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My Olympus OM-1MD with Zuiko 50 mm lens.

My old Olympus OM-1MD was manufactured in 1974, the same year I
graduated from high school. I always loved working with this camera.
It brings everything down to the basics: aperture, shutter, ISO,
exposure, focus. For a manual camera it is very easy to work with.
And the Zuiko 50 mm f/1.8 lens that I use on it is sharp and punchy.

The motor drive eliminates the need for manual winding and provides a
very nice grip. Without the grip the camera is smaller than today's
normal SLRs, closer to rangefinder size. It too is nice to hold.

I haven't used this camera in a while. It has a film advance problem in
the internal ratchets, a common problem for old cameras. It would cost
me $110 US to get it fixed. I would certainly do that were it not for
the fact that at this point I've got about 25 rolls of film sitting around
waiting to get developed, most of it B&W that will require more expensive
lab processing.

I don't have a scanner, or I would post some photos taken off of the OM-1.
My only published photo, taken for an article my BFF Julie wrote for
a local paper several years ago, was taken with the OM-1.

These days I use my little Sony W100 point and shoot. With a lack of
normal photographic controls found on an SLR, I have to really use my
knowledge of photography to get shots that I find acceptable. And even
then I have to cross my fingers sometimes. But it also has the advantage
of being very light to carry and I can put it in a little case on my
belt and people don't even know I'm packing a camera until I pull it
out. But the bottom line, I suppose, is that is gives me "the shots
that are in my head," often straight out of the camera. Which is the
important thing, really.

I have a couple more SLRs that I don't use anymore either. But the
OM-1 is my classic, my "74 Mach 1." It's just too bad I can't get an
"upgrade kit" to convert the OM-1 to digital. The closest thing to
that these days would be the Leica M8 — too bad I don't have about
$6,000 lying around.

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