Vintage Camera Review: Bronica ETRS

All images and review by Edward Inzauto.

Just like the pros, getting “that full-frame look” is a growing desire among enthusiast amateur photographers. The topic is a trend in gear-obsessive online discussion and a bug in the brains of those who feel that only a larger sensor will allow them to fully express their creative visions. And while many have taken advantage of the fact that buying into the full-frame DSLR and mirrorless camera market is less expensive than ever, still others will find that the upfront cost of a modern full-frame camera body and compatible lenses is still a significant and insurmountable barrier to entry.

But what if you could go bigger than full-frame — even-fuller-frame, per se — for significantly less money? Well, my friend, you absolutely can. The solution you’re looking for is medium format film, and one fine entry-level option for exposing that timeless, removable, chemical “sensor” technology is the Zenza Bronica ETR line of cameras.

Editor’s Note: All processing was kindly done by the Lomography Gallery store here in NYC. You should check out all the services that they can do.

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Vintage Camera Review: Yashica Electro 35 GTN

If you play with film (and many of you readers do) you’ve probably been aware of the Yashica Electro 35 GTN at some point or another. It’s not the more famous Yashica Electro 35 GSN, but according to photographer Ade Torrent, it’s still quite a beaut.

Ade runs the Old Cameras YouTube channel and he prefers the Yashica Electro 35 GTN and an Olympus rangefinder. However, we thinks it’s a bit large. The camera has a fixed lens with an f1.7 aperture and a 45mm focal length  It’s also an aperture priority only camera.

His channel reviews vintage cameras, does giveaways, etc. And the video on the GTN, which is after the jump, is very worth the view.

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Vintage Camera Review: Polaroid Land Camera 180

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Polaroid 180 review product photos (1 of 12)ISO 2001-125 sec at f - 2.0

Something that I’ve been thinking about for a while here is getting back into doing vintage camera reviews: and one of my long time favorites has been the Polaroid Land Camera 180. This one was targeted at the higher end professional crowd, and as a result doesn’t use a battery or even have a light meter built in–much like many other Polaroid Land Cameras. To that end, that means that you don’t need to check the battery compartment to ensure that it wasn’t corroded away.

Like other Land Cameras though, you’ve got a couple of other problems to look out for: rangefinder calibration and the quality of the bellows only being two of them. You may also want to check the shutter speeds, how the lens looks, etc.

But if you manage to get your hands on a solid, working copy of the camera, hold onto it.

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Finding Beautiful Moments in Vintage Cameras

Sweden Finds

All images used with permission from Lewis Watts.

Lewis Watts is a vintage camera collector; and sometimes he goes after cameras with old film inside, develops them, and finds incredible photos. He’s always had a love of photography since buying a Minolta X-300. The excitement of waiting for the film to develop is what he says got him hooked. Eventually, he fell in love with medium format and started to develop B&W film himself. He’s now working with a Wet Plate camera.

In addition to his love of photography, Lewis has had a love of history too. So he started buying cameras from the early 1900s to around the 1960s. If there are rolls inside the cameras, he develops them to see what’s on them. “The only thing is, you never know if somebody has exposed it to light, what conditions it’s been kept it, so it’s very anxious work, because you never know what’s going to come out,” says Lewis. Recently, he came across a roll in a Kodak Brownie with beautiful images of a family and their pets enjoying the winter snow. “The most recent roll, with the couple walking their pets, I really didn’t expect anything because when I bought the Brownie from eBay, there was a photo of the back open with the film in it, and obviously I wasn’t hopeful, but I got 4 frames, which was amazing.”

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Awesome DIY Vintage Camera Lamp Project

7151250641_f91c4d6e42_cPhotos by Stacie Stacie Stacie. Used with CC BY permission.

If you’re a vintage camera collector or if you just love diving into a really good do-it-yourself project, here’s an awesome and useful one that you can get into to distract you from those winter blues.

Popular New York City-based blog Stars for Streetlights published a tutorial on how to take your old – and obviously non-functioning, since it wouldn’t be right to use working ones – film cameras and turn them into a really neat “upcycled” camera table lamp last year. Taking inspiration from the camera lamps she’s seen on the Internet, like Etsy seller Dan Riordan’s $150 Polaroid Camera lamps and Anthropologie’s vintage-looking Tripod lamp, blog author Stacie stitches together a modern lamp using some old cameras from her own collection.

