Canon A-1 - A-series "professional camera"

Discussion in 'Modern Film Cameras' started by jdm_von_weinberg, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. Look at the entire post and you'll find this point has been discussed twice already.
  2. I has a 2fps winder and a 5fps motor drive.
  3. My error but the speed of the motor notwithstanding, it was still not a professional grade system camera nor was it ever intended to be.
  4. Do you read every single post in a 4 page thread? I doubt it.
  5. Nor did anyone here ever say it was or was supposed to be.
    Not always,, but at least I'd look to see if the topic had already been discussed twice.

    I'd also put in a disclaimer if I skipped over things....
  6. I guess you could in many respects compare the Canon A-1 to the Nikon FA. Both were fine cameras targeted at the advanced amateur market and had a wide range of lenses and accessories available to them. Perhaps the greatest difference between the two was the A-1's top shutter speed was only 1/1000 while the FA's was 1/4000 and it was the first in its class to offer (although somewhat simplified compared to today) Matrix metering. Both can still be had on EBAY for very good prices and are good bargains. If I had to choose between one or the other I would most likely go with the FA.
  7. The Canon A-1 was a top model and I still have one. I would say I got more use out of it than the F-1 original. it had great specs and good construction and a decent set of winders. It was surpassed only by the T 90 and I have two of them unused for many years and with groky magnets that I fixed once. But they are gems and can still be restored, but I am way beyond film alas. I have saved a number of the wonderful Canon brochures. So beautifully done. Ahh.True the F- was the professional beat it up choice and I admired it as well..heavy so and so and had no better body capability than the A-1 in its picture taking ability. I carried it all over Asia and it held up very very well. Professional I do not know but very light vs F-1 and the accessories. A proud member of the Canon lineup.
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
  8. I received one of these as gift once but sold it shortly thereafter. While the lenses were nice, I just could not get excited about he look of this camera or any of the Canon lines from that time period. To me, it looked like just about every other camera made around then.
  9. I don't like the A-1 for many reasons but not the look. I think it's one of the better looking 35mm SLR of the period. The controls on the A-1 gave it a unique look.
  10. I still have my A-1 from 1980. It's a fine camera and if I'm shooting autoexposure, then it's one I will take. If I'm shooting manual exposure, I leave it at home. It simply does not have enough information in the viewfinder to use manual exposure.
  11. I bought my first A-1 in 1983. At the time, I believed more automation equaled a better camera. About six months later, realizing the error of my thinking, I did an about face and bought an FTb, then about a year after that, an original F-1. My A-1 sat around, collecting dust. It got used after I discovered the joy of manual mechanical cameras, but only seldom. In the ensuing years, I've owned many A-1s. Mostly I bought them to sell them and make a few dollars in the process. Now, however, I own a single minty A-1, and I own it to sort of complete my collection of "preferred FD Cameras." It actually gets used only seldom. I still prefer manual mechanical cameras. Some things haven't changed since I wised up all those years ago.
  12. Hey, I'm not above resurrecting my old threads, but this time, I am not responsible.

    As far as the old FD line of Canons go, my personal favorite (if it worked, that is) would be the Canon T90.

    It is true that the A-1 is more traditional in appearance, but most cameras reflect their contemporary styles. I think the all-black A-1 is one of the better designs of that particular style.
  13. I agree about the A-1's styling. I've always thought it was a comely creature, and it fit my hand well. It fit even better after I attached a Motor Drive MA to it. Unlike others, I actually liked the sort of non-traditional layout of the roller and switches used to control aperture and/or shutter speed.
  14. Since this has already been repeatedly resurrected, it won't hurt to add this old "Too Hot To Handle" comment on a topic raised more than once in the comments:
    Modern Photography 1982-07
  15. This is congruent with my experience, too. I used it throughout college in journalism in the early '80s, and thereafter until the mid-2000s.

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