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3D Print Your Own Analog Camera

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Rob Spiegel
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Your own old fashioned camera
Rob Spiegel   7/23/2013 8:05:11 AM
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Very impressive, Ann. Actually, I think that's pretty good time considering the complexity of a camera. Heck, I've seen Gadget Freak videos that take nearly as long to download as this camera takes to print. If you don't have to babysit the printer, 15 hours isn't so long. But I would guess you have to hang around the printer for each individual part.

far911
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
far911   7/23/2013 8:22:06 AM
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Impressive stuff indeed. I'm glad 3D printing is making its way down to the educational level by allowing young minds experiment with the technology and come up with new ideas. 

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Rob Spiegel   7/23/2013 8:25:32 AM
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I agree, far911. The idea of sharing design changes is also a nice feature: crowdsourcing for camera improvements.

Debera Harward
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Debera Harward   7/27/2013 6:23:56 AM
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Its really impressive to see that university students participating in 3D printing in terms of there projects . By all this i can feel that 3D printing is the next upcomming technology, I am really excited to hear about 3d printed analog camera but does these cameras will have different labs or different developing  techniques other than other cameras ?

Nancy Golden
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Nancy Golden   7/23/2013 5:48:50 PM
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It is a nice accomplishment done in the spirit of shareware which is good to see...I particularly like his modular approach which I think simplifies the process for anyone wanting to build one. 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Ann R. Thryft   7/24/2013 11:44:58 AM
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Thanks, Nancy, glad you got the spirit of the project: it's a shareware sort of thing, as well as a proof of concept. Much like the customized personal electronics technology in the story we did here http://www.designnews.com/document.asp?doc_id=255795 this one is about the ability to customize a tool or device for your own purposes. I'm not a camera fanatic, so I wouldn't use it myself, not would I pay 50 Euros for a complete one the designer built. But it's inspiring to think about what else I could make and customize for my own uses.

Charles Murray
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Charles Murray   7/24/2013 7:44:17 PM
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Am I wrong, Ann, or was the idea to demonstrate the capabilities of 3D printing?

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Ann R. Thryft   7/24/2013 7:53:33 PM
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Chuck, I think that was one of the ideas. But it's also to demonstrate the whole DIY feel of low-end 3D printing and the shareware aspect, as Nancy said. One of the things that interested me was the fact that this guy is not an engineer but a design student, or by now, a graduate.

Charles Murray
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Charles Murray   7/24/2013 8:00:21 PM
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Yes, Ann, design students are doing some amazing things. I've visited Illinois Institute of Technology's design school on several occasions, and I'm always amazed by what I see. You don't need to be an engineer to innovate.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Ann R. Thryft   7/24/2013 8:05:35 PM
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I've certainly been finding that out--about not needing to be an engineer to be innovative. I've seen that play out in robotics, as well. I think at least one service robot I wrote about was designed by a design student, not an engineer. Stay tuned for something else 3D printed by a non-engineer designer, although he had help from an engineer.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Ann R. Thryft   7/23/2013 1:11:48 PM
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Thanks Rob--that's pretty funny: "Gadget Freak videos that take nearly as long to download as this camera takes to print." Yes, I'm pretty sure you need to watch the printer during the whole process.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Rob Spiegel   7/29/2013 11:16:32 AM
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If you have to watch the printer, 14 hours is much longer than letting it rip overnight.

Charles Murray
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Charles Murray   7/23/2013 4:21:37 PM
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I agree, Rob. Fifteen hours to print and an hour to assemble is better than I expected. Cool story.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
Rob Spiegel   7/25/2013 9:08:18 PM
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I guess the number of hours is relative, Chuck. Fact is, you can probably be doing other things while it's printing -- again, similar to downloading large files. It's OK if you're not in a hurry.

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Your own old fashioned camera
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/26/2013 9:23:19 AM
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Rob:  One thing that you MUST put on top of your agenda is to pester the software fgolks @ DESIGN NEWS to work on the ongoing problem of disasterously slow screen refresh.  This blog, as well as all the others, takes forever to load & display.  I know it's a problem because I e-mailed someone else @ DESIGN NEWS a while ago, and that person acknowledged the problem.  It's painfully slow, and it's NOT just this PC.  I've had it occur w/ frequency on other PCs, regardless of processor power.

THANK YOU!.....

