The Konica Hexar-RF

This is my latest toy. I’m still learning how to use it, perhaps 25 rolls into the purchase (in April). I’m always surprised by how differently different camera-lens combinations handle light and shadow and color. This box, with the M-Hexanon 50mm f/2 lens that came with it is totally different from my medium formats in that regard. I’m learning to love it, though. The camera is quick and quiet and small and feels great in my hands, and the lens is capable of great things, once you know its strengths. The bokeh is pure butter.
Try to find the hidden person here, on my Flickr page:
This review of the camera appeared on the Luminous Landscape’s Sunday Morning column, written by Mike Johnson: The Konica Hexar RF. I was a great aficionado and staunch admirer of the original Hexar (I bought several of them), and the Hexar RF is a much better camera than the Hexar was. All discussion of the Hexar RF is tainted by the inevitable comparisons to the camera whose form it mimics, the L-word. But forget that if you can. Pretend for a moment you came upon the Hexar RF afresh. If you love classic 35mm photography, street and reportage photography, personal snapshot photography, or art photography, you just can’t help but be charmed by this beautiful designed and beautifully made box. It’s heavy and solid as a rock, with a lovely, wide, clear viewfinder that’s a joy. It’s quiet, fast, and easy to use, with nary an extraneous control anywhere and a built-in motor (although after years of using Leicas, I confess my thumb kept feeling for the wind lever! Does the name “Pavlov” ring a bell?). The Konica lenses are absolutely top-class, the equal of the Zeiss lenses for the Contax G cameras and the M lenses for the Leicas. Too bad almost all discussion of this camera is caught up in the political and status-oriented battle of Leica vs everything else; taken on its own terms, the Hexar RF is lovely.

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