Using the Ricoh FF-3AF 35mm point & shoot
Old 05-22-2009   #1
chubasco
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Using the Ricoh FF-3AF 35mm point & shoot

I got two of these cameras for very cheap off the 'bay and am very happy
with the sharpness of the lens, a 3.2/35mm Rikenon:

These $10 cameras are great for the glove box in your car, and take 2
alkaline AA batteries.

Bill
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Old 05-23-2009   #2
Justin Smith
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Many of those old P&S cameras don't look like much, but perform great

I love the color from Ferrania 100 and 400, even though it can get a little freaky and grainy at times. I feel many of the shots I've taken on it have a "cinematic" look to them. My local Krogers do not not carry it anymore
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Old 05-23-2009   #3
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Thanks, Justin!
Yes, I had this film sent to me from the PNW, Krogers here in Huntsville
don't stock it, and it is now being discontinued by Krogers everywhere.
It goes by the name Solaris, and is offered on ebay, guess that is one avenue.

Thanks for you comments!

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Old 05-23-2009   #4
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Your photos are really superb in all respects, I love the color! Ricoh's and other cameras from that time are outstanding. Thanks for sharing these.
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Old 05-23-2009   #5
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Thanks for your comments, Leica M2 Fan! These little Ricohs have been
quite a surprise.

Bill
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Old 05-23-2009   #6
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I agree, very appealing shots, wish I could see frozen music around me.

My FF-70 (aka 90) has some intermittent problem though I prefer it over FF-700 (aka 90 Super) which I'm trying to sell. So probably I have to try out FF-3?

btw what is difference between FF-3 and FF-3 Super, anyone? They look same dimensions so probably difference is not AA's vs CR-P2, as with 90/90 Super.
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Old 05-23-2009   #7
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Btgc, thanks for your comments. Both of my FF-3s are the Super model that take two
AA alkaline batteries, and both work equally well with no issues. The 2nd one I bought
came with original owners manual. I like that you can manually select ISO on this cam
and easily has as sharp a lens as the FF-90s, just not quite as fast.

Sorry, can't tell you what the difference is from the FF-3 to FF-3 AF Super.

Bill
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Old 05-23-2009   #8
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Bill,

Your pictures are really outstanding for the sharpness and color. I have also found that these Ricoh cameras are very nice. I recently got an AF-5 with the wideangle and telephoto lenses. I did a test roll and was very pleased as you can understand. Keep the great images coming.
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Old 05-24-2009   #9
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Thanks, Wayne, I looked at your pics on flickr and the lens looks sharp indeed. Love these Ricohs!

Bill
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Old 07-08-2009   #10
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Sorry to dig up this old thread, but I was rummaging through some of my aunts old stuff in the back of a closet on rumor there might be an old camera back there. I found one of these Ricoh FF-3 AF Super's back there along with some nikon binoculars and one of those god awful Olympus all in one SLR types. No surprise to find the fellows on rff talking about this little cam. The one here is in good shape, pretty clean all around, but my goodness it is loud!

The auto focus seems to be some sort of zone type with icons for single person, double person, and mountain but needs a lot of light to accurately guess what you are looking at.

Needless to say though my aunt just lost her camera.
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Old 07-08-2009   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avotius View Post

Needless to say though my aunt just lost her camera.
Post some shots when you get a chance, would like to hear your impression
of the camera.
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Old 07-17-2009   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avotius View Post
The auto focus seems to be some sort of zone type with icons for single person, double person, and mountain but needs a lot of light to accurately guess what you are looking at.
I haven't found answer if AF really focuses only at three ranges or there are many AF steps and VF symbols just give clue about approx. range.

My 70/700 sometimes give doubtful indications of distance (mountains in room) though on pictures focus seems to be good.

P.S. I still haven't figured how FF-3 Super differs from plain FF-3. With SLR's Ricoh used Super to indicate additional features over base model (KR-10/KR-10 Super).
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Old 07-17-2009   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btgc View Post
I haven't found answer if AF really focuses only at three ranges or there are many AF steps and VF symbols just give clue about approx. range.

My 70/700 sometimes give doubtful indications of distance (mountains in room) though on pictures focus seems to be good.

P.S. I still haven't figured how FF-3 Super differs from plain FF-3. With SLR's Ricoh used Super to indicate additional features over base model (KR-10/KR-10 Super).
Here is the information from the user manual. It appears to be the same for both the 70 and 700

Shooting Distance:
For subject that are less than 0.8m (2.6 ft.) away from the camera, it is not possible to obtain sharp focus.

1. When the Shutter Release Button is depressed slightly, the symbol will appear for subject 0.8m -- 1.8m (2.6 - 6 ft.) away. If you are closer than 0.8m (2.6 ft.) away from your subject, the mark will blink on and off. If you are much closer than 0.8m (2.6 ft.), the l; symbol or the `44 symbol will appear.

2. The symbol will appear for subjects 1.3m -- 4.5m (4.3 - 14.8 ft.) away.

3. The symbol will appear for subjects 2.3m-- (7.4 ft. - 50 ).

As you can see, there is slight degree of overlap in the distances covered by the three marks. This will not cause any focus problems. Your camera has 10 focusing zones that assure maximum sharpness at any focusing distance.

