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photogdave
06-03-2008, 09:39
Sigh...There I was, scouting out a location where I was going to shoot a wedding completely with film on RF cameras (saving the details for another thread). I was firing off some test shots with my beloved Panasonic LC-1 when it totally died. The screen fizzled out and it was just dead as a doornail.
Sent it in for a repair estimate. $700 to replace the main board. I love the camera but no way! :mad:
Anyway it just makes me mad that to replace one part is half the original retail value of the camera and more than I actually paid for it! Meanwhile I have 30+ year-old Leicas and a 50+ year-old Rolleiflex that require nothing but minimum maintenance to keep running smoothly.
I've been shooting about 90% film all along anyway but this experience just reenforces my continued allegiance to mechanical film cameras. Of course I've just now booked a trip of a lifetime that will take be to the Galapagos islands and I'll want something compact with a good telephoto lens. Hello Olympus E-420! :rolleyes:

mich8261
06-03-2008, 10:10
digicams are really just very expensive disposable cameras.

This is obviously an exageration, but it has certainly been true leading up to the 5-6MB cameras. I am about to sell my first dSLR (the original dRebel) and I wonder if I'll be able to get $200 for it even with all the extras.

wray
06-03-2008, 10:14
One of my OM2S's had the shutter lock up on a shoot last week. The repair will be more than I paid for the camera! So it can happen to film cameras as well.

Axel100
06-03-2008, 10:22
Oh yes... died digicams in our family the last years:

Kodak DC4800, 2 Canon Ixus, Fuji E550, Fuji S20Pro, Sony DSC-W15, Konica Minolta Dimage Z3...
:(

Regards, Axel

photogdave
06-03-2008, 10:58
One of my OM2S's had the shutter lock up on a shoot last week. The repair will be more than I paid for the camera! So it can happen to film cameras as well.
I know, but how old are those cameras and how much use did you get out of them? I only had mine for less than two years! :(

spyder2000
06-03-2008, 12:49
Having been in the business, it was hard to explain that repairs were often based on the suggested retail price of a camera, not the street prices. So often, an extensive repair wound up costing 75% of street price and it came with a six month warranty.

More than once I sold a new camera to replace the broken one. Digitals are for the most part no better. Sad.

lemalk
06-03-2008, 13:07
Are you sure it's not the CCD?

I have an LC1 that I love dearly, and there have been numerous postings on the Leica forum about the Digilux 2 and the LC1 dying due to some dodgy Sony sensors.

The LC1 is a gem, unlike most other digicams. I'd do some more research before dumping the LC1 outright - maybe Panasonic can cover most of the expense under warranty like Leica is doing?

Al Patterson
06-03-2008, 13:11
digicams are really just very expensive disposable cameras.

This is obviously an exageration, but it has certainly been true leading up to the 5-6MB cameras. I am about to sell my first dSLR (the original dRebel) and I wonder if I'll be able to get $200 for it even with all the extras.

I agree. When I used to shoot color print film, it cost me about 50 cents (US) per shot when one added up the cost of film, development and printing to 4 by 6. So, if I buy a $500 digital P&S and get 1,000 shots from it, and it dies at that point, I figure I'm even. So far I'm up to maybe 2,000 shots on my Sony DSC-V3, so any more I get is gravy.

At $700 to repair, it might be better to just buy a new one from Amazon or somewhere, and sell the second lens to someone with another 4/3 system camera.

Brian Sweeney
06-03-2008, 13:12
If the hard drive in my DSLR dies, I have a spare. It's 16 years old. They don't make them like they used to.

These days, film is cheap. $1 a roll of 24 exposure film, $3 to print to 4x6. $4 to print to 5x7.

willie_901
06-03-2008, 13:26
Actually some working pros do consider DSLRs to be disposable cameras. I shot a gig with a guy who is a full-time sports photographer. From late August through June he shoots sports at least 5 days a week in Texas.

We were shooting an event together, and during a break he says, "If you need a back up you can use one of these". The he opened a suitcase with 4 D2X bodies and a several beat up lenses wrapped in towels. He travels with a suitcase of D2X bodies and old lenses stashed in his car's trunk as back ups for his D3/D300. The D2X's have so many clicks they are worth little on the used camera market. Also he's too busy to sell them. So he just keeps them "just in case". I would have offered him next to nothing for one, but the D2X is just too big and heavy for me.

