said.

    So, film and digital each has it's advantages and reason to stay.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by chua beng View Post
    But when we are holding a film camera in our hands, we don't shoot like using a DSLR. Somehow the cost, the winding lever, the film counter display, makes us think thrice before pressing the trigger. Also, we are unlikely to "switch to continuous shot mode" and shoot 3 frames for the same scene. Unless you bring 10 rolls of film in your bag and shoot them all within 1/2 a day.(10 rolls=360 shots, easily achievable with a DSLR in 3 hours).

    I guess, using back a film camera kinda forces discipline back into us when it comes to composition. "When you look through the viewfinder, imagine the shot as an enlargement hanged on your wall, ask yourself is it worth, then press the trigger or skip it ..." a really good photographer ever said.

    So, film and digital each has it's advantages and reason to stay.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    yes, let's put it into perspective.

    my k20d body cost me $1.5K thereabouts, it has shot about 27K shutter count up to date.

    convert that to rolls of film, that's 750 rolls. buying it alone, let's say you get the cheapest negatives in BnW at unbelievable price, $3, just buying would have cost you $2.2K.

    of course film is fun and in some ways digital will never replace film.. but in the long run, it is not necessarily a "money saver" for sure.
    Notwithstanding that one does not shoot like a machine gun with film, you have ignored all the other stuff needed for digital, like computers, hard disks and software and continuous upgrades.

    Not to mention the value of time eaten up by photoshop.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Xtol19 View Post
    Notwithstanding that one does not shoot like a machine gun with film, you have ignored all the other stuff needed for digital, like computers, hard disks and software and continuous upgrades.

    Not to mention the value of time eaten up by photoshop.
    Post processing is not just meant for digital, you still need to scan your film right? And some enhancement is still required due to loss of information during scan. We can manipulate the image further in PS, film/digital is just a medium, the final product is only limited by your imagination.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by chua beng View Post
    I guess, using back a film camera kinda forces discipline back into us when it comes to composition. "When you look through the viewfinder, imagine the shot as an enlargement hanged on your wall, ask yourself is it worth, then press the trigger or skip it ..." a really good photographer ever said.

    So, film and digital each has it's advantages and reason to stay.
    you think so?

    i can tell you, based on all the film shots i see here, it is not necessarily the case that people put more thought into photography when using film.

    however, the people who put thought into photography do so for both film and digital. you are perhaps, linking causality a wee bit wrongly.

    anyways, i'm not saying that film is useless, i just think that it is a misconception that you "save money".
    Last edited by night86mare; 30th January 2010 at 12:24 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Xtol19 View Post
    Notwithstanding that one does not shoot like a machine gun with film, you have ignored all the other stuff needed for digital, like computers, hard disks and software and continuous upgrades.

    Not to mention the value of time eaten up by photoshop.
    you need to find the machinegunners. they do so for both film and digital.

    let's see - you can easily throw computers out, i used to run photoshop on a 1.6 celeron laptop with 512mb ram. it was pain in arse, but it ran. i suppose that even netbooks today could run it if you want to, just painfully.

    software - fair enough, 1K difference can BBB whatever you want.

    upgrades? upgrade what? software? i'm still using photoshop cs2.

    upgrade equipment? film lenses, good ones, cost more than digital ones. the only reason why you might assume that film users do not upgrade is because they also have a digital system. this is unfortunately, not the case if you wish to argue in that line.

    photoshop eat a lot of time? how about development? high res scanning into computer? there is a reason why people charge MORE for 16base scanning instead of 4base, or 8base.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by foxtwo View Post
    Post processing is not just meant for digital, you still need to scan your film right? And some enhancement is still required due to loss of information during scan. We can manipulate the image further in PS, film/digital is just a medium, the final product is only limited by your imagination.
    Why would I want to scan? I just give the color negs to the lab, tell them what I want to print. They do all the work, I save time. For my B&W, I print on my enlarger.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    you need to find the machinegunners. they do so for both film and digital.

    let's see - you can easily throw computers out, i used to run photoshop on a 1.6 celeron laptop with 512mb ram. it was pain in arse, but it ran. i suppose that even netbooks today could run it if you want to, just painfully.

