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View Poll Results: Titanium King of P&S world?
Contax T3 197 69.12%
Nikon 35Ti 88 30.88%
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Contax T3 vs. Nikon 35Ti
Old 09-13-2010   #1
Colin G.
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Contax T3 vs. Nikon 35Ti

In another post I questioned owners of the T3 about the viewfinder. Upon doing more research into the camera, I came across the Nikon 35Ti. Both seem like excellent point-n-shoots, and I probably couldn't go wrong with either.

Anyways, does anyone have experience with both? Which would you recommend?
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Old 09-13-2010   #2
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I have the 35Ti and have mixed feelings about it. It's a bit too bulky for my taste and the focus is a bit slow. Other than that it's a very nice camera. The lens seems to be a bit less contrasty and maybe also less sharp than what I've seen from the T3.

The T3 is usually more expensive than the 35Ti, though, so that's something to keep in mind.

I'll probably be selling my 35Ti again as I use my Mju II most of the times anyways.
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Old 09-13-2010   #3
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contax > nikon


I base this analysis on the contax t3 having cooler photos on flickr, and the fact that contax/zeiss lenses and camera interfaces/ergonomics are nearly always better than nikons.
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Old 09-13-2010   #4
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T3.

Superior build quality, its size! (which is its selling point for me) and that gem of a lens on it.
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Old 09-13-2010   #5
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I've played around with a friend's Nikon 28Ti and I have to say, it's very impressive. Solid build quality, but a bit on the large side, which is where the T3 would be a better option. The analogue dials are a bit gimmicky, but cool to look at. And the Nikkor lens is nothing to sneeze at either - sharp, contrasty and the slides I've seen from the camera are beautiful. I'm sure the 35Ti would be much the same.
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Old 09-13-2010   #6
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They are both excellent cameras with superb optics. I use them both and must say it is hard to pic. The T3 gives you better control over flash is one advantage of the T3.
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Old 09-14-2010   #7
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I kept my T3 and sold my 28ti. The main reason was size, not performance. 28ti was superb and I miss it's lit frame lines, very nicely done.
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Old 09-14-2010   #8
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I've owned a 35Ti since they came out, Excellent metering, focus is a bit sluggish (even when using manual pre-set), the lens is better than people give credit, respectable battery life, the battery cover is a bit flimsy although I've never had any problems. They are susceptible to dust in the vf. Probably the worst thing about the camera is the flash overide button located on the front is awkward to use (a much better design on the 28Ti). All in all it's a great camera and did I say it has fantastic metering.
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Old 09-15-2010   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodt16s View Post
Probably the worst thing about the camera is the flash overide button located on the front is awkward to use (a much better design on the 28Ti). All in all it's a great camera and did I say it has fantastic metering.
My 35Ti has the 28Ti style flash selection button (Sno: 5006552) it must be a very late version?
I agree it is a very good camera the only down side is the lack of manual film ISO selection.

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Old 09-16-2010   #10
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Got T3 all the way...
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Old 09-17-2010   #11
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Hi, i cannot say anything about the nikon 35ti, ive seen only on pictures, but im sure its a great camera.
I own a t3, its superb, high quality, very qick and reliable focus, up to 1/1200 speed and the lens is another story!!!!
All these features in a shirt pocket size camera, what else can i ask for?

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Old 09-17-2010   #12
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you're missing the TC-1, I think it's titanium clad.
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Old 09-17-2010   #13
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The TC-1 is a real jewel, beautifully made. Really tiny.
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Old 09-17-2010   #14
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I've had a 35Ti. When I got it I played with a T3 in the shop, which was much more expensive, and it felt quite cheap - well, quite cheap for the price...

The 35Ti is great, I didn't find the flash override button very hard to use and there's a custom function you can set to make sure it is off by default. It also has more finder information than most cameras of this type, and the lens is very good. I didn't personally find the focus slow but then maybe I'm used to MF cameras.

The only bad thing about it is that it's really quite large, in particular it's too deep to fit in most pockets.

Purely for that reason I'd go to a T3 in an ideal world, but not given the 2x price difference.

If you didn't need a 35mm lens I'd look into a Ricoh GR1V , which has pretty much the most perfect interface of any compact camera I've ever had - all the features you need, but not so many it becomes a hassle to use.
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Old 09-21-2010   #15
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I have a T2 and not a T3. Are they very different? I doubt it.

