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View Full Version : Well, I did it. Just bought the RD1


SteveRD1
06-17-2005, 13:10
I must be nuts. Really.

I have been tempted by the Rd1 for months and at its $3k price for body only, I felt it was way to high. I have been using a Leica DIgilux 2 and an Olympus E1 setup for 2 years. Love them both but I like the Digilux 2 better for its size, feel and controls. I now use the D2 in manual mode 100% of the time.

I used to have a photo business back in 1998 doing Weddings. Too stressful so I now do something else not related to photography. BUT Ive been shooting digital for years, going through many DSLR systems such as Canon, Nikon and then Oly.

Thought I was happy until I saw the Epson promo video on the Rd1. That got me along with some of the pics I have seen recently.

So, I sold my E1 gear for $2k (E1, 14-54 and 50-200) - that left me $1k short for the body.

I had some extra $ but the wife wants it to go into savings. WHat did I do? I just placed the following order:

Hoya HOUV39
39mm UV Haze Glass Filter

1
$ 22.50
$ 22.50

CTA CTNP80
DB-NP80 Lithium-Ion Battery (3.7v 1350mAh)

2
$ 29.95
$ 59.90

Voigtlander VO3525P2B
Color-Skopar Pan 35mm f/2.5 (PII) Lens

1
$ 339.95
$ 339.95

Epson EPRD1
R-D1 Digital Camera

1
$ 2,995.95
$ 2,995.95

Sub Total
$ 3,418.30

Shipping
$79.50

Sales Tax
$ 0.00
Total
$3,497.80

Even splurged for next day ship. OUCH! Anyway, I just bought the cheaper lens for now even tough I really want a Leica 35 F1.4 or F2.

Hopefully my camera will be problem free. SHould have it tuesday. Please tell me I did not make a mistake! Now my E1 is gone and an extra $1500 cash!

BUT my style of photography is more reportage style lately. I enjoy my shots with the Digilux 2 much better than the E1 shots. Hopefully Ill enjoy the Rd1.

BTW, I have never shot with a ragefinder either. Ever. Bu it looks like my style for sure.

Steve

back alley
06-17-2005, 13:22
Please tell me I did not make a mistake!


you DID NOT make a mistake!

well, maybe telling your wife the real price wasn't too smart...;)

welcome to the forum, lots of rd info here.

joe

sgy1962
06-17-2005, 13:36
Think of it this way: The next digital rangefinder -- whether from Leica or Zeiss -- will probably be a whole lot more expensive, and is probably still some 2 years away. I have this strong feeling that the Leica digital M will be at least $7500 US or more. Leica's DMR for the R series is (I believe) $6000 US. And Zeiss, should they go that way, I suspect will be $4000 or more.

By the way, the new M mount Zeiss lenses are said to be very good optically and favorably priced (about 60% of Leica counter part).

Tell us how youlike the camera. I'm thinking about the same thing, because I can't find any good film developing where I live.

mtokue
06-17-2005, 14:07
Steve, Wecome to the forums,
I'm sure that when the Rd-1 arrives you will feel much better! and secure in your purchase. Although I must say that you must have some big kahunas to have chosen the RD-1 as your first Rangefinder!
I have heard good things about the CV35 PII, And YES the RD-1 does have problems! For me the problems were nagging but the Camera was/is a Keeper!
There are a lot of good people with a lot of knowledge here!
Best.
Mike.

SteveRD1
06-17-2005, 14:09
Yes, that is my biggest fear. That I will have defects! Hope not. I was toying with the idea of getting a film rangefinder and a scanner but its still not cheap and i figure if I hate the camera (which I highly doubt) I can also sell on Ebay at a minimal loss. It appears there are very few RD1 dealers in the US.

mtokue
06-17-2005, 14:16
IF you felt like letting her go, (which I would also doubt) Place a post here on the forums I would almost guarantee that another member here would snap her up real quick!
Mike.

jlw
06-17-2005, 15:29
Please tell me I did not make a mistake!

In my opinion, ditching an SLR for an RF can never be a mistake.



Anyway, telling you that you didn't make a mistake is what we're here for. Telling you that you DID make a mistake is your wife's job...

Sean Reid
06-17-2005, 16:42
Just looking over your shopping list...great camera, very good lens for the R-D1 (nice choice) - looks like a good list. My only comment would be that if you are going to use UV filters, I would recommend springing for the best multicoated ones - there is a difference. The Hoya "HMC Super" filters are very good as are the coated Heliopans.

