While on a walk I popped back into the crazy world of 'Buy & Sell', the focus of one of my posts several months ago.
Once again I found myself inexplicably wading through the store's snowdrifts of crap.
Inside I met Amanda, who had just purchased her first 35mm camera for $20. Being a nosy nerd, I asked which camera she had gotten. When she handed it to me, out of neurotic necessity, I tested to make sure it worked. The focusing screen was clear, the shutter action was smooth and even the 50mm f1.4 lens it came with looked good. An impressive find amongst the clutter and disorganization of 'Buy & Sell'.
Equally impressive as the label Prinzflex suggested, it was probably some mass manufactured Russian knock-off that was more likely to be a huge piece of shit rather than a working camera even when it was first produced. I thought maybe she would have the same luck I had when my Fed-3 arrived from the Ukraine last year.
Amanda posed for a portrait with her new find and after I was on my way.
It wasn't until I got home that I became intensely interested in the history of the Prinzflex.
After some research on Camerapedia I was able to find out the Prinzflex TTL was once a camera made in Japan named the Chinnonflex TTL. It was sold in Britain by the electronics store Dixons and rebranded. Some web forms I visited suggested it was a knock-off of the Ricoh TLS and it's hard not to notice the similarities in design.
I couldn't find anywhere that talked about its performance, but I would wage being made in Japan over the USSR would make all the difference.
So looks, or I guess crazy names, on old cameras can be deceiving.
Hopefully Amanda's new camera will bring her many happy artistic moments and show her how amazing it can be to cut the digital tether!