Redux: the style transition from FD to EOS -- A LA RECHERCHE DU TEMPS PERDU

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by JDMvW, May 22, 2022.

  1. Just digging out some old memories.

    Here is a pictorial history of the (stylistic) development from Canon FD to EOS-mount cameras

    First, the old standard - cameras in the wake of the "original style" Pentacon era - The FD-mount

    The Canon AE1-P

    Canon challenges Nikon

    The flagship of the Canon A line - making everything a little more automatic
    The Canon A-1
    Still very much in the Pentacon mode, but getting more and more functions -

    And still more - the first of the Canon T-series
    Canon T-50
    Practically all you need to do is push the button.
    Beginning to show the same kind of styling as the Triumph TR-3 sports car

    Focus confirmation appears
    Canon AL-1
    Canon AL-1 140820 3.JPG
    It did work, even pretty well.
    But the T-series makes the first Canon autofocus camera. Combination of AL-1 focus and T style
    Note that the lens bulges are the in-lens focus motor

    But a German named Colani pummels the form - a prototype style exercise

    Colani Canon 645 prototype.jpg

    Which results in the ultimate (stylistically speaking) gem of the FD-mount line
    Ta-Da- the T90 - basically an EOS camera without AF

    Take the works of the T90, add a more compact in-lens focus motor, revert temporatily to a more "TR-3" style, and you have the first EOS camera, the EOS 650
    a whole new mount, with many FD-mount users switching to Nikon F.

    From now, it seems like it may have been a smart move.;)
    Last edited: May 22, 2022
    dave_mockford, NHSN, ajkocu and 3 others like this.
  2. corrigendum

    The TR-3 Triumph car did start the transition to more "slab"-like styling, but what was stylistically most representative for the T-series and the early EOS cameras was the slab + wedge shape of the TR-7.

    The Coloni style brought the rounded "jello-mold" look, like that of the T90.
    Last edited: May 22, 2022
  3. SCL


    I loved that T90. A couple of years ago I sold mine, and just got another one last week. Unfortunately I have to get a replacement battery holder as the catch is broken, but the rest works when I hold the batteries in, and no EEEE.. Tanks for sharing the "rememberance of things past".
  4. One of these days I'm going to make another stab at fixing the EEE error on my T90.

    I also love that camera.

    Old report on it
    Canon T90 - Twilight, harbinger, and herald

    By the way, these are all in my "collection" except, of course, for the Colani prototype.
    Last edited: May 23, 2022
  5. Did you see this? LINK

    Depth of Field Preview button stuck?
  6. Thanks, Mark. I will (again) try everything.o_O
    Mark Keefer likes this.
  7. But it started before the AE-1, of course. My first Canon was an FTb in black. This one isn't mine; I found the image online. Mine was gray market, and in those days, the C and final n were drilled off gray market imports. This was the budget alternative to the F-1, which I couldn't afford and certainly didn't need.

  8. I could have gone back to the Exakta, or even before, but I had to start somewhere and I felt that the new FD mount and the AE-1P were the real beginnings of Canon's climb to hegemony.

    Here's the start of the "style"
    VEB Zeiss Ikon
    Contax F.jpg
    I still think it has priority for the eye-level prism. That Biotar double-Gauss lens is still excellent today.

    And then the East-West divide led to a new name
    How I wanted one, but I was probably lucky that I got a Heiland Pentax clone of it instead.
    John Farrell likes this.
  9. The F1 and FTb had the FD mount.
  10. That is technically true, but the FD mount on their lenses is the breech-lock mechanism. (see FDn Series - FlynnGraphics). The mount on the FD body itself never changed, but the lenses did.

    The "new FD" (FDn) lenses were introduced with the Canon AE-1 in 1971. It, and subsequent pre-EOS Canon cameras, will mount FD lenses but have the (pseudo) "bayonet" twist-the- lens-to-mount on their FDn LENSES.

    I consider this change as another part of the design changes that mark the start on the way to Canon dominance in the SLR field. The AE-1 camera was very successful.

    There are arguments for the beech-lock ( it was earlier on the VEB KW Praktina), but while one can appreciate it in theory, in practice those of us who have had a breech-lock lens fall off got a little skittish.
  11. My first Canon was a range finder model from the 1970s and that was stolen in the late 90's. Here is an oldie but goodie that was given to me by an old friend a few years ago. I really need to get some film and go on a 1960's/70's photo mission with this beauty. 20220721_103530.jpg
    John Farrell likes this.
  12. Whilst the FD, (breechlock), mount was introduced in 1971 the Canon AE-1 was released in 1976. The Canon AE-1 'ate the lunch' of the Canon EF, produced from 1973 to approx 1977. I have both the EF and AE-1, (in addition not to mention A-1, F1-N and T90). All working well so far.

    When I purchased an AE-1 as Christmas present to self in1978 it was supplied with FD 50mm f1.8, not the later FDn bayonet mount. I think that the FDn mount was available when the A-1 was released in 1978. Maybe the dealer that sold me my AE-1 thought he was getting rid of old stock when he supplied me with a breechlock mount lens. I have a collection of breechlock and bayonet style lenses for my Canons and have no difficulty using any of them.

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