Peter Wittlin, Basel

Photography

Photography

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Kodak Instamatic 100
126 Film Cartridge
126 Film Cartridge

Photography is nowadays a very popular and wide spread hobby - and no doubt far away from being uncommon. There are many occasions for taking pictures, such as baptism, marriage and holidays - simply something for the album. Anyway, being a lot of fun was the reason for this most fascinating hobby. My first camera was a Kodak Instamatic 100 using 126 film cartridges - a very simple thing. This was around 1963.

The pictures were of very poor quality - and yet, at that time it meant a lot of fun for all of us. The "lens" (43mm f/11) was a kind of plastic material and the flash light didn't look very stable. Anyway, it was a camera and we were quite happy with that poor old thing. And the Instamatic Cartridge was something completely new at that time. Say: "cheese!".

Kodak Instamatic 500

However, after a certain time I was dissatisfied with this very low quality standard. So I decided to buy a new camera: an Instamatic 500. And this time the lens was really a lens; after all it was from Schneider! A skylight filter and a flash light followed and my photo equipment was complete.

Topcon RE Super

It was only a matter of time until I decided to have a camera that could meet all my demands concerning photography. So my next buy was a Topcon RE Super - also known in the US as Topcon Super D - an extremely versatile camera that was exactly what I was looking for. The pentaprism could be replaced with a special precision viewfinder (with adjustable diopter!). Even the fresnel lenses could be exchanged: microprism, split-image or precision range-finders.

Novoflex Bellows-Unit

Somewhat later I bought a few accessories. Among them were a Novoflex bellows together with a compendium and a few lens heads. A slide copier, extension rings, filters and a double cable release made the equipment complete - in my opinion at least.


Novoflex Bellows-Unit with Compendium
Novoflex Quick-Shooting Tele Lens

My Novoflex quick-shooting bellows was a very fine piece of equipment. It was similar to what you can see on the picture at your right side with the exception that there were bellows instead of a tube.


Topcon with 135mm tele lens

A single lens reflex without exchangeable lenses? Pretty soon I bought a 28-mm wide angle lens followed by a 135mm telephoto lens (picture showing the 200mm version). A 58mm macro lens head with a separate adjustable extension-ring made the party complete.

Topcon with macro lens and adjustable extension ring

Together with the adjustable extension ring and a double cable release the above mentioned lens head could also be used in the normal range. But it was a real true macro lens of very high quality.


 Topcon Accessories 

Waist Level Viewfinder
Waist Level Viewfinder
Precision Viewfinder
Precision Viewfinder
Adjustable Extension Ring
Adjustable Extension Ring
Set of Extension Rings
Set of Extension Rings
 
Flash Adapter
Flash Adapter
Fresnel Lens
Fresnel Lens
 
 Topcon Lenses 

RE Auto-Topcor 1:3.5 f=135mm
RE Auto-Topcor 1:3.5 f=135mm
Macro-Topcor 1:3.5 f=58mm
Macro-Topcor 1:3.5 f=58mm
RE Auto-Topcor 1:2.8 f=28mm
RE Auto-Topcor 1:2.8 f=28mm
Exakta Varex IIb

The last camera I added was an Exakta Varex IIb. It was only the body without a lens. I could use the Topcon lenses instead, because they were using the Exakta bayonet as well. A strange thing was that the wind lever and the shutter release were on the left side of the camera. In contrast to the Topcon there was no through the lens exposure meter. However, it was such an extremely versatile camera that it was nearly impossible to find something equal.

Canon EOS 450D

Times are changing. It's obious that nowadays everything goes towards digital technic. It is also a great advantage that you don't have to care for you own darkroom, what in most cases cannot be realized anyway (no own house, your flat being to small...). What ends up that you have to go to your local photo shop in order to have all the developing and enlarging be done. Digital imaging proves to be a real advantage over conventional image processing. And it saves you a lot of time. After looking around for quite a while I decided to buy a Conon EOS 450D. The zoom lens has a range of 18-55 mm, f:1:3,5-5,6. Now there is only one thing left: I have to get used to my new camera and have to study all the new features and possibilities..