Cheers,

Sean

SteveRD1
06-17-2005, 16:45
Ill look into a better UV filter. Cant wait to get the camera. Im taking a 1 week trip next Friday driving from Phoenix AZ to Chicago and I'm sure Ill give the Rd1 a workout! I already have three 1GB Ultra III SD cards I have been using with my D2.

Thanks everyone, I now feel better about my choice!

Steve

RML
06-18-2005, 03:31
I too was a bit fearful about the problems previously mentioned. But I asked Dr Yao, from whom I ordered my RD1, if he could check the camera out. And he did. I don't have any of the problems, except that the shutter button doesn't always fire. Annoying but I'm trying to find out when and how it occurs.

jlw
06-18-2005, 12:12
I don't have any of the problems, except that the shutter button doesn't always fire. Annoying but I'm trying to find out when and how it occurs.

Could you be a victim of the Sleeping Curse? The R-D 1 goes into sleep mode after a number of minutes of unuse (settable via a preference) and once it's asleep the first press of the shutter button does NOT fire the shutter -- only wakes it up. Second press fires it and everything is fine, until it goes to sleep again.

pfogle
06-18-2005, 16:39
re the sleeping shutter syndrome, I find I've developed the unconcious habit of half pressing the shutter at intervals, and especially when bringing the camera to the eye before taking a shot.

I still get caught out though - when I forget to 'wind on' ;)

Phil

RML
06-19-2005, 03:15
Could you be a victim of the Sleeping Curse? The R-D 1 goes into sleep mode after a number of minutes of unuse (settable via a preference) and once it's asleep the first press of the shutter button does NOT fire the shutter -- only wakes it up. Second press fires it and everything is fine, until it goes to sleep again.

:)
No, it's not the Curse of the Sleeping Beauty. I really mean that when I push the shutter button very slowly, as in half-pressing and than on to full press, that then the shutter doesn't fire. When I again press it but faster than it fires. I, of course, also tried to slow press it again and again it wouldn't fire. Even after putting on a soft release I still have the same "problem". It could be I just have to position my finger properly but I'll have to try that out and, if true, it'll be a drag to force myself to shoot like that.

Jim Watts
06-19-2005, 03:42
RML,
This does not sound right to me. No matter how slowly I press the shutter or part press then release I can't duplicate this provided the camera has not gone into sleep mode and the shutter is wound on. Does this occure all the time or is it intermittant? There have been some unresolved intermittant shutter release problems reported here as in the thread started by Sean. "Shutter Release problem - Pleas Chime in": http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5425

RML
06-20-2005, 07:00
RML,
This does not sound right to me. No matter how slowly I press the shutter or part press then release I can't duplicate this provided the camera has not gone into sleep mode and the shutter is wound on. Does this occure all the time or is it intermittant? There have been some unresolved intermittant shutter release problems reported here as in the thread started by Sean. "Shutter Release problem - Pleas Chime in": http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5425

I read that thread. For now I'm uncertain where the problem lies. Perhaps it ís due to my third party batteries. Maybe I just need to position my finger properly on the shutter button. I'll have to try things out and come to some sort of personal shutter pressing protocol. :)

Jim Watts
06-20-2005, 07:24
...Maybe I just need to position my finger properly on the shutter button. I'll have to try things out and come to some sort of personal shutter pressing protocol. :)
RML,
Given your experience of rangefinder included Bessa's I have noted here in the past it seems unlikely that your not pressing the shutter release correctly. I've tried purposely mis-pressing, just catching an edge and its very difficult to get it to mis-fire.

Did you get an Epson battery with the camera? Is the problem there with that as well? Try setting the sleep mode to 20 minutes and see if you are experiencing the problem in that 20 minutes of use.

justins7
06-20-2005, 07:42
I took a look at the RD-1 at Calumet in NYC. I was FLOORED by how nice it was. Much better construction than I imagined.

But why doesn't the price ever come down? It's been available for a while now.

Doug
06-20-2005, 19:59
I took a look at the RD-1 at Calumet in NYC. I was FLOORED by how nice it was. Much better construction than I imagined.

But why doesn't the price ever come down? It's been available for a while now.Probably because there's a limited supply, and the demand is still high.

On the quality issue, from all the complaining we read in the message boards, we might get the idea the Epson's a shoddy piece of junk. Just goes to show what a distorted view we get, that way. :)

SteveRD1
06-20-2005, 21:12
Well, mine arrives in less than 12 hours. Cant wait. I'm sure Ill be posting after I get it!