I like the T2 a lot.
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Old 09-21-2010   #16
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Quote:
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I have a T2 and not a T3. Are they very different? I doubt it.

I like the T2 a lot.
I believe they are different in one very critical aspect (correct me if I'm wrong):

T3 moves the lens into focus when you half-depress, T2 doesn't. (In manual mode T3 leaves the lens at focus distance). T3 then has minimal shutter lag compared to T2.

I really like the analog controls though on the T2...A hybrid would have been perfect.
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Old 09-27-2010   #17
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I've used the T2, T3, Nikon 35ti, the Leica Minilux and CM... my favorite is the CM, then the Minilux, then the T2 (very slow though). The T3 has a great lens though. You really can't go wrong with any of them.
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Old 09-27-2010   #18
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I've owned the T3, 35ti, T2, TC-1, GR1v and a Minilux all at the same time, except the T2. After extensive testing I kept the GR1v and sold the rest. The T3 is small, neat and easy to use. Took nice pictures too. The 35ti was a real beauty. The matrix meter on it is a work of art, seldom fooled and the lens is pin sharp. The Ricoh GR1v is better than both of them and ultimately much more pocketable. I also bought another T2 as it was simply a more pleasant experience to use than the T3. The only one I miss is the Minolta TC-1 but I needed the money...
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Old 09-27-2010   #19
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Similar to muf, I've owned the T3, TC-1, GR1/s/v, and have played extensively with friend's 35ti and 28ti. Sold the TC-1 last month, now the only keeper is the GR1v. A real shooter it is, with nice optics (not as good as the Sonnar and Nikkors though), custom ISO setting and what is the most important to me, top ergonomics.

Seems I'm going off topic as well...

Yes Colin, as you have mentioned in the original post, both are top class shooters that gives more than excellent if not superb results.

Major difference to me: The T3 is pocketable, The 35ti is not. However the Nikons (35ti and 28ti) are a little more comfortable to shoot with. They come with matrix metering, better handling and better craftsmanship at a cost of size and weight, while the T3 has slightly better optics, smaller size and much reduced weight, and is slightly faster in focusing. Do notice that many pros use the T3 for important assignments because its dual shutter mechanism offers an astonishing top speed of 1/1250s, a feat nothing in this class could compare to. The 35ti's with others here, of which the top shutter speed is a standard 1/500s.



One thing that troubles me with the T3 though: rich in features it is, it lacks dedicated controls like a compensation dial. To compensate you must press that tiny Mode button hard first for four times (!). Changing rolls mid-way is a pain too.
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Old 09-28-2010   #20
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If I were to buy one these days, I'd go for the Ricoh as well.
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Old 09-28-2010   #21
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Regarding the T3. The killer for me as Archlich pointed out is that certain controls that would benefit as a direct selection on the camera are only accessable through the menu. The 35ti suffered this fate too. Of the two, I would choose the 35ti because it was more enjoyable to use than the T3. It felt like a real solid well crafted instrument, where the T3 felt like a posh persons toy to show off to their friends. I concur the T3 has better optics, but the difference in picture quality between the two is not high enough to overlook the pleasure I got out of using and owning the 35ti.
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Old 09-28-2010   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archlich View Post
Do notice that many pros use the T3 for important assignments because its dual shutter mechanism offers an astonishing top speed of 1/1250s, a feat nothing in this class could compare to. The 35ti's with others here, of which the top shutter speed is a standard 1/500s.
I know a pro (fashion) who uses a T3 for his work too. His reason: lens quality and minimal shutter lag compared to other P&S cameras.

I don't know about the 35TI, but the shutter lag issue is a big deal for me. I went from a Yashica T4 and a Contax T2 to the T3 for this reason.

The GR1 has a good response time, but I don't like 28mm these days.
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Old 09-28-2010   #23
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Get a Rollei 35. Simple to use. Unobtrusive. Great pix. Used to have a T3. never got used to the menu although the lens was great.

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Old 10-01-2010   #24
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I have had both and the lenses are superb on both. I am blown away by the optics for both. The T3 has better control for the flash. To solve the problem get both.
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Old 10-01-2010   #25
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I am impressed with how accurate and sophisticated the matrix metering is on the Nikon 35Ti. I would not hesitate shooting slides with the 35Ti.

