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10-27-2013, 05:09 PM   #31
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Sounds like a lot of differing opinion in this thread. Never had either an OM or an MX. However with the Pentax line you could go up to the LX.

10-27-2013, 06:05 PM   #32
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When I was shooting film, I used an MX as my high speed film camera. It was a great camera that has served me well. However, when my mom was looking for an SLR, I suggested she get an OM-1. To me, I thought it was a better overall camera. I loved the smoothness and sound of the shutter when it fired and it had a great feel in the hand. Lucky me, when my mom went digital and figured she would no longer be shooting film, she gave her OM-1 to me so now I've got both!
10-27-2013, 07:55 PM   #33
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I used to think that Olympus was first to have the shutter speed control on the lens mount base but it was Nikon who first introduced this in 1965 with their FT and last used in the 1977 FT3.

10-27-2013, 08:24 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by LesDMess Quote
I used to think that Olympus was first to have the shutter speed control on the lens mount base but it was Nikon who first introduced this in 1965 with their FT and last used in the 1977 FT3.
Leaf shutter lenses have had this feature for years, for many years...I think...before Nikon or Olympus. Most leaf shutter lenses were/are on medium format cameras.

10-27-2013, 08:30 PM   #35
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Duly noted. Nikon was first to introduce it on focal plane 35mm SLRs. I wanted to be sure to point out that was not one of the features innovated by Olympus.
10-27-2013, 11:04 PM   #36
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I remember when the OM-1 was first announced. I would have killed for one, but being a civil servant with a young family at the time, there was no way I could afford it. A woman with whom I worked asked my advice what camera I would get if money was no object. I suggested the OM-1, which she duly bought and brought in to work to show me. I was so jealous. I couldn't even afford an MX when they came out, but I had camera bodies that could take Pentax lenses, first M42 (like the Prinzflex, a Dixon-branded Ricoh, as it happened), then later K-mount Chinons (great value). I eventually migrated to "proper" Pentaxes, later owning the wonderful Z-1p. I have stayed with Pentax ever since, and I am so glad I did. Olympus had rather lost their way by the time autofocus appeared, though they made wonderful manual focus cameras like the outrageously expensive OM-3. I still have a bunch of M and A series Pentax lenses, which work happily on my K-5. If I had stayed with Olympus, I would now have a load of beautiful but useless-on-digital Zuikos.

I now have an OM-1, an OM-2 and a OM-2 SP in my collection, along with an MX. I still think they are great cameras, but although I appreciate the qualities of film, I don't use it nowadays, as I no longer have a darkroom.
10-28-2013, 09:47 AM   #37
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I owned Nikkormat FT2 and Olympus OM-1 bodies with shutter speed dial around the lens mount.
This seemed very unnatural to me and was a major reason I sold them.

The Pentax MX shutter speed dial is difficult to use - it's hard to turn and buried too close to the pentaprism.
But at least it's in the proper place, up on the top deck of the camera.

Chris
10-28-2013, 04:09 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by lithos Quote
OM1 uses those nasty mercury batteries, don't they?
Well-functioning Criscam adaptors exist to solve that....

10-28-2013, 04:12 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cosmo Quote
I've always wondered, how good is old Olympus glass? They look good, and I always here very high praise of Zuiko lenses.
Some of it great, most of it beyond amazing.

I came from the OM world, and my heart still is there - alas, OM withered and I moved on. The current iteration of Olympus is but a shadow of itself.

But, the OM glass was...is...just amazing. I loved my 85/2, my 24/2 and my wicked 55mm Zuiko.
10-28-2013, 04:16 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by raymeedc Quote
Om1 has great addictive dampened feel to it's shutter & a great large, contrasty screen with simple match needle metering system. What I don't like are the lenses. The shutter speeds at the lens base is odd, but can be gotten used to, & even appreciated.
What is *really* odd is why the heck the shutter speed ring at the lens base didn't catch on more. It always puzzled me why all the other brands insisted on putting the shutter speed dial where the ISO/DIN selector should be. Keeping all the exposure-and-focus controls at the lens means that one can keep the right hand concentrated on keeping the camera steady. It just was...natural.

Honestly, the right-hand-thumb-and-index-finger-dials that are used on today's SLRs is just really really non-intuitive and non-natural, once you've tried the right way to manipulate a camera. I "make do" with the ergonomics of today's cameras, but Pentax would make me really happy if they came out with a body with those good and actually ergonomic controls. Alas, they won't....and it won't get my knickers in a bunch that they wont.
10-28-2013, 04:23 PM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nesster Quote
The OM series was a game changer, beautifully engineered and thought out cameras. The OM2 in retrospect is probably their pinnacle, as far as sales and market impact - and current usability goes. Olympus came from nowhere to be the #2 selling SLR in Japan for instance, after Nikon. Every other camera maker had to react, just as they later had to react to Canon's elctronic light shows and Minolta's auto focus. The manufacturers who did not, went into peril...