RML
06-20-2005, 21:29
RML,
Given your experience of rangefinder included Bessa's I have noted here in the past it seems unlikely that your not pressing the shutter release correctly. I've tried purposely mis-pressing, just catching an edge and its very difficult to get it to mis-fire.

Did you get an Epson battery with the camera? Is the problem there with that as well? Try setting the sleep mode to 20 minutes and see if you are experiencing the problem in that 20 minutes of use.

Jim, I'll try all of that!
I'm missing shots because of the shutter not firing when I want it and though it's not a matter of life and death, I still want it sorted. Fortunately, I still have months before I'll be able to go back to Mognolia and shoot more for my ongoing project there. Hopefully things will have worked out by then; either I get the shutter to fire properly or the camera lands in the street after falling 3 stories. :p

Jim Watts
06-21-2005, 01:22
Jim, I'll try all of that!
Hopefully things will have worked out by then; either I get the shutter to fire properly or the camera lands in the street after falling 3 stories. :p

Which street? So I can be there with my net. I could use another body. :D :D

SteveRD1
06-21-2005, 13:08
It was 3 h ours late since my FedEx guy called in sick, but I have opened it and took 3 test shots to try it out. BIG difference from my E1 DSLR! Have TWO huge dead pixels, even at ISO200. That kind of stinks being that i just spent $3k on the camera! Ill test more tonight as i have to work today!

SteveRD1
06-21-2005, 13:09
Oh, BTW, my serial# is 004**2

sgy1962
06-21-2005, 15:54
What's a dead pixel?

RML
06-21-2005, 21:06
Is it for sure that the bodies are numbered sequentially? Mine says 13xx on the top and from Dr Yao I got the idea it was a specimen that came quite recently from the plant (April, to be clear).

RML
06-30-2005, 00:21
I think I found out why I had shutter firing trouble!

I found some info on the not-well-visited epsonrd1.co.uk website's forums.
One nigelt wrote the following:
I have just found out why sometimes (frustratingly) I had to press
the shutter release twice to get a response.
If the screen is active the first press turns it off and the second press
fires the shutter. So it's best to view the image, then turn off the
screen and then shoot normally- no more missed shots.

This morning I figured I try it out and, lo' and behold!, it worked! It seems that turning off the screen does have an effect on the shutter's ability to fire immediately or not.

KEH
06-30-2005, 00:43
RML,

You should check out the shutter problem thoroughly. My first RD1 had an intermittent failure to release that got worse over time (and was not linked to the active screen issue). Epson replaced my unit after the problem got bad enough for me to send it in.

Cheers,
Kirk

RML
06-30-2005, 01:08
RML,

You should check out the shutter problem thoroughly. My first RD1 had an intermittent failure to release that got worse over time (and was not linked to the active screen issue). Epson replaced my unit after the problem got bad enough for me to send it in.

Cheers,
Kirk


Kirk, my problem was not intermittent at all. For almost every shot I had to press twice, the second time hardly and more forcefully than the first attempt. Of course, I'll still be testing my findings a bit more thorough but I think I've found the cause.

Jim, you're suggestion that it could be the battery didn't work out. I was using the original Epson battery and had the same experience as with the third-party batteries.

Brian Sweeney
06-30-2005, 02:19
"Remy, These problems can always be traced to Human Error". Yeah! The guy who wrote the firmware! The shutter release should do just that: operate the shutter!

Nikon learned that lesson on the D1x and D1h, on which the shutter release took a picture no matter what mode the camera was set to (except turned off). So in playback mode, or computer mode, the release still takes a picture. That was to correct a complaint on the original D1. Also on the D1, if you use single-frame mode with the monitor in review-mode, it takes forever for the camera to take a second shot. The camera does the processing to display the image, displays it, then stores to flash. It does not use the -big- buffer to take the shot when you press the release. Using "C"ontinuous mode gets you 4.5FPS, usually resulting in an unwanted second shot or too jerky movement on the release. I used the "Custom Menu Settings" to set the "C" mode to its slowest setting. That way I have 1 second to let up on the release, or press it multiple times as I want.

I suspect that the "programmer guy" for the RD-1 thought "Shutter pressed: if in review mode, stop processing current image and shutdown the monitor ELSE take picture. That way operator can use same button to terminate review mode with one press and take shot with second." I suspect firmware could be re-written to stop display processing of current image and and take the shot with one press of the shutter. Why not contact Epson and ask if the firmware can be modded?