GTOlover
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Where do you purchase/devolp film?
GTOlover   7/23/2013 10:44:23 AM
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I know the film and developing can still be done, but my how it has shrank! I remember the day when you found this stuff everywhere. Doubt that this will revive the analog film market.

The next generation should be to print a digital camera. Or at least the frame as the insides would have to be made conventionally.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
Ann R. Thryft   7/23/2013 1:19:24 PM
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GTOlover, good point. It's been awhile since I took pictures with my analog Olympus and tried to get them printed. A quick web search on "film developing" tells me the drugstore chains still do that. Also, there are still professional photographers who use non-digital cameras to do things that still can't be done with digital ones, so there must still be at least some professional photo labs around.

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/26/2013 8:24:48 AM
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Ann: I shoot w/ film & digital cameras.  Recently, I had an opportunity to visit a Buddhist Temple on the outskirts of Tampa, as a photographic field trip.  I decided to use one of my film cameras for a change.  I shot two rolls of print film, and returning home, I stopped at my local CVS pharmacy.  They informed me that they removed the "wet" film processing machine over a year ago, but suggested that I go to another CVS store a few miles down the road.  So, I did.   Their machine was not working, but the photo person suggested I take it to another nearby CVS store.  At this store, the machine needed a filter, but since the fellow saw my plight, he said he'd send the two rolls to another CVS store further away.  The upshot was that in all cases, they respective photo clerks reiterated that CVS is in the process of removing ALL their "wet" processing machines (NORITSU) from all their facilities throughout their chain.  And, for me, this experience had its plus side & minus side.  On the minus side, what once would have taken only an hour to complete, now took almost 5 days; on the plus side, I wasn't charged for their work, since I was so inconvenienced!

By the way, I have not gone to a WAL*MART store recently w/ film developing requests, but the last time I had slide film processed, they were the ONLY source for it.  And, that was over 2 years ago.  So, I don't know if they're still offering slide film processing as a "send-out" service.  FUJI has maintained that they will continue to manufacture AND process slide film for the foreseeable future.  KODAK has completely abandoned all film processing services, and is now only selling ONE formulation of their EKTACHROME slide film. 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
Ann R. Thryft   7/29/2013 1:16:39 PM
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OLD_CURMUDGEON, a quick online search told me that Walgreen's advertises 35mm film processing, as do several mail-in services in the US, UK and Singapore. I also know that many art photographers--both those who shoot pictures of art and those who do photography as art--do not want to move to digital because it still can't reproduce what high-quality, high-speed film can do. So pro photo labs still exist. They're just not everywhere or aimed at high-volume markets like consumers.

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/30/2013 7:45:15 AM
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Ann:  I wasn't suggesting that wet-processing is no longer available.  What I've learned is that it is MOSTLY not available on the local level at a competitive price.  I have been involoved in photography for the better part of 60+ years, having started with enlarging my father's images with his home-made enlarger in the basement of our house as a child.  My point was and still is, is that it is not convenient for a person now to get the processing done AND at a price which makes it worthwhile, UNLESS you're a professional photographer & can absorb the costs.  Typically, a 24-exposure roll for processing & 1 set of prints (4x6, matte) was approx. $6.  Now, it's double that @ these specialty outlets.  In the rear pages of SHUTTERBUG magazine, for example, there are several advertisements for film processing services, but this entails sending the exposed film to their facility, and waiting.

By the way, the WALGREENS at the entrance to our subdivision informed me that they do not develop film anymore.  They ONLY have machinery for digital file processing to prints.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
Ann R. Thryft   7/30/2013 12:51:10 PM
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OLD_CURMUDGEON, it did sound like you were saying film development wasn't available much anywhere. It certainly was cheap for a long time, such as at drugstore chains. Of course, good pro labs have always cost more--and are usually worth it. The Walgreens corporate online ad is here: http://photo.walgreens.com/walgreens/pdpsdpitems/type=film_processing My local store still does this--I wonder why yours doesn't.

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Where do you purchase/devolp film?
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/30/2013 2:40:06 PM
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Ann:  It's NOT too important to me anymore, since I mostly shoot digital now, but when I went to that Buddhist Temple a while back, I just had a hankering to grab some film from the freezer.  So, it's NOT a big deal.  I have used a lab in Gainesville for years for my B&W film.  They have partially converted their process.  They develop the film w/ the classic wet process, then scan the negatives using very high reolution scanning equipment and print the negatives w/ digital printers.  Last year I sent them a quantity of B&W negatives that were approx 70 years old.  They came back absolutely GREAT!  Even some minor scratches were removed.

Years ago my local CVS store was staffed by two very knowledgeable technicians in the photo section.  Because I brought in a fair amount of film for developing, they would go the "extra mile" for me, and make prints which were color-adjusted where necessary.  Needless to say, that was a great relationship, and all at the regular store prices.  ALAS!...... that is no more!  CVS has abandoned MOST wet processing, and the stores which still have the old NORITSU machines will be discontinuing that service within the next 6 months.

Take care...... thanks for the dialogue.

Battar
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Futility
Battar   7/24/2013 9:21:04 AM
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So here we have someone suggesting using the latest 3D printing technology to create a 3rd rate example of a technological product which was obsolete a decade ago.

This redefines the phrase "an exercise in futility".

EricMJones
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Futility
EricMJones   7/24/2013 10:00:36 AM
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I'm with Battar on this. I don't see the point and hardly think publishing this is worthwhile. Sorry. At the very least, if the camera had some utility or features that marked it as an interesting and clever creation, I might say "good job!" But it's hardly more than a box.

KingDWS
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Re: Futility
KingDWS   7/25/2013 6:11:17 PM
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It might be a bit butt ugly on the outside but its the internals that make it interesting. If you ever take one of these apart they are mechanically quite complex. Its not going to change the world but it does demonstrate how a moderately complex device can be fabricated. I'm sure if they had something other than a SLA printer to do this it would have looked slightly better.

 

Makes me wonder how hard it would be to print a large format camera aka Hasselblad. Then you would really have something.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Futility
Ann R. Thryft   7/29/2013 1:17:46 PM
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Thanks for that description, KingDWS :) The internals are, indeed, what counts here. I don't see offhand why one couldn't figure out how to print a Hasselblad, too. After all, with other types of printers that do metals, NASA is printing complex rocket engine parts.

KingDWS
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Re: Futility
KingDWS   7/29/2013 6:07:29 PM
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The reason I mentioned large format such as a hasselblad is the much higher quality of the image over what you get in the far more common 35mm format. Technically if you can print a 35mm you can print any format size (well within reason anyway).

Here's the reason for printing one. You can go to pawnshops or second hand store or camera shops and pick up what used to be top of the line Canon or Nikon for lunch money amounts. Nothing wrong with a lot of them just not digital. However you cannot find a hasselblad as they are still for the most part in use. The new 50mp digital images are close but still not up to the same quality in a few areas so these cameras keep on working for the pro's. The other part of this is that a low end hassleblad setup would cost about the same as a nice new shiny Mercedes. The top end would be about the same as a nice new shiny Ferrari. That makes it worth doing unlike a 35mm size.


Yup it ain't rocket skyence! It's just a camera...

far911
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Re: Futility
far911   7/30/2013 5:38:59 AM
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Ann I believe the skepticism in the air lies around the word 'printing'. Where we're accustomed to using words like moulding, manufacturing, dyeing etc., printing seems like an underwhelming word whereas its purpose is on par with those aforementioned words. What do you think? 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Futility
Ann R. Thryft   7/30/2013 12:46:25 PM
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far911, I'm not sure I understand your question. The term "3D printing" has been around for quite awhile. Perhaps you mean the "it's like magic" appeal to people who don't understand the technology or don't realize how far it's come, and therefore think these claims are impossible. Or did you mean something else?

Dave Haynie
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Cool, but uncool
Dave Haynie   7/24/2013 10:35:48 AM
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Ok... it's very cool that you can do this. It's an interesting experiment. But make more of these for 50 euros? What's the market?


