New to submini

Discussion in 'Minox' started by steve g, Mar 26, 2005.

  1. I am rather new to submini, but unfortunately..not Minox. I picked up
    a Minolta 16 II at a camera show, after lusting after a Minox. My
    wallet made the decision for me, haha. So far I have been rather
    underwhelmed with my results. I have tried scanning the film on my
    Epson 3170 and find that I am not getting results I think are even
    web-postable quality. However, I have not had the chance go try wet
    darkroom printing any negs yet, so my scanner could be the weak link
    here.<br><br>Any particular film recomendations? I was shooting some
    FP4+ I got free with some cassettes, and have picked up rolls of HP5+
    and Bluefire to use.<br><br>
    Are there any Minolta 16 II users here that can share comments/advice.
    Image quality comparisons to Minox are also of interest to me.
  2. I'm a user of both (Minox and Minolta 16 (MG, not II)).

    The Minolta 16 is a nice camera with - in my opinion - one downside: the lens. The Rokkor is a fine lens but why did they use it as fix focus? It's focused at about 2.5m so best results are recived if the main subject of your shoot is about there (or within the DOF).

    If you need a manual incl. DOF-Table: <>

    The Minox has a focusing lens which is sharper, but only half the negative size.

    So it's a battle between the limited lens resulution of the Minolta vs. the small negative of the Minox. When a real fine-grained film is used the Minox is the winner. The focusing Complan lens on the Minox B is just superior to the fix-focus Rokkor.

    Postcard-size prints are no problem with both.

    First: Wet prints are the way to go.

    Most scanners have trouble with real b/w pictures, and the resolution of your Epson is way to low for the small frame. I sometimes scan my Minolta and Minox negatives with a film scanner (Minolta Dual Multi) at 2880dpi. It's is OK for the web, but way below the quality of a wet print.

    Second: the frame size of your Minolta is less then 1/4 of the size of a 35mm frame. So to get good results a film with fine grain has to be used - means a low speed film. HP5+ is -IMHO- way to grainy to use in submini. FP4+ is a bit grainy but ok, other films like PlusX, APX100 are ok also. Blufire is a better choice. Bluefire is said to be microfilm stock, like Agfa Copex or Kodak Imagelink which have very fine grain but are a bit difficult to develop. I've used some microfilm in my Minolta and you can get 4x5" prints with almost no visible grain!

  3. For 16mm, I use Wirgin Edixa 16MB, it has a 25mm f2.8 Xenar lens. It is a unit focusing lens, close focus to about 0.4, like Minox COMPLAN lens; however this Xenar also has variable aperture, from f2.8 to f16.
    See samples of my Edixa 16MB pictures:
    Edixa 16 gallery
    I use Agfa Copex Rapid Pan 16mm film.
    There is a small Edixa 16 fan group:
    Edixa 16
  4. Thats a neat little camera. As a note for those that are interested, my friend who picked up a Minolta 16 QT tried the Bluefire before I had the chance. Shot it ~ISO 80 and deved it in Diafine. The prints he made @ 8x10 full frame blew my mind. I would not have guessed it was 16mm film. Sure, some grain like maybe 400 speed 35mm film, but still...I was amazed. Even the FP4+ he did in Rodinal looked pretty decent printed 8x10.
  5. Stephen,

    Hi. Do you happen to know how long your friend developed that Bluefire in Diafine? How many minutes in each of the 2 baths?

    I am interested in Bluefire film but have not bought any yet. (Ditto for Diafine, for 35mm work as well.)

    How about the FP4+ time in Rodinal? Which dilution?

    Thanks, Micah in NC
  6. I believe he used Diafine 4 minutes per bath, as he had some problems in the past with certain films @ 3 minutes each.<br><br>FP4+ @ISO125 in rodinal, 1+25 dilution, 9 minutes.
  7. Stephen,

    Thanks! I appreciate it!

    --Micah in NC
  8. William White in his excellent work "Subminiature Photography" rated the Minolta 16 II lens in the top ten of all subminiature cameras.

    (order of manufacturing)
    Minox B
    Minolta 16 II
    Rollei 16
    Minox 110
    Minolta zoom slr mk II
    pentax auto 110 super 24mm f2.8

    in 35m format the Tessina and robot SC and for telephoto the camBinox and not forgetting that the Narciss can take many lens including the 1000mm MTO catadioptric the longest focal length lens that can be fitted to a subminiature without special tooling.

    I would have expected the Minox A to be listed side by side with the B and the Minox lens in BL//C/LX cameras separately from the complan lens.

    I have hundreds of results with the fixed lens Minolta 16Ps, a slightly later introduced camera than the 16II but both sold on into 1972 when the MG-s replaced teh MG and the QT was launched. I can't fault the results from the fixed lens MG-s and have numberous side by side comparison with the Minolta 16 QT which has a zone focusing lens.

    The larger negative of the Rollei 16s, MG-s and QT made me stop using the 16Ps and MG. I have used 25cm, 40cm and 80cm close up lens with the MGs and QT but the convience of the Minox C made for easier carrying when you wanted to get down to 20cm to fill the frame.

    For many years I carried a MG-s (slide), QT (color negative), BL (color negative) and C (slide). Just as easy as carrying a spare film.

    I once had the chance to take a low flying flight over the town and country. A nice 35mm zoom camera would have been best, but I didn't own one then. I took photographs with the Minox C (two - one black and white and one color) and with the two Minoltas and Rollei. The Rollei film was old (very old) but the three 12x17 format cameras clearly have the sharpest image and least grain. There is not enough negative size in the Minox and the Minopan 100 and Minocolor 100 film I was using to make up for larger format used in the 16mm cameras. Now I would use a teleconverted Pentax Auto 100 Super or the Minolta S100 with a 80-240mm lens (same body size as the Minolta zoom SLR Mk II) as there is not much space in a two seater light aircraft and no time to be fiddling with changing lens and working out if you can get the right exposure. The 20-40mm zoom on the Pentax is a nice choice and very rapid in use.

  9. Edixa 16M with Copex film

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