Camera Speed Dating – Canon A-1 w/ 50mm f1.8

Those that know Meghan and I know that we have what appears to be an on going camera acquisition “problem”. Really all it is, is a desire to try all of the cameras!!!

We have started collecting many vintage cameras now over the past few years, but in an effort to not let our collection get out of hand we decided to only collect cameras that work and can actually be used.

However, not all are winners and some are just easier or more fun to use but you have to shoot with them first to find out! Thus, we decided if we run a roll through every camera we are interested in, not unlike going on a 5 minute date with a bunch of strangers at a singles night, we can quickly see which are worthy of being added to our collection. Camera speed dating!

Here is most recent camera I had the pleasure of a quick date with….The Canon A-1 w/ 50mm f1.8, 35mm camera.

A few quick facts about the Canon A-1 , it is a 35mm SLR camera manufactured from the late 70’s to mid 80’s. It has a high shutter speed of 1/1000. It uses Canon’s interchangeable FD mount lenses. Pictured here with its 35mm lens, though I used my 50mm f/1.8 for our date!

This date started when I decided Beau photo needed a less expensive 800 speed film option, so I ordered in the Fuji Superia 800 speed in 24 exposure rolls. Conveniently on the same day a few things came together, the Superia 800 arrived and my Canon A-1 (with its FD 50mm f1.8 ) came back from repair. A friend of mine was nice enough to fix up its whirring shutter for me, and I had plans to go see the Murakami exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery. In my mind this is really the perfect date. I’ll start by saying if I had totally forgotten why I fell in love with the Canon A-1, this date made me remember. It is the only Canon I own, only because it was loaned to me by a family member — otherwise I never would have bothered. I really enjoy using the Canon A-1 however, despite its shutter’s tendency to start whirring at age 40, it is most certainly worth having tuned up. I find the A-1’s light meter easy to use, it’s possibly my favourite, and one of the few I actually use in camera (I usually just use a light meter app on my iPhone). I also enjoy the feel of it’s shutter — it has a very satisfying snap. I like shooting people especially with this camera. I am not sure why, perhaps its the focus or ease of use. I also admit I am a sucker for a glossy black exterior…




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Beau Photo Supplies Inc.
Beau Photo Supplies Inc.