User comments btil June 2003

G

Guest

I am turning back to photography after several years. My Pentax Super A stopped working 7 years ago, and I just stopped taking pictures.

Now I want to go back, and I am buying a Contax G1 (mostly because I can't afford a G2).

Any comments on the camera's performance -is it discontinued by Contax- is it just a nice as it looks? I have to say I was sold when I actual held the camera body -what a nice camera!!

Per
 
G

Guest

Per,

I bought the G1 a year ago because the price was just right...I also like the size and feel of the G1 better than the G2 and the 35-70 zoom lens was not an issue for me. I know there are many who say this camera does not focus as well as the G2, but I feel any AF camera will have it's own problems in this area. For what I do it is fine...I prefer my T3 as it is smaller and more convenient to take around with a minumum of effort.

Joel Stern
 
G

Guest

> [Hi Joel,

I have been using Contax SLRs for years but am interested in getting a smaller camera. I've been considering the T3, a used T2 or perhaps the G2. The G2 is a little bigger but I do like the idea of being able to change lenses. My question is regarding the image quality of the T3 vs G2 system. Aside from flexibility (G2) vs portability (T3), any noticeable difference in the image quality? Thanks.

Jason]
 
G

Guest

Hi Jason,

Since the T3 has only one lens, the 2.8/35, it would be also only fair to compare it to its equivalent, the G 2.0/35.

I owned both and made testshots side by side. The lens of the T3 is better. This is not that surprising, because the G35 is the weakest lens in the G-system and the T3 lens was just impressive desigend.

But of course, if you want to have more lenses to use, no compact model can replace a complete G-system.

On the other hand, once you have a T3, because of its tiny size, it will really go with you everywhere and this is in my view the major point in thinking about a T3.

If you want to use a G1 with only one (the 35mm)lens anyway, go for the T3. You have better performance and smaller size. Check the T3 review on this site.

dirk
 
G

Guest

What about the other lenses, the 45mm and 21mm?

I want a 45mm right away, and buy a 21mm when I can afford it, but is that a bad idea? I didn't really consider the 35mm, don't know why really.

Per
 
G

Guest

Don't touch the G1!!!

It is as addictive as crack cocaine.You will neglect your SLR to the extent that it will become a retirement home for spiders.

OK! The autofocus is not that great compared to an SLR. But, compared like for like with other rangefinders it is comparible. When you squint through a Leica's viewfinder trying to gauge whether the ghost image is directly over the true image you need an area of contrast to aim at. The G1 is no different.

True, you focus with your thumb in manual mode - no big deal - you soon get used to it. And if you write the hyperfocal distances of each f stop on a small piece of adhesive label and stick it on your lens barrel so that they correspond to the apertures, you can outdo HCB and set hyperfocal focus before shooting.

Yes, it needed a spot meter and a focus lock would have been nice too. But, since it has an AE lock the former is not too great an issue and anyway when did you last see the perfect camera?

One final point - check your intended purchase out first. If it has a silver and not a green label inside the film chamber it will not couple with the 35mm.
 
G

Guest

>Sorry, I already touched it ;) And Iike it very much. Just delivered my >first film in today. Can't wait. The viewfinder is not perfect, I agree, >especially if you want to read the shutter speed. The AE lock is >essential, and yes I had trouble holding the focus without making the >camera re-focus. I hope it's just a matter of practice. I haven't really >used manual focus yet. About the label in the film chamber. It's silver. >Please explain about the 35mm and why it won't take it. Do I have to take >it back now?
 
G

Guest

Aaaargh too late, you're hooked!!!!!

The older G1's had a silver label inside the film chamber. When Contax introduced the G2 they also brought out 35mm & 21mm lenses that would not couple with the G1. To get round this they offered to upgrade the G1 free when you purchased a new 21mm or 35mm lens. The upgrade amounts to increasing the camera's ROM. When this was completed they put a green label inside. Later G1's had the modification done before they left the factory and also bear the green label.

If you want to use a 21mm or 35mm lens on your 'silver label' G1 then you must have it upgraded by Contax at your own expense. How much this costs I don't know. Personally I will stick with the 28mm / 45mm / 90mm set until I get a G2.
 
G

Guest

OK, I understand.

I will probably never be able to afford a G2, so maybe I have to stick with the lenses you propose. Anyway, I wrote to the shop I bought it from, and mayne they will tell me what an upgrade costs. Or maybe swap my G1 to an upgraded one, I don't know. I had kind of set my eyes on the 35mm, so it was a bit of a disappointment.

Per
 
G

Guest

I wrote to the shop where I bought the G1 and asked about the upgrade for the camera to take a 21 and 35mm. The guy confirmed that my G1 wasn't modified, but promised me that it would be, free of charge, if I bought one of the lenses there.

Per
 
G

Guest

Hey! I’ve just found the custom functions on my G1. Don’t laugh – I did not get a manual and would you have found them on your own?

Anyway, there are now two AE locks on my camera. The conventional On / Off / AE switch worked just fine so why is there a shutter button operated one too? Surely this would have been better put to operating a focus lock? When you think of how simple it must be to reprogram a chip to lock the focus instead of the shutter speed it makes you wonder what Contax were thinking of when they (justifiably) got slated for the G1’s autofocus. It did not need the G2, just a bit of reprogramming or am I being naive?

