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Roger Hicks -- Author of The Rangefinder Book

Roger Hicks is a well known photographic writer, author of The Rangefinder Book, over three dozen other photographic books, and a frequent contributor to Shutterbug and Amateur Photographer. Unusually in today's photographic world, most of his camera reviews are film cameras, especially rangefinders. See www.rogerandfrances.com for further background (Frances is his wife Frances Schultz, acknowledged darkroom addict and fellow Shutterbug contributor) .


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Do you know how many cameras you own?
Old 04-03-2011   #1
Roger Hicks
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Do you know how many cameras you own?

And, of course, what do you count as a camera? Surely, anyone who has been taking pictures for more than a decade or so (I've been at it 45 years) is likely to have all kinds of junk lying around (and so do many who started much more recently). What about non-functioning folders? Polaroids for which film is no longer available? Cameras you were given ("I know you're interested in photography...") and have not got around to trying? Cameras that don't work any more (or 'yet')? Camera phones? Outdated disposables?

I'd guess I have around 100, but it is only a guess. Usable, reasonably versatile cameras? Maybe a quarter of that. Cameras I use much? Halve it again, or maybe fewer.

Cheers,

R.

Last edited by Roger Hicks : 04-03-2011 at 07:29.
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Old 04-03-2011   #2
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Sold it all and only kept my M7.

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Old 04-03-2011   #3
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More than 20 or so including 35 mm SLR and rangefinders, medium format toy cameras (Holga/Diana) LF, digital and pinholes (6x12 and 4x5). All of them functioning, including the polaroid that I don't have film for anymore.

The only cameras that see any use are my M6 and my 4x5. Occasionally I'll use the Holga or the pinholes, and if I have anything that requires digital I have a Canon 1D mark II which is ancient by digital standards, but I still think it produces an incredible file.
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Old 04-03-2011   #4
Jerry Thirsty
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According to the spreadsheet I use to record my serial numbers, I have 52 cameras. (I'll admit it: I'm more of a gearhead than a photographer. The photos are just an excuse to use the gear, but every once in a while I get lucky and get a keeper.)
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Old 04-03-2011   #5
squinza
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I own many (too many) lenses, but only three cameras: M6, M8 and a 5D mark II, that's all I need. And I wouldn't mind combining the two Ms into a M9.
That's because I barely use film, and as far as digital is concerdend, the latest bodies are definitely better than older ones.

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Old 04-03-2011   #6
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According to my wife, too many.

She's wrong.

Well, maybe she's a little bit right.

But to really answer the quest, I don't know. I could estimate, but actually sorting them out and counting them would probably be pretty alarming.
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Old 04-03-2011   #7
njos
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around 8 cameras include RFs,MFs,SLRs.(some are pinhole a.k.a Body Only)
i don't have any digital yet, or LargeFormat - Half frame
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Old 04-03-2011   #8
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Probably between 30 - 40. Most work too. As of late, I've only been using two (Leica MP and Rolleiflex 6006) but will take out one of the others when the mood strikes.

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Old 04-03-2011   #9
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Around year 2000, I sold all my stuff to fund a Leica M and a Lens. It was a project of removing the clutter and getting back to basic. During the following years I found out that I actually enjoy owning and using a diverse selection of quality equipment and I have purchased many new (to me) cameras since then.
My new rule is that if a camera doesn't work and if I don't like it enough to pay for a repair, it goes out. This has left me with a total of 9 film cameras (from half-frame to 6x9cm) and 2 digital cameras - all see regular use.
I don't consider phone and web cams part of this. I never use them.
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Old 04-03-2011   #10
zhengpeng
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I think somewhere around 50. For some camera models, I bought several of them. For example, I have 3 Kodak tourist and 3 Kodak monitor folders (they are all of the better/special version). I probably have a dozen of German folders with very good working condition. I still have a few boxes of antique cameras brought from auction. If they are counted, the number could approach 100.
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Old 04-03-2011   #11
drinkingeye
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less than I need, more than my wife can stand

around 35 cameras in total - technically in perfect condition maybe 25,
in heavy use around 10 (MF and 35 mm)
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Old 04-03-2011   #12
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Yes, I do. And since the number is always increasing, decreasing, increasing...etc., I'd rather keep the number under wraps.