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Review: Figosa Mirrorless and Vintage Camera Leather Strap

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Figosa Black Vintage strap (4 of 5)ISO 2001-125 sec at f - 5.6

Figosa is an extremely new company in the camera strap world. Based in Italy, and manufacturing their products from genuine Italian Leather, they are initially targeting users of film cameras and mirrorless digital cameras. Italian leather has always been known for its excellent quality and it is often always worked with by hand. This leather lends its qualities to their first strap designed for vintage cameras and mirrorless interchangeable lens cams as well. It can come in different colors, but we went for the conservative black look. The overall quality and look earned the strap a special mention in our recent camera strap roundup.

But should it be the next strap on your camera?

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3 Tips to Make Vintage Lenses Look Wonderful on Digital Cameras

Vintage lenses on digital cameras render a beautiful look.

Fact: Vintage lenses are superior to modern lenses in most ways. Modern post-production is so good that it can remove any flaws in a photo. However, if you want to engineer them back in, it becomes more expensive and annoying. Indeed, vintage lenses give you a look you can’t get with modern lenses anymore. And because of that, we’re giving you tips on how to make the most of them.

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Terry Godlove Converts Stunning Vintage Lenses to New Camera Mounts

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“There are lots of readily available adapters—but I find they offer no advantage over a standard helicoid and mounting plate”, says Terry F. Godlove. A professor of philosophy and religion at Hofstra University, Terry loves tinkering around with vintage lenses, to makes their mounts compatible with modern mirrorless cameras.

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Be Sure to Read This Before Buying a Vintage Point and Shoot Camera

If you’re in the market for a vintage point and shoot, our latest original infographic covers everything you need to know before taking the plunge.

Vintage point and shoot cameras are some of the most fun to shoot with. They are great entry points for photographers interested in shooting film who find more traditional vintage cameras to be intimidating. As their name suggests, simply point your camera at your subject and shoot away. You won’t have to worry about messing around with camera settings. If you’re looking to purchase a vintage point and shoot camera of your very own, here are all the things that you should be mindful of.

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6 Rangefinder Style Cameras With Vintage Charm, Modern Performance

If you’re looking for a camera with gorgeous retro styling, but you don’t want to give up performance, you need to see these Rangefinder Style cameras.

If you long for a camera that can offer classic retro looks, but you don’t want to give up performance, the Rangefinder style cameras we have rounded up for you here will fit the bill perfectly. There are Rangefinder style cameras that fit all types of budgets, and there are APS-C, Full Frame, and Medium Format offerings to choose from. All of these Rangefinder style cameras look amazing, and they will help you create images you’ll be proud of. Check out six of our favorite Rangefinder style cameras after the break.

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New Vintage: Older Digital Nikon Cameras That Can Still Do a Job Today

There are some older digital Nikon cameras that can still do a top job today, and the best part is that they can be picked up at affordable prices.

We recently took a look at some old but gold Canon digital cameras, and now it’s time to look at some new modern vintage digital Nikon cameras as well. During the DSLR wars, Nikon went head to head with Canon, and they produced some real gems that will go down as some of the best digital cameras ever produced. If you have been thinking about picking up a DSLR with a few miles on the clock so that you can play around, or use it as a workhorse camera that won’t let you down, click on past the break. There you will see which older digital Nikon cameras can still produce glorious images and which ones would still be great cameras to invest in today.

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The Four Best Vintage Contax Cameras That Won’t Break the Bank

There’s more to the Contax brand than the insanely expensive cult compacts T2 and T3, as these cameras surely prove.

A good portion of film photographers today must be familiar with Contax through the insanely expensive and popular Contax T2 and T3 compact cameras. However, there’s more to the historic camera model-turned-brand that hails all the way back to 1932 Dresden. Whether you’re interested in scoring a more reasonably priced Contax or simply want to familiarize yourself with the other noteworthy models, we think this list will be of great use to you.

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Vintage Under $150: 5 Point and Shoot Film Cameras You Should Try

Point and shoot film cameras are great for getting started with shooting film without putting a dent on your wallet.

