2018 has been an amazing yr for the location. My superb group of writers and I’ve labored exhausting to place out worthwhile digital camera tradition content material, and in the previous twelve months greater than two million readers have taken the time to learn our phrases. That quantity makes me very glad.
Our hottest articles are digital camera evaluations, and this yr we’ve shot some huge names. Cult favorites just like the Yashica T collection are bookended by deep dives into the machines of the Massive Pink Dot. We’ve coated a number of the greatest cameras ever made, and a few of the worst, and in both case we’ve penned evaluations that entertain and inform.
In fact, all of those articles can be meaningless with out you. Thanks for studying and for the greater than six thousand reader feedback which were submitted. Whether or not these feedback are typed to say we’re the most effective images website round (many thanks) or to inform us we’re absolute morons (a number of much less thanks), we recognize the suggestions.
I assumed it’d be enjoyable to try each digital camera we reviewed this yr. So let’s do it. Take pleasure in this record, open a number of articles in separate tabs, share them with associates, or save those you could have missed for a Sunday morning learn. We hope you take pleasure in them as a lot as we loved writing them. Thanks once more.
Yashica T4 Zoom – We began 2018 off fairly robust when Josh reviewed the inexpensive and much zoomier model of the favored Yashica T4 in January. He shot the factor throughout Los Angeles and got here away with some very particular opinions on each this digital camera and right now’s point-and-shoot tradition. Learn the evaluation.
Contax G2 – Going from power to power, I began the brand new yr capturing a digital camera that was considered one of my favorites of 2017, the Contax G2. I purchased this unused instance from a collector good friend, and it was in impressively good situation. After a yr of capturing it with the 45mm Planar, the 28mm Biogon, and even the much-maligned Vario-Sonnar, I lastly penned my G2 digital camera assessment. Learn it right here.
Ricoh 500G – In line with the Informal Photophile custom of spotlighting even cameras which have gone principally forgotten, our pal Dustin found and ran with a particular little rangefinder, the Ricoh 500G. He stated it properly, “…the tiny Ricoh 500 G is a relatively undiscovered secret. It has everything you need without any of the trendy bullshit.” See what it’s all about (plus Dustin’s sometimes wonderful pattern photographs) in his full assessment.
Minolta X-570 and Maxxum 7000 – This evaluate from Jeb covers the top and starting of two essential eras in the lifecycle of Minolta. The X-570 was the endpoint in Minolta’s guide focus SLR timeline, and the Maxxum 7000 their first autofocus SLR (certainly the primary profitable and succesful autofocus SLR ever bought). His poetic tackle the altering of know-how is likely one of the greatest deep dives on the location. Learn it and see.
Minolta Minoltina P – Oh, look, one other Minolta and one other digital camera nobody talks about. The Minoltina P is an uncommon machine, an EV viewfinder digital camera that’s concerning the measurement of a half-frame Olympus, however exposes full frames. It’s tiny, with a pleasant lens, an correct mild meter that requires no batteries, and a unusual analog show on prime. It’s additionally a very beautiful digital camera. Simply take a look at it. It’s very fairly.
Olympus 35RD – Dustin has a factor for the basic fixed-lens rangefinders that Japanese corporations have been churning out in droves through the 1970s. He’s shot all of them and reviewed most of them right here on the location. However his favourite could be the Olympus 35RD. This amazingly compact digital camera has a pointy lens, near-perfect ergonomics, and a legendary pedigree. It’s additionally considerably uncommon and the final of the basic 40mm rangefinders that Olympus would produce. Particulars in his full assessment.
Nikon FM3a – This one was particular. The final devoted guide focus 35mm movie SLR Nikon ever made ended up being one of many storied firm’s greatest. It’s the right Nikon SLR. Benefiting from shut to 5 many years of SLR manufacturing expertise, the FM3a is an ultra-refined and finally superior digital camera for the photographic purist. It’s the solely SLR I want and the one one I actually need, lately (I’m nonetheless searching – new and unused with all papers and field, when you’ve got one). Learn all about it in my assessment.
Lomography Lomo’Immediate Sq. – Seeing now that I adopted up the Nikon FM3a with the Lomo’Immediate Sq. is humorous. I really like on the spot cameras. I can’t be certain I liked this one, however at the very least it ended up being a practical, sturdy, and enjoyable little machine. And hey, it made actually beautiful photographs on Instax Sq. movie! That’s not dangerous. Learn my full assessment right here.
Canon Canonet QL17 GIII – The quintessential common rangefinder, the Canonet QL17 GIII has been reviewed on this website twice. I wrote my impressions of the machine in the earliest days of CP, however Chris did a much better job this yr. His lengthy expertise with the digital camera actually exhibits in this writeup, and his pattern photographs make the case for the Canonet’s reputation. See them, and extra, in the complete evaluate.
