The LC-A 120 ($429) is the newest offering from Lomography and is a medium format version of their classic LC-A, a camera that the company was built on. Using the same programatic auto exposure that the original has, the 38mm (21mm equivalent) lens f4.5 lens produces 12 6×6 shots per a roll of film.
I am a fan of the original LC-A, and have often kept one in my bag for when I am on outings because it is perfectly compact, and is a quick camera to grab while out. I was eager to get my hands on the LC-A 120 to see how it stacks up against the original
To the right of the lens is a small switch that allows you to adjust the ISO to correspond to the film you have loaded into the camera at the time. The light-meter is viewable through the viewfinder via 2 small red LED lights. As long as both lights illuminate, there is adequate light for an exposure and the batteries are fully charged and reading correctly. I have always hated this light-meter/battery because one of the lights actually represents the current energy level of the batteries. If it is low, one of the LED lights will not turn on.
Unfortunately, the LC-A 120 uses three 1.5V button batteries, designated as LR44 or A76 which can be a pain to find as they are not sold in every shop.
The camera is priced quite high currently, however it does not contain the flaws of other Lomography products. It is extremely portable for a medium format camera, able to be dropped into any day bag the photographer might want to choose and weighs about the same as the original LC-A. The new LC-A 120 feels less rigid than its predecessor, the original feels more like a solid brick. That is not to say that it feels flimsy, but that it was essentially the same parts, just it a larger case, making the middle feel more flexible.
It uses a scale focusing system, which can be a bit of a chore and slow you down when you are trying to grab a quick snapshot, and it forces you to look at the front of the camera to make certain you are on the right measurement. Equally frustrating is loading film into the camera because you have to turn a tiny spring till it is diagonal to you and then force the roll of film in, however since the camera I had was only a prototype, I am not certain if this is something that has been fixed on the final version.
As an additional bonus, the LC-A 120 does not make use of the red window most medium format point and shoots come with and instead uses an actual frame counter. Unfortunately, the frame counter maxes out at 12, which means you can not load it with 220 film. That may have been intentional because fewer brands are making 220 anymore, but it would be nice to have for the few that still do.
Unfortunately, like the original LC-A slow shutter and nighttime photography is a bit of a pain. The afore mentioned light meter will turn on and tell you that there is enough light to accurately capture the scene, but not when the exposure is done. This can often times leave you standing in the dark with your finger on the shutter release cable wondering when the exposure is complete. For the one usable nighttime exposure in the gallery below, I metered beforehand and then counted down to get close to what my external meter was telling me the cameras was going to capture.
All images in the below gallery are straight scans from the negatives. No modifications beyond cropping have been done to them. Some stated the belief that companies heavily modify images taken by their products, so as a matter of honesty, none of these have been altered in any way.
Lomography really has done a good job on engineering this camera to be similar in quality to that of the original, however I feel that the price may be a deterrent for some. The original LC-A is a very capable camera and one of my favorites in the Lomography line-up.
The camera is incredibly worthwhile and is really capable. If you really enjoy shooting medium format and want a quick and dirty point and shoot, this is the perfect camera to add to your arsenal. Knowing Lomography’s product cycle, I fully expect this camera to have a slew of accessories being introduced in the next few months, including an instant back and hopefully an underwater case similar to what is produced for the 35mm LC-A.
Podcast: Play in new window
Pdexposures is back with a whole new argument amongst the team: what lens do you bolt on the front of your (insert camera system that we can’t agree on here)? Zoom or prime? Super wide or nifty fifty? Do you bother with telephoto lenses or not? Are modern super-sharp multi-coated lenses really that much better than pre-war uncoated glass? And how do you define “better”?
Buried somewhere inside this hate-filled-argument-posing-as-discussion are perhaps a few salient points that can help you decide which lenses to pick up for your favourite system, along with a bit of advice on hidden gems for the Leica shooters out there.
What, you thought we’d discuss lenses without dropping our favourite L word? We might even drop the other one, too… If you’re lucky.
According to one source the answer is a very straightforward yes. According to the appropriately named Reddit user LeicaM6Guy, Lomography is currently in the testing phases of a new lens for M39/M-Mount cameras. While not too much information was provided he was able to provide some information.
It is a reworked version of an older lens.
Based on our experience with the Lomography Russar+ this means a new construction, new multicoating, but with the same optical formula as the original lens. The lens is also reported to have been built on the Russian M39 standard. For those unaware even though the USSR did make lenses in Leica screw mount, they were slightly different in how they focused. This means if you have a wide lens like the 50mm 1.5 Jupiter 3 it is very easy to miss focus.
Unfortunately not much more information was given. LeicaM6Guy did though give a quick rundown of some of the pros and cons:
- Very well built
- Will work better on a digital camera than the M3 that was being used
- Great for low light
- Neat bokeh under the right conditions
- Sharpness is probably on par with the Leica 50mm 1.5
What does all this mean? Well I reached out to Tony for a quick discussion and to bounce some ideas back and forth. Our guess? There will be a new version of the Jupiter 3 coming soon.
The best part of it all? If you want to see a photo from this sample, click here!
This Saturday, October 18, is World Toy Camera Day! Let the lovers of the plastic lens rejoice!
Load up your Holgas, Dianas, Brownies and more, grab your friends, work your best hipshot, get out there and shoot.
Be sure to share your shots on twitter and instagram with #WTCD2014.
You can also join the facebook
groups and share your images.
Optionally, if you have something a bit funky
, why not pull it out of the closet and take it for a stroll.
What will you be shooting with this weekend?
