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Not Everyone Needs a Leica

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While shopping the local camera store, I happened to overhear a teenage-looking customer inquiring about some gear. He wanted a certain type of lens, but was actively rueing the fact that the lenses his friends were using cost more than he was able to spend. He asked to see a lens he could afford, listened to the clerk tell him it wasn’t as good as the glass his friends were shooting, got discouraged, and ended up leaving the shop with nothing.

I must admit, the whole thing kind of bothered me.

It’s been a few days now, and I keep catching myself thinking back to that dejected-looking kid at the camera shop. I wish I had gotten his attention as he walked out the door. I wish I had asked him what camera he was shooting, what kind of subjects he likes to shoot, and if he had a Flickr account where I could check out his shots. I wish I had shown excitement that he was a new photographer, and told him to keep at it. I wish I had asked him to see his camera, and been impressed by the machine he’d have pulled from his bag- whatever camera that might’ve been.

But I didn’t do any of that. And that’s a real shame.

Thinking on it since then, it seems that there exists in photography an almost unhealthy preoccupation with names and numbers. Some folk look askance at all but a select few makes of camera, even though any camera would be rightfully regarded as pure sorcery to human beings from any other era than our own. Even so, to some shooters these incredible machines capable of capturing the photons of our universe just aren’t all that good, on account of their lacking a certain name, digit, or engraving.

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Win a Leica in Our End-of-Year Giveaway

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It’s no secret we love film cameras. To us, there’s no better way of taking a break from the technological over-saturation of our day-to-day lives than leaving the digital stuff at home, loading a roll of film, and seeing what kind of images we can make with a “primitive” analog camera. It’s just the best.

Our mission here at CP is, in part, to help this passion for film shooting blossom in those who visit. There’s no better feeling than the one we get when we introduce someone to the world of film photography for the very first time, either through this site or through our camera shop.

With this goal in mind, we occasionally give cameras away for free. And, guess what? We’re doing it again.

In the past we’ve given away a number of classic Canons, the perennially popular AE-1 and it’s more capable brother the A-1. This time we’re upping the ante. That’s right; we’re giving away a Leica.

Want it? I thought so. For contest details, read on.

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The Best First Film Camera for Any Shooter

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It’s one of the questions we’re asked most often here at CP, across our social media accounts, and through our online shop. Every day, new shooters and experienced digital photographers ask us to help them choose their first film camera.

It’s not an easy task. Often we don’t know the shooter’s goals, experience level, or budget. What we do know, is that there’s a film camera out there for everyone. They just need to find it!

With this in mind, we’ve put together a list of recommended cameras for people looking to buy their first film camera. From totally inexperienced shooters to those seeking the ultimate film camera, we’ve taken the time to curate a list that’ll help any first-time film shooter find the film camera that’s right for them. We’ve even included links to our full reviews where applicable!

We should add that there are many more cameras out there that could’ve made this list. We tried to focus on cameras we’ve reviewed.

Check out the list, and if you’re a veteran film shooter let us know in the comments which camera was your first!

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Leica Minilux – Camera Review

Leica Minilux 35mm Point and Shoot Camera Review 7

For many photo-geeks, there are few cameras that elicit the kind of lustful ogling as those made by Leica. For many photophiles, Leica’s machines are the holy grail of cameras. And for many devoted followers, Leica is a brand that can do no wrong.

Not without good reason; the boys from Wetzlar long ago earned their enviable spot at the top of the pile due to their unflagging production of nothing but the highest quality cameras. Their M rangefinder system, specifically, has been the camera to own for over fifty years due to its timeless combination of optical fidelity, clarity of design, and exclusive price point.

But today, we’re not talking about the M2, M3, or any other M. Instead, we’re talking about a Leica that’s a little less popular, a little less expensive, and a little less German. It’s the Leica Minilux, a 35mm point-and-shoot that proudly boasts the famous red dot.

The Minilux was Leica’s offering for pros and passionate enthusiasts who wanted Leica quality and sophistication in a point-and-shoot camera. It certainly bears the name in enough places, but is the Minilux any good? Is this premium point-and-shoot a real photographer’s tool, or is it an over-hyped toy for rich boys?

Let’s find out.

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The Ultimate Camera Battery Compendium

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We field a lot of questions here at CP. Whether they come by way of post comments, our online shop, our social networks, or via direct message, there’s a never-ending supply of inquisitive photo-geeks seeking answers to hard questions.

And one of the most common questions we field almost every single day gets right to the heart of the hobby. It’s an important, existential question. A question that, were it to go unanswered, would invariably bring the world of photography to a slow, grinding halt.

“What battery does my camera take?”

See? Pretty important.

With this in mind, we’ve decided to throw together an exhaustive, alphabetical list of every battery-powered classic camera, with links to its appropriate battery. We’ll start with the most common cameras, and update the list as frequently as possible as we continue to add to its ranks.

Our suggestion is to bookmark this page for reference, disseminate it widely, and use it to slough off your inquiring friends who just won’t stop bothering you about powering their cameras. Hell, that’s what we’re doing…

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