Home - Photo Jottings

Welcome to Photo Jottings! Feel free to browse the site; there’s a lot of stuff here, so starting with the site guide may be a good idea.  Film lovers can start with my film camera reviews and scanned negatives here and here.  For all my Minolta and Sony lens reviews, go here.

New!  film buying pages; one for color, and one for B&W.  This covers all film (110, 35mm, 120 roll, and sheet), currently available fresh dated by the manufacturer.

New!  Kodak Ektachrome E100 now available here.

Vest Pocket Kodak Series III Review

The 'Vest Pocket' Kodak models were produced for several decades between the teens and the thirties, and featured numerous lens and shutter combinations, along with some neat colors and coverings, like the 'Sea Gull' finish you see here.

Vest Pocket Kodak Series III models are very small as the name suggests, and they'll easily fit in a 'vest' pocket, or in the back pocket of your jeans.  Of course they're 'folders,' meaning they must be opened up and the lens extended before taking pictures, which makes them a bit larger and more cumbersome when you're actually taking pictures.

Our ca1932 review model has a good Kodak Anastigmat F/6.3 lens, along with a decent four speed Diomatic shutter, and thumb screw focusing.  Surprisingly...

Read more »

Kodak Breeze 35mm F/4.5 Review

Snapshots are a breeze, with the Kodak Breeze!

The Kodak Breeze, (S100EF or Euro-35) was a budget friendly camera that used bold color schemes and simplicity to attract customers, and probably sold by the millions at K-Mart or Walmart back in the very late 1980s into the early 1990s.  There are more color combinations for this particular camera than you can imagine; white black, blue, and red bodies, some with different colored buttons.  Our review model is white with pink accents, and is often referred to online as the 'Hello Kitty' camera.  Kodak wasn't satisfied with just a bunch of goofy colored cameras, so they tried to advance the status a bit from our cartoonish model, to evoking Parisian sophistication and grandeur in another model using the name 'Élysées,' with an elegant cursive font, and faux mother-of-pearl finish.

The picture quality, operating characteristics, and dimensions of the Kodak Breeze are similar to the Canon Snappy 30, except the Breeze has no winding motor, it's all manual, so you don't need any batteries unless you want to use the flash. The Kodak Breeze is a very inexpensive model, but it's capable of taking good pictures with the right film and settings.  I really appreciate the small size; it'll actually fit in a shirt pocket without sagging, (like a pack of smokes) as it's so light-weight, especially without batteries.

This popular snapshot camera from three decades ago set me back about $2, and it still works just fine.

If you're bored at work, and looking to goof off for a few minutes, scroll on down for the review; and pretend you're 'somewhere in time.'

Read more »

Kodak P3200 TMAX Review

I finally tried out the roll of Kodak P3200 Tmax I bought when it first came out, and below are some samples for you to look through.  At first glance I notice the film grain is quite fine and sharp for such a high speed emulsion.  Based on some of the shots where the sun is still out, but low …

Read more »

Ricoh FF-90 35mm F/2.8 Review

Apparently, Ricoh didn't have much confidence in the FF-90, so they designed a velvet lined casket for each camera, and when it stopped working, you simply put the camera back inside, closed the lid and unceremoniously tossed it in the trash can.  Fortunately, the cameras lasted longer than Ricoh thought, and here I am more than three decades later reviewing a good working model.

The Ricoh FF-90 came out soon after the Ricoh FF-3D AF Super, which featured a cool Pontiac checkered dashboard inspired gray exterior.  The differences are not huge, but noteworthy; the new updated camera now rewinds after the roll is done instead of just beeping.  Also new is DX coding, but you can't change the ISO unless you tape over the contact area of the film canister; however, it now offers a +2.0 exposure compensation button.  The top has a huge LCD panel...

Read more »

Bell & Howell Electric Eye 127 Review

The late 1950s brought us a lot of cool stuff, like flying cars, the integrated circuit, and the microwave oven, but few people remember it also brought us some fabulous cameras such as the Electric Eye from Bell & Howell!  This particular model is smartly dressed in tweed; it looks great, that's why I bought it.

The Bell & Howell Electric Eye 127 camera featured fully automatic exposure control, a wide view 'special' lens, (with a curved film gate---uh-oh), and a way to adjust the aperture in case you want to override the automatic system. (note; the lens on this camera has a very unusual characteristic, either you'll think it's cool, or you'll hate it and won't ever use the camera again...

Read more »

Voigtlander Bessa 105mm F/3.5 Heliar Review

This week our review camera is the folding and pocketable pre-war Voightländer rangefinder Bessa, featuring the top of the line, five element Heliar lens.  Another nice feature for this Bessa is the magnified (zoomed in view) rangefinder window for more easily seeing, and setting the focusing distance, with the other window used for composing the image.  Additionally, the camera focuses by moving the entire lens and shutter assembly back and forth like a view camera, not simply with a turning front focusing lens element as most folders have.  

I've had three of the Bessa 6x9 cameras with Heliar lenses through the years, but I only have the review copy now.  All are a little different as far as optical characteristics, (especially resolution) are concerned when looking really closely at high quality scans.  One was super sharp almost wide open in the centers, but had very soft sides; my other two had...

Read more »

Argus Super Seventy Five 65mm F/8 Review

The Argus Super Seventy-Five (should've been named 'Super Sixty-Five' for obvious reasons) is a big step up from the 'Seventy-Five' and other fixed focus, fixed aperture fake 'TLR' type cameras.  The 'Super' model includes a rare semi-wide angle 65mm three element lens with three waterhouse punched disk type stops to choose from, and the design is reminiscent of the Kodak Duaflex with 72mm F/8 Kodar.  However, the Kodar has an achromatic doublet type with focusing front element, and the Argus Super 75 has a better anastigmat lens that's quite sharp across the frame...

Read more »

New pages for Color and B&W film.

I've completed the film buying resource pages, and have included all 110, 35mm, 120 roll film and sheet film.  There are over 123 B&W film types and sizes, and over 50 color types and sizes listed.  Everything here is fresh from the manufacturer, there is no outdated or re-spooled stuff.  Color page, and B&W page.

The most popular brand in B&W is Illford, especially when it comes to sheet film.  Kodak has a nice selection of color sheet film, and did you know you can still buy fresh 11x14" Portra 160 film; it's expensive though!

At the moment, Fuji is the only one selling traditional color reversal film, not counting Rollei's odd CR200 or Crossbird emulsion, and Lomography's awful 110 Peacock film, see sample here.

Anyhow, I think I have most films listed that are carried by one of the stores in the links.   Let me know if I've missed anything...

Read more »

Scroll to Top