Thursday, November 11, 2010

First film from the Pen EES-2

I've finally put my first roll (of Fuji Superia 400 colour neg) film through my little Olympus EES-2. And I've gotta say right off the bat, I'm thrilled!

As you can see from the proof sheet above, I got 53 (mostly) beautifully exposed wee gems - all sharp, with great colour. I must say I was slightly worried, since the Pen had light seals that were reasonably suspect - but there was no problem with light leaks whatsoever.

The Pen was a joy to use. It's a fairly automatic camera - the only decision you really need to make is setting the focus range on the lens (with a choice of 1m, 1.5m, 3m or infinity). The manual for the camera suggests that an 'average' shot will mostly work at the 3m range - and that's largely where I left it, although I did change the focus as necessary (shooting at infinity for landscapes etc).

The thing that struck me initially was the incredible quietness of the shutter release. Just a very faint 'snick' when you push the shutter and the image is taken. Then a very short flick of the thumb on the wheel at the back (very nicely placed btw) to move the film along - it's only half-frame remember - and you're good to go again. Ergonomically beautiful - a perfect mix of Japanese design and the modern mantra 'form follows function'.

Before getting the film processed, I stripped the camera of all its old foam-based light seals, and replaced them with felt and wool (as described on several internet websites). I'm very happy with the new sealing (it was fiddly, but NOT difficult) - even though, as already mentioned, there were no light leaks anyway. Worth doing as general upkeep for such an old camera though.

Having got the film developed (process and proof only - no prints), I scanned the negs on my Epson V700 Photo Scanner - at 2400dpi, giving me a print size from the half frame of approx. 13cm x 17cm at 300dpi. I could go back and scan any individual negs at a higher resolution if I needed to - but 2400dpi is probably enough to upsize the half frame neg to at least 8x12' - which is about as big as I would print unless I needed something for exhibition.

Couldn't be happier with the results from the Pen EES-2! And I'm really enjoying shooting film again. I'd almost forgotten the anticipation of picking up your film from processing to see what you've got - all the better when the results are this pleasing.

My experiences with the other Olympus compact I got on Trademe is, however, less positive. Unfortunately, try as I might, I can't get the camera to work! The Olympus 35ED is battery dependent (unlike the Pen EES-2), and it seems like I've got a dud. Can't really do much, because I purchased the camera without batteries and sold 'as is'. Oh well, you win some (Pen EES-2) and you loose some (Olympus 35ED).

Not daunted by this however, I've just purchased another Olympus - a 'Trip 35' on Trademe (also sold 'as is' - but the guy claims it's working). The Trip 35 is very similar to my Pen - no batteries :-) and uses exactly the same focusing system. It's basically a Pen that uses a standard 35mm format. Looking forward to shooting with the Trip as well.

I've loaded a roll of Kodak Black and White 400cn (C41 colour processed black and white) 36 shoot film in the EES-2 now (which should give me around 75(ish) shots. Might take a while to get through that many images - depending on what I get up to this weekend. Will definitely post images from that roll once it's shot and developed. Good times with film!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comment. I appreciate you taking the time to reply. I will respond as soon as I can.
Thanks again