talkin bout cameras


a blog by Branden Frederick

Gear

Lomography Diana Baby

Lomography Diana Baby

Is it any good?

901
gear
19 May 2019
110 film was designed for consumer simplicity. It came in cartridges which handled a lot of the machinery, giving 24 shots of 13x17mm negatives, most often at ISO 200. This allowed for very simple camera designs and film loading, at the expense of image quality. It's the film type I used for my first 15 years of life, but it died out when digital rose up. Until Lomography brought it back in 2017. continue reading »

First Impressions: Pentax 645D

First Impressions: Pentax 645D

Chronicling my descent into medium format digital

344
gear
13 Mar 2019

Who would want a digital camera with technology from ten years ago? Me, apparently.

continue reading »

Return of the Pentax 645Nii

Return of the Pentax 645Nii

We missed each other

472
gear
9 Dec 2018

In the ebb and flow of my camera gear addiction, once a camera was gone, it was gone forever – until now. Yes, that's correct: the Pentax 645Nii has returned.

continue reading »

Canon EOS 3

Canon EOS 3

film on easy mode

266
gear
3 Dec 2018

The Canon EOS 3 is the pinnacle of Canon's EOS film line. It is everything you ever want from a 35mm film camera except being small.

continue reading »

Hasselblad 500C/M

Hasselblad 500C/M

A year with the king of cameras

671
gear
25 Nov 2018

I've just finished out a year with a Hasselblad 500C/M, running somewhere around 60 rolls of 120 film though it.

continue reading »

Fujfilm GA645Zi

Fujfilm GA645Zi

Medium format point-and-shoot

1081
gear
21 Nov 2018

Nine months ago I learned of the existence of a line of cameras that both use medium format film and are flat and compact.

continue reading »

New Arrival: Fujifilm X-T3

New Arrival: Fujifilm X-T3

And the Venus Laowa 9mm f/2.8

454
gear
27 Sep 2018
Being a Fujifilm fanboy, when the spanking new X-T3 was announced a month ago, I pre-ordered it. Delivery day has come, and the X-T3 is, of course, iteratively better than the previous generation of tech. continue reading »

Pentax K-50 Saga

Pentax K-50 Saga

Wherein I learn about aperture block failure

329
gear
28 Jul 2018

I love bright and crazy colors, so a few years ago when Pentax made the unusual decision to produce their K-50 camera in a huge array of toy-like colors, they had my attention. I was not in any way looking to buy a new SLR system at the time, so I didn't, but I never forgot about it.

continue reading »

Pentax Lens Confusion

Pentax Lens Confusion

Making order from chaos in the Pentax K-mount lens lineup

620
gear
22 Jul 2018

As I keep repeating ad nauseum, I started SLRing in the world of Canon, only to eventually join all my hipster friends by jumping ship into Fujifilmland. However, despite that, I've always has a fascination with Pentax's K-mount hardware. This is because Pentax, like Fujifilm, seems to make their equipment less for business-minded professionals (like Canon, Nikon, and Sony) and more for lovers of the photograph. Although where Fujifilm's X series lens lineup has been straightforward, with little overlap between lens capabilities, Pentax's K-mount offerings are maximally confusing.

continue reading »

Minolta SRT101

Minolta SRT101

Classic film SLR

289
gear
21 Jul 2018
This camera is called a Minolta SRT101. It is a true classic film SLR camera, being produced from 1966 to 1976, and epitomizing the style and operation of SLRs. continue reading »

Pentax K-01

Pentax K-01

The Brick

500
gear
24 Jun 2018
I bought, used for two months, then sold a Pentax K-01. It's not clear why the camera was created in the first place. This is its story. continue reading »

Pentax SF1

Pentax SF1

Prime Vintage 80's

149
gear
10 Jun 2018
This is the Pentax SF1 – an autofocus, full-featured, interchangeable-lens 35mm film SLR camera. continue reading »

Fujifilm X-Pro2

Fujifilm X-Pro2

Replacing the venerable X-T1

673
gear
6 Feb 2018
Over this previous summer, I sunk my mittens into the Fujifilm X-Pro2. I already had Fujifilm's first-generation top-of-the-line SLR-esque camera in the X-T1, and I though a second-generation top-of-the-line rangefinder-esque camera would be the best complement. continue reading »

Xpan

Xpan

Hasselblad's true panoramic rangefinder

1112
gear
2 Feb 2018

For years, the Xpan was a dream camera for me.

continue reading »

Kowa/SIX Compared

Kowa/SIX Compared

compared with what?

1439
gear
2 Dec 2017 4 Dec 2017
The Kowa/SIX was produced from 1968 to 1974, and was the first of three Kowa medium-format 6x6cm cameras. It competed against (and was cheaper than) the Hasselblad V system – and someone familiar with the Hasselblad will recognize many of the same selling points in the Kowa. I've been shooting with a Kowa/SIX for about two year now, and have become familiar with the camera. continue reading »

Canon EOS Rebel 2000

Canon EOS Rebel 2000

film SLR

142
gear
30 Aug 2017
The Canon Rebel 2000 was the entry-level SLR released by Canon in April 1999. It cost about $500 at the time, although I bought this one on eBay for $15. continue reading »

review of every fujifilm XF lens

review of every fujifilm XF lens

even those I've never used

3131
gear
19 May 2017
Fujifilm, blessed be they, are makers of the "X" camera system – the best compact camera system on the market. There's two lens lines available in this system, the XC lenses, which suck are cheap, and the XF lenses, which are awesome. I'm going to tell you all about every single XF lens, even those I've never used. continue reading »

first impressions: xpan ii

first impressions: xpan ii

legendary panorama rangefinder

858
gear
28 Nov 2016
I recently was able to add a dream camera to my collection: the Hasselblad Xpan II. The Xpan II was produced from 2003 to 2005 by a joint effort of Fujifilm (in Japan) and Hasselblad (in Sweden). continue reading »

repairing the x-t1

repairing the x-t1

a log

455
gear
24 Oct 2016
Last year, on vacation in Ireland, I dropped my Fujifilm X-T1. I had a crappy wriststrap attached to one of the strap lugs, and the camera was dangling from my wrist, when the strap broke, and the camera tumbled to the ground below. continue reading »

two years with the x-t1

two years with the x-t1

obnoxious statistics

964
gear
24 Oct 2016
Two years ago I sold almost all my Canon gear and went to Fujifilm. Under the auspices of Canon, I cut my teeth in really learning photography. Over the Canon years I had gone through a ludicrous amount of Canon gear, having used well over two dozen different lenses, not to mention the slew of flashes and other accessories. continue reading »

my legs

my legs

yes, i'm going to talk about tripods

307
gear
4 Sep 2016
The thing with photography as a hobby is that there is more gear out there than even a gear-o-phile like myself cares about. I am talking, in this instance, about tripods. continue reading »

xf 56mm f/1.2

xf 56mm f/1.2

my reaction

166
gear
4 Sep 2016
I'm not much of a long lens guy. I love me some wide, fast primes. But when it comes to long lenses, I just am never happy. So me, knowing that Fujifilm makes a highly-acclaimed 56mm f/1.2 lens for my beloved X-T1, just had to get my hands on one, but didn't want to commit. So I rented. continue reading »

pentax 645nii

pentax 645nii

successor to the Pentax 645

193
gear
2 May 2016
This was my second 645 camera. After breaking my Pentax 645 I was still in love with the system, so I upgraded to this 645NII. Originally released by Pentax in 2001, this was a model late in the film game that featured all sorts of neat advances that a modern digital shooter going back to film will expect and find comfortable, which was exactly what I was doing. continue reading »

pentax 645

pentax 645

medium format SLR

170
gear
1 May 2016
This camera was my introduction to medium format photography. If you've never looked through a medium format viewfinder, you owe it to yourself to do so. continue reading »

canon eos 5D mark ii

canon eos 5D mark ii

full frame DSLR

286
gear
24 Jan 2016
This was my "main" camera for five years – from early 2010 to late 2014 – it was a great camera. It could do anything, as all the other people who did great things with this camera will attest. continue reading »

fujifilm x-t1

fujifilm x-t1

mirrorless digital

300
gear
8 Dec 2015
This camera is my main squeeze, my bestie, my better half, my significant camera, my glass eye (is that an expression?), my window to the soul, my partner in crime, my ... if I continue this list, my wife will get jealous. Anyway, I use this camera to take pictures of things. continue reading »

olympus xa

olympus xa

tiny pocket 35mm rangefinder

137
gear
29 Oct 2015
This was my first rangefinder camera. I had read about rangefinder cameras online, and wanted to try them out. This is (was?) the cheapest model with decent reviews, so I found one (thanks eBay). I used the heck out of it for about four months. continue reading »

leica m3 vs. fujifilm x-t1

leica m3 vs. fujifilm x-t1

a comparison

2359
gear
18 Jul 2015

This article is a comparison of the Leica M3 and the Fujifilm X-T1.