Alpa 10D – Alpa is a reputation that not many photograph geeks know in 2018. Lately, the Swiss model produces outrageously costly giant format cameras and multi-thousand-dollar tripods (and extra). Within the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s they made extra simply recognizable machines – rangefinders and SLRs. The unifying theme amongst all of those creations is impeccable construct and no expense spared. The Alpa 10D is an odd digital camera in each means, and capturing one was a deal with (if not a little bit of a problem). My full evaluate has all the small print on this uncommon and fascinating SLR.
Mamiya Press Camera Tremendous 23 – Chris determined to take this monumental digital camera to a Porsche launch occasion on the New York Worldwide Auto Present, firmly touchdown him nicely outdoors his consolation zone. This trial by hearth confirmed fairly shortly what the Mamiya Tremendous Press is all about, and his discomfort resulted in some actually superb pictures of New York Metropolis, world-class cars, and a few surprisingly robust road photographs. See them in his full assessment.
Nikon Nikonos – Much less a assessment of a single digital camera and extra a retrospective of the various superb dive cameras from Nikon, my article on the Nikonos and Calypso cameras is amongst my favourite items I’ve written for CP. It covers the start of the Calypso digital camera (designed in half by Jacques Cousteau) via the guide focus Nikon designs, and on to the one underwater autofocus SLR ever constructed. Add a splash of James Bond, a drizzle of pattern photographs, and a deluge of historic context, and it’s a deep dive certainly. Bounce in and splash round a bit.
Nikon FM – How is a taco the identical as a Nikon FM? Josh is aware of, and he tells us all about it in his evaluate of the straightforward, mechanical SLR from Nikon. The FM could also be all of the 35mm movie digital camera that anybody might ever want, and that’s coming from somebody who commonly shoots much more difficult and “advanced” cameras. Works for him, perhaps it’ll be just right for you. Discover out.
Fed 5b – Jeb evaluations a variety of Russian cameras right here on CP, and he is aware of his stuff. On this article from the springtime he provides us a fast historical past lesson on Fed, and by extension, the united states itself. This “beer can rangefinder” was a pleasure and in addition a ache, however not in the methods chances are you’ll assume. A digital camera whose capturing expertise could be summed up by the phrase “thirty-six maybes” is sure to try this. See the highs and lows (and the various surprises) of capturing the Fed 5b in his assessment.
Olympus O-Product – The Olympus O-Product is the kind of digital camera that we reside for, right here at CP. Uncommon, unusual, and uncompromising, it’s the product of 1 man’s radical design philosophy and a very fascinating digital camera. That aluminum physique; that ridiculous on/off change; the audacious statements stamped into its physique. The O-Product is ridiculous, and I adore it. The complete evaluation is right here.
Contax IIa – I’ve lengthy been a fan of Zeiss. Their optics create photographs that simply have the best kind of search for my capturing. I’m such a fan I truly created an experimental Zeiss fanatic web site (which continues to be round, and really dormant). Shocking then, that it took me so lengthy to shoot a Contax IIa, that firm’s greatest basic rangefinder. Outfitted with a Sonnar 50mm F/1.5, it’s made a number of the pictures I’m most happy with, and utilizing it’s a pure tactile pleasure. Samples and impressions in the complete evaluation.
Leica M-A – Chris had by no means owned a Leica, so I assumed it might be enjoyable to ship him their latest (and considered one of their costliest) movie cameras, the M-A. As somebody completely resistant to the Leica model mystique, his impressions of the M-A (and Leica, writ giant) are concise and trustworthy in a method that’s fairly distinctive. Learn one Leica evaluate and also you’ve learn ’em all, proper? Perhaps not in this case.
Olympus XA – The Olympus XA is one among my private favourite movie cameras. It’s every thing I would like in a machine – tiny, tremendous sharp lens, guide management, aperture-priority. So think about how irritated I’m that Josh reviewed it, and I didn’t. What an injustice. Who’s operating this place anyway? Learn the evaluation, I assume, however don’t let him know you loved it.
Agat 18Okay – Jeb traveled by means of 5 European nations with the half-frame Agat 18Okay movie digital camera, and I gained’t lie – I anticipated him to hate this factor. It’s plastic, low cost, fiddly, and weird. Think about my shock (and perhaps his, as properly) when his pattern photographs turned out to be merely beautiful. Positive, the sprawling vistas and charming old-world cities of Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Poland definitely helped issues alongside. However the Agat 18Okay made these pictures and proved me fallacious, and Jeb did an ideal job reviewing it.