Willie

Paul700
06-03-2008, 13:32
its rather easy to dis digital, I use film and digital, both have advantages and disadvantages, mostly I feel like a sucker for falling for the hype, and upgrading the DSLR, and the pocket compact. Still, it keeps the photo industry ticking over.

yanidel
06-03-2008, 13:40
Most goods built nowadays are not built to last, this is modern consumerism.
Fridges, cars, clothes, everything is not what they used to be for many brands. As an example, people now own their cellphones for an average of two years than change. Same is happening to cameras ... so I am not sure sticking to film will have an effect on this trend. The cost of developing film is on an exponential compared to the cost of owning an digital camera. In a few years, even if the old Leica will remain more reliable, it just won't make any sense to shoot film, except for the high income photographs.

Steve Bellayr
06-03-2008, 13:52
For sporting events digital cameras provide the photographer with the opportunity to shoot a 1000 photos where 100 would have sufficed. That was how it was explained to me. Don't need a lab. Just email them and go to the next event. Quality is and optics is not and never was a consideration in sports photography. If enough pictures are taken some are going to be usable. Four Nikon D2xs are the cost of doing business. Fact of life.

photogdave
06-03-2008, 13:52
Are you sure it's not the CCD?

I have an LC1 that I love dearly, and there have been numerous postings on the Leica forum about the Digilux 2 and the LC1 dying due to some dodgy Sony sensors.

The LC1 is a gem, unlike most other digicams. I'd do some more research before dumping the LC1 outright - maybe Panasonic can cover most of the expense under warranty like Leica is doing?
I did look into that. My camera did not fall into the range of serial numbers with those sensors, so there will be no warranty coverage.
Thanks for the tip though!

photogdave
06-03-2008, 13:54
I agree. When I used to shoot color print film, it cost me about 50 cents (US) per shot when one added up the cost of film, development and printing to 4 by 6. So, if I buy a $500 digital P&S and get 1,000 shots from it, and it dies at that point, I figure I'm even. So far I'm up to maybe 2,000 shots on my Sony DSC-V3, so any more I get is gravy.

At $700 to repair, it might be better to just buy a new one from Amazon or somewhere, and sell the second lens to someone with another 4/3 system camera.
Unfortunately it's the LC1, not L1, so it is a fixed zoom lens camera.

robertdfeinman
06-03-2008, 14:31
Different users have different criteria, so most discussions are comparing apples to oranges.

A pro considers a camera the way a carpenter considers a hammer - it's a tool. It's cost gets factored into the overhead.

An amateur considers a camera as an investment and expects it to last until there is a reason to change.

Electronics makers (of cameras, TV's and the like) consider their products like spaghetti, they just keep cranking it out by the yard and hope that it gets consumed and you come back for more.

Most electronic items these days are assembled by machine and contain very small components and are, therefore, almost impossible to "fix". At best some sub-assembly will be replaced. There is no solution to this, you can't cram so many features into a small box without compromising repairability.

Either accept the limitations on product lifetime, or stick with mechanical devices and hope for the best. Even then spare parts become an issue.

ChrisN
06-03-2008, 15:02
... Anyway it just makes me mad that to replace one part is half the original retail value of the camera and more than I actually paid for it! ...

How does the cost of an overhaul from DAG or Sherry compare with the original retail value of an M3 or M6? Probably pretty similar, although the working life is usually 30 years.

sfb_dot_com
06-03-2008, 15:21
My now outdated Nikon D100 still soldiers on five years after purchase. There's some wear to the finish on the buttons, but everything else is as new. It's been subject to -40C temperatures in the Arctic, been dropped many, many times, and wet many more. It has never put a foot wrong. and the original 1GB IBM Microdrive still works too. These days it usually has 'Ugly Betty' the 60mm Macro bolted to the front, which despite her cosmetic frailties, still takes a cracking sharp picture. It doesn't quite have the wonderful tactile feel of a Leica, but it's a Nikon and built like a tank.

Andy

photogdave
06-03-2008, 15:34
How does the cost of an overhaul from DAG or Sherry compare with the original retail value of an M3 or M6? Probably pretty similar, although the working life is usually 30 years.
Exactly! I would rather pay half of my cost to CLA a Leica that lasts 30 years than double my cost to replace a digital that's already obsolete.
However what I'm really trying to say is that I love the camera and want to keep using it but the repair cost is too high! This discussion has veered off into the usual film vs digital and the camera is just a tool etc etc but that's not what I was intending to get into.

Al Patterson
06-03-2008, 15:37
Unfortunately it's the LC1, not L1, so it is a fixed zoom lens camera.

Ah, different story. You might be able to pick one up on eBay though. I

lemalk
06-03-2008, 15:53
The LC1 doesn't hold the same resale value as the Digilux 2 - I got mine about a year and a half ago for a little over $500.
I'm sure you can find a replacement on ebay for roughly that or less...