continue reading »

panasonic dmc-lz2

panasonic dmc-lz2

cheap digital point-and-shoot

75
gear
17 Jun 2015
The Panasonic DMC-LZ2 was just a generic point-and-shoot camera that I purchased as a small pocket camera for traveling. continue reading »

panasonic dmc-tz5

panasonic dmc-tz5

digital point-and-shoot

118
gear
14 Jun 2015
I purchased this camera from a mall kiosk in Denmark, when my previous camera broke while traveling. So for me, this was always a travel camera. continue reading »

canon ae-1 program

canon ae-1 program

35mm film SLR

84
gear
20 Dec 2014
This is a Canon AE-1 Program film SLR that I owned for a short time. continue reading »

canon powershot s200

canon powershot s200

my first digital camera

197
gear
19 Dec 2014
This was the first digital camera I ever owned. It's convenience and portability made it my gateway into the hobby of photography. It came with an 8mb CF card. continue reading »

canon powershot s100

canon powershot s100

digital point-and-shoot

117
gear
19 Dec 2014
This was a Canon top-tier point-and-shoot camera from 2011. It has a zoom lens that goes from 5.2mm to 26mm, which has a full-frame equivalence of 24mm to 120mm. The lens opens up to f/2 at the wide end, which was unusual for p&s cameras at the time, which is why I purchased this camera. continue reading »

canon eos digital rebel t3

canon eos digital rebel t3

digital SLR

117
gear
13 Dec 2014
I purchased this camera based on internet advice that "no photographer goes to an event without a backup camera body". It was the cheapest Canon EOS body on sale at the time, and also the smallest, and was a great camera. continue reading »

canon eos digital rebel

canon eos digital rebel

my first SLR

147
gear
13 Dec 2014
This is the original affordable digital SLR. Before the Digital Rebel, a digital SLR was not affordable. When this model hit the markets, suddenly amateur photographers across the internet started posting much better work than they ever had before. continue reading »

canon eos elan iie

canon eos elan iie

35mm film SLR

228
gear
29 Nov 2014 2 May 2016
The Canon EOS Elan IIe came out in 1995 and cost $750 new. I purchased mine in 2013 and paid $20. The Elan IIe was just another entry into the alphabet soup of 35mm SLRs. continue reading »

balda baldinette

balda baldinette

1950s folding accordion point-and-shoot

353
gear
26 Nov 2014
I have a Balda Baldinette camera from the 1950's that I inherited from my wife's family. The camera is basically a 'point-and-shoot' camera from the 1950s. continue reading »

leica m3

leica m3

classic rangefinder camera

217
gear
9 May 2014
This is an early-60s model Leica M3. It is the single-stroke variant, meaning one push of the film advance lever is enough to advance to the next frame (the other variant requires two pushes). continue reading »

lens reviews

lens reviews

and why they suck

401
gear
28 Apr 2014
Camera lens reviews are terrible to read, but they're the bread-and-butter of gear addiction. Here's some basic facts about lenses, that should not detract you from using your camera. continue reading »

this website

is a one-person blog all about digital and film photography and its techniques, concepts, and accessories, and the search for the meaning of life. This project is created by Branden Frederick, a long-time hobbyist photographer with allegiance to no brand. The goal of this website is to help us all become better photographers.

Photography advice is the only as good as the person making the photos, and as Branden is miles away from being a great photographer, take this whole blog with a grain of salt.

about Branden Frederick

about Branden Frederick

I am a photographer: I have fun taking photos, and I always have.

I've had a camera in my hand my whole life, a 110 camera as a kid, and the high school's 35mm SLR later. In 2008 I spent six months doing nothing but taking photos and loved it. From that point on I've had my camera surgically attached to my hand (I lie). I went digital in the year 2000, and I came back to film in 2013. My parents tell me my photos are "nice".

bf@branden.me