MiNT InstantKon RF70 Instax Vast – Again in the fantastic days of summer time, the Hong Kong-based prompt digital camera firm, MiNT, despatched us a prototype of their InstantKon RF70 for testing. I shot it for every week in quite a lot of circumstances, and it’s an excellent digital camera. However that doesn’t imply it’s a digital camera for everybody. Utilizing Fuji’s Instax Vast movie, it makes prompt prints with full guide management, one thing that’s fairly uncommon in the moment area. My full evaluation is right here.
Leica R5 – A few of my favourite articles right here on CP are those that transport the reader to a spot and time. I attempted to try this with my evaluation of the Leica R5. Half in-depth assessment, half journey journal, the article follows me and the Leica on a day journey to Martha’s Winery, a summertime island vacation spot off the coast of Massachusetts. There’s scorching donuts, sailboats, sandy shores, and… tech specs. Test it out, and convey your swimmies.
Leica M5 – Apparently I used to be on a little bit of binge, as a result of I adopted up my evaluate of the Leica R5 with a evaluation of the Leica M5, Leica’s most maligned rangefinder. This factor was a problem. How do you speak concerning the M5 in a approach that’s new, and fascinating, and well worth the readers’ time? Robust questions, however I feel I managed. I pulled up my sleeves and dived in. The evaluate is filled with historical past, specs, and why all of this stuff mattered when the M5 was new and why they nonetheless matter at the moment. Have a look.
Konica Autoreflex TC and the Hexanon 40mm – Jeb went slightly wild on this one, combining a digital camera assessment and a lens assessment into some type of Voltronean masterwork. He examines why Konica all the time appears to be unnoticed of the basic digital camera dialog, how one in every of their most elementary cameras could also be one of many greats, and whether or not or not this humbly-priced Hexanon lens is value proudly owning. Hey, is that this the one Konica evaluate we’ve executed this yr? That makes it uncommon and price studying.
Minolta XD – The digital camera that many individuals say is Minolta’s greatest, the XD had been on our record of cameras to assessment for a very long time. Jeb took the reins on this one, bringing us alongside on his journey to discover a good XD after his unique died in his arms (and one way or the other shoehorning a Forrest Gump reference into his assessment). After which he weighs in on whether or not or not this much-praised Minolta actually deserves a spot when discussing the perfect 35mm SLRs ever made. Learn it.
Polaroid Solar 660 On Tour – Josh is the cool one at CP. He’s an actual life, trustworthy to goodness gigging musician. When his band hit the street for an prolonged tour in the summer time, he full of him a Polaroid Solar 660 and loads of Polaroid Originals’ movie. The resultant evaluation is as a lot journey into reminiscence and nostalgia as it’s an evaluation of the basic 600-series Polaroid digital camera. As all the time with Josh’s writing, there’s extra occurring right here than what you see on the floor. The evaluate is right here.
Voigtländer Bessa R – Earlier than we reviewed it, the Bessa R was a digital camera that continually pinged my inbox and Instagram DMs. Individuals love this digital camera and need to learn that we adore it, or they’ve questions on it and need us to assist. Which is sensible. It’s the last word worth proposition in the ever-popular rangefinder phase. Chris’ evaluate dives in, evaluating the Bessa R to every thing from a Leica M2 to a Canon Canonet, a Volkswagen Beetle and a Honda Tremendous Cub (I’m unsure how he received there, however he did). Discover out for your self, all the things concerning the Bessa.
Nikon F4 – Once I realized the Nikon F4 was turning thirty years previous this yr, I knew we needed to evaluation it. One other well-liked digital camera, individuals had been messaging me concerning the F4 for years. Fortunately, Jeb had one and was able to shoot. His evaluate has every thing you’d anticipate, however extra importantly it accommodates some ideas on amassing, gear acquisition, and discovering your personal good digital camera. It’s a fantastic learn, with nice photographs, and you may see it right here.
Olympus Mju II – Ah, the Mju II. The digital camera that nobody on employees needed to assessment. Dustin tried capturing it, and his ideas contained so many unprintable phrases that I can’t repeat them right here. Josh wouldn’t assessment it, saying he’d served his sentence by reviewing the unique Mju. Jeb simply laughed. Chris by no means replied to my messages. So, it fell on me. And let’s simply say, issues went as predicted. Hey, a minimum of this evaluation let me point out (even when briefly) my most admired digital camera designer. That’s not dangerous.
Minox Spy Camera – This one was a pure deal with. The Minox Spy Camera (it’s not likely referred to as that, nevertheless it works) is one other a type of cameras that CP was made to cowl. It’s a particular digital camera – uniquely constructed, with an fascinating historical past, and a superbly elegant design. The article is succinct, however thorough. I briefly define the life historical past of the genius who invented the Minox, his path by way of the world through the horrors of World Struggle II and past, in addition to the digital camera’s place in all of that. Once more following the mission of CP (to speak about particular cameras and why they matter in 2018) I spell out the place to purchase movie for this archaic digital camera immediately, the best way to develop it at residence or by way of a lab, and greatest practices for digitizing pictures from this extremely tiny movie. It’s a superb one. Certainly one of our greatest. Learn it right here.
