Jan 26 2019

Konica Auto S3 battery holder repair


I was in the middle of shooting a roll of Ultrafine Colouruption film which I received from Photo Warehouse when my Konica Auto S3 stopped working.  Despite my disappointment I wasn’t going to waste a roll of film so I rewound it and loaded it into my Fuji half frame Fujica Drive but that will be another story.  Back to my now dead Konica S3.  The S3 has an electronic shutter so will not operate without batteries or in this case power (There were fresh batteries in it).  I suspected that it was the battery holder primarily because of that lack of power.  The first order of business was to remove the bottom plate which is held in place with just 3 screws.


While there is evidence of a little bit of corrosion it doesn’t look too bad so I need to go deeper and remove the holder itself.


And now its pretty clear what’s happened.  One of the battery cables has come completely off with all the corrosion that was hidden underneath.


Next I cleaned all the corrosion off and prepared to solder a new piece of wire to the end of the existing lead.


What a struggle it was to get the solder to adhere to the battery tab.  In the image above you can see that the solder has formed a little blob around the cable.  This is not a sufficient connection.  After more flux and frustration I finally managed to get a good solder joint and put it back together.


And now I have my Konica Auto S3 back and working.  Its such a joy to use I’m looking forward to putting some more film through it.


One thing about one camera:  The Konica Auto S3 was claimed to have the first built in daylight flash synchronization.  With the Konica X-20 flash mounted you would line up the flash needle with the exposure needle and the light would be balanced. 

Jan 20 2019

Pentax EfinaT


APS film and cameras were the first victims of the burgeoning digital camera revolution.  Around the year 2000 you could buy new an APS film camera or a 2Mpixel digital camera or a film or a digital SLR they all coexisted for a brief moment in photographic equipment time.  It isn’t surprising of course that APS film was the first to go as it was the most limiting and offered little in image quality over the digital cameras that would soon leave it behind.  The thing is for me though that I enjoy cameras themselves as objects of design and technology.  The Pentax Efina T represents the best of what APS could be, a small and durable camera that can be carried all the time and produce decent results.  (That sounds a lot like what a smart phone provides today)

The lens is a 23-69mm f5.6 to 9.9 with six elements in five groups, two of the elements being aspherical.  But who can really tell anymore if its any good when all the remains is outdated poor quality film (Just kidding its actually pretty good).  The 23mm focal length is roughly equivalent to a 29mm lens on 35mm film so that’s another reason this camera is my favorite among the APS cameras out there.  And don’t forget stylish.

I’ve always been amazed at how solid this camera is and now I believe that this is in part due to it being made from stainless steel.  In particular SUS316 a highly corrosion resistant variant.  I believe this is the case because the nearly identical Efina T2 is described as being made from it and there is no difference between the two cameras that I can discern.



Previous posts about the Efina T  Efina T 2016    Efina T 2012 , Rhymes with density , Efina T 2014


Jan 12 2019

Fuji DL Super Mini Zoom with Expired Fuji 400


The lens on the DL mini Zoom goes from 28mm at f4.5 to 56mm at f7.5  neither of these apertures are particularly fast but that is the tradeoff for a compact wide zoom.  The lens is comprised of 7 elements in 6 groups.  The camera has a good number of functions and settings for a point and shoot including manual focusing which is rare. Looking at some of my images I probably should have resorted to using manual focus particularly through glass as the active autofocus is not able to deal with that situation.  Something to be aware of is that the DL mini Zoom will take a picture if you mash the shutter down whether it has achieved focus or not.  There is +-2 stops of exposure compensation also a rarity for a point and shoot and nice for situations like backlighting and snow scenes or maybe when you want things a little darker.  This camera came out in 1999 which is twenty years ago as of this writing but honestly it looks and feels more modern than most of the digital cameras that soon followed it. A previous post on this camera can be seen here.  Fuji DL Mini Zoom

Jan 6 2019

Olympus 35SP


I took a look at my Lightroom catalogue that holds my film pictures to see how long I have had this camera and apparently its been 4 1/2 years.  It certainly doesn’t feel like it, because every time I have a chance to use this camera it feels special like its the first time.  Back in 2011 I compared the Canon QL17 and the Yashica Electro 35 GX but this camera beats them both.  That’s not to say that those aren’t fantastic cameras but the lens on the Olympus is just that little bit better.  The SP has a 7 element lens that is very sharp and well corrected with just a touch of colour fringing in extreme contrast conditions that would tax any lens.  I have to admit that I don’t tend to use the spot metering which is actually where the SP in SP comes from but the center weighted metering works very well in its own right.  The greatest effect seen within the area of the focus patch at about 20 degrees which drops to 6 degrees for the spot metering.   And of course there is the ability to do full manual aperture and shutter speed if you don’t want to use shutter priority or there is fully automatic metering if all you want to do is focus and compose.  In automatic mode the camera selects from 1/15 to 1/250 second so if you want to use the camera outside that range you should opt for manual settings.  In manual operation it expands to 1sec and 1/500sec  The shutter itself has a very definitive “THWACK” that leaves you no doubt that it has done its job. If I was to have one complaint about the Olympus SP it would be the focus lever tucked up against the camera body.  I prefer to use a focus ring at the business end of the lens.