Using cinema films for still photography seem to be all the rage, and Lomography is at it again offering a new Cine400 Tungsten film which promises to be a nice addition to their already extensive film selection. The Cine400 is sensitized to work better in artificial lighting and still delivers those nice blue tones outside. Grain appears to be fine/medium and based on the sample photos it looks like it may wash out a bit in bright sun, however skin tones seem quite nice. Currently available in 35mm format – no word yet if they’ll be releasing a 120 or 110 version. Like the Cine200 released earlier this year (which sold out incredibly fast!) the Cine400 is processed C-41 and available in a limited run of 4,000 rolls.
The early price for Cine400 is $10.99.
We’re excited to try out all the cinema films hitting production – have you tried the Cine200, and if so will you try the Cine400? Share your thoughts on this and other cinema films in the comments below.
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It’s been a long, long while since we properly covered the instant film industry on Pdexposures. So long ago, in fact, that finding the page for that link was actually slightly difficult. Which link you say? This link. Here. Which goes back all the way to episode 11.
A lot has changed in the instant world in that time – new cameras, new film stocks, new things to love and new things to get angry about. Needless to say, we’re here to explore both sides of that fence – good and bad – so buckle in and enjoy the ride.
The music is from our old friends Bastions – it’s a track called Onset from their Hospital Corners LP. Yes, LP. Go and buy it at your local record store. If there isn’t one in your town, get off your ass and start one sharpish. Thank us later for that brilliant business advice.
In the most recent episode of the Pdexposures Podcast we talked with Dave about a lot of things including film production, timelines and more. What we didn’t go over on-air was the fact that they would be doing this all via a Kickstarter project. That day has come and at the time of writing they have raised over $35,000 in less than 3 hours.
The “100 More Years of Analog Film” Kickstarter Project by Film Ferrania speaks to exactly what they are trying to accomplish – provide a sustainable resource for film photography far into the future. And the plan to do this is simple, by producing film in smaller batches costs can be kept down and they don’t run the risk of over-producing.
As with all Kickstarter projects this does come at a cost. Ferrania needs to raise $250,000 in 28 days in order to purchase the machines required to produce the film in these smaller batches. If they are unable to do so the Italian Government cannot promise they won’t be destroyed (if this sounds like the plot to a cheesy thriller you’re right, but that doesn’t make it any less true).
To start with Ferrania will be making four types of film including: 35mm, 120, Super 8 and 16mm. Though they are clear to state that these are in no way the only formats they will ever produce. Ferrania has the ability to produce 4×5, 8×10, 126, 127 and other formats if the desire is there. So even if you’re exclusively a large format shooter it would be best to back their campaign so they’ll be able to produce other formats moving forward.
Finally, as a disclaimer we would like to mention that the prices are sure to seem expensive for Chrome film. Ferrania has stated in no uncertain words that this will not be the final pricing. The initial run will be more expensive as machines are purchased and brought online but in time the cost will come down.
To show your support you can back their Kickstarter project here. Also be sure to listen to our interview with Dave Bias of Ferrania here!
It is no secret that Ferrania has been the talk of the town lately – which is why we are very excited to announce that this Sunday (9/21/14) the Pdexposures Podcast will be interviewing Ferrania’s own Dave Bias!
But to make things even better, this won’t be your standard Q&A session with the Pdexposures hosts. No, rather than simply having the usual team asking the questions, we will be taking your questions for Dave Bias for the rest of the week on Twitter.
Simply tweet your questions about Ferrania to their Twitter handle @filmferrania and be sure to use the hashtag
We’ll pull the questions and go over as many as humanly possible on air and you’ll be able to hear all the answers on episode 39 of the Pdexposures Podcast when it’s released on Wednesday 24th of September!
Today is the first day of Photokina and the photographic announcements are already rolling down the pipeline with news coming from all realms. The Impossible Project today has announced their latest special edition known as Round Frame.
As the title describes instead of the standard square frame of the SX70 and 600 type films these only display their image in a circular format.
While not many sample images were provided those that were available lead us to believe these are on their current BW formula and not what was seen in the Gen 2.0 BW film that was recently released. When asked if it would be a temporary or permanent addition to the lineup Impossible left no questions,
You can purchase Impossible BW Round Frame by clicking here for $24.49, $1 more than their standard film. Why the price increase? We’ve reached out to Impossible but have yet to hear a reply.
Other news is still coming down the pipeline at Photokina including new details about the Impossible Camera and we’ll be sure to cover all things film related!
Fans have been begging Fuji to release an updated Instax Wide camera ever since the 500AF was discontinued – preferably one with more professional features to take advantage of the wonderful Instax Wide film. Unfortunately, the all-new Instax Wide 300 is not that camera.
There is good news however as the Instax Wide 300 offers an updated finish that is more in line with the recently released Instax 90, moving away from the bubbly look of the Instax 210. It retains most of the features of the 210 including the built in optical viewfinder, two focus zones for portrait and landscape use, a close up lens and built-in electronic flash.
The most noticeable upgrades are in the aesthetics. This camera is a much more mature Instax Wide with a pronounced grip, two-tone look and textured ring around the lens, harkening back to the glory days of photography. Soon you’ll be able to get one for yourself for only $129.99.
Fuji also introduced two new colors in their Instax Mini 8 line, dubbed Rasperry and Grape:
But wait – there’s more! To cap off today’s announcements from Fuji they added an all-new color option to the Instax Mini 90 in the form of a nice brown (faux) leather.
While these may have not been the announcements serious Instax shooters have been hoping for, they do prove one thing: Fuji is still very much committed to their Instax line, and you can expect it to be around for a long time.
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