I went down to the Dallas area's bi-monthly computer flea market Saturday just to see if there was anything interesting. Although I did come across a tiny 2003 Sony laptop computer for $10 (PCG-N505VX), it was the photographic find that I'm the happiest about! At one of the several "junk" dealers tables, I ran across several photographic items, including a Minolta X-370. That was mildly interesting, as was the Asahi Pentax Takumar 135mm. Then I saw what I thought was an always common, Rokkor 50mm/f1.7, or maybe 2.0, but NO; it turned out to be an MC 50mm/f1.4! The guy wanted $10 for it. I was able to calm myself down long enough to find it's backcap, a ThinkPad power adapter that was worth the $15 that I paid for both.
Now, I'm going to have (kicking and screaming) be forced to buy a suitable Minolta camera to mount it on. But of course, that is obviously going to be an XE-7...... woe is me..... whatever am I going to do about this terrible state of affairs!!!
Husband, Father of Two, Teacher, Old Coach
Loves: A/V, Photography/Cameras, Computers
"Cut my photographic teeth" on a Voigtlander Bessamatic
Post by Dan Vincent on Nov 12, 2016 12:11:47 GMT -5
Don't get the idea that the most expensive camera is the best for you.
My first Minolta was a used but like new XE-7. It was an absolute delight to use. I still have it and it still works.
After getting to know the XE-7 I decided to go all out and bought a new XK. Although it was a technical wonder I found the XE-7 was quicker to handle and the XK stayed on a tripod at my house.
When I started doing magazine articles on RC model airplanes I was constantly switching between normal and telephoto lenses to shoot models on the tarmac and those in the air.
I then put a normal lens on the XK and the longer zoom lens on the XE-7 but after walking around airports for some four day events I started to think about reducing my equipment weight.
I found a really nice Minolta XD-11 and fell in love with it. Not only was it more compact and much lighter, it had a very bright viewfinder and it felt very comfortable in my hands. About a year later I fell into a great deal on a Minolta X-700 and snapped it up.
The X-700 turned out to be a fantastic tool for the articles I was doing and wouldn't pass up another if it is in good condition.
If you think about it, when you click the shutter the camera body becomes a tunnel between the lens and your film of choice. I can get the same picture at 1/125 sec from a Minolta SRT-101 as from an expensive XK.
When it comes to lens quality a fast 1.2 lens will cost more than a 1.4 and a 1.7 is even less. Since most of us find that every lens has a "Sweet Spot" near the center of the f-stop range you may find your slower speed lens may out-perform a more expensive lens for sharpness, color and contrast. My Rokkor 1.4 produces flatter contrast while the slower lenses produce more vivid shots of colorful things.
Almost everything in photography is a trade-off and you sometimes have to give up one quality to gain another.
One neat test is to tape a newspaper to the side of your house, in shaded sunlight, and take a shot at each f-stop and see how they compare. The lines will also show distortion and barreling. I recently bought an adapter for my Minolta lenses to my Nikon digital SLR's so I can do a lot of tests without having to pay for film developing.