What's Your Favourite Camera (and lens combo optional) of all time?

Discussion in 'Open Gear Talk' started by vincechu, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. vincechu

    vincechu Veteran

    Sep 14, 2010
    Reading Amin's thread about 'What gear do you regret selling?' made me ask the question:

    'What's your favourite camera of all time?'

    You don't have to have owned it but you must have used it.

    It could be a camera and a particular lens combo, as opposed to a camera with just a fixed lens. Similarly it could be a camera with a particular accessory which helped make it better, e.g thumbs up or grip on a Leica.

    I'd be interested to see why you liked it so much :)

    Feel free to share photos from your fav camera too!
  2. vincechu

    vincechu Veteran

    Sep 14, 2010
    I guess my favourite camera and lens combo has to be the Pentax K5 and FA31 Limited by far. Reason being that the combination somehow felt good, the lens and body are both well built and balance well, and the K5 has a great grip IMO.

    The lens together with Pentax's colours were always perfect to my tastes very rich and film like, and the lens just renders like no other I've ever used... its strange and hard to put my finger on, the combo just felt sooo good and inspiring - I had no problems going into 'photog mode' with it, where I can just visualise and focus on getting my end result if that makes sense?

    A few photos from this combo:


    Daffodil Bokeh by VinceChu89, on Flickr

    So round... the Sigma goes oval/triangular at times/towards the edges

    IMGP0210.jpg by VinceChu89, on Flickr[

    Film like colour and nice portrait rendering, with no colour editing:

    View attachment 44918
    Potrait of Emily at Wagamama 2 by VinceChu89, on Flickr

    View attachment 44919
    Peck on the cheek :) by VinceChu89, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 4
  3. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    When I was a real photographer, I used a Leica M4 with a 35mm Summicron. I liked this combo because the FOV is my natural FOV.
    It's a simple camera because you set the shutter speed and the aperture. The camera doesn't tell you anything but what it's seeing. It doesn't care about ISO and like ASA better but doesn't care about that either.

    When I was a real photographer my camera didn't need a battery and there were no blinking lights. There was no light meter. I didn't need a light meter because I could see the light and get the right exposure just by feeling the exposure.

    I worked this way for many many years. I still don't trust the meter in my cameras. Sometimes I think I don't have real cameras. Its ok because sometimes I don't think I'm a real photographer anymore. If I pick up my favorite M4, it tells me it's ok for me to be doing digital and that I'm still a real photographer. I listen but dont believe it.

    Black Laq M4 1207-4**
    • Like Like x 5
  4. vincechu

    vincechu Veteran

    Sep 14, 2010
    Don, I know how you feel, I've tried out a few of the new Panny G series and numerious serious compacts the past few weeks, and I hate how some cameras are so over complicated.

    These days I love the simplicity of my K5 and the GXR (used my girlfriends) and the GRD. I use a Canonet sometimes, and I just love how it lets you get back to the basics and worry only about getting on with your photography. (this reminds me... i still need to develop and scan the last roll i shot with the canonet....)
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    My first photographic love was (I think) a Kodak Duaflex (or some other fixed focus TLR camera). I found it in a drawer when I was very little and I'd carry it around and point it at stuff looking through the strange reversed waist-level finder and release the shutter. I don't think there was ever any film in it, but it didn't matter, I was "taking pictures". I'd still love a modern digital version of a camera of this design....and not a toy either (I've seen those key-chain sized Rollieflex copies and they make me want to puke). I want a real one with a big, juicy waist-level optical viewfinder.

    It may have looked like one of these.....
    View attachment 44920
    He was a flashy dresser and stood apart from the rest by Lukinosity, on Flickr
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  6. dmc

    dmc Rookie

    Jul 12, 2011
    MP with Summicron 50, hands down.
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Landshark

    Landshark PhotoDog

    Jul 15, 2010
    My favorites have been the Nikon Fs, Contax g2s, Mamiya RZ, Fuji 680, Mamiya 6 or 7, Ricoh GRs, Contax TVS, Fuji X100, Canon EOS-1D, Sinar P, Toyo-Field, Linhof 617 or Fuji GX617, adjustable pinhole, there is an even bigger list of cameras I have used that were just ok and then a whole other list of the cameras I hated with the Kodak DCS at the top of that list
    • Like Like x 2
  8. I think mine was my fully manual Minolta SRT303 with its kit Rokkor 50mm f/1.4 lens. I bought an adapter for the lens so I could use it with the K-5 and I've barely had it out. In digital times, my K200D + 35mm DA macro which served very well also as a "normal" lens.
    • Like Like x 2
  9. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Good question.

