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11-18-2017, 12:23 PM   #1
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My first test of a Miranda Sensomat RE with Auto Miranda EC f1.8 50mm lens

I got the camera as part of a package deal that included a different camera and lenses I actually wanted. But the camera cleaned up well and turned out to be in very good condition except for two things: (a) the shutter curtain seemed to drag or stick at slow shutter speeds, and (b) the internal meter didn't seem to work properly. Neither of those problems seemed to stand in the way of testing it with 400 iso film and an external light meter. I decided to stick to shutter speeds of 1/250 to 1/1000 and didn't anticipate exposure problems, unless all of the speeds were off. I loaded one of my last rolls of expired Poloroid Hi-Def Ultra 400 color print film and started shooting.

Incidentally the camera is very well-made, and solid feeling, in use, -- heavy, in a way the feels good to me. And it has some features I am not used to. For one thing, it has shutter buttons on both the top and the front of the camera. Also, the entire prism finder will slide off, revealing a waist-level finder one can look down into for framing. The camera actually came with two f1.8 50s, and I decided to use the one that looked like a slightly later incarnation of the lens, the EC model. I'm not sure whether EC stands for some automated feature it is compatible with a slightly later Miranda SLR body or whether it indicates a kind of lens coating.

From my past experience with this expired Polaroid 400 film, originally picked up as a 4-pack at a thrift store, I knew the colors might look a little dull and it would look a bit grainier than iso 200 films I'd use. On the other hand with a little tweaking of the scans it might not be too bad, and also, when they were converted to black-and-white, they sometimes looked very nice.

The film was developed and scanned by Dwayne's in Kansas. Here are four of the color versions. Each has some exposure adjustment using the Shotwell viewer program. Next try with the camera, I definitely will use better film!

11-18-2017, 01:22 PM   #2
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This stuff gives the images a very seventies-emulsion look. I for one quite like it. Have fun with your new-to-you camera and all its quirks, and I hope you can get the issues fixed sometime.
11-18-2017, 02:15 PM   #3
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Miranda cameras had a good reputation back in the day. They were used a lot as grab shot and backups by wedding photographers because they have a relatively quiet shutter. It should perform well for you. Not sure if there is a Miranda thread somewhere out there in an classic camera forum.
11-26-2017, 12:08 PM - 1 Like   #4
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My first SLR was a Miranda Sensorex ll with a 50/1.8. I saved up for a long time to buy that camera and all the photos of our oldest daughter were taken with it back in 1973. I was forced to sell it in early 76 when I was out of work and the (now 2) kids were sick. It was a sad day selling that camera, lenses, flash and all for next to nothing. There was no Ebay in those days. When things changed for the better a few months later, I purchased a Pentax SP1000, the M42 precursor to the K1000. I still have it.

Miranda closed up in the late 70's if I remember. In all honesty, it was a better camera than the SP1000 as was the 50/1.8 Auto Miranda lens in comparison to the 55/2 SMC Tak. While the Tak is certainly sharp, the Miranda had open aperture metering and the very good split prism focusing screen was much brighter and made the lens easier to focus. The only thing "bad" I can say about the Miranda is that the company was poorly managed and they went belly up. They seemed to be improving with every new model. They were owned by the same group behind Soligor but never offered the extensive Soligor lineup to Miranda owners. There weren't a lot of lenses available for Mirandas and hardly any third party support due to the funky, external aperture mechanism but it was a great camera to start out with and I have fond memories of it to this day.


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