Anyone still into chemical (a much better word than "analog") photography can choose between many, many fantastic film cameras on eBay, and probably many other venues. I ran into a complete Pentax electronic SLR system at a yard sale for $15 a few weeks ago... kind of a shame no one wanted it. I just saw a Canon EOS Elan 7 on eBay for under 50 euros.

taimoortariq
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Re: Cool, but uncool
taimoortariq   7/25/2013 1:45:51 PM
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@Dave, I agree, although this project serves great for learning and future development, that can be achieved using 3D printers but it is not a very good business plan. To pay 50euros for a camera is not reasonable, not forgetting that analog cameras are outdated. If there was a unique device which is otherwise not avaliable at a cheaper price, it would have done the trick.

taimoortariq
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3D printers in future
taimoortariq   7/25/2013 1:54:09 PM
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With the 3D printers on the rise, I wonder how long it will take for it to become a utility for household. Certainly, it would lead to people becoming self sufficient in creating there own parts, there may be inbuilt features for regular parts utilized at home. It would certainly be quite a useful device to have at home.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: 3D printers in future
Ann R. Thryft   7/25/2013 5:43:57 PM
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taimoortariq, the idea of some of these "print your own ___ [fill in the blank" projects all over the place is to explore just what can be done with these machines, especially the low end ones. A recurring theme I see is customization, assuming that the user can tweak the design. I wonder about what level of self-sufficiency is possible for non-engineers is designs need tweaking and when materials are rather exotic and must be sourced and purchased.

Dave Haynie
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Re: Cool, but uncool
Dave Haynie   7/26/2013 3:04:28 PM
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@taimoortariq  oh, absolutely. I think the initial development was a really cool hack, simply to be able to say that you made a functioning 35mm camera from a 3D printer. Though I could probably carve one from oak, if I decided to spend the next year at the task :-) 

What boggled me was the idea of selling this. It's an amazing thing to have done this yourself, and the notion of open source mechanicals is cool today, but very likely a revolution we can hardly even imagine, in the long run. This can ultimately be Star Trek stuff. But commercializing this as-is.. I don't the sense in it. Maybe if you're working on a history of 3D printing or something, but not for practical photography. 

On the other hand, given it 10 or 20 years, and start mixing open source HW and SW. There could come the day that you'd actually be able to make a pretty good digital camera at home. And I'll tell you, that's a day I hope to see!

 

Niel
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Hummm, ok.
Niel   7/24/2013 10:41:30 AM
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I can see the attraction of playing with film, but why not use cheaply available old Canon lenses? Lots out there AND because Canon keeps changing their mount, making the older glass worthless, cheaper to build and equip. That Nikon Nikkor-S  is still a sought after lens today, $600 price tags are not unknown!

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Hummm, ok.
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/26/2013 7:49:11 AM
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Niel,

I think you'd be better off IF you did some research before spreading some misinformation regarding CANON camera series.  Early CANON SLR products used a screw-in lens, ala LEICA, etc.  In the 1950s, they switched to their "FL-mount" which is a bayonet mount design, making lens-changing a very effortless, quick process.  They continued that basic mount style until the introduction of the EOS line of cameras in 1986, when it was superceded by the "EF" mount, and larger, modified bayonet mount.  The FL mount was updated in the early 1970s to the FD mount w/ the introduction of the AE-1, and F-1 cameras because they had advanced the metering technology to be more automatic & coupling to the lens.  However, a person owning a previous generation CANON camera, designed only for the FL mount, could still use the new "FD" mount, except they could not switch the lens into the "A" position on the f-stop ring.  When the EOS line was envisioned, CANON realized that they be communicating a lot more data between the camera body & the lens (autofocus, auto exposure, etc.) so they upgraded the mount to the present-day EF mount, which, by the way, stands for Electro-Focus.

Now, switche gears to NIKON...... In the early days, NIKON also used a screw-in mount.  Then, in the late 1950s, with the introduction of the "F", they made the NIKKOR lenses with the external coupling to the aperture ring.  Then NIKON produced some more cameras since then, both film & digital which constantly updated & upgraded their lens mounts, so that today, a person investing in NIKON equipment has to be selective because SOME modern NIKON lenses have feaures built into the lenses, others have these features built into the camera body.

So!, you tell me WHICH camera company has produced MORE disparate mounts in the past 50 or 60 years?????  I think that "award" goes to NIKON!!!

p.s.  I have been an avid semi-pro photographer for the better part of 60 years, and so I know of where I speak.  And, still have some of my original purchases of CANON equipment, dating back to the 1950s!

Niel
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Re: Hummm, ok.
Niel   7/26/2013 8:15:43 AM
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Talking purely 35mm/dslr Nikon's F mount has had electronic's added, but my 1.4 5cm still fits and meters on my new 'pro' dslr Nikon's with the mod'd ap ring, that's the point I was making, OLD Nikon F mount glass is still useable, the UASF use them for optical expermimental stuff, but old Canon slr glass is much cheaper. Of course a lot on Canon users also buy older Nikon glass and a simple adaptor to use them, keeping Nikon glass prices up!

