Repair of Contax RTS II
Small Minolta story (or how to make excellent pictures cheaply)
Well, I haven't modified this page since 2002 - i.e. 9 years! One of the reason is no time to do this, the second could be "almost nothing has changed!"
Surely, text below needs some cleaning as some sites disappeared or data are not relavent anymore... moreover, at the time I had some plans to write series of articles describing the basics of handling equipment - but I was too occupied by taking snaps, doing some work to make money and enjoying life at all ;-) To be honest, there is no need to do it anymore. As for the basics, i.e. what is aperture, shutter speed, ISO, tripod mount, lens characteristics, all can be found on many websites today, with a lot of luck even helpfull. Just bear in mind technical descriptions going behind the technical terms mentioned above means something is wrong - with writer or equipment. If you find camera and lens, be it film or digital and you are satisfied with the results, just ignore others (trash) talks. Many people tend to take a part (take apart) endless discussions concerning equipment instead of taking snaps. Just ask them to bring their own work, that's what counts. Many times you can be surprised!
If you can find a link to a "lenses" page at the top, it's because from time to time someone is curious about Zeiss glass - than I can safely say "just look on my website, for now let's discuss your and mine pictures!" It's far, far more funny to look at pictures instead of lenses alone :-)
So below is text from 2002 revisited - in fact I only deleted lens information as it is moved to the other page!
I had an east-German Praktica B100 bought by the first money I have ever earn - the snap of cat on title page I made with that camera. All in all, it wasn't so bad - for now, it sits againg in a closet. I used some other cameras, but with exception of P&S Werra (all manual, all metal, no plastic :-)) only for short time.
Than in 1998 I bought Canon EOS50E and I was generally pleased with that body, but sold it in 2001 -- due to my new cameras I decided not to bother with all of them.
Starting new millenium required new equipment, so in January 2001 I bought Contax G1 plus Planar 45/2. Well, in fact I was looking for a new 50mm lens for EOS (50/1.4), but found it (at least here in Czech Republic) way tooooo expensive. So I took another look at rangefinders market, and after some time of research, found Contax G body and lenses reasonably priced (comparing value you get for the money). So instead to buy only new lens, I bought whole new camera with, maybe, as good or better lens.
Pictures are great and camera is a neat toy, beautifully engineered. Yes, it is AF, yes, it makes some noises, but so what (but yes, it's many times slow to take a picture of a child! I've got much better results using manual Contaxes...). At one third price of the Leica I've get body and great glass, which itself is a bargain. I ordered 90/2.8 ...and moved from EOS completely. Contax G system can be found lately for low prices, which is great if you shoot film!
The same year I bought used RTS II, 159MM and some Zeiss glass... and other bodies and lenses as years followed. As of today, I can say I've got anything I've ever dreamed of - be it lenses or bodies. Just when we went for a trip, visit something/someone, interesting light appears, I pack proper equipment and all I need is time and mood. Many times we (me and my wife) get pictures at home, since kids are so cute... (see my other pages)
I also used 30-years old Canonet GIII 17 QL, bought from Brian P. Wolfe shop, and I was surprised with some snaps from that camera. Sold some time ago to fellow botanist.
Tripod is also important (WHEN there is a plenty of time): Bogen with good head (190B + 329).
I'm using mainly Kodak films: Portra, BW400 sometimes Fuji Reala, and from time to time Velvia. Velvia is a great film for Zeiss glass, alas lab service here is not catching up with my demands. I also tried Fuji Neopan with Rodinal developer and found it a lovely combination.
Developer: untils kids grow older, there is no space for developing films :-(
Oh yes, I forgot the bag: nice Domke F-2 original in black color - sand one gets apart after many years of use. I still regard F-2 as the best you can get for caring equipment.
I don't use flash - flash is the evil tool sent on Earth to destroy good photography and set newbies on the road to hell! For family enforced shooting in the dark, I use Sunpak 440D. With flashmeter of RTS III it's a good combination.