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Kodak Retina RF This forum is for the 35mm Kodak Retinas, known for their German engineering, relatively modest price and superb lenses.

View Poll Results: Barnack vs. Retina
Barnack 107 57.53%
Retina 79 42.47%
Voters: 186. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-11-2011   #51
Steve M.
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I sold my IIa. Great camera, but my Ia w/ Ektar lens just blew it away in IQ. Scale focusing is really easy, and since you have to look at the camera from the front to set the speeds and aperture anyway, it takes but a few extra seconds to set the distance. Since I got my Nikon SLR w/ Leica lenses going I never shoot it anymore though. I like not having to take a hand held meter w/ me.
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Old 12-11-2011   #52
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I have two hang-ups about the Retina IIIC. One is it's ergonomics, and the other is the ridiculous interchangable front elements. The second I can just ignore, but the first I have to live with. That said, (even though I own a Zorki) I cannot bring myself to look through the viewfinder anymore on the old Russian. I even went to the trouble of getting a nice I-26M so I could change apertures while using filters, and I still can't stand the viewfinder. And when you think about the pocketability of the Retina (it even closes with a filter attached), I'm sold.

But wait until I get the Yashica YF repaired. Then the Retina may have a hard time getting in the que.

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Old 12-11-2011   #53
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I came across a as-is IIa on ebay and picked it up. The cameras basically shot (which matches what I paid for it : ) but it cured me of my IIa interest. It isn't that much smaller than the IIIc and surprisingly, the IIIc works a bit better for me. It would become a repair project but the glass is shot. Its almost like the lubricant migrated to the glass and then etched it, though that doesn't make sense. For $10 though, I may take it apart and try to get the shutter working more reliably for fun. Otherwise it will go back to ebay with a more accurate description.

Inspired by a recent Retina thread, I finally spent some time cleaning oil off of the shutter leaves which was causing the IIIc to hang. Also took the opportunity to clean the all of the elements. Almost done shooting the first roll with it. Forgot how much I like this camera.
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Last edited by Brian Legge : 12-11-2011 at 22:46.
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Old 02-26-2012   #54
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Just shot a short roll to test a recently acquired Retina II. To my eyes the Xenon 50/2 is on par with my Summitar. I just wish I can get inside the combined VF/RF which is a bit cloudy.
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Old 03-15-2012   #55
Jack Conrad
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My Retina IIIc, believe it or not, has the best rf I've used thus far, and I've tried quite a few fixed lens rf's. Although I can't compare to a Barnack. This is the small c variant. While it doesn't have the largest view finder, it's quite clear and the white diamond patch is extremely easy to see in the bright sun or indoors.

It's easier to use than my Vitomatic IIa with it's 1:1 viewfinder, because it has a tendency to flare which makes it difficult to see the yellow circle patch.

I did try an M3 one time but that particular sample simply sucked. Sorry, wasn't at all impressed.

I guess every camera has it's own idiosyncrasies.

I'd love to try a Barnack though. That old glass looks wonderful.
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Old 03-17-2012   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Conrad View Post
My Retina IIIc, ...easier to use than my Vitomatic IIa with it's 1:1 viewfinder, because it has a tendency to flare which makes it difficult to see the yellow circle patch....
exactly...almost.
i am using two Vitomatic IIIb, bought from different seller, both needed a pro's cleaning to restore the VF.
i found that one of them "has a tendency to flare which makes it difficult to see the yellow circle patch", the other is better.
so my suspect is that the comparison of A camera and B camera may not be all fair, due to the conditions of the specimens.
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Old 03-17-2012   #57
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I perfer the Retina IIIC to any other 35mm Folding cameras. I have Voigtlander IIA, Several Zeiss ikon, including the Contessa. Among them the Retina is not the most expensive one but the best one.

On the other hand, Leica iiic is a totally different system, a totally different generation of cameras.

I will select IIIc between this two.
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Old 03-17-2012   #58
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and I agree, the IIIC's VF is much bigger than a IIIC.
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Old 03-17-2012   #59
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I got my first Retina a IIa but the RF patch is faint so it is hard to focus. I assume this is not normal. Can it be fixed and who can do it?
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Old 05-01-2012   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rayt View Post
I got my first Retina a IIa but the RF patch is faint so it is hard to focus. I assume this is not normal. Can it be fixed and who can do it?
have you tried Uncle Tat of Panda? since you are in HK.
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Old 05-20-2012   #61
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I don't think is is really fair to compare the two, because they are not in the same price range...
Here in Europe:
Retina IIa / 50mm f2 30 - 100
Barnack Leica + any 50 f3.5 or f2 >200. And you can have a scratched lens, a shutter with holes and a shot up RF at that price if you are not careful...
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Old 05-23-2012   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S.H. View Post
I don't think is is really fair to compare the two, because they are not in the same price range...
Here in Europe:
Retina IIa / 50mm f2 30 - 100
Barnack Leica + any 50 f3.5 or f2 >200. And you can have a scratched lens, a shutter with holes and a shot up RF at that price if you are not careful...
I disagree..

Kodak introduced the Retina camera to compete with the screw Leica..
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Old 06-13-2012   #63
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Rayt, here's a tutorial on cleaning the viewfinders on the Retinas. It's a little tricky, but it's doable.

http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~Srawhit...stripdown.html

and a more detailed drawing of the advance lever parts is here

http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~Srawhit...na1alever.html

Just click on the HOME page in the top right of the links to get to Chris's full info page.
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Old 02-20-2013   #64
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Retina IIIs von Michael Relguag auf Flickr

If you thought to compete a Retina with a Leica you should think about the III S

Retina IIIs von BW400CN auf Flickr
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Old 02-20-2013   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Towermax View Post
Chris Sherlock has CLA'd my IIIS and IIIC--excellent work and quick turnaround. Not cheap, though--at the current exchange rates, a CLA for a IIIS is over $180.00, plus shipping to New Zealand. Here's his repair and price page:

http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~Srawhiti/KodakRetinaRepairService.html

Prices for the folders (IIa to IIIC) are about $120 at current exchange rates. Chris pays the return shipping on all work.
Chirs made my III S and the lenses - the best investment I made ever!!!
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