I’ve been trolling eBay, looking at film-camera listings ending soon. You sometimes pick up bargains that way. It’s led to a few camera purchases, which will in time lead to reviews here. I was hoping to find some point-and-shoot 35mm cameras that others haven’t already reviewed, and I did find one, but primarily bought other kinds of cameras.
The first camera is this Nikon One Touch 200, from 1991. Unfortunately, its auto winder doesn’t work, making the camera useless. The seller refunded my money and told me to just throw the camera away, which I’ll do now that I’ve photographed it for this post.
The next camera is a 35mm SLR: the Mamiya/Sekor 500 DTL. This is a basic match-needle SLR with a 1/500 sec. shutter. I owned one 15 years ago or so, but it broken in more than one way and I eventually got rid of it without putting film through it. This one is clean, with hardly a mark or scratch. The only cosmetic flaw I find is the flaking lettering on the pentaprism. Unfortunately, I found a corroded battery inside. I’ll clean out the corrosion and hope that the meter still works. But I’m going to shoot and review this camera even if the meter is dead, because the camera is all mechanical otherwise.
Next I found this Kodak Duaflex, a pseudo-TLR for 620 film. I’ve had any number of opportunities to buy one of these but have never opened my wallet because I’ve owned two Duaflex IIs (review here), which are just a later version of the same camera, albeit with a pop-up hood over the viewfinder. But this original Duaflex had something I’ve never seen before: a cover for the viewfinder and lenses. It hooks on below the taking lens, and snaps on in the corners behind the viewfinder. It also came in its original box.
Next I found this oddball 35mm camera, the Sears Tower 41. Mamiya made it for Sears. It features a 43mm f/2.8 lens and, as you can see, a prominent reflector dish for an AG-1 flashbulb. This is a rangefinder camera with shutter-priority autoexposure. Mike Eckman reviewed one; see it here.
Finally, I did end up buying one point and shoot. This Vivitar 500PZ is said to be the same camera under the skin as the Leica Mini Zoom, although both cameras were manufactured in Japan by Matsushita (Panasonic). This mid-90s 35mm auto-everything camera features an f/4-7.6 35-70mm zoom lens.
I’ll put film through these cameras in the months to come.