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Hummm, ok.
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/26/2013 8:35:58 AM
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In the late 1960s, I was within a millimeter of purchasing a new NIKON F body, partly because a fellow engineer had one, and bragged about it so much.  And, one day, he brought it into the lab, so I could get a hands-on feel for it.  At that time I had a cousin who had a CANON PELLIX & an FT.  I compared the two cameras in my mind, and when I saw my colleagure remove the lens, and then reinsert it, he had to ensure that the aperture coupling pin on the viewfinder engaged w/ the notch in the lens, that small technicality bent me into the direction of the CANON cameras,  He fumbled with it for what was a few milliseconds, maybe, but in my mind, it seemed like an eternity!  That was the convincer for me.  The next time I saw my cousin, I asked him to get out his camera.  Then I asked him to remove the lens, and hand me both items separately.  I CLOSED my eyes & did NOT cheat.  I grabbed the lens, & the camera, and reattached the lens onto his CANON FT without the slightest hesitation!  The following week I bought a CANON PELLIX & a CANON FT.  I still have BOTH bodies & a slew of lenses, although now they're pretty much relegated to the top shelf of an unfilled closet.  The last time I used them was to capture some fireworks displays from the roof of our house.  Florida is flat, so capturing 4th of July fireworks displays, professionally-presented is a fun thing to do, especially from the roof of your ranch-style house!! 

Niel
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Re: Hummm, ok.
Niel   7/26/2013 8:40:25 AM
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Yes, I came to a similar conclusion, just as Canon started changing their mounts, if they hadn't it would have been Canon for me too, but it was enough, I still have my first Nikon, and the lenses, my favourite is a 50cm f5 cat that I still use for small boats and wildlife.

Dave Haynie
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Re: Hummm, ok.
Dave Haynie   7/26/2013 3:33:29 PM
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I'm not sure which Canon SLR system you mean here... please educate me. 

I used to be a collector of Canon Rangefinder cameras, which of course used the Leica M39 screw mount, up until the Canon 7, which had the external bayonette for the 50mm f0.95 lens only. 

Far as I know (though I didn't collect these), the first Canon SLRs were the R-Series. The R-Series lenses were breech-bayonette mount -- you set the lens with a pin or two (two in the R-series, one on the FL-series), and rotated a ring to lock down the lens, rather than rotating the lens. 

The R-series (1955) and the FL-series (1964) used the same breech-lock bayonette. R and FL bodies could use either lens. 

The FD lens system also employed a breech-lock bayonette, though they gradually moved from using the ring to moving the whole body of the lens when mounting, so it seemed more like a conventional bayonette, but the actual mount still didn't turn against the camera body. 

The EF lens, of course, switched to a completely incompatible (without adapter) conventional bayonette. Though just for grins, it turns in the opposite direction of Nikon's... 

Nikon definitely used the bayonette for their first generation SLRs.. same basic bayonette they use today. And yeah, they changed to electronic coupling over time, and (like Canon) added APS-only lenses, but the mount itself hasn't changed.

On the other hand, the EOS mount to film plane was wider shorter than most, so you can adapt nearly anything in SLR land to an EOS camera. And change was a good thing.. Canon moved to electronics much sooner than most other camera makers, and with a clean start. 

In those early days, the 40's and 50's, Nikon made M39 lenses for other cameras (and Canon made at least one lens that fit Nikon's), but their rangefinders used the Contax rangefinder mount (sort of ... their focus coupling was different), which was a bayonette mount, not a screw mount. I don't know of any Nikon that used a screw mount. 

OLD_CURMUDGEON
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Re: Hummm, ok.
OLD_CURMUDGEON   7/29/2013 9:02:44 AM
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That was the point I was attempting to make.... the "R" lens, the "FL" lenses & the "FD" and "new FD" lenses were all interchangeable over a very long span of camera bodies, from the 1950s until 1986 when CANON changed to the EF mount out of technological necessity.  And, while I'll agree that I can't mount my EF-S 10-22 on my 5D Mk II, I CAN put ALL of my other EF glass onto my EOS 1N, 1V, 5D Mk II or 7D without any problem!  I still maintain that CANON has considered their customers with more regard than NIKON.

