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What to Know Before Buying a Film Camera

Over the past few years, photography has changed in remarkable ways, majorly due to the introduction of advanced cameras with a host of useful features. While digital cameras have taken the world of photography by a storm, you can still choose to use a film camera in the course of your work. In fact, a good number of professional photographers use both digital and film cameras. Compared to digital cameras, film cameras have a lower initial cost; offer a higher resolution and film ranks better when it comes to capturing details in black and white. However, in order to enjoy these benefits, it is important to choose the best film camera for your needs. Here are a few things you should know when shopping around for a film camera.

Establish what you want

One of the most important things to know when buying a film camera, and indeed any camera, is the device that will work for you. With the wide range of options out there, you will have to invest time and effort if you are to identify the best camera. Some of the issues you may want to keep in mind include your preferred model, user-friendliness, sturdiness, maintenance and how easy it is to buy the film. These features will not only offer you convenience but also allow you to enjoy photography.

Check shutter speeds

Slower shutter speeds tend to be clogged up and die faster in case the camera is not cleaned or lubricated for a considerable period. When checking shutter speed, you should use a timer to check the slower speeds for accuracy. In case you establish that this is working as expected, there is a good chance that the faster speeds work properly as well. When buying a leaf shutter camera, you should remember that once oil accumulates on the leaves, they could be stuck. While this can be corrected by cleaning with alcohol, the method may not always work.

It should offer good lens quality

It is critical that you check the lens to establish its condition and quality. A clean lens will ensure you capture sharp and quality images, a factor that will contribute a lot to your photography work. A flashlight will help you shine light through the lens as you check for haze or fungus. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced photographer, you will not want to spend time and money cleaning off the distractions. This is why you should carry out a thorough inspection of the camera, including a lens check, to save yourself the trouble.

Light leaks can destroy images

This is particularly important to remember if you are going to buy a second-hand film camera. When you are taking photos, the only light you will need is that which comes through the camera lens. This means that any light that leaks into the camera will have an adverse effect on the quality of your images. Before buying a film camera, you will have to make sure the light seals are not damaged. In the event that they are not in good condition, you should get them fixed or replaced.

Focus accuracy delivers sharp photos

Whether you are doing photography professionally or as a hobby, there is no doubt that, you will want your images to be sharp and clear. It is necessary to know that focus accuracy will help to achieve sharp photos. Before buying a film camera, take time to find out if the camera is able to focus at the correct distance. In case you cannot do this by yourself, you should consider bringing a more experienced photographer with you. In the end, you will want to get value for money from the device. This means that you should take the necessary steps to ensure good performance before making a purchase.

The importance of bringing batteries

Regardless of where you are buying the camera, you should test it to ensure that it is working properly. Although some sellers will provide batteries to facilitate this exercise, you should bring your own just to be sure. This means taking to research the kind of batteries that the camera you intend to buy uses. Carrying powerful, brand new batteries will give you a chance to test all camera functions, a factor that will give you peace of mind when you finally decide to buy the device as well as when using it in the field.

It is important to do research

Just like when buying any other product, it will be important to do your research before buying a film camera. This will not only involve identifying the best brands and models in the market but also looking for reliable sellers. Your research should also include the type of photography you wish to engage in and the camera that is most likely to help you meet your needs. Such information will not only ensure you buy a camera that is in good working condition but also helps you make the right purchase decision.

You can ask questions

Even after inspecting the camera, it is crucial to remember that you can still ask questions. If you are buying a second-hand camera, take time to ask whom the previous owner was. It will also be necessary to find out whether the previous owner kept the original manual and receipt in good condition. A person who keeps these documents in good condition is likely to have taken good care of the camera. In most cases, the seller will be in a position to answer these questions as well as provide invaluable information on how to take good care of the device.

There are times when you will find a camera with a scratched body or worn out strap. Rather than looking at these defects, you should establish whether the inside of the device works properly. Some of these issues may be because of the previous owner traveling a lot and having many adventures. You should also remember to care for the camera if you are to enjoy the advantages associated with a film camera.

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Written by Marcus Richards

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