When I moved last August I got rid of about a dozen. Kept more than that.
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Old 04-03-2011   #13
andens2
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Rangefinders - 8
Rank aldis x 2, Fed2 x 2, Fujica V2, Yashica GSN, Canon Canonet, Voigtlander Vito ii.
SLR's - 5
OM1, OM10, Praktica MTL 5, Minolta Dynax 500si and X-700
Medium Format - 3
RB67
Mamiya 6
Kodak Special 6 Twenty

1 - DSLR

2 - Pocket digital cameras

In addition to 7 other point and shoot cameras and three phone cameras.

Daily, Weekly use about 8 -10 mainly rangefinders and medium format.
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Old 04-03-2011   #14
John Lawrence
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About ten years ago I probably had around the same amount as Roger (100+), but I needed some money, I wasn't using them and there was a boom in sales of vintage / classic cameras - so I sold them.

These days I probably have around 6 left - 3 I use regularly and 3 I keep for sentimental reasons.

John

Last edited by John Lawrence : 04-03-2011 at 11:05.
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Old 04-03-2011   #15
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I recently had a major clear out. I now own (thinking) 11 cameras.

Sh1t that's too many. I'm going to sell more.
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Old 04-03-2011   #16
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It's interesting to note that most folks who have a DSLR have only one, though they may have many varieties of other species. It could just be an economic consideration, I suppose.
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Old 04-03-2011   #17
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Two: MP+ M9. Four lenses. That's all (sometimes I think it's too much).

Cheers, Horea
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Old 04-03-2011   #18
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Last count--and I, too, have a database for insurance purposes--I had 24 bodies, only 4 or 5 of which are totally non-functional. I use 4-5 on a regular basis; the rest spend most of their time sitting. I seem to shoot less and less film all the time so the film cameras are the ones that sit. I'm going to sell off some bodies--and a few lenses--to fund a GXR. There, I actually said it, now I just have to do it...
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Old 04-03-2011   #19
HuubL
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let's see. film cams, from the top of my head:

RFs: leica iii, iiia, iiic, iiifrd, iiifrdst, iiig, m1, m2, m3, m4, m4, m5, m6, m7, mda, cl
contax iia
fed 2
konica s2

SLRs: canon ftbql, f1n, ef, ae1, a1, ae1p, f1N, t90
oly om2
edixa flex
petri v6

compact: voigtlander vito iia, minox gl

6x6: rolleicord Va, zeis ikon nettax.

digital: canon 40d, panasonic gf1, i don't count my cell phones.

recently sold rfs: contax iii, canon ivsb, P, 7, zorki 4, zenith s, nikon s2 (reminds me I have to replace my sig pic)

Oh, all are functional, only the leica IIIa and the petri have bad slow times.
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Last edited by HuubL : 04-03-2011 at 10:10.
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Old 04-03-2011   #20
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less than 10, but i only keep 4 now, including one Pentax film PnS that's not working anymore, an XA, one Olympus XB400 and MG-1, i'm selling the MG-1, so practically i only have 2 cameras now, but hopefully i can get that Canonet QL17 Giii in the classifieds.. If that happens, my dream of having an XA and the QL17 will come true, and i won't be buying another one in near future i guess (oh, maybe a digital body, a K-5, if i have the money )
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Old 04-03-2011   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HuubL View Post
...
RFs: leica iii, iiia, iiic, iiifrd, iiifrdst, iiig, m1, m2, m3, m4, m4, m5, m6, m7, mda, cl
...
impressive! i want one! haha!
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Old 04-03-2011   #22
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Quote:
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impressive! i want one! haha!
Sorry, I need them ALL
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Old 04-03-2011   #23
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No idea how many - some bought out of curiosity, some bought out of sentiment, some bought as duplicates (spare parts), some bought stupidly!
Should have a clear out, might have a clear out, maybe tomorrow!

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Old 04-03-2011   #24
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Well, since I am not a collector, but a user, it is strange that I have 7 working cameras, and 2 non-working one of which I plan to repair. I have a couple or three more on my affordable wish list, and a half dozen on my wish list but too expensive given my limited income.

I used to equate collectors as hoarders, but have changed my mind lately as I realized that they are the source of those cheap "estate sale find"cameras on eBay. If they had not bought all those cameras up they would probably have wound up in the trash.
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Old 04-03-2011   #25
Michiel Fokkema
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I'm not sure 20 or so. I've sold everything I can miss. Haven't bought nay cameras lately, only lenses. Must own around 30 I guess. Can't miss any of them.

