Minolta Riva Panorama - anyone use it?
Old 11-25-2013   #1
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Minolta Riva Panorama - anyone use it?

This may be old news to some, but I just found out about an intriguing point and shoot from the old days: the Minolta Riva Panorama.


Minolta RIVA Panorama by rogeratac30, on Flickr

Also known as the Freedom Vista or P's, the Riva Panorama is a 35mm automatic film compact with a 24mm f4.5 lens. But it seems to have an internal mask that crops the frame to give a 2.7:1 aspect ratio.


A Transparent Lake by Giuseppe Stenaco, on Flickr

Many of the photos on flickr have a very cinematic quality, due to the pseudo-anamorphic aspect ratio and the nature of film. They are not terribly good, technically, but have quite a charm to them.

http://www.flickr.com/groups/[email protected]/pool/

Does anyone have any experience with this camera?
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Old 11-25-2013   #2
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I've never seen one. I think perhaps it might have been sold in the US as the Minolta Freedom Vista Panorama camera (that's a mouthful). they don't seem to be too common even here. I do have a fixed focus, fixed exposure Vivitar PN2011 thats has a 28mm plastic lens and can switch from full frame to 16X36 panoramic. It was 99 cents at a second hand store but I haven't tried it out.
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Old 11-25-2013   #3
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I've just been trying some 2.7:1 ratio crops, and they come out very well. To get a similar effect, you could use a wide angle lens like a 28-21 and crop to 2.7:1. Many digital cameras have composition grids in thirds; use the middle 'strip' as a 'cinematic cropline'.

Now that I've seen this, I figure I could use my Fuji Natura Black, which has a 24/1.9 lens, as a Riva Panorama. Just crop the frame afterwards and re-add vignetting if desired.

I think the issue with the Riva Panorama would be the loss of resolution. Another alternative that would retain resolution is to use an anamorphic adapter, hahaha! A much more expensive and large proposition, but there would be no loss of resolution and the ability to use any number of existing lenses. But this is getting away from the Riva...
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Old 01-18-2020   #4
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There's a Minolta Riva Panorama picture gallery on Flickr by Hamish Gill. Worth a look, my favourites are the colour pictures at the bottom of the gallery page.
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Old 01-18-2020   #5
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I have a couple of these, obviously you lose negative size because of the black bars, but it's fun.
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Old 02-07-2020   #6
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Oh, thanks for that gallery. Some of the colour images are great. Love that older lower contrast look. It's like the images were taken in the 70s or early 80s.
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