Zeiss Ikon Teleskop 1.7x Adapter

This post is all out of order, but I am impressed by a peculiar piece of hardware I picked up recently. More specifically a peculiar piece of camera hardware for a peculiar camera. The camera in question? The (deep breath) Zeiss Ikon Contaflex II.

IMG_20170818_121404_994

A camera that I had no idea ever existed not that long ago. Stunning fixed lens SLR camera released in 1954 that is magnificent in its own right and I intend to write a full post on it for KEH.com soon. The hardware? The (deep breath) Zeiss Ikon Teleskop 1.7x Adapter made just for this camera and its predecessor, the non-light metered Contaflex. Pictures cannot possibly do the build quality and feel in hand justice on both pieces. Just what you would expect from German engineering and manufacture. And beautiful. If a fine vintage watch could morph into a camera this would be the result.

What is more amazing is that both the camera and the teleskop adapter each cost less than $60 each. Both a screaming bargain by any measure.

In this humble Industrial Engineer’s opinion, this may be the most beautiful piece of camera equipment I own. And I own some beauties. Add to that the fact that this camera has a feel in hand that no other camera I have owned or held can match… Ok. Enough about the camera. The camera itself provides remarkable IQ (duh, Zeiss) so I was curious whether or not the adapter would add or detract from the experience.

It adds.

Aesthetics:

This adapter makes an already amazing looking camera even more amazing looking.

Build:

Amazingly this 2 piece (slide on bracket and screw on lens) feels like all of one when mounted on to the camera. No wiggles. No flexing. No sliding. It even feels a bit more balanced since the built in lens sits so flush on the front of the camera.

Installation:

Set the built in lens to infinity. Slide on the bracket. Screw in the lens. Focus now moved to the easier to find by feel focus ring on the adapter and shutter speed and aperture control on the front of the camera is retained.

Removal:

Add step of depressing release button at the bottom of the bracket and then simply reverse the steps above.

Use:

Just like normal and even the exposure needs no adjustments as it is compensated for with the lens design. Now instead of a 45mm f/2.8 you have a 76.5mm f/2.8.

IQ:

The native lens is nothing short of amazing and after getting the first test roll back the adapter only enhances the flexibility of an already stellar lens with only a slight drop in sharpness. There is even an interesting almost Helios 44-2 swirliness to the bokeh under certain conditions.

I close here. Here is an online gallery for this adapter and below are samples from the first roll.

Happy shooting.

-ELW

Scanner files: First Roll Through the Russian Tank Zenit E w/ Kodak Gold 200

First test roll through a recently acquired $15 Zenit E that I unwittingly tried to destroy by attaching a Takumar M42 screw mount to it (Do not ever do this as it quickly jammed itself on the body. There is a pin on the lens that will jam in one of the screw-heads on the face of the Zenit’s mount.) followed by a camera store fix visit with no change followed by my own brief berserker episode w/ a .009 feeler gauge that managed to save camera and lens.

IMG_20170718_174902_779

Now matched w/ the intended era correct favorite lens of mine, the Helios 44 2. Continue reading “Scanner files: First Roll Through the Russian Tank Zenit E w/ Kodak Gold 200”

Scanner files: Contax G1.. and G2 too.

There will be more written about these cameras. Not sure if it will be here or as a contributing writer at KEH Camera’s blog. But there will be much more written about the Contax G1. Why? On a high-level it is so good that…

  1. I am already on film roll 4 in a weeks time.
  2. I have not used any digital gear since I received it.
  3. It prompted me to do something I had no intention of doing. Getting a G2.

_DSC4529

Continue reading “Scanner files: Contax G1.. and G2 too.”

This Old Camera: Konica C35 AF2

So I walk into Southeastern Camera…

(The beginning to many a story.)

…and ask, “What do you have in new that is film, auto exposure, with a built in lens and costs around $50.” To which Dennis replies, “I have your next camera right here, Eric.”

This would freak me out, but similar exchanges have become quite common there.

And it was marked at $50 exactly. After a quick flickr sample shot search I was sold. This is not my first film Konica purchased here. Darth Vader’s disco ball helmet (aka AiBORG) preceded it.

_img8314

But other than being film, AF, otherworldly consistent in image output, and having Konica written on them these two cameras could not be more different. Where the AiBORG is a mash up of 80s form and function oddity born in the early 90s and full blown automation the C35 AF2 (and AF before it) is 70s function and design minimalism birthed in 1980. Where some aspects of the AiBORG beg the question why, everything about the C35 just makes sense. I do enjoy the AiBORGs quirkiness, but I would choose the C35 any day. The only worthwhile advantage the AiBORG offers over the C35 is zoom and that is not worth it. I still enjoy owning (moreso than shooting) the AiBORG, but it has one glaring fault. Its viewfinder is like looking through a hole punched through a potato with a pencil. The one on the C35 is a joy by comparison with it’s big and bright vantage point. It even has a parallax adjusted view box for close framing. In use it feels much like my beloved rangefinders._DSC4335Which it seems to actually be… but with AF. On to minuses, pluses, and sample galleries and link to more images. Continue reading “This Old Camera: Konica C35 AF2”

Good new. Great second hand. Sony FE 50mm f/1.8

One of the lenses that Sony has released in the last year that interested me was this lens. (The other being the instant favorite 85mm f/1.8.) Why? It is 50mm. And I am a sucker for a 50mm sub f/2.0 prime lens.

20160726_202345

And now Sony was offering one at an unusually affordable price… for Sony. $249. Not quite the bargain that the $599 85mm f/1.8 is, but I beat that price by finding one used for $156. Even better. So I heard a few murmurs about this lens online so let’s address those first.

Continue reading “Good new. Great second hand. Sony FE 50mm f/1.8”

This Old Camera: Olympus OM-10 Sample Photos Added

Sample photos added.

Eric L. Woods

Sample photos added to the gallery at the bottom.

Soon there will be an Olympus OM-10 This Old Camera Post. A few things.

How? Felt led to visit SE Camera as I wanted another 35mm camera.

Why? Always in the market for another film camera, especially pedestrian 35mm ones as they are often in excellent condition and quite affordable.

What happened? While talking with Alex I noticed an Olympus OM-10 with my all time favorite 50mm focal lens (f/1.8 will do nicely) sitting on the counter. A few minutes later I had purchased it and a roll of Rollei RPX 400.

What now? Below are some photos of the camera and once I work through the first roll I will update with samples of what it can produce. If it produces images anywhere near as good looking as the camera itself it will be a win.

View original post