For a lot of photographers today, vintage point and shoot cameras often serve as the gateway drug into film photography. They’re compact, easy to use, and often inexpensive. Some of these cameras also produce or enhance a distinct look of nostalgia that film photography has come to be known for. So, it’s not surprising that so many vintage point and shoots make it to lists of recommended film cameras for beginners. Whether you’re looking for one or two point and shoot film cameras to get started with, or add to your growing collection of vintage compacts, these are some of the awesome and affordable models you can grab today.

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Beautiful and Affordable: 7 Vintage Soviet Lenses to Adapt to Your Camera

If you want to get the authentic vintage look for your digital snaps, these beautiful and budget-friendly vintage Soviet lenses are your best bet.

The dreamy look of retro photography continues to be a popular aesthetic even for digital photography, and nothing is better than achieving it using the real deal. Vintage Soviet lenses make great options for adapting to your digital cameras because there’s still a fair number of them available for cheap. To help you make the best choices, we’ve done a bit of looking around for some vintage Soviet lenses to score today.

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These 5 Vintage Hasselblad Cameras Are Great, and Here’s Why

Today, Hasselblad is known for its high-end, digital medium format offerings, but we can still grab some iconic vintage models for a premium medium format experience.

Swedish camera maker Hasselblad has a long and colorful contribution to the history of photography, making it one of the most popular brands for medium format photography for both film and digital. If the hefty price tags of the digital Hasselblad cameras have been keeping you from shooting with one, you might consider grabbing a vintage model instead. Now, more than ever, is a great time; film photography continues to thrive, with more and more film cameras getting a new lease on life.

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How to Mount Vintage Lenses to Modern Cameras Using Adapters

Looking for a guide on using vintage lenses on your modern camera? David Krooshof has you covered with his in-depth how-to.

Previously, we saw here an explanation about using vintage lenses on your new camera, including a video testing them for the bokeh. Let’s look into the world of adapters that are needed if you’d like to use retro glass. These adapters come in the form of rings with one end connecting to your specific camera, and the other accepting a certain lens.

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This Fujifilm Camera and Vintage Lens Help Jennifer Carter Create Unique Concert Photos

All images by Jennifer Carter. Used with permission.

Jennifer Carter fell into concert photography through circumstance. Her love for music and passion for photography were brought together and she hasn’t looked back since. Her images provoke connection and feeling, almost to the point you can hear and feel the music from her subjects. Borrowing from the best of both worlds, Jennifer uses a combination of modern camera bodies and vintage lenses. Intrigued by this approach, we caught up with her to learn more about her work.

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Anyone Still Have These Cool, Vintage Girl Scout Cameras?

These vintage Girl Scout cameras will make you want to dig in your grandparents’ basement or attic.  

The Girl Scouts of yester-decades sure had some cool stuff back in the day, including some commemorative or special edition Girl Scout cameras. We spotted a few of them in a post by Redditor MrRabinowitz during our customary Reddit rounds, and we’ve been wondering where have these been all our lives?

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Vintage Film Camera Review: Pentacon Six TL (6×6 Square Format)

There are only a few cameras that have been coined “an SLR on steroids” in the medium format camera world, and one of those is the Pentacon Six TL. The Pentacon Six TL is a medium format SLR camera similar in style to its more famous rival the Pentax 67. It doesn’t use interchangeable backs but instead opts for one of the quirkiest ways of loading a camera perhaps ever. Shooting square format 6×6 images, it’s also prone to problems like frame overlap unless you’re careful. Though if you can work with its quirks, you’ll have yourself a solid SLR camera that is reliable otherwise.

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The Jollylook: A Vintage Style Instax Film Camera Made from Cardboard

Every time a new Instax camera gets announced it’s a genuinely great reason to get excited: and a new Kickstarter called the Jollylook wants to inspire to many others. The Jollylook is a foldout camera made from recycled paper and cardboard with some glass elements for the lenses and the shutter and aperture are made of thick paper and laminated cardboard.

Quirky, but indeed kind of cool too!

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Kimi Camera Straps are Made from Vintage Kimono Silk and Leather

Lots of camera straps these days are typically made of really nice leather, canvas or sailing rope. But a brave new Kickstarter is trying to do things a bit different. Kimi Camera, run by William Roy, is trying to create camera straps made of vintage Kimono silk and leather. This is completely different from everything else out there and quite honestly is sort of refreshing.

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