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Mike Eckman
38 followers -
aka Constrictor
aka Constrictor

38 followers
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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Nice review Adam! As with you, I struggled to find enough to really say about the Olympus, but I guess thats one of the advantages of having a History section, I get to do some honest to goodness research that perhaps other people might not know, but on the contrary, I don't know that many people read that stuff anyway.

It seems that everyone who is new to the OM-series comment on the location of the shutter speed dial. My theory on this is that this is something that cannot be fully appreciated on the first, second, or even 10th roll of film.

My guess is that in the 70s when people like you and were paying full price for these cameras and not scoring them for $15 in resale shops, that when this was your one and only camera, you'd grow to appreciate, and even enjoy it.

I also give Olympus credit for putting the shutter speed dial closest to the body, and the aperture rings farthest away on the lens, eliminating any fumbling that might occur with the two rings next to each other. This is a minor complaint I have with the Nikkormat FTn which also has the shutter dial on a ring around the lens mount. Since most NIkkor lenses have the aperture ring near the lens base, this results in having both rings close together.

In any case, as you found, the Olympus is a great camera. It's chock full of state of the art technology, and holy cow, that viewfinder!

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
These are my favorite kinds of reviews on this site. Not only are you writing about an obscure and often forgotten model, but you did it while resurrecting a dead film format as well! I love the look of these images and find the center sharpness in the third image to be outstanding! I agree that the Rolls gives a really cool period correct look to the image. The biggest complaint I would have is it's inconsistency. Is it possible you have a film flatness issue? Some images are very sharp, others not so much. In either case, well done! I can't wait to read more! :)

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Very cool! Considering that this was a homebrew recreation of a very difficult process, plus, I dont know that ANY 42 year old color slide film would have looked any better, this is certainly promising! Once Mr. Fuller perfects his process, and people get a chance to shoot "less expired" Kodachrome, the results should continue to get better and better!

Thanks for taking one of the first dives into the Kodachrome 2017 pool! I know developing this stuff isn't cheap!

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Its funny how much of a hodge podge these point and shoot autofocus cameras can be. I had near perfect results with my Canon AF35 from 1979 and this super awesome Nikon AF3 that I paid a ton of money for, but then other auto focus cameras like the Konica AiBORG, and Canon AF35ML were completely all over the place with out of focus shots.

It seems this Olympus is capable of some really sharp shots under ideal conditions, but those ideal conditions don't happen as ideally as you might like.

What a pity.

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Wow, you weren't kidding. These shots are quite impressive, and considerably better than those from my No.2 Brownie which showed significant softness and aberrations near the edges. Your selection of film was spot on. I have found Potra 160 to have very good latitude and very good on box cameras like this with questionable shutter speeds.

Great review, but now I want a Goodwin. Dangit.

Maybe one day you'll find some real 116 film to use in this camera! :)

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Wow! Those timed exposures in bright daylight are very cool! You're so used to seeing those in nighttime shots, its not often that someone does that in daylight. Then again, its not often someone shoots ASA 6 speed film! :)

I also really love the curved stairs image in Chinatown. The lighting is perfect and the sharpness is sharp, sharp, sharp!!!! Well done!

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Very nicely done Adam! This camera in my mind is the epitome of the "Quirky (and Frugal) Guy with a Camera (and a family)" mantra! I love the pics, especially of the cannon (after talking about photography so much, it is hard to type 3 n's in the word cannon) and the big white mansion.

Film plane flatness definitely seems to be an issue. A question is that some folding cameras can have an issue when you extend and retract the lens barrel where it can create a suction inside of the camera distorting the film. Is it possible that in some cases, while extending and retracting the lens, there was some type of vacuum inside of the camera that caused the film plane to move?

On second thought, its probably unlikely that this camera is so tightly sealed that it could create any type of internal pressure, but you never know. Maybe a third roll of this camera with extremely gentle retractions of the lens might return more consistently sharp images.

Who knows, and who cares, I love the randomness of these images. Many digital Photoshoppers actually sit there in front of a computer trying to recreate the effects you did naturally.

Well done, and a great review!

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
I really enjoyed shooting with my Argus Seventy Five and after seeing the expanded capabilities of the Forty, I think I may see one in my future as I also have a nice supply of 620 "laying around".

In regards to 620, I completely sympathize with your disdain for the format. It offers no improvement or upgrade whatsoever to standard 120 and was designed with only Kodak's greed in mind.

On the other hand, I am excited to see you finally give it a chance and now, just maybe, you'll have a Medalist in your collection to try out! :)

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
It took me a while to get to this review, but well done Adam. For every blog post from someone declaring that Leicas, Hassys, and Rolleis are the best cameras ever made, there are posts like this that prove even the most rudimentary of cameras are capable of something. I applaud your desire to share results from cameras that likely haven't been used since probably before the Internet even existed! While it might have been a challenge to come up with enough positive things to say about this camera, these toy cameras from the 1950s still played a role in photographic history. Tons of kids had these, or cameras very similar, and its cool that you took the time to cut film for one, shoot it, and then post your results and thoughts! :)

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Mike Eckman commented on a post on Blogger.
Well done Adam!  What a beautiful camera you have there.  Your example looks to be in wonderful shape and I love your images.  It is amazing to me how consistently sharp all of these Retinas are.  It really does not seem to matter which lens they have, they're all good.  I've never seen one in person with the Ektar lens, but I know they're far less common, so your example is definitely not something you see every day.  

I love all of the little details that Kodak AG put into this camera as you mentioned.  The dual aperture scales are there so the photographer could easily see it in both portrait and landscape orientation.

Although I am sure you already know this, but don't let the "uncoated" lens keep you from using some color film in this bad boy.  I've shot many rolls of color in pre-war uncoated lenses like this one and consistently get great shots as well!  
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