    software - fair enough, 1K difference can BBB whatever you want.

    upgrades? upgrade what? software? i'm still using photoshop cs2.

    upgrade equipment? film lenses, good ones, cost more than digital ones. the only reason why you might assume that film users do not upgrade is because they also have a digital system. this is unfortunately, not the case if you wish to argue in that line.

    photoshop eat a lot of time? how about development? high res scanning into computer? there is a reason why people charge MORE for 16base scanning instead of 4base, or 8base.
    Film lenses and cameras are so damned cheap these days you wouldn't believe. People almost pay you to take away their Canon FD cameras and lenses, etc.

    Development doesn't take your time, unless you want to do it yourself. For color film, it's just 2 mins to give the roll to the lab. They do all the dirty work, and it's $3.50 per roll. Cheaper than a Big mac, I get the negs the next day, and I don't waste time doing PP.

    Scanning is optional. I don't like spend the $$, I just look at the negs with my loupe and tell them to print what I want. They do all the printing and dust removal, I just collect the prints.

    Machinegunners don't exist for film any more.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by Xtol19 View Post
    Film lenses and cameras are so damned cheap these days you wouldn't believe. People almost pay you to take away their Canon FD cameras and lenses, etc.

    Development doesn't take your time, unless you want to do it yourself. For color film, it's just 2 mins to give the roll to the lab. They do all the dirty work, and it's $3.50 per roll. Cheaper than a Big mac, I get the negs the next day, and I don't waste time doing PP.

    Scanning is optional. I don't like spend the $$, I just look at the negs with my loupe and tell them to print what I want. They do all the printing and dust removal, I just collect the prints.

    Machinegunners don't exist for film any more.
    1) 2 min to give roll, the lab is right at your doorstep

    2) ok, fine, you find scanning optional, not true for everyone.

    3) by film lenses, i don't mean the 50mm f/1.8 kit stuff. people actually use more than just that, e.g. L lenses, full frame lenses, the list goes on. equipment for film, technically should cost MORE because crop frame sensors mean that only centre of image is taken. i am talking about top end of course. if you talk about consumer grade lenses, then dslr lenses of that grade also cheap cheap cheap.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    3) by film lenses, i don't mean the 50mm f/1.8 kit stuff. people actually use more than just that, e.g. L lenses, full frame lenses, the list goes on. equipment for film, technically should cost MORE because crop frame sensors mean that only centre of image is taken. i am talking about top end of course. if you talk about consumer grade lenses, then dslr lenses of that grade also cheap cheap cheap.
    You ignore the topic. It says "old mechanical film cameras". Meaning fd, m42, etc. Even if you go for fd L lenses, they're hell of a lot cheaper than ef L lenses.

    Modern lenses for film and digital cost the same of course, but the topic
    means that we're buying m^3 cameras and lenses-- mechanical, manual focus, metal cameras. No machine gunners here,
    just people who compose and focus their shots carefully and deliberately.

    Again, because m^3 shooters grew up without scanning, they can live without it, hence it's optional. Yes, it needs to be done sometimes, eg to send pixs to friends via email, but it is not reqd as a matter of course, and they can live without it.
    Last edited by Xtol19; 30th January 2010 at 02:38 PM.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Old mechanical flim cameras

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    high res scanning into computer? there is a reason why people charge MORE for 16base scanning instead of 4base, or 8base.
    As a film shooter, I'd say lab scanning in Singapore is overpriced and unnecessary. To me it adds unnecessary time and cost and negates the reason to shoot film in the first place. If a photog is so keen on managing all his pixs on a computer, he shld just shoot digital and skip the time and cost of scanning.

    Quality-wise, serious film scanners know that scanning is an art, and it takes a damn good scanner, skill time and patience to get the very best scan. A lab scan by an hourly-rated worker is unlikely to give you the detail, colour accuracy or dynamic range you deserve. Hence I regard 16-base scans as not worth the $$$.

    Thus I see that film shooters who need digital output for every shot should go digital, it'll save them time and $$$. If one shoots film, then one should not obsess over scanning.
    Last edited by Xtol19; 30th January 2010 at 03:29 PM.

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