Note: Due to the above mentioned overlap, you may occasionally notice that the marks may move from one figure to another even though the subject distance did not change. This does not mean that your camera has focused improperly.

It just mean that an "in-between" zone has been selected
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Old 07-19-2009   #14
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Thanks camera.bear! 10 zones are enough for most of shots. Ricoh as tech-headed company could just make focus light in VF - keep symbols and place under them 10 diodes, one of which would indicate distance (including intermittent ones between symbols). In that way we could have better idea about distance!

I know, they would need to exploit LCD like in their SLR cameras (at least, Program models), though this days we still could afford them. In case someone would buy them for ~usd350-400 in past.
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Old 10-20-2009   #15
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Just got mine for 0,99 GPB
Nice shots, Bill.

Regards.

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Old 10-20-2009   #16
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Congrats, Jes, looking forward to hearing how you like it!
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Old 10-21-2009   #17
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I have shot a bunch of HP5 in my FF3 super and I love the camera, lots of fun to use. Unfortunately I don't got anything scanned up right now but the 35mm lens is nice for street work even though I don't really care for 35mm lenses.
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Old 04-15-2011   #18
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Bump...

Just got me one of these... A Ricoh FF 3. Verrrrrrrrry nice point-n-shooter... Haven't developed first roll yet, but the above pics are obviously very sharp. Here's what's nice about this one:

1. Undervalued relative to classic rangefinders. Most seem to go for less than $10.
2. You have to set the ISO manually, no DX on this one. And ISO setting goes from 25 to 1000 - a terrific range.
3, You control the flash. A "shake" indicator light in the VF flashes when the camera thinks you should use a flash (below 1/30th probably...) so the flash is off by default.
4. Scale/Distance indicators are in the VF.
5. No beeps, whistles, car alarms go off if shooting in dim light or you're too close to the subject like a lot of other point and shoots. - Just indicator lights in the VF.
6. Solid build quality for a PnS...
7. Handles nicely...
8. Takes two AA batteries - good for about 100 rolls (allegedly).
9. Above average and sharp pics (judging from those I've seen on the web) from its 5 element tessar variation lens.

Dislikes
1. Damned motor is way loud.
2. Unlike the Yashica T3 I have, there's no way to defeat the loud motor of the film advance. (The Yash T3 doesn't advance the film until you release the shutter button, so you can delay the motor sound if shooting discreet candids...)
3. Nice size but too big to be considered pocketable...

Quirks...
This camera has some weird endearing quirks...
1. Although it has a motorized film advance, it is not activated by closing the door after loading the film as with other point and shoots. You have to load the film, close the door, and press the shutter release button once. Then the film advances a few frames and you're ready to shoot. I first thought this camera was DOA until I realized this.
2. In reading the manual, when a roll is done (haven't completed 1st roll yet) it doesn't seem to automatically rewind when the roll is done. Instead an indicator light goes on when the film is done and you have to flick a rewind switch manually under the camera, probably...

(Advantage 9) - so the camera will allow you to rewind film mid-roll. Bet it also leaves some leader film sticking out (like the Ricoh FF 90 does) so you can reload the same roll again. Guessing... but that's probably it. Very smart, Ricoh!

3. Same strange indicator light is used if you didn't load the film right, and it's not spooling correctly...

4. The on/off flash switch is kinda weird. You slide a slider under the flash to your left that leave a little plastic piece sticking a few millimeters outside of the camera body to turn on the flash. Strange. Not sure what purpose a slider is supposed to serve over a regular on/off switch.

5. Weird max ap of 3.2... (I suspect all these lenses are crippled 2.8's... I think this is also true of the Yashica T4 vs T3.... when manufacturers found consumers mostly used the flash and didn't care about 1.8 vs 2.8 vs 3.5 anymore...)

Overall, a well-thought-out point-n-shooter from Ricoh with above average build quality, nice sharp lens, manually set ISO from that goes from 25-1000, and manual flash control with some endearing quirks but none of the annoyances of other cameras in this genre. And this (guessing) $400+ (in today's dollars) camera is cheap as chips used today (though with point-n-shoots it's very hit/miss and you might need to get a few samples before getting a good one. No repairing these babies for the most part...) This is a "polite" street shooter (as opposed to the Yashica T3 with its sneaky top plate "Super Scope" and method of delaying the film advance motor and accompanying noise...) meaning its motor is too loud with no way to delay to shoot people without their knowing it... so you have to politely ask them if they will let you take their pic...

Last edited by NickTrop : 04-15-2011 at 16:39.
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battery door
Old 02-24-2013   #19
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battery door

I found one yesterday for $2. It works but with the battery door closed properly (and with the correct batteries), the camera fails to work. The battery door has to be slightly ajar. I really do not want to walk around relying on tape to get the correct battery connections.

Any suggestions?
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Old 02-24-2013   #20
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Sounds like an easy fix. Try to visualize the the missed connection - "be the battery".
I wouldn't hesitate with a little bit of tape on a 2 dollar Ricoh though
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Old 01-15-2020   #21
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When I climbed El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite, I hauled this camera up those big walls. I am still surprised at how sharp and well exposed the Kodachrome 64 slides are. ��
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