Decent film camera?

Started Jan 5, 2013 | Questions thread
Guy Parsons
Guy Parsons Forum Pro • Posts: 30,331
Re: Decent film camera?

skpman wrote:

I'm interested in buying a cheap film camera to toy around with... but have no knowledge of film cameras.

I'm not looking to build a whole new lens set or anything.. hopefully stay under $100 max.

Can somebody recommend a few good models I can look up on ebay?

thank you!

First up decide if you want to use slide film or colour negative film with prints, or B&W film and then find out where to buy it and who can process it and at what cost.

Film cameras are getting old now and repairs are usually impossible for parts. So you have to seek a seemingly well cared for camera and hope for the best.

System cameras are of course the most flexible with a wide range of lenses that can be added. Otherwise you are looking at cameras with built-in zoom lens if that's what you need. With all cameras make sure that there is some sensible return/repair policy as old cameras can develop light leaks as seals deteriorate and you never find out until the first roll is developed.

Be aware that most digital cameras of 8MP or more can deliver results that look better than 35mm film could do.

I stopped using film in 2002 and never went back despite a drawer full of cameras and lenses, the freezer still has bunches of film waiting to be never used. In the latter film years I was scanning to print or computer display, but the dust, hells bells, film is such dusty stuff no matter how careful, digital solved all that.

Saying all that, the camera that I used to use was a Nikon N8008s (F801s) and it was superb. The simpler Casio built Nikon FE-10 was pretty good for a cheapo Nikon, no auto focus with that one.The cheapest SLR I liked was my wife's Pentax MZ-50/ZX-50, some of my old notes on that here . With its standard 28-80mm lens it worked very nicely indeed.

Also check in advance what batteries the camera uses and see if they are still available and at what cost.

As a silly aside, be aware that film really is digital stuff, and digital sensors are really analog.

Regards...... Guy

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