Halloween seemed like a good subject to try some of my first film photos in a long time. The Petri Color 35, a 35mm film camera with a 44mm f2.8 lens and FujiColor Pro 400H film makes a very nice image with soft skin colors against a vibrant background. This digital image was produced at the time the film was developed. Since this image was delivered as a JPG, it did not need much post processing.
These older cameras like the Petri Color 35 really make the photographer think about what he is about to do as he prepares to make a photograph. It does have a light meter, but no rangefinder. So, the photographer must use his best guess of the distance while making the depth of field large enough and the shutter speed fast enough to keep the subject sharp.
Red Barn This old Red Barn has been well maintained or restored. It’s only a few miles from where I live and seemed like a good subject to try my first film photos in a long time. The Petri Color 35, a 35mm film camera with a 44mm f2.8 lens, makes a very nice image. This digital image was produced at the time the film was developed. Actually, prints were optional from the processor, but I took them just to see if there were are differences between the prints and the JPGs. These older cameras like the Petri Color 35 really make the photographer think about what he is about to do as he prepares to make a photograph. It does have a light meter, but no rangefinder. So, the photographer must use his best guess of the distance while making the depth of field large enough and the shutter speed fast enough to keep the subject sharp. Since the images were delivered as JPGs, they did not need much post processing. Besides, too much processing in post could destroy the “film” look to the image.
The Petri Color 35 Camera is a compact mechanical, scale-focused, leaf-shuttered 35mm film, viewfinder camera with a 44mm f2.8 lens. The camera has a built-in coupled CdS meter with a match-needle indicator, visible in the viewfinder. All camera controls are easily accessed with three little dials using the right index finger. The 40mm f/2.8 C.C coated Petri lens focuses and retracts into the body by turning the focus wheel to the right of the viewfinder eyepiece. The shutter speed and aperture control wheels sit on the top right of the camera. It also has a unique, elegant collapsible film rewind crank, near its top left side-located hot shoe. The bright frame viewfinder shows the focus scale (distance estimated manually), parallax indicator and the match needle light meter. The frame counter with clear numbers in black on white is tucked right under the hot shoe. The ASA/ISO is set with the ring on the lens barrel when the lens is extended.
Introduced in 1968; it was a very affordable, high-quality camera that apparently sold very well. Ergonomically, this camera was ahead of its time. Being the smallest Japanese full-frame 35mm camera at time of introduction; it was smaller than Olympus 35RC but a bit bigger than the Rollei 35. This Petri camera is pretty common in the used marketplace today. Buy it for its use-value not the collector-value. List price for a new Petri Color 35 Camera in 1972 was $89.95 (app. $514 USD in 2016 dollars). Today, used price for a camera in very good condition runs around $60.00 USD.
Petri Color 35 Specifications
- Lens: Petri 40mm f2.8 Color Corrected/Coated, Collapsible (Tessar Type) Filter: 5mm
- Focusing Range: approximately 1M (3 feet) to infinity
- Focus Scale: Inside view finder
- Shutter: Leaf-shuttered Cocked when film advanced Double-Exposure prevention
- Speeds: Petri MS Shutter B 15 30 60 125 250
- Lens Opening: Four Bladed Aperture 2.8 4 5.6 8 11 16 22
- Meter: Cross Coupled Match Needle CdS meter ISO 25 – 800 / EV7 – EV17
- Meter turns on by cocking the shutter; needle viewed inside Viewfinder
- Battery: PX675 1.3V Battery (Works with 675 Zinc Air & LR44)
- Flash: Hot Shoe and PC Sync Terminal, X-Sync At All Speeds
- Film: 35mm Body Release: Bottom plate of camera
- Dimensions: 101mm x 64mm x 43mm / 3.8in x 2.5in x 1.7in Weight: 390g / 13.75oz
- Construction: Single stroke lever film advance, drum-type loading, and exposure counter