In '85 I was ready to upgrade from my Olympus Pen FT half frame... and for sentimental reasons bought an OM2s rather than a Super Program or one of the Minoltas. And the OM2s is a fine camera, in many ways better built, engineered and designed than Pentax of the time. But it's let down by a couple of glaring problems which the Pentax Programs don't have: it has horrendous battery life, a dim view finder (to permit through the mirror metering)... and although excellent and small, the OM lenses I feel aren't as built to last as Pentax or Nikkor, to take two.

I now have a Program Plus that I use far more often than the OM2s...

The other bit about OM vs Pentax - see above Canon and Minolta challenges - Olympus never did manage to compete with these game changers. Pentax managed, though one may argue how successfully. As a result, OM has become a semi-orphaned camera, while we all benefit from the Pentax lens compatibilty to this day.

Small vs. large has always seemed to be in play with 35mm cameras - you have your Leicas as the prototypical small cam, and Nikon F as the large. Personally, I'm in the small camp, although some of the cameras probably did end up too small for their own good.
So, I probably shot more with either of my OM2s/p than I did with the totality of all the other cameras I've owned. It was a /grand/ camera.

It did exposure metering right: if you're in manual, you're smart enough to use "spot" metering, so that's what you'll get. Period. It was a system camera, meaning that you could exchange the focusing screen and use all the equipment (flashes, winders, ...) and all the wonderful OM lenses.

The weakness...none of the above. It was that it was one of the first "fully electronic" cameras, and so, the electronic circuitry was prone to failures. One of my OM2s/p's had the circuit board replaced 3 times while I had it. I suxx'ed bigtime, but the ergonomics of the camera was perfect, so I kinda tolerated it. OM3/4 were, nominatively, better cameras, but I still think that the 2s/p was the ultimate natural extension of my body for photography.

I'm nostalgic, but have moved on - mostly. I've sold all the OM gear, and am happily using Pentax. Still, when I see an OM1 or OM2s/p, my heart bleeds just a little....
10-28-2013, 05:33 PM - 1 Like   #42
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By no stretch of the imagination could one call having to remove your eye from the viewfinder and look all the way over
at the front of the camera to see a dial around the lens mount in order to set shutter speed natural or convenient.

Though clearly some Olympus fans got used to it IMO it is the most un-ergonomic design imaginable.

Chris
10-28-2013, 06:08 PM   #43
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I sold all the major brands in the days we are referencing. Olympus might have been even overall, but the consensus was Pentax was just a bit better at miniaturization than Olympus. Olympus took a hit by the time of the economy OM10, and cheap build by all the manufacturers soon followed. Optics very close between Pentax and Olympus with the SMC coatings giving Pentax a slight edge in reputation - well deserved in my opinion. Overall, at the shop level the pecking order was very well established: Nikon on top, Pentax and Olympus very close, Minolta trailing (mostly due to optics), Canon a wild card - poor on the consumer level, but very competitive on the pro bodies and optics. Canon sold the most due to heavy marketing and pro credentials (some things tend not to change). The Canon AE-1 was an amazing seller due to marketing and shutter priority (consumers simply did not want to understand aperture). Never mind the bottom-of-the Coke bottle viewfinder glass, clunky shutter, and sledge-hammer mirror slap.
10-28-2013, 08:15 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by tclausen Quote
why the heck the shutter speed ring at the lens base didn't catch on more.
For me it was simple. I really wanted an OM-1 until I picked up the camera. The shutter speed ring is simply too close in. FWIW, I am with Chris (above) regarding the MX shutter speed dial. Too hard to turn and too close to the pentaprism housing.


Steve
10-28-2013, 08:18 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by ScooterMaxi Jim Quote
Canon sold the most due to heavy marketing and pro credentials (some things tend not to change). The Canon AE-1 was an amazing seller due to marketing and shutter priority (consumers simply did not want to understand aperture). Never mind the bottom-of-the Coke bottle viewfinder glass, clunky shutter, and sledge-hammer mirror slap.
The AE-1 was relatively inexpensive and that coupled with the marketing and good press pretty much guaranteed that they would fly off the shelves. I was in the market to buy at the time and was not impressed with the AE-1.


Steve
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