    Contax RX, with the 85mm 1.4 Planar back in the day - one of the best SLRs ever made, IMO. Leica M2 with DR Summicron - silky smooth, Leica II with 5cm Elmar - the ultimate street machine, M7 .85 with 50mm Elmar-M - higher tech but still with a soul - all make the grade. Top of the tree is my Leica MP4, teamed with a 50mm Sonnar. It has the uncluttered viewfinder of the M2 and just enough electronics to do the job.

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/lightmancer/6393843801/" title="MP4 braided strap 2 by RangefinderGeneral, on Flickr"> View attachment 44934 "1024" height="768" alt="MP4 braided strap 2"></a>

    seen here with a Lens Carrier M holding a 90mm Collapsible Elmar :wink:
    • Like Like x 2
  10. BigTam

    BigTam Regular

    Jun 23, 2011
    Dortmund, Germany
    If you had asked me this question 6 months ago, I would have vacillated between my first DSLR, the Nikon D40, and the incredibly versatile and quite competent Nikkor 18-200, and the D7000 with the Sigma 10-20. I loved both those combinations. But they don't even come close to my current amour fou, the Fuji X100. I will be looking with great interest at the Fuji interchangeable, but the fixed lens X100 has me much more focussed on composition and standpoint, It has wonderful skin tones, and colours generally, and above all, it has made my photography so pleasurable.
  11. BigTam

    BigTam Regular

    Jun 23, 2011
    Dortmund, Germany
    And that's one of the main reasons I like the X100: you see the aperture and shutter speed before you even turn on the camera. When you feel like it, use it the same way you use your Leica. When family or other things take priority, set it to automatic. Either way, great pictures.
  12. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    Tam, isn't that an odd reason to keep a camera? I mean who needs a camera that adds pleasure to your photography.
    Good choice with the X100 by the way...
  13. Glen Barrington

    Glen Barrington Rookie

    Nov 19, 2011
    Reading, PA, USA
    Film? I still love (Still use) my Yashica Mat 124. Digital? Oly E500 I still like that Kodak sensor, I liked my Canon G3 images pretty well, though it was a bit of a kludge to operate.
  14. dixeyk

    dixeyk Guest

    Hmmm...Konica Auto S3 (with the 38/1.8 Hexanon attached to it) and/or Konica Auto S2 (BIGGER viewfinder). Alas I was a compact RF shooter and not so much an SLR guy. For digital...my G2 with the OM50/1.4 (so far) but I'm really liking the E-P1 Panasonic 20 combo as well.
  15. Lili

    Lili Hall of Famer

    Oct 17, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    My Konica Hexar AF, which I still have and shoot. My GRD first gen comes next.
  16. soundimageplus

    soundimageplus Top Veteran

    Jul 6, 2010

    Pentax MZ series film camera + battery grip + Pentax 43mm f/1.9 Limited lens in chrome.
  17. pictor

    pictor All-Pro

    Jul 14, 2010
    Every time I have my Leica Summicron 50mm mounted on my E-PL1, it stays there, no matter which other lenses I have with me. So I could say that this is my favorite camera/lens combination. On the other hand I prefer the user interface of my G12 to that of my E-PL1. However, the image quality of my E-PL1 with the right lens is significantly better.
  18. kathyh

    kathyh Top Veteran

    Jul 13, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    The 50mm summicron with the M9 is my favourite lens and camera combo. At least right now. I've been taking the X1 out a bit and I must say autofocus has its pleasures.
  19. retow

    retow All-Pro

    Jul 24, 2010
    Leica MP with Summilux 50. I rarely use the MP but when I do, I feel in a different state of mind. I calms me down, lets me focus on photography, it just feels so smooth and perfect and better balanced than the M9.
  20. snkenai

    snkenai All-Pro

    Oct 5, 2010
    kenai, AK
    Stephen Noel
    From the film era, OM-1 and 50mm or the Tamron 90mm macro. I would go back in a heart beat if I could have it in digital. But, I took more "good" pictures with the OM and a Tokina 80-200 f4.0. Sold it to my Uncle, and was sorry. Alas! Haven't found that "special one" yet in digital. Still searching.