Interesting that you SHOULD mention the "R" 50mm/0.95 lens......  I HAD the FL version of that lens for my PELLIX & FT, but VERY STUPIDLY sold it, and to this day I don't know why!!  I saw one at a camera equipment show in the Holiday Inn in downtown Tampa about 15 years ago.  The lens wasn't in great shape.... lots of wear, but the glass didn't look bad.  He wanted about $500 IF my memory serves me.....

On a positive note, however, I still have in my FT PELLIX (QL) bag, the FLP38, which is not unlike the new EF pancake lens being offered for the EOS cameras. Interesting how it is, "as things go around, they come around!"

Dave Haynie
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Re: Hummm, ok.
Dave Haynie   7/26/2013 3:43:21 PM
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Canon changed the coupling mechanism. But so did Nikon. 

Otherwise, they only made it incompatible once. The original SLR lenses from 1955, the R-series, worked interoperably with the FL lenses (1965), both were breech mount bayonette. The FD series were still interoperable, but added the additional auto aperture coupling pin. 

It was only for EOS/EF lenses that they broke compatibiltiy at the mount level (well, again, if you want to consider EOS M, but then you'd have to consider Nikon 1 as well, and no one wins here). 

Given that no mechanical lens will couple automatically with an electronic camera, and that the EOS lens mount to focal plane distance is less than the breech mount series (so you can use any R, FL, or FD lens with an adapter), I'd personally call it a wash. 

For the record, I have both Canon and Nikon film and digital SLRs, though my main system is Canon. Also, Olympus OM-series and Digital Pen series cameras. To date, I have more OM-series lenses than any others, but Oly kind of walked away from SLRs after the OM-4. Which led me to switch, eventuually, to Canon... they had electronics in the days of film far in advance of anyone else. At least that year.  

notarboca
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Re: Hummm, ok.
notarboca   7/28/2013 9:20:31 PM
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With only one shutter speed (1/60 sec.), I don't see how you'll get much use out of it except in certain situation.  MHO.

JRT256
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Analog Camera????
JRT256   7/26/2013 11:51:52 PM
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I was wondering just who decided to call film cameras "analog cameras".  Yes, their recording method is analog.  BUT, what do you call electronic cameras that use an analog recording method?  Most of these are video cameras using tape.  However, if you do a little research, you will find that there were also some still electronic still cameras which recordeded images by analog methods.  It could even be more complicated since there were cameras that used CCD image sensors, which are digital, but used analog tape to recorde the images.  Then video switched to digital tape before it switched to memory cards.

My point is that this is not a binary proposition.  It is not as simply as calling something 'analog' simply because it is not digital.

William K.
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Analog camera???
William K.   7/30/2013 5:41:17 PM
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The title of the writup is a bit confusing, since I was thinking that an analog camera would be an analog electronic camera, instead of a film camera. Big difference there. Of course, this may have been mentioned already, but I did not read through all 5 pages of comments just yet. I still have some truly analog cameras, vidicon types that are completely analog and produce NTSC composite video. The reason I keep them is the very high resolution of those lenses, which are able to resolve fence wires at 100 feet quite well. Of course, there are some very good pure digital cameras that will do much better than that, but they cost a whole lot more than I am willing to spend o toys such as these.

So "print your own film camera" would have provided a much more accurate description of what the article actually is.

And 15 hourse to print and one whole hour is not bad at all, although it certainly would be a huge challenge for somebody with a 3 second attention span. 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog camera???
Ann R. Thryft   7/30/2013 6:10:19 PM
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William, "analog camera" is the designer's own descriptive term, but I've seen it used interchangeably with "film camera" to distinguish this type from digital cameras. Funny, we all knew what they were before, and right after, the digital versions came along.

William K.
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Re: Analog camera???
William K.   7/30/2013 6:33:34 PM
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Ann, I have never come across a reference to a film camera as an "analog" camera. In the crash testing business there are both "pure analog" digital electronic cameras and "pure digital" digital cameras. Of course these are very application specific devices with capture rates that sometimes exceed a thousand frames per second. But the very most impressive frame rates are on the cameras used to record the military testing of projectiles hitting armer testing. 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog camera???
Ann R. Thryft   7/30/2013 6:54:36 PM
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William, I don't know why the designer used the term in his description, but the term "analog camera" is very common in machine vision. And, as I've said, I've seen it used interchangeably with "film camera" to distinguish this type from digital cameras, usually in a consumer context.

