Recommended Reading 3/8/19

For this week’s Recommended Reading post, I’m revising the format slightly as the WordPress embed feature doesn’t seem to be working for me.

This week Jim Grey takes a look at the bulbous Yashica Lynx 14E.  Does it get ‘thinned’?

In Jim Grey’s regular series “Operation Thin the Herd”, Jim revisits those cameras in his collection he hasn’t touched in a while and shoots another roll of film through it to determine if the camera deserves a permanent spot in his collection.  If not, then it gets sold.

This is a genius approach to collecting and something I really should do soon as my collection is ripe with cameras that I’ll likely never shoot again, and don’t have any room to display.

This week, he looks at the Yashica Lynx 14E, a camera whose sole claim to fame is the monstrous 7-element f/1.4 lens.  This is the fastest lens ever put on a fixed lens rangefinder, and one that many collectors drool over.  But is it really that good?  I’ve reviewed this model before, so check out Jim’s thoughts to see how close I was in my opinion.

Here are more great posts from some of my favorite sites:

When you think of 35mm TLRs, your options are quite limited.  There was the odd shaped Zeiss-Ikon Contarex from the 1930s that was a squished down TLR designed for 35mm film, and then there’s oddball cameras like the Bolsey C, but for a very short period of time, AGFA was taking normal looking 35mm cameras and grafting on a waist level finder.  Is this a true TLR, you be the judge with Thomas Merk’s review of the AGFA Flexilette.

I love photography, and I love American history, so this week’s post on Casual Photophile regarding American Civil War photographer Matthew Brady has me all up in a tizzy.  There’s a decent amount of background about Brady and his process, but the clear champions of this post are his photos.

When you really break a camera down to it’s basics, a camera is simply a light tight box with a lens and a focal plane.  It doesnt matter if you’re talking about a pinhole box camera, or a state of the art digital mirrorless.  But what does that box have to be made out of?  What if I told you that you could use a loaf of bread or a watermelon?  If you think that’s “crazy talk”, then you’ll definitely not want to check out Japan Camera Hunter’s look at the creative cameras designed by artist Brendan Barry.

Do you like Rolleis, but can’t afford a ‘flex?  Maybe you should consider a ‘cord!  This week Jens Kotlenga at EMULSVIE takes a look at a very early ‘cord, the Rolleicord 1a – 2 – Model K3.  If only this had been posted one week later, it could have tied in nicely with an upcoming review of my own!

Growing up in the Midwest United States, I live near the locations of literally hundreds of defunct American automobile brands.  Sometimes when an old automobile marque dies, it doesn’t stay dead, and for a brief period of time from the late 1980s to the early 2000s, South Bend, Indiana based Studebaker saw a resurgence of one of their most innovative models, the Avanti, into it’s own car brand.  This article from Jalopnik tells the tale of hope and failure of this strangely designed car.

In their recurring series “Yer Metal is Olde”, the guys at Angry Metal Guy take a look back to Finnish metal powerhouse Nightwish’s 1999s masterpiece Oceanborn.  Although not the band’s first album, it was the one that launched them into international stardom and ignited a whole industry of copy cat wanna be Nightwish impersonators.  If you like over the top orchestral metal with soaring female operatic vocals, then this is the album for you!


  1. Glad to hear me and my fellow bloggers are not alone despising the “new and improved” editing format WordPress jammed on us. They remind me more and more of Microsoft every year, fixing things that are not broken, complicating that which was easy, and changing the editing tools with ZERO assistance in form of menus or quickie tutorials. This recent update was named Gutenberg. I’m told you can disable it and return to the prior version via this link (have not done this myself, though):

      1. Mike, I don’t know if this is a wordpress issue or not, but when I open the site and see the banner slideshow at the top of the page there is no way to click through to the indicated review. For instance, when I opened the site today and tried to click on the words “KW Praktina” there was no link through to the review; I had to search through the alphabetized reviews to find it. If this is my user error, then my apologies – I wanted to share in case it’s a glitch.

        1. Thanks Andy, what you’re talking about is definitely a WordPress issue. Those scrolling images are part of a slider program that don’t actually link to the reviews of the camera being shown. I have some sliders for cameras I haven’t actually reviewed, but plan on it. I never really considered that people would want to link directly to a review, but I’ll look into ways to make it work better. Thanks for letting me know!

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