Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Skeletons From The Closet (SFTC) Results - July's Camera, the Konica I 35mm Rangefinder

Well, July is behind us now. I shot my Konica I 35mm rangefinder camera for the month.
 
(Click Here) to read about the camera.
 
It has been a Konica summer, with my June camera also a Konica, the later model Auto S1.6.
 
Here are some shots from the Konica I. First, several from an evening in Leesburg, VA:
 
 
 
 


The image below is from the National Cathedral. It's an unintended test of the dynamic range of color print film. I'd say it did pretty well.

 
I took the remaining shots on a morning walk in DC's Eastern Market.
 
 
 
So, what is my assessment after shooting the Konica I for a month? First, it's a fun little camera. The collapsible lens makes it very compact; it fits just about anywhere. The rangefinder works very well, and hits the focus point correctly. I think the image quality is quite good for a camera from 1950, and Konica's first 35mm rangefinder. It's very sturdy, but the metal covers do seem to get marked rather easily. This is a drawback for carrying it in a coat pocket, for example.
 
As you'll see over and over in my writing, f3.5 is not quite wide enough for me as a maximum aperture. The Hexar 50mm lens on this camera is pretty sharp, but not quite like the razor sharpness from the later Konica Auto S1.6. One more criticism - there's no accessory shoe, so I have to carry my CV light meter in my camera bag or pocket, rather than slipping it into the shoe so it's always with the camera.
 
So, the Konica I is a great little addition to my collection, and quite functional. The Auto S1.6 is a better shooter overall, in my opinion. In fact, that Auto S1.6 is hard to beat with any other fixed lens rangefinder.
 
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