Anyway, check the images folder for my solution to the depth of field conundrum. Strange is n’t it how photographers will happily forgo D of F markings on their zoom lenses, but think it should be their God given right to have them on a rangefinder?

Clive
 
G

Guest

Hello,
I have an old G1 with the silver label which should indicate that it will not connect properly with the 35mm Planar. The later models and those that have been converted should have tell - tale green labels. Having recently bought a G2 with said 35mm Planar I put the 35mm lens on the G1 out of curiosity. It works! Does anyone know how or why?

Incidentally, I e-mailed Contax to evaluate the cost of the ROM update and it is only $32 to upgrade the old 'silver Label' G1's to accept the 35mm and 21mm optics.

Secondly, and I stress that this is unconnected with the above; My G1 has suddenly become all 'fuzzy'. No photograph comes out sharply focused no matter what lens I use or camera to subject distance employed. It does not appear to be a matter of incorrect focus, rather an all over loss of sharpness. Comparative shots taken using the same lenses on the G2 come out OK. Anyone have similar experiences?

Regards,

Clive
 
G

Guest

Does the out of focus problem happen at all f/ numbers or is it worse wide open? Check your lens when you focus and then when you snap the shutter. Does the lens move when you push the shutter all the way?
 
G

Guest

Hey Per! I was just like you. Once I held a G, I just had to have it. I tried both the G1 and G2 when I was at a photo show which was held in a large marquee. Both cameras focussed without problems and the fact that the G1 is smaller and lighter swayed me to buy one. I use the 28 and 45 now but I did own a 90mm which didn't get much use.
The G1 is a cracking camera and i don't believe it to be inferior to the G2 as some say. Just different maybe.

Just enjoy!

Paul
 
G

Guest

Hi,

Fixed it! There was a pin in the lens throat that had stuck inside giving the false focus. A little cleaning did the trick.

Clive
 
G

Guest

Just joined. I got the G1 for travel and as a substitute for a Leica M-6. I'm looking for a hack for the G1 manual focus wheel to d&/lock the focus on manual.

My web site is <
Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!
>
 
G

Guest

I've got a problem with a recently purchased silver label G-1. The 45mm lens is extremely loud when focusing... causing noticable vibration of the camera and almost a kind of bark when it extends for close focusing. It does not do it all the time, but when it does it is pretty loud. Even my wife asked me if the camera was ok.
It is an older model G-1, but the first owner only put two roles of film through it, and it has not even the slightest signs of use... in short it has been stored in its box for a long time. Is this noise level common? I had a green sticker G-1 for a year, and cannot remember this kind of noise. It seems worse when the contax filter and lens shade are attached. But maybe I am imagining that. At any rate, it sounds like dry gears, or as if the mechanism is dry and grating, you can hear slight sqeaks, is if it need lubrication. Anyone had this problem? Suggestions whould be most welcome. Can the focus mechanism get dry or 'sticky' if the camera is not exercised for a long period of time? Thanks.
 
G

Guest

I have the same problem with my 90mm when used in the portrait orientation, and especially with the lens hood on. It took me a while, but I figured out that the problem was the moving part of the lens is a little loose, and it rubs against the stationary part as it focuses. The friction causes lots of vibrations and noise. At first, like you, it seemed intermittent, then after lots of fiddling I discovered it only happened on it's side (portrait orientation) and with the lens hood on (because it weighs it down). Without the lens hood it does happen, but it's hardly noticeable.

I found that if I lightly support the moving part of the lens with the tip of my finger as it focuses, there is no noise. Unfortunately when I sent the lens to Contax for repair they sent it back saying "No problem found" even though I clearly described the problem in my paperwork. Kinda sucks because I hardly use the lens now, and that is the main reason.

I was thinking of sticking a very thin piece of tape of some sort on the rubbing part, some kind of tape that is very smooth, and that should help, but I don't like the idea of having to use tape on my beloved G equipment.

I had posted this question to the Contax G Forum a few months ago, and was surprised to hear that there were a few people out there with the same problem. I guess it doesn't get worse, because they didn't seem to mind it once they were used to it. Unfortunately, I think that the strong vibrations in time could start to do damage to other parts of the camera...

-Vu
 
G

Guest

I am considering buying a G1 (because I cant afford the G2) but I have never used a rangefinder before and all this talk about the focusing 'problems' with the G1 have got me a little spooked. Is there a real problem or is it just a matter of getting used to how the G1 operates and if so is that very difficult. I would not consider myself an experienced photographer but have been drawn to the G series since I first encountered them. So I would realy love to own a G1 (or G2) but I dont want to experience continual difficulties with the use of the camera.

ssp
 
G

Guest

> I now have 3 years experience using the G1 and have experienced no more problems with the focusing system than one expects with > any passive autofocus system - the camera requires a subject with some vertical contrast on which to focus - really no different > to the conventional manual rangefinder systems used in the M series Leica. As long as one has an awareness of how the camera > operates there should be no problem achieving focus. I do not remember ever having to resort to manual overide even in situations > of strong backlighting etc..

>
 
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