Cheers,

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Old 04-03-2011   #26
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lol

four plus my mom's old rolleiflex which is in a box somewhere
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Old 04-03-2011   #27
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Leica M4
Fuji GA645i
Pana GF1
Yashica D
Canon EOS Elan 7
Canon AF P&S (film)

The first four get used regularly.
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Old 04-03-2011   #28
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opened or unopened?
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Old 04-03-2011   #29
Steve Bellayr
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I know exactly how many cameras/lenses I own and their serial numbers & what batteries they use. In many cases I tell you where and when I purchased the items and for what price. I computerized this information. Computers do serve a purpose.
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Old 04-03-2011   #30
gb hill
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I have less than 10. Mose are working users some belong in the trash can. Camera's are expensive so I fight off gas & buy what I can use. Really not any camera I'm interested in buying anyhow. There are a few lenses I'd like to have.
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Old 04-03-2011   #31
FrankS
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A few less than Roger.

The real question is how may enlargers do you own? Any one with more than 9? (I can't help "rescuing" them from garage sales.)
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Old 04-03-2011   #32
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I have 10, all functional. I paid for 9 of them; 1 was a gift:
  • 2 DSLR's
  • 4 Film SLR's
  • 2 35mm Film RF's
  • 1 NEX5
  • 1 Graflex (a gift)
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Old 04-03-2011   #33
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Only four; two Pentax film SLR bodies (MX and ZX-M), a Leica IIIf RDST, and a Panasonic DMC-LX3 digicam.

Wait -- five. I forgot about the Olympus XA I don't use very much anymore.

No -- six. Then there's the dead Canon A300 digicam.

No, wait -- seven. Forgot to include the MF folding camera.

Oops -- nine. Also have two old 6x9 box cameras that also take 120 film.

Um -- ten. Then there's the simple plastic Vivitar camera (forget the model, has only one shutter speed and a fixed-focus lens, designed for ASA 200 film under daylight conditions) I fished out of a free pile on the street.

But only the first four see any sort of regular use presently.
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Old 04-03-2011   #34
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Cameras owned:

Before 1979, 0.

From 1979 - 1997: 1.

From 1997 to present, increasing exponentially, it seems, so that I now have 27.

Seven cameras purchased new (two film and five digital), one film camera that was given to me, 18 film cameras purchased used, and the digital camera in my cell phone.

The break-down is this:
11 ea. 35mm SLR
1 ea. crop-frame DSLR
2 ea. full-frame DSLR
4 ea. 35mm Film Rangefinder
1 ea. 35mm Film Point and Shoot
2 ea. Digital Point and Shoot
5 ea. Medium Format TLR
1 ea. Cell phone POS

All of the cameras that I purchased new work fine, and I use all of them, though not every one every month.

The camera that was given to me is in pieces on the dining room table (and has been for awhile). It may get sent away to a home for aged cameras as a basket case - I haven't decided its fate yet. I did put two or three rolls of film through it before taking it apart.

Of the 18 that I purchased used, only 6 were fully functional with no need for anything immediately. I have used all of those. Two of the cameras are maybe beyond hope - they cannot be used in their current condition but they are really nice cameras (Rolleiflex 3.5A, OM-2n) so I'm hoping they can be restored. The ones that need service are lined up and ready to go out - most of them were purchased within the past year.

So, I have 16 fully functional cameras, and use them all, though some more than others.

My goal is to master each camera, but I'll have to get busier than I have been. I did process some black and white film the other day like there was nothing to it, though, and it wasn't all that long ago that I processed my first roll ever. So, there's hope.
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Old 04-03-2011   #35
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Hmm, my wife counted 9, but it was before i got at least five or ten more, so i say between 10 to 20.
I also got diagnosed re-burst of Zuikoholism, had some 10 lenses before, now about the same again and propably more to come...
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Old 04-03-2011   #36
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M6 with 90mm and 28mm Zeiss lenses, keeping it simple, though a GSW690 looks interesting.
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Old 04-03-2011   #37
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I keep my tally just below the number of shoes my wife has.
She's no Emelda Marcos but definitely no slouch.
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Old 04-03-2011   #38
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I have about 40 cameras. Only 2 Leicas (M6 and IIIf). I have a weakness for Kodak cameras, so lots of them are quite cheap. I like all of my cameras, each in its own way, and for no more than they cost me, they were a bargain.

I like Frank S's followup question-- how many enlargers do you own? I have 1 now, but since I recently acquired a Speed Graphic 4x5, I need an enlarger that can handle large format.

Frank-- anything you could part with?
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Old 04-03-2011   #39
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I like Frank S's followup question-- how many enlargers do you own?
Just 2 ...
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Old 04-03-2011   #40
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I'm not sure. I thought that maybe I had a collecting problem. But after reading some of the posts in this thread I now feel much better about myself. Some of you are sick.
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