But the Olympus DSLR is pretty tempting...

But it doesn't have a silent shutter and that wonderful lens.

Brian Sweeney
06-03-2008, 16:05
I've had three Barnack Leica's CLA'd and new beamsplitter put in for $100 each.

CK Dexter Haven
06-03-2008, 16:16
Factor in the cost of the film and processing you didn't have to pay for when using the LC-1, and the cost of replacing the digital camera is seen with a more realistic perspective.

There's really no good reason to compare film and digital in this manner, relative to economics. A film camera is a consuming device. As much as we love them, they cost us money each time we use them. Twice.

Keith
06-03-2008, 16:20
Things break and wear out ... sometimes prematurely.

Just because my toaster lets me down on wednesday I'm not going to get up on thursday and gather wood, light a fire and wait for the glowing embers to toast my bread ... I'll just buy another toaster and break that one too!

Consumerism ... you gotta love it! :p

photogdave
06-03-2008, 16:44
Factor in the cost of the film and processing you didn't have to pay for when using the LC-1, and the cost of replacing the digital camera is seen with a more realistic perspective.

There's really no good reason to compare film and digital in this manner, relative to economics. A film camera is a consuming device. As much as we love them, they cost us money each time we use them. Twice.
Like I said, I wasn't intending to turn this into a film vs digital discussion but since you mention it...
If I felt I had shot my money's worth with the LC1 I wouldn't be nearly as upset. But in fact I didn't use it that much because my film cameras are way more versatile, reliable, and the IQ was better. Film is much more economic for MY type of shooting because I have an already-paid-for film scanner.
I liked the LC1 because for certain situations it was a great camera to have on hand - great lens, bounce flash, relatively compact. But truthfully I didn't actually take a lot of photos with it, so I feel like I didn't get my money's worth. This will apply to an digital camera I buy because I will always use my film cameras more.
Bottom line is I truly feel I get more for my money out of a film camera. Not to mention the wastefulness of my nicely crafted LC1 just going into the dumpster!

Sam N
06-03-2008, 17:51
The title of this thread should really be "Another Reason To Dis Panasonic".

Any camera can break at any time. If I wanted to fix the slow speeds on my Rolleicord, it would cost more than the camera is worth.

About one year of ownership of my Canon 400D ended up costing me under $200 in depreciation. In that year I took about 8000 photos. A roll of color film with development (no prints, and the film stays as a negative so it's of little to no use for viewing) comes out to more than $6.

8000 shots / 36 shots per roll x $6 = $1,333.33
So film costs about 6x as much as digital for me. I enjoy film and I'll probably never stop using it, but my desire to shoot outweighs my desire to handle film. If I were a millionaire I'd shoot expensive $7-per-roll films (Portra) and slide films ($17 a roll after dev. and mounting) all the time and have someone else scan and catalog my shots for me. Since I'm a normal person with limited time and money, digital has enormous advantages.

Of course you could argue that I'd be more careful about my shooting and have a higher keeper rate and lower shot rate with film. This is probably true, and I do shoot less shots even with digital as I become more discerning, but I like having the freedom to take shots that I normally wouldn't waste film on, knowing it will cost nothing.

photogdave
06-03-2008, 18:09
The title of this thread should really be "Another Reason To Dis Panasonic".

Any camera can break at any time. If I wanted to fix the slow speeds on my Rolleicord, it would cost more than the camera is worth.

About one year of ownership of my Canon 400D ended up costing me under $200 in depreciation. In that year I took about 8000 photos. A roll of color film with development (no prints, and the film stays as a negative so it's of little to no use for viewing) comes out to more than $6.

8000 shots / 36 shots per roll x $6 = $1,333.33
So film costs about 6x as much as digital for me. I enjoy film and I'll probably never stop using it, but my desire to shoot outweighs my desire to handle film. If I were a millionaire I'd shoot expensive $7-per-roll films (Portra) and slide films ($17 a roll after dev. and mounting) all the time and have someone else scan and catalog my shots for me. Since I'm a normal person with limited time and money, digital has enormous advantages.

Of course you could argue that I'd be more careful about my shooting and have a higher keeper rate and lower shot rate with film. This is probably true, and I do shoot less shots even with digital as I become more discerning, but I like having the freedom to take shots that I normally wouldn't waste film on, knowing it will cost nothing.
I give up. I'm talking about MY particular situation, not a general cost comparison of film vs digital! I should have known better to open my big mouth on RFF these days... :rolleyes:
To summarize: I paid less than $500 for a camera that I hardly used in less than two years. I will have to pay more than $700 to repair it and it has a resale value of less than $500. It's too nice a camera just to chuck in the bin and this upsets me. If it was a film camera of the same quality (ie Leica) it would probably retain its value and be worth the money to fix. The end.

gdi
06-03-2008, 18:29
digicams are really just very expensive disposable cameras.

