Minolta 9xi -"Modern" Classic?

Discussion in 'Modern Film Cameras' started by riffeym, Sep 29, 2011.

  1. Hi all!
    Just thought I would share a camera that, even though it's 18 years old, fits the definition of Modern Film Camera. I recently sold my Canon collection, A1, AE1-P, EOS 650, AV-1 and EOS A2e because I wanted to go back to my first love - Minolta.
    The first one that I managed to pick up was the Minolta 9xi. One of Minolta's "professional" cameras, it was quite the head turner when it was introduced in 1993. Metal frame and mirror box construction, carbon fiber re-enforced shutter blades capable of 1/12,000 sec shutter speed, 5 frames per-second burst rate, 4 sensor AF that can track horizontally, vertically and diagonally, weather sealing, transparent LCD technology that overlays information in the viewfinder and a host of other features. Oh, and the styling - you either love it or hate it!
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    These pictures show it wearing a Minolta f1.7 50mm lens with a Minolta Cine metal lens hood. I was lucky enough to pick this one up with the original box and all the paperwork. The camera body was originally bought from Monument Camera & Video in Boise, Idaho in 1993 for, are you ready?, $1400.00. I was lucky enough to pick it up with a Sigma 24-70mm f3.5-5.6 Aspherical Zoom and 5 Minolta Custom Cards for $80.00.
    I just finished shooting a roll of cheap expired color film through it, EasyClix ASA 200 expired in OCT 2010. I found that EasyClix was re-branded Ferrania Solaris made in Italy. The film was home developed and scanned. I hope you don't mind me sharing a few shots -
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    Mike : D
     
  2. Wow! That's a gorgeous camera, and the pictures are very nice, very sharp. I can't look at the pictures of the camera for too long or I'll want one. I'm looking away...looking away...
     
  3. Thanks Andy! Just remember....Resistance is futile...
    Mike : D
     
  4. mva

    mva

    If only it was not for those weird cards... !
    Lovely camera, I did not know it, thanks for writing!
     
  5. Hey Marco! My pleasure!
    I think that Minolta shot themselves in the foot by limiting some of the functions to cards that you had to buy separately. At least the Bracketing function is available with out the cards. The other thing that didn't sit well with some photographers was the fact that the 9xi did not have a built in flash.
    The 9xi had wireless flash control but to utilize the wireless flash function you have to use the 5400xi flash or Minolta's special wireless flash controller.
    It's still a great camera though....! :D
    Mike : D
     
  6. And the 9xi and later 9 hold the record for the fastest shutter in a film camera. The wireless flash system is quite versatile. Also, x-sync is 1/300 second with any xi or i series flash which makes fill flash in daylight more manageable. Great photos, BTW. Thanks for sharing.
     
  7. You know your 9xi's Mike! Thanks for the kudos on the photos and, I was happy to contribute! Seems a little quit in here.
    BTW - I said that the 9xi was introduced in 1993...I should have said 1992.
    Mike : D
     
  8. Michael, that was an amazing find for the money. I am sure you will be able to find all the appropriate Minolta lenses on the cheap too. That camera almost looks like it hasn't had over a couple of rolls of film through it, if that.
    1992, I along with most of the other stupid people were not looking at these cameras we were being bugged by our women to get those "cute" point and shoot cameras because the SLR's were so big..........and I didn't realize you had to have cards for different functions on the camera to work. I assume that threw this camera out of the ballpark for most pro photographers.
    Great pictures too!!! Thanks for sharing.
    Bob E.
     
  9. Hi Bob!
    You definitely hit on one of the sore points on an otherwise great camera. I think that was one of Minolta's big mistakes on the 9xi; it was obvious to everyone that the camera had all of these functions built in but, you had to buy a Creative Card to unlock it! I know some of the pro community did not appreciate what appeared to be Minolta's attempt to have to pay extra to unlock these functions.
    It's still a great camera though....;D
    Mike : D
     
  10. Among the expansion cards the Custom Function Card is very useful. Later these functions were built into the camera. I use this card with my Maxxum 8000i. You can select whether or not the leader is left out when film is rewound (handy if you develop your own film) and the increment that you set the shutter speeds by, just to name a couple of examples.
     