And the analogue gauge is one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen on a camera.
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Old 03-13-2011   #26
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NEITHER!
The minolta tc-1 is the titanium king!
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Old 03-14-2011   #27
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I've never had the Minolta, but the T3 wins over the 35Ti hands down in my book. Size matters.
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Old 04-09-2011   #28
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I really wanted the 35ti. I went out and found one in a store window. It was oddly bulky and not as compact as I'd imagined. It seemed lumpy compared to my Hexar Af. I kind of just gave up on owning one. Like a woman seen through drunken eyes--good from far... Still interested in the contax if I can get my hands on one.
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Old 04-11-2011   #29
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I agree DB. I had a 35Ti for a bit. It was loud and clunky next to the Contax (T2 in my case). Not what I expected at all. The one I had was malfunctioning as well which did not help tge first impression.
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Old 04-11-2011   #30
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For cheap and cheerful, try a yashica T 4. It has a nice zeiss lenses. I never had luck with my GR 1. I used these cameras for climbing. The yashica is more rugged.
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Old 04-12-2011   #31
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I'd rate the Contax T2, Ricoh GR1v and Minolta TC-1 above both. If looking at a Yashica then I'd personally go for the Yashica T3 which has an f2.8 lens which I feel puts it in front of the T4/T5's f3.5. My Yashica T3 compared to my dads Yashica T5 is a much better made camera. If I had to get rid of all but one, then I'd keep the Ricoh GR1v. Form, fit and useability puts on top of the pile. IMHO. Lets face it. There's not much in the picture taking capability of the top of line P&S's so the useability is a real decider for me.
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Old 06-06-2011   #32
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I own the 35Ti since July 2009.....noisy winder, ultra sharp lens & perfect exposure metering, even with Velvia 50....
But is not rough enough, it starts with a faulty switch-on that get serviced by official assistance .......some months ago the shutter became erratic and now is totally stucked.....

When it works, it takes these pics: http://www.flickr.com/search/?w=3438...&q=35ti&m=text
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Old 06-06-2011   #33
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Can a T3 owner clear up the shutter lag question? The T2 which I own is from the early days of P&S, when the lens would move into focus only after the shutter was hit, leading to significant shutter lag. Does the T3 have the more modern AF where the lens is focused on the half-depress?

Other than that, I like the T2, especially the manual controls. The dedicated EV wheel is a plus especially since the camera's simple spot meter often demands compensation. IF you focus on a face, then EV goes to +1. If you focus on a shadow area, EV goes to -1 etc.
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Old 06-06-2011   #34
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All you peeps talking about shutter lag. Are you all taking sports shots? Because if not, then why is a slight delay causing such a big fuss?
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Old 06-06-2011   #35
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I love my T3. I've taken it on my last few international trips instead of my M6...and never regretted it.

The leaf shutter allows high fill-flash sync speeds, it's Zeiss Sonnar let's light reach the far corners of the film frame, and it's unbelievably sharp.
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Old 06-06-2011   #36
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Shutter lag can also be a problem if you're doing street photography, etc. or anytime you need to capture a moment.

Quote:
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All you peeps talking about shutter lag. Are you all taking sports shots? Because if not, then why is a slight delay causing such a big fuss?
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Old 06-06-2011   #37
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To answer my own question, a reviewer of both who bought the T3 specifically for its reduced shutter lag found that, even with selectable pre-focus, the T3 had a bit of lag and in the end was not significantly different than the T2 in that regard.

Apparently, neither come close to the Olympus XA and its wonderfully direct shutter control.

With that in mind, I think I'll stick to the T2 and its manual controls, although others like the T3's small size and upgraded lens.
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Old 06-06-2011   #38
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Quote:
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Shutter lag can also be a problem if you're doing street photography, etc. or anytime you need to capture a moment.
That makes sense. Suppose an XA is the way to go there then.
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Old 06-06-2011   #39
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Apparently, neither come close to the Olympus XA and its wonderfully direct shutter control.
The Ricoh GR1v has a 'snap' mode which basically captures everything from 10 feet onwards. No shutter lag whatsoever. The Contax T does the same only it's manual wind.
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Old 06-22-2011   #40
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The Contax T3 can be set to manual focus (for pre-focus) while still metering automatically. Fast fast, with all the benefits of a Zeiss Sonnar 35/2.8...just shoot hyper-focally.
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