William K.
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Re: Analog camera???
William K.   7/30/2013 7:22:19 PM
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Ann, an analod electronic camera is certainly a very common type in machine vision, but it is most certainly not a film camera, but a truely analog device. Some analog cameras do contain converters to the digital format, while others have it happen outside of the camera. But none of them is a film camera.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog camera???
Ann R. Thryft   7/31/2013 1:14:57 PM
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William, guess I should have said I'm aware of the difference between those two. My point was about terminology usage, not definitions.

William K.
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Re: Analog camera???
William K.   8/1/2013 9:47:31 PM
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OK, Ann, It was indeed about definitions. It is frustrating to find that lazy journalists, amongst others, are promoting the use of incorrect terms for what the meaning is that they attempt to convey. The end effect is to remove any specific meaning from a word or expression, which leads to fuzzy understanding and unclear thinking. As an engineer working to provide solutions to problems, clear meaning is quite important to me. I understand that totaslly foggy meanings are quite acceptable to a large portion of our population, but we should, as engineers, at least attempt to communicate accurately. We owe it to ourselves, if not to everybody.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog camera???
Ann R. Thryft   8/2/2013 12:10:25 PM
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William, we are clearly disagreeing about the use of terminology, not what it means. The two are separate but related issues. "Analog camera" means different things in different contexts. In this context, it was completely appropriate. The problem with a lot of tech terminology in general is exactly that: there are no absolutes. That's something that technology journalists have known for decades, and that's why different publications serving different industries have kept their own "style guides."

jname
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Re: Analog camera???
jname   8/2/2013 1:25:22 PM
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Hmm...linguists would argue that definition is a tricky business and despite the proclivities of some, language needs a certain amount of fluidity for effective communication.  There is a time-honored practice of stipulative difinition, wherein the word used is tied to a specific context.  This is not sloppy;  it evinces a sophisticated grasp of mulitple abstract levels of reference.

 

--jname

William K.
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Re: Analog camera???
William K.   8/7/2013 5:36:20 PM
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In my engineering career I have written a large number of technical proposals, machine descriptions, machine manuals, and sales letters, which define exactly what a machine will do, what it will not do, and how fast it will do it. The financial health of my employers has been dependant upon those documents having only one possible interpretation. The result is that I do tend to be quite picky about what words are used to imply, and what they mean. That is my background, and it is not that I am attempting to give anybody a "hard time" about meanings and semantics, but rather that it is first nature with me to want descriptions to be accurate. 

Sometimes that accuracy can be quite boring, as when I wrote a three page description of a "Zippo" brand of cigarette lighter for one technical writing class. The instructor said that it would be quite possible to build a working version just from the description. Others said that it was quite boring. Oh Well.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog camera???
Ann R. Thryft   8/19/2013 12:53:18 PM
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William, I agree entirely about the need for accuracy. But you are describing primarily engineering, not blogging. I too, have written tech manuals, articles, brochures, and you name it; in fact I did so for several years before going into technical journalism. And while doing so, I learned how guilty the tech industry as a whole has been of using many different terms to mean the same thing, especially with brand new technologies that are still being defined and described. Or using the same acronym to mean many different things. Or just plain silly acronyms that quickly lose any useful context (remember LSI and VLSI?). Coming from a science background, I found this pretty annoying. But one learns to adapt.

h2mac
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Analog Camera
h2mac   8/17/2013 12:58:40 PM
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I got it right away. (But I'm an old dog.) The term digital camera became the ubiquitous term a couple of decades ago to distinguish cameras with ccd backs from film cameras. Of course at the time, we never called film cameras "film" or "analog" cameras, just cameras.

But to a younger person, who grew up in the culture of digital everything, it might seem perfectly normal, since analog is the natural complement to digital in many areas of electronics, to use the term analog as an analog for the opposite of digital, would be quite normal. It is analogous after all.


Anyway, why are we splitting this silly hair?

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Analog Camera
Ann R. Thryft   8/19/2013 12:54:27 PM
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h2mac, thanks for the context and history. I knew it had something to do with the CCD shift, but not exactly what. Interesting about the generational difference: I guessed something similar.

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