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Which Contax System suits best to your needs

Having traveled all over with my RTS and then the RTSII and now RTSIII's you shouldn't have any problems. The cameras are very rugged. Bring along several dust brushes and keep them in plastic bags. I used to carry a can of air, but post 9/11 that's become problamatic so a large bulb blower is essential. You will need to do regular extenal cleaning with the ususal soft cloths and be very careful when changing lenses. I always carry a few large heavy zip bags to hold stuff especially film. Bring extra AA batteries as they are often expensive and double bag them. likely the cameras will hold up better than the photogarpher. have a great time, take pictures!
 
Phil, thanks for your thoughts. How about the lenses? Do they hold up as well? Did you travel into areas with extreme conditions? Like sub zero? Sand storms? Blizzards? The camera will probably not be used during those conditions, but how did they survive the rapid changes in humidity, temperature and dust? Thanks, David.
 
Let me be more detailed, First, I always keep a UV or 1A filter on just to protect the front elements. My choice is B+W or Helopan due to optical qualities and my being a snob. It's impossible to keep all the smutz off the lenses so I carry two small trim (chip) paint brushes to clean off the "stuff". One 2.5cm with the bristles cut short and one 5cm. The focusing helical and f stop rings need some protection and a wide rubber band can really be helpful but unless dunked, they are well designed and can be brushed out.
if you feel grit when you focus, stop and use a (chip) brush to clean out the grit before it works itself into the helical. When you change lenses, point the lens down to avoid moisture getting into the mirror box.
In extreme cold, leave the camera outside your clothing to avoid moisture condensing and causing that series of problems. Again a plastic bag open on the botton to allow airflow can do wonders. When traveling in the Negev dust was the problem, not sand, in Asia it was humidity (!) and in Europe rain rain and more rain so I often use an EWA bag to protect the camera if I really had to shoot, but usually just a heavy plastic bag. It may look dumb, but a 3p glad zip-lock bag can save you big bucks in repair. Be sure the bag is really clean inside and don't leave the camera in the hot (direct) sun inside the bag, for that some aluminum foil can be a real help. I also have a silica gel canister in my bag to try keep things dry. I think I got it at Porter's many years ago, be sure it's the type that can be heated to recharge it
If you can keep the majority of "elements" off the cameras you stand a better chance of aclamating them without damage. You have to understand that in extreme conditions the equipment might not work the same so don't force anything! A lot of common sense can save you a ton on money. I hope this helps
 
Hi,

I am currently working for 99% digitally (unfortunately no ND :)), but I notice tha to get fast results, analog is still favourable (contradiction? :)) i shoot a lot of portraits on location or in the studio.
I am looking into an "old" contax system, like the 159MM or 167MT. I found a lot on ebay and one or two at a local store, any hints where to look for regarding defects?

thanks!
 
Hi Marco.
I had a 167MT once but couldn't really get on with the buttons. Also the main circuit board failed leaving the camera dead after about 15 months. This was years ago and the bill would have been £200 if Kyocera hadn't relented and reduced it to £80 as I recall, during my somewhat aggrieved negotations. I was probably just unlucky as I have not heard of any other similar complaints.
Hope that helps,
John
 
Marco, I think if something is wrong with one of these used cameras it would be internal. If I were you I would seek out a used Aria from a reputable store. The Aria is still in production so if something does go wrong at least it would be easier to fix. Plus the Aria is a great great camera. That's my 2 cents.
 
I agree with Vincent. The Aria is a great camera and small and light and handy as well as easy to use and still in production should parts be needed. It also has spot and segment metering.
Cheers,
John
 
hmm, does the aria have a portrait grip possibility?
I shoot a LOT in portrait, and I am very much used to the portrait grip of my current camera.
I can't find anything on the contax webpage, only a databack (without image.)
 
The body has a comfortable built in hand grip and I have the bottom half of an ever ready case I found in an oddments bin and which happened to fit covering the body for protection. It also gives extra grip. I don't find it a problem to hold it in portrait mode.

John
 
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