View Full Version : RC or RD? That is the question

05-17-2008, 01:36
I'd like to give one of these a try as a change from FSU rangefinders. I can't really decide between them based on spec' alone. So which one to get? Any advice, wisdom, bitter prejudice welcome.

05-17-2008, 02:12
One and a half stops or 2 ounces, that is the question.:rolleyes:

dan denmark
05-17-2008, 02:35
eleven is one of each

05-17-2008, 05:52
You can get an RC - fairly plentiful, for wha? - $20.00 US Bush/Republican administration dollarettes? Less than the going rate for Bush/Republican gallon of gas. Don't own one, but I've seen some great pics from this thing. Tiny, all manual control, excellent lens, available (there always seems to be a few on the 'bay), cheap, and seemed to have held up better than the RD. I'm thinking of getting one myself. Downside? F2.8 lens. Slow for a fixed lens RF.

05-17-2008, 06:28
OK, so far so good. Thanks for your replies - it seems like the RC is ahead by a length. Now, if it isn't heresy to ask this on the Oly forum - how does the RC stack up against the Yashica Electro?

05-17-2008, 06:37
Let's hope it goes higher so you can feel even better about yourself. The Germans call it 'Schadenfreude'. Make you feel like a real man, does it?

Touchy, touchy... Should I drag out quotes of the hand-wringing and gnashing of "R" teeth when gas went from $1.00 to $1.25 a gallon under Clinton?

I call it...

It's OK If You're a Republican. Explanation for an action or statement by a Republican which, were the responsible person a Democrat, would be cause for a firestorm of outrage.


05-17-2008, 09:43
The Electro and the RC make a great combination. Although I agree with Nick that the Yashica is the best rf design (fast lens, aperture priority, stepless shutter), I love the RC for size, build quality, control of shutter and aperture in the finder. And I believe that it is the more reliable camera if that's what counts...

Steve Bellayr
05-17-2008, 10:11
Most people use their rangefinders in low light and IMHO f2.8 is too slow a lens for a rangefinder. If it is you "extra" camera & you just want to keep it around for fun...maybe. But, if you find yourself shooting towards the edge i.e. limited lighting circumstances & moving subjects then you should opt for the camera with the fastest lens.

05-17-2008, 11:04
I'm not a Republican, I've said that before.

You interject your politics into many a thread. Most recently that MAC thread, which prompted a tirade of cliched liberal bashing. Here, have a taste of your own Castor oil, and thanks for taking the bait.

As for being a "Libertarian" - thanks for the laugh. Here's my definition of "Libertarian" (of which I was a registered one until 2004) - or what a "Libertarian" has become (which is why I bailed). A libertarian is one who likes to take part in Fox News-style "liberal bashing". However, when the R's screw up, or are asked about the failures (read disaster) of this Republican administration over the last 8 years, they suddenly say, "Hey, don' look at me mahn, I'm a "Libertarian", you see..." Hilarious...

Oh yes, cameras -

RD - supposed to be great. But expensive to get in any condition and will need work.

RC - great camera, cheap, all manual control, very compact but a slow f2.8 lens

GSN - aperture priority, great glass, stepless shutter, parallax corrected, reasonable cost, plentiful but a pretty big camera for a 35.

Other considerations -

Yashica CC (Same as GSN but smaller. Rare, somewhat pricey Only meters to 500 and 1/250 top shutter speed. However, has a very good fast f1.8 35mm focal length. Not many 35's are this fast, all cost more than this camera...)

Konica Auto S3 - Rare, pricey. Outstanding lens, tiny, black. Shutter priority only

Konica C35. Small, cheap, great glass. shutter priority, but f2.8 lens, I think.

Lots of others - check out http://www.cameraquest.com more information. What you'll find is - small size, fast glass, features (manual control), cost; pick any three

05-17-2008, 12:07
Many thanks for the replies - I am now wiser, at least concerning rangefinder cameras. As for the politics, I am, like most Europeans, at best bemused by American political wrangling.
After the second world war, the newly elected British Prime Minister, Clement Attlee visited the US. Upon his return, he reported his findings to the cabinet. He had this to say:
'The United States has two principal political parties - The Republican party, which is very similar to the British Conservative Party, and The Democratic Party, which is very similar the the British Conservative Party'.

05-17-2008, 17:45
I have both and I use the RC much, much more often. It's a great camera with a full feature set (including an 'Off' setting) and a great lens in a wonderfully compact body. As stated before the RD usually succumbs to the shutter issues but it does have a legendary lens, the same that's found in the Olympus 35DC, another camera I enjoy using immensely. I've not found the f/2.8 lens to be a problem; usually if I'm shooting in low light I'm using something different altogether. I tend to use my RC for general shooting. It's one of the cameras I come back to over and over which, out of about 200, is really saying something.

