Film Friday: Buying a Camera from Japan

by | Nov 5, 2021

Today’s Video by Joe Farace

Here’s some camera/lens terms that were mentioned in today’s video that you may (or may not) be familiar with:

  • Fungus (lens): This is produced by dust and moisture accumulating in a camera lens element and looks like small web-like spots or patches. Dust typically won’t cause problems but if it contains fungus spores and combines with moisture, it grows. Fungus can occur more commonly in non-weather sealed lenses that are used in humid climates. It can permanently decrease the performance of the lens and make images to look soft.
  • Balsam separation: This looks like a white or rainbow halo around lens elements that are beginning to delaminate. The appearance can vary depending on the type of lens coatings used. White colors appear on lenses with no or few coatings but you’ll see a multiple colors in lenses with more coatings.
  • Dust: …in camera lens is not necessarily a problem. It’s only a problem depending on how big and where it is. I hate seeing big hunks of dust in a viewfinder and this can easily happen if the camera has a removable prism like a Nikon F or Canon F1 and says to me more about the camera’s care and handling. Lens dust is a normal fact of life—again depending on how big and where it is.

Cory Ryan and Kyle Hall have written a tutorial on How to Clean a 35mm Film Camera and Lens. Please check it out. If you’re an Oscar Madison type—on the Odd Couple TV show, he was a photographer—and enjoy having nice looking gear, it’s a must read.

Why is this video in Black and White? Two reasons: First, since most of my initial film photography has been in black and white, it felt right to shoot the video in black and white too. (In tomorrow’s post, I’ll talk about shooting some long-expired color negative film.) Second, I wanted to visually differentiate this series of vlogs from the oft-colorful Joe and Cliff Go To Cars and Coffee videos that appear on my car photography blog.

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