Kodak Funsaver – Okay, so I do know we’re imagined to cowl particular cameras. I actually don’t know what occurred with this one. Josh needed to put in writing a few disposable digital camera and since I actually like Josh I made a decision to let him have his enjoyable. I don’t know why he needed to do that. You’ll should ask him in the feedback. The person owns a Leica M2, for the love of… Do you want disposable cameras? You may like this evaluate.
Agfa Ambi Silette – Righting the ship after the squall of the disposable digital camera is a clockwork-like rangefinder from Agfa, the Ambi Silette. This digital camera is one other considerably undiscovered masterpiece from a lesser-loved model. Interchangeable lenses (which might be fairly good), a concise and collectible system, a stunning viewfinder with built-in rangefinder and selectable body strains – this factor was only a pleasure. There are some warts, however general it’s a really lovable digital camera that extra individuals ought to attempt. See all the small print in my evaluate.
Praktica MTL 5B – If it’s from Japanese Europe you understand Jeb’s writing it. I actually didn’t know a factor concerning the Praktica MTL 5B past what’s apparent to a educated eye. Jeb’s evaluation remedied that. He explored the digital camera’s historical past (and that of the corporate that made it), its modern use, and its modern-day legacy. Like most of Jeb’s write-ups, this one is nuanced and cautious. Learn it right here.
Nikon F2 – For a very long time, Josh was the unequalled Nikon fanboy at CP (I’ve all the time admired their cameras, however not till this yr have I discovered myself actually dropping it over Nikon machines). When a pristine Nikon F2 rolled by means of the store I knew I needed to supply it to him. He wolfed it up immediately and wrote an actual love letter to what simply could also be Nikon’s greatest professional-level mechanical SLR ever. Right here’s that love letter. It’s deep. It’s thorough. And it’s enjoyable to learn.
Olympus XA4 – Charlotte joined the group simply this yr, and her contributions have already made the location a greater one. In her first digital camera evaluation, she tells every thing a few digital camera that she rescued from the junk drawer of her mother and father’ house. The Olympus XA4 is among the many rarer of the XA lineup, that includes an unusually extensive and macro-capable lens packed into the normal XA physique. It’s an amazing digital camera, and the assessment is a superb learn for anybody looking for their good compact digital camera. It’s additionally an exquisite style of what we will anticipate from one among our latest writers. Learn it right here.
Fujifilm Natura Black F1.9 – One other point-and-shoot that’s whispered about in reverent tones, the Fujifilm Natura Black F1.9 differs from loads of the opposite super-expensive point-and-shoots in that it might truly be well worth the worth. I shot this digital camera on trip just lately, and its mixture of tremendous vast lens (24mm) and tremendous quick most aperture (f/1.9) make it a really particular digital camera certainly. It’s one of many solely premium compacts that gives one thing completely distinctive – one thing that may’t be matched by another digital camera. However then once more, it’s received that kind of price ticket too. Learn all about it.
Canon Canonet 28 – One other of our new writers, Drew, launches into issues together with his first digital camera evaluate. A sensible take a look at the Canonet line, Drew examines whether or not the Canonet 28 is a viable various to the far costlier QL17. Consider it as one other worth proposition article, and level your budget-conscious movie buddies this manner once they’re attempting to find a brand new rangefinder. It might assist.
Pentax UC-1 (Espio Mini) – Jeb tried his hand on the expensive point-and-shoot digital camera and got here away fairly impressed (no less than in some methods). Studying the evaluate I too was impressed at simply how, nicely, spectacular these pattern photographs have been. The Pentax UC-1 has probably the greatest lenses I’ve ever seen fitted right into a compact digital camera. It actually is sort of beautiful. Now if solely the capturing felt higher. Learn Jeb’s full assessment (and see these beautiful pictures) right here.
Leica CL – The final assessment of the yr (on the time of this writing – there’ll in all probability be a pair extra added) went to the Leica CL. This most diminutive of M mount rangefinder cameras was (as most know) made in Japan by Minolta. However that shouldn’t flip away potential consumers. Except for some reliability points, it’s probably the greatest M mount cameras you should purchase at present. I shot it on trip, and although I gained’t say it was the perfect digital camera I used whereas away, I can say that it was the digital camera that uncovered probably the most movie. That counts for one thing. Learn all about this digital camera in my full evaluate right here.
And that’s the yr in critiques. I’ve to confess – once I began this text I had no concept we’d revealed this many digital camera evaluations. Compiling this record took a really very long time. I’ll have grown a beard. I’ll have missed Christmas. What month is it?
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