05-18-2008, 12:13
also have both the RC is a treat....2,8 is not that slow (remeber the Leica with an 3,5 or 2,8 Elmar as a standard lens?). especially i fyou use it with a 400 ASA but i must admit the f2,8 was the reason for buying the RD.
The RC replaced the Retina IIc as my backup. And it´s really very handy. Luckily no one thought of making an underground movie using it like "Pecker" (the movie that made the canonet unobtainable in Europe!)

As for politics:
In the 80`s in an Austrian talkshow on politics with a Soviet and a US represenative. The Spviet had painted himslef into a corner by claiming that they had a democracy. But you don´t have elections!" said the American. "we do" was the Soviets response . "yo have no political parties as we do!" (actual words as if written for a schoolplay in primary school!)
"Parties like yours? We cut our Soviet party in two and the we have parties just like yu in the states!" A good proof that even people who state a downright stupid claim can find original answers.
Actually I like "Dollarettes" In german we use "Euretten" sometimes ;o)

05-19-2008, 23:19
I have an RD, and RC, and 2 Electro 35's. A couple more considerations if these haven't surfaced yet:

- You can get RCs or Electros for not too much $$ these days , but the RD seems to be going for more (I got my RC for $10). Also, the RD has some documented shutter problems that will likely require service.

- both the RC and RD have full manual control available if the battery dies, the Electros do not and are "only" aperture control

- electros and the RC have an "off" switch; with the RD you need a lens cap otherwise the meter will be on, draining the battery

- (on my examples at least) the olys feel more solidly built than the yashicas

- size-wise, the RC feels more like a toy and the Electros more vintage & huge - as big as some of my SLRs.

I'd personally rank the RD tops overall, the RC best viewfinder, and the electros best ease of use.

05-19-2008, 23:53
I've had the Electro and the RC, and I'll say that I prefer the RC. Usable without a battery, much smaller & rugged too. As for image-quality, the Electro's ahead by more than a stop, but the RC can take photos just as nice (if not a bit better) as the Electro.

05-20-2008, 13:17
Get an RD if you can find one with non-oily shutter. It's only peer is the Minolta 7sII. These two can deliver some seriously good photos.

35 RC and the less known 35 ECR are "pocketable" cameras. They are exceptional if you consider them as they are intended to be considered. I personally think the ECR is cooler.

As for the Yashica Electros, all I can say is that the lens is sharp... darn sharp! but big.

Of course, I think the best overall is the 35 SP.


05-21-2008, 16:28
I own two RCs and two Electros. Just because they're cheap and I wouldn't want to be without one.

stjohnst has it all about right. In my case, I use the RC about three times more often than the Yashica. It's so much easier to bring along. The Yashica is really SLR size. In terms of micro-contrast, the Yashica is the more apparently sharp of the two. It's a more modern image look. The RC has a Tessar design and Tessar look -- I happen to like that.

Also I prefer a manual camera. I don't even have a battery in the RC.

The Yashica bugs me because I never know what shutter speed it has chosen. Not really a problem since I know that I can hand-hold down to 1/15th no problem. Still... I want to know.

The limitation of f/2.8 is not really a consideration for me, as I'm usually trying for max DoF anyway. I've put in bids for a couple of RDs but never took it to the max because the extra stop and a half is rarely crucial.

If you really can't decide, buy an SP. It has the best features of both, at a size about midway between the two.

05-23-2008, 00:53
There's a a different feeling with each of those cameras. The RC is the lighter one whereas the RD is a bit heavier in a good way - reminds me of die cast toy cars. I like the way of choosing speeds on the RC the RD had again the rather traditionenal fixed focal length RF method of placing the speeds around the lens.
Try the RC - they are still! - rather cheap. Whereas RD´s cost more and you´ve the risk of getting one with a gummed shutter. I am just telling you my story.

05-23-2008, 13:52
Today I were given RC with non working AE (corroded white wire and what else). It's really small! Will do sealwork, go out and see if I understand Sunny 16 to leave AE alone (mostly because my first RF were Electro and I rather prefer slight blur caused by speed limitations to auto-o-DOF). And for low light, really, there are other cameras/lenses - RC is day bird, obviously.

Build quality seems nice, I just noted paper slice over beamsplitter and mirror covered only by top plate not own roof. Famous "glued battery cradle saving one little screw"...but it also doesn't cost you arm and leg! Though finder is good, reminds that on Mju/Epic - small, but comfortable.

05-28-2008, 03:52
I remember that sitemistic once answered me that the RC´s weren´t exactly cheap when they were new! About 300 $ as I remember.

05-28-2008, 04:24
f2.8 is plenty fast.