  11. Mike said:
    Among the expansion cards the Custom Function Card is very useful...
    The funny thing is that I got the Custom Function Card along with others when I bought the camera but, guess what? It doesn't work with the 9xi.
    Mike : D
     
  12. I seem to remember that there is a separate custom function card for the xi (and si?) series of cameras.
     
  13. John said:
    I seem to remember that there is a separate custom function card for the xi (and si?) series of cameras.
    Give that man a cigar! Yep, there was a separate Custom Function Card for the xi Series. But the functions available on the xi Custom Function Card ARE built into the 9xi by utilizing the programmable Quick Button.
    Mike : D
     
  14. I stand corrected. Since the 8000i was before the 9xi it makes sense that the 9xi should have more functions built-in which would make the Custom Function card for "i" series redundant. That settled, the 9xi is quite a bargain if you want 1/12,000 sec. top shutter and 1/300 x-sync without paying for the Maxxum 9, which is still quite high.
    When my family owned a camera shop we didn't sell a lot of expansion cards. Our biggest seller was the AE (not sure of name) card which added aperture priority and shutter priority to the Maxxum 5000i (which only had program and manual modes.) Then along came the 5xi with all those features. We never stocked the 9xi or 9 as in our small town there wasn't much demand. I do recall selling a few 7xi's though.
     
  15. I would love to have a 9 but, my financial resources won't allow it at this time (or probably EVER). The 9xi is a very overlooked and under-rated camera I believe and, it suits me just fine! :>
    Mike : D
     
  16. Especially the 9TI, Michael. I saw a LN condition one at KEH for over 2000 USD. KEH has the 9xi, but not at as good a deal as you got. The Sigma 24-70 f3.5-5.6, BTW was a good value even when new as it performed quite well. I owned one, but after many years of heavy use the AF coupling in the lens developed a grinding sound. I replaced it with the Tamron 24-70 f3.3-5.6. Lots of good deals to be had on Maxxum (or Maxxum mount independent) lenses. Be careful of the early Sigma AF lenses, though. The first ones were "reverse engineered" to work with the orginal Maxxum. When the "i" series debuted, the orginal Sigmas wouldn't work with it unless re-chipped at a Sigma service facility.
     
  17. Just bought a 9xi. Finally, they are affordable.
     
  18. Hey Mike, congratulations! I hope it works as good for you as it does for me!
    Mike : D
     
  19. Thanks, Michael. When my family owned a camera shop we deemed the 9xi as just too expensive to stock. Even dealer 3+ net was just too much for me to justify for my own use. I am amazed at the clarity of the viewfinder-- no small feat considering it is sandwiched with a liquid crystal layer. AF is swift and sure even with the slowish Sigma 28-105 f3.8-5.6 (first lens I picked up from my camera cabinet that wasn't attached to a camera.)
     
  20. I do think the viewfinder is quite good myself and I love how the AF keeps up even when your "target" is moving.
    Mike : D
     
  21. I saw this post awhile back and had been looking around for one of Minolta's best kept secrets, the Maxxum 9xi. What I found out in December 2012 is the prices can vary and so can the amount of wear and tear each Maxxum 9xi can have. So I just waited for the right time and the right opportunity and lo and behold it happen for me this week. I found a Minolta Maxxum 9xi in excellent condition for the whopping price of, drum roll, $41.99. I had a lens and a couple of Minolta flashes and have been taking photos ever since. Once I develop the first roll I will process those photos and post them here and on Flickr. I believe some of the Minolta products are The Best Kept Secret around. I will have to see how this 9xi and my 800si perform against the Nikon N90s. The experiment continues.
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  22. She's a beauty Leo! Congratulations! I simply love mine and I recently got a 9000 and a XE-7 to go along with her! I still think MInoltas are great and I can't wait to see your photos.
    Mike : D
     
  23. Bob Shell in an article about ten years ago named his "25 Greatest Cameras of All Time" -- that's 25 including all formats. There are fewer than a dozen 35mm cameras but the Maxxum 9 is one of them. I've never been clear on the differences between the 9xi and the 9. My minoltas are all MC-MD Rokkor manual focus era.
     
  24. Sorry to be a little late on this talk but my dad just found his 3 old minolta bodies with this being one of them really excited to use this!
     
  25. Congratulations Ted, I think you'll find the 9xi to be quite addictive! What other bodies did your dad have?
    Mike :D
     

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