Camera Review Film Photography Lens Review

Local Marketplace Find: Minolta X700, XD11 and Legendary Rokkor Lenses

In a world dominated by digital photography, there’s something undeniably special about shooting with film. The nostalgia, the anticipation, and the timeless charm it brings are unrivaled. Recently, I stumbled upon a treasure trove of vintage photography gear at my local marketplace, and among my finds were two “top-of-the-line” Minolta 35mm film camera bodies: X700 and XD11, and a set of remarkable Minolta Rokkor lenses: 28mm F2.5, 35mm F1.8, 50mm F1.4, 100mm F4 Macro and 200mm F3.5. You’ll notice there is also an interesting Minolta Panorama Head II adapter for seamless panoramic shooting.

Look what I found yesterday from local marketplace!

The Minolta 35mm manual focus film cameras are a true classic. XD11 is the last metal body 35mm manual film camera Minolta produced before switching production to a slightly more advanced but fully plastic X700 in the early 80s. Renowned for its exceptional build quality and reliability, these cameras represent an era when craftsmanship was at its peak. Holding it in my hands, I couldn’t help but admire its solid metal construction, clicky dials, and precise controls. Every click of the shutter feels like a testament to the dedication put into its creation.

One of the highlights of my vintage camera find was the collection of Minolta Rokkor lenses. These lenses are renowned for their exceptional optical quality, rendering images with stunning sharpness, contrast, and vibrant colors. Compared digitally to my previous collection of Olympus OM lenses, the Rokkor lenses provided smooth and beautiful bokeh above all the OM lenses I’ve had in the past. Creamy, balanced color and, of course, that vintage look when shooting wide open.

Among the collection of Minolta Rokkor lenses I acquired, one gem stands out—the 35mm f1.8 MD Minolta lens. This lens has gained legendary status among photographers for its exceptional performance and versatility. The 35mm focal length is often considered the “standard” for many genres of photography. It provides a natural field of view that closely resembles what the human eye sees, making it ideal for street photography, environmental portraits, and capturing everyday moments with a sense of intimacy. With an impressive wide aperture of f1.8, this lens excels in low-light conditions, allowing for stunning shots with minimal noise and beautiful bokeh. The 50mm f1.4 MD, on the other hand, is a true workhorse, the lens can usually be obtained for less than $50 bucks and produces excellent sharpness from F2.8 and beyound. At f1.4 the 50mm is a bit soft, but if you are shooting 35mm film, the softness will add to the “glowy” effect when developed.

Rediscovering the art of film photography allows us to slow down, appreciate the process, and capture moments with a timeless quality. So, if you ever come across a vintage Minolta camera and Rokkor lenses, I urge you to take the plunge and unlock a world of creativity waiting to be explored.

Below, I’ve also included some early “digital” samples that I’ve snapped of our cats, with various lenses mounted on my Sony A7 IV mirrorless camera. The cats oftentimes pose a real challenge to focus, but the Rokkor lenses all performed flawlessly.

Stay tuned for reviews coming out based on this collection!

Camera Review Film Photography

Rollei 35 RF Rangefinder Film Camera: Light Meter, Frame Lines, Shutter Sound + Film Loading

I bought mine on eBay for around $1000 (as of mid 2022). You can check on the current price here: A film camera that’s quite rare (less than 2000 copies made due to lack of demand back in the day), A solid performer and better bang for your buck compared to any Leica M film camera. This one also has a built-in light meter. If 40mm is your favorite focal length, this camera is your best friend (or Bessa R3A/R3M). Hint: It’s pretty much a Bessa R2 with improved grips! (Those grips may deteriorate quickly in certain situations; if that happens, buy a replacement Bessa R2 leather cover to replace said grips. Or you can order a nice leather cover for the camera to further protect the body from damage and enhance its appearance.

Film Photography

How To Rewind Film on Olympus OM-4Ti/OM-3/OM-2 SP Cameras

If you have one of the cameras mentioned, this is a quick guide on how to rewind the films after you’ve finished shooting your very first roll of film. #kodak #kodakgold200 #filmphotography #olympusom4ti

Camera Review Film Photography

Minolta XD5 35mm Film Camera Overview

In this video, I give you guys an overview of the features of the Minolta XD5 35mm SLR film camera. 35mm Films: 35mm Film Scanner:

Later on, I will do a detailed comparison of the Minolta XD/7/11 compared to the XD5.

Lens Review

Minolta MD Rokkor-X 50mm F1.4 Lens Sample Photos

Minolta MD Rokkor-X 50mm F1.4 Lens is a full manual focus lens originally designed for Minolta manual focus film cameras. It can also be used on some newer film cameras to achieve full automatic exposure using either Shutter speed priority or Aperture priority auto exposure.

The lens performed quite well on a digital camera, using a Fotasy Minolta MD MC Rokkor Lens to E Mount Adapter I have included some sample photos taken using this lens on a Sony A7 IV mirrorless digital camera. Expect the lens to perform much better on any Minolta film cameras.

You can probably still find a good used MD lens on eBay.

Video Light Review

Aputure Light OctaDome 120 Softbox Review: Fantastic Light, But There Is A Catch

I bought the Aputure Octadome 120 right after it came out.

In this video, I am unboxing the light and giving you my first-hand experience of what I think about this newly released softbox. Not paid by Aputure to write this review.

There are really good things to praise about this light, but there is also some major pain in the butt associated with using this light. #aputure #OctaDome120 #softbox #videolight

Camera Review Film Photography

Minolta X570 Review

In this video, I give you guys an overview of the features of the Minolta X570 35mm SLR film camera. 35mm Films: 35mm Film Scanner:

Camera Review Film Photography

Minolta X570 vs XD5

In this video, I talk about the differences and similarities between Minolta XD5 and Minolta X570 (X500), both of which are very capable auto exposure aperture priority cameras made in the 70s and 80s.

Some key differences will make your purchase decision lean towards one or the other. I’d pick X-570 for AE lock, full aperture + linked shutter speed readout in the viewfinder, and a physical on/off switch with a beeping option.

I’d pick XD5 for a more compact camera body (though less ergonomic without molded grips), half metal construction for durability (bottom plate is metal, top plate is plastic), exposure compensation dial, shutter-priority auto exposure, and if you don’t want to worry about replacing the low-quality capacitor on bottom of X-570!

Both cameras have a bright, easy-to-focus viewfinder with 94% frame coverage, and will provide excellent exposure in auto mode and manual using the newer silicon blue cell light meter, which responds to changing light much faster than older CdS cells used in SLR bodies prior to mid-70s. Since both are fully electronic, always bring extra batteries when out on the shoot.


Camera Review Film Photography

Olympus OM1, OM2, OM2S Program, OM4 | Which Is The Best One To Buy In Year 2022?

In this video, I discuss my honest opinion on which Olympus OM single-digit manual focus camera is the best buy in the year 2022.

Film Photography Video Light Review

Update on GVM SD300D LED Video Light Defective Fan Replacement

So I’m here to provide an update on the defective fan situation with the GVM SD300D that I reviewed weeks ago. In this video, I go over my diagnostic process on replacing the defective fan that shipped with the GVM SD300D video light.

It’s a fairly simple repair if you have basic DIY knowledge.

Now things you’ll need: