Recommended Reading 4/17/20

I haven’t posted a Recommended Reading post since June of last year as they were taking longer and longer to research and write and I was falling behind on the site’s primary content.  But with an extra bit of time on my hands and a plethora of fantastic posts that are worth sharing, I figured it was time to start doing these again.

To start, I wanted to draw attention to an excellent series of posts comparing a couple different Leica copies to the real thing, done by Johnny Martyr.  I am a little biased here as the three cameras in this series are ones I loaned to Johnny, but his thorough analysis and humor in these posts is incredibly well written.

When I sent these to Johnny, I had hoped he’d write something, but never imagined he’d go to these lengths to compare the loaners to his beloved Leicas.  So far, he’s written an intro, and an in depth look at a Zorki 1c and Zorki 3.  Next Tuesday he will post his look at the Canon IVSb.

Here are the links to the three articles so far:

Martyr’s Leica’s vs. Eckman’s Copies: Introduction

Martyr’s Leica’s vs. Eckman’s Copies: Zorki-1c

Martyr’s Leica’s vs. Eckman’s Copies: Zorki-3

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

Since I’m playing catch up, I wanted to draw attention to Theo from’s look at the Nikon F3.  As much as I love Nikon cameras, this is one model that has eluded me, mostly because of how expensive they are.  Until I do however, Theo’s excellent post of one of his favorite cameras will have to do!

People shoot photography for a variety of reasons.  For many, it is a creative outlet for those who suffer depression or anxiety.  The beauty of a photograph can give some people purpose and a feeling of worth.  But what happens when the act of making photos is what causes you depression.  Maybe it’s because old photos capture people who are no longer with us, or they remind us of happier times in the past when our present isn’t as wonderful.  Gerard Exupery from 35mmc makes an interesting post explaining how he overcame the depression of looking at his old photos.

Continuing a theme of Nikon cameras I haven’t yet reviewed, Alex Luyckx posted his thoughts on Nikon’s leaf shutter SLR, the Nikkorex 35.  I’ve come across a few Nikkorexes over the years and one day will get around to shooting them but I encourage you to check out Alex’s thoughts on this often forgotten model.  Not just for the camera review part, but Alex is also a wonderful photographer and his images are better than anything I could make.

Over the past couple years, Jim Grey has been on a “thinning the herd” project where he shoots one final roll of film in a camera he owns, then decides whether he should get rid of it.  Many of the cameras get thinned, and one such was the Retina IIa.  But then a funny thing happened….he regretted it and had to get another.  This week Jim gives us his reasons for acquiring another Retina IIa and what he likes about it.

This next post is from a blogger whose site didn’t exist the last time I did these Recommended Reading, which is a shame as her site, Aly’s Camera Alley is really well done.  Alyssa’s recent post on her experience shooting a Kodak Brownie Target Six-16 using the FAK 16 adapter is an interesting take on this old camera.  While some people are happy cutting down 70mm film to shoot 116 and 616 cameras, Alyssa took an easier approach and used premade adapters so she could use regular 120 film.  As an added bonus, theres a video at the end of the post too!

If you’ve even been casually following recent photography Kickerstarter campaigns, you are well aware of the travesty of what has become the ‘new Yashica’  From a ill conceived “new” digital camera, to rebadged Yashica film, to a reissue of one of the original Yashica’s crappiest models, this week Alan Duncan from Canny Cameras takes a look at the new Yashica MF2 Super and compares it to the original.  I’m impressed with Alan’s efforts in this comparison, but less so about the product he’s reviewing.

Woohoo!  More Nikon reviews!  This time its not a single model, but the entire Nikkormat series.  Josh Solomon from Casual Photophile gives us a whole overview of this series of “lesser Nikons” that were produced from 1965 – 1977 and why they might be just as good as the camera’s they were supposed to be inferior to.

Everything is bigger in Texas and apparently that applies to Leicas too.  Of course, Leicas were made in Germany, so the name “Texas Leica” is often applied to Fuji’s wonderful 6×9 monster, the GW690II.  This week Bill Smith at Fun With Cameras takes a look at this wonderful machine.  If a real Leica is a filet mignon, then I guess the GW690II must be a porterhouse!

When my friend Mark Faulkner told me he wanted to shoot a Miranda, I warned him against it as my very well documented problems with this brand of cameras causes me anxiety whenever I hear someone is going to shoot one.  Of course, after loading the Miranda, the camera broke on him and he had to try another.  But I guess he managed to get through a roll of film on his Sensomat and even managed a pretty cool collage of 9 exposures stitched together.  Check it out!

I’ve previously reviewed the Pentacon produced Exakta RTL1000 in one of my Cameras of the Dead series, so it was with great interest I read kosmofoto’s review of the RTL1000.  Although this particular article doesn’t show any sample images, it is another interesting take on this relatively obscure “later Exakta”.

Continuing with another East German Pentacon, this week Peggy Marsh from cameragocamera posts her thoughts on the Praktica LB, a gloriously square 1970s SLR from everyone’s favorite Soviet controlled country.  Peggy is a big fan of Doctor Who and finds an interesting way to combine two of her hobbies together.  Check it out!

Finally, one of my favorite bloggers, Mike Connealy wrote a post called Stretching Film in which he looks at ways to reduce the economic impact of shooting film during these uncertain times.  Whether it’s shooting cheaper film that works better in a particular chemistry or trying more half frame cameras, there are ways to make our “photographic dollar” last longer.  Do you have any tricks that help you economize?

Finally, it wouldn’t be a Recommended Reading post without a Recommended Listening (or watching) from a little known band I love.  This one is from a two piece group from Lexington, Kentucky called Fool’s Ghost.  This song, Touch, is the first single from their new album “Dark Woven Light” available on Bandcamp and is a hauntingly beautiful and somber piece that is very appropriate as we all quarantine ourselves unable to touch other people.

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