This is obviously an exageration, but it has certainly been true leading up to the 5-6MB cameras. I am about to sell my first dSLR (the original dRebel) and I wonder if I'll be able to get $200 for it even with all the extras.

PM me with your lowest price for the DigiRebel. I'm casually looking for one.. :D

Sam N
06-04-2008, 01:38
I give up. I'm talking about MY particular situation, not a general cost comparison of film vs digital! I should have known better to open my big mouth on RFF these days... :rolleyes:
To summarize: I paid less than $500 for a camera that I hardly used in less than two years. I will have to pay more than $700 to repair it and it has a resale value of less than $500. It's too nice a camera just to chuck in the bin and this upsets me. If it was a film camera of the same quality (ie Leica) it would probably retain its value and be worth the money to fix. The end.

Well I agree that it's upsetting to have a camera break in that way, but there's nothing to really discuss about that. Clearly, circuit boards are a liability, because they can't be replaced easily. This is the same reason some people avoid Hexar RFs.

My response (except for the first line) was mostly towards at other responses in this thread which were about film vs. digital in terms of cost. Your thread's title was pretty much asking for that kind of discussion, so you shouldn't be surprisedThe LC1's place in the digital world is not quite as high as that of a Leica in the film world. It's more comparable to a non-big-2 pro-sumer film SLR.

yanidel
06-04-2008, 02:17
I give up. I'm talking about MY particular situation, not a general cost comparison of film vs digital! I should have known better to open my big mouth on RFF these days... :rolleyes:
To summarize: I paid less than $500 for a camera that I hardly used in less than two years. I will have to pay more than $700 to repair it and it has a resale value of less than $500. It's too nice a camera just to chuck in the bin and this upsets me. If it was a film camera of the same quality (ie Leica) it would probably retain its value and be worth the money to fix. The end.
I don't understand your point then. You say $700 is too expensive too fix and you are staying with film. What most say in this thread is that film will cost you more than $700 during the corresponding lifecycle of that digital camera. This is not a film vs digital in terms of quality or preference kind of answers.

IGMeanwell
06-04-2008, 02:57
I think Sam N is correct

This has less to do with the fact that your camera is a digital and more a comment on Panasonic; especially with the quoted price for the new circuit board

With electronics comes the increasing instability as it ages, no matter if you use your Panasonic or a Yashica T4 .... the big difference is in the cost of the replacement part(s)

So perhaps this is more an argument of electronic vs. mechanical

Sparrow
06-04-2008, 03:04
The meter hasnít worked on my om1 for 30years, and Iíve only had it a little over 40ÖÖ..now thatís what ya call unreliable




:rolleyes:

Socke
06-04-2008, 03:17
The meter hasnít worked on my om1 for 30years, and Iíve only had it a little over 40ÖÖ..now thatís what ya call unreliable

:rolleyes:

But consistent at least :)

Better use a well known workaround than fiddling with a fix which might turn up other problems.

OurManInTangier
06-04-2008, 03:52
The D2X's have so many clicks they are worth little on the used camera market. Also he's too busy to sell them. So he just keeps them "just in case".

Willie

I totally agree with him. If you're in business as a photographer ( esp. using digi) you should factor in the need for upgrading your camera bodies every two/three years. In which time the value of the old ones make it barely worthwhile selling, its easier to keep them as back-ups to your back-up. I still use an old D1H when on holiday or if I'm on the street but want the flexibility of digital....I get some odd looks from people with a mix of M6 and D1H, but hey...whatever works for me.

photogdave
06-04-2008, 07:53
I can see the point that is being made that my argument can apply equally to a film-based electronic camera as to a digital. However the fact is the camera that broke IS digital and I think it's an inherent problem with digital cameras that to fix them outweighs the replacement cost.
I could see this applying to some film cameras but it would be the exception, not the rule. If the LC1 was a film camera I would probably fix it because I could put whatever film I wanted in it and enjoy it for years to come. Unfortunately it's a nicely designed camera body with a fantastic lens that houses four-year-old technology that is quite out of date. Fantastic image quality at 100 ISO, useless above that.
As far as "staying with film", I've already said I shot much more film while using the LC1 anyway and am looking at an Olympus DSLR for an upcoming trip. My Leica CL will be on that trip too. It cost me half its value to repair and was worth every penny! :cool: