Five Cameras That are Discontinued But Not Forgotten
Do you ever dream about your old cameras? Perhaps you've upgraded to a more modern camera but still have feelings for your old ones. Here is an ode to the cameras that you probably can't breathe life into.
Though it saw a very short production life, the Leica CL was an affordable way to do nearly everything that the company's costlier M bodies could. Rangefinder aficionados will know that the camera's focusing was just like that of the other M bodies, and that it could use all of the M-mount lenses. The built-in lightmeter really helped to push sales as well.
They appear every now and again in our used department. However, do note that they never stay there for long. It was also made by Minolta as the Minolta CL—which also pops up in stores.
With 10.1MP, 6fps, and with what was, at that time, low noise at high ISO settings, the Canon 40D saw widespread use. My father still has his, and wedding photographers swore by it. Indeed, when Canon's 50D came out, many 40D owners could not yet justify upgrading.
Though it has been discontinued, it's still an excellent choice for students, and for those looking for a more affordable bang-for-your-buck camera option.
The Olympus OM-1 took the idea of an SLR, and made it smaller. Created by the same team that created the original Olympus Pen, it was as small as some rangefinders, and quickly caught on with many photographers. Though small, the OM-1 incorporated a very large viewfinder for the time.
It was also originally called the M-1. However, the company needed to change the name, due to conflict with Leica's flagship rangefinders being coined the M series. Because of this, the models with the original M-1 logo are rare collectors' items.
The Contax G-Series rangefinders were autofocusing mavericks of their time. They were accused of not being true rangefinders. What made the G2 so special was the titanium build and improved autofocus performance over its predecessor, along with higher top shutter speeds of 1/4000 sec in manual mode, and 1/6000 sec in aperture-priority mode (Av).
The Carl Zeiss lenses, combined with their autofocusing capabilities and compact size, made this camera extremely popular with many users.
Evolving from a rangefinder, the Nikon F was an SLR that saw lots of use during the Vietnam War. What made this camera very popular were the features, wide range of lenses and accessories, and more affordable price. The camera used Nikon F-mount lenses, and offered a depth of field preview button, in-camera metering and a mirror lock-up feature.
Photojournalists, who needed a well-built body to keep up with the nature of war photography, fell for this. To this day, people still say that you could bang nails with this camera.
Bonus: Olympus E-510
The last digital camera on this list, the Olympus E-510, is more of a personal choice. Years ago when the stores and reviewers were touting the Canon XTi as king of the entry-level DSLRs, I cut my teeth on the E-510 with two lenses, a bag, filters and software.
This was my first DSLR, and I used it at my internships with PCMag.com, Geek.com, and others. The above photo of Aerosmith is perhaps one of my favorite images to come from that camera.
The camera was one of the first to have Live View, which helped me to compose my images much easier in tricky situations.
What camera do you miss so dearly? Was it the camera you cut your teeth on? Do you still have dreams about it? Let us know in the comments below. Also, If you're interested, share your thoughts with us about your first lens.