Contax NX

This camera was in one of my local second-hand stores for ages. I saw it every time I went in to womble. It was on a shelf with a hefty price tag of about $100 which was quite a bit more than I would like to pay for an unknown camera, and one without a lens. But there it was week after week. Finally, I thought, “If is there the next time I go in I will buy it, I am sure I have a lens that will fit.”

It was in perfect condition and fired up straight away with 2 CR2 batteries. It came with the Japanese instructions and original price tag, which makes me think it is a mint, never used example. Out of interest, I looked up what that price would mean in today’s money and it came to $890 so a bargain for me really. You can find more technical details here. Of course, if you are knowledgeable or read the specs you will know that the lens mount for this camera is a Contax N, which I had none. In fact, there are only 10 lenses and they are all friggin expensive. Even an adapter to fix it to another camera is expensive. In fact, the lens would cost me three times that of the camera. I was tempted to just sell it straight away and not even bother. I don’t know why I changed my mind, but I did and waited for payday. I then search online for the cheapest I could find and bought that.

It was fairly cheap at $250 and in perfect condition. So all in all a pretty expensive camera for me, seeing as I sometimes pay $1. It better bloody work!

First I tried a fuji film and went for a walk around Koto-Ku in Japan. Here are a few of the photos.

Look at the mushrooms on the tree, it is so sharp. This camera is awesome. It is a little heavy to carry, but it is worth it. The dial on the top allows you to manually set the ISO, so you can push a film. There are two “o” settings where you can have custom settings and quickly change between the two. Plus all the regular settings. There is a thumb dial so you can change the speed or aperture without moving your eye from the viewfinder. Of course, it is the lens that makes this camera, it was well worth the money…as I got it cheap. But it did persuade me to get a better lens for the Leica I have and that worked out great too.

I then decided to put in a slide film, the first time since I went back to film, a Fuji Velvia 50.

The odd shot out is the Pikachu as I wanted to test the inbuilt flash. I found the film a little cold so I added a bit of warmth. I am not sure I will try it again. But the camera is still awesome. Contax is now my new favourite line.

With this autofocus camera and the Leica with the Canon lens, my feelings towards going wombling have changed. I don’t feel like I need another camera. My friends and family think this is a phase..but I am not sure. I have a few more cameras to try and add to this blog, but really I want to use these two cameras all the time. Plus I am reaching the limit of the free allowance for WordPress.

Keep or sell: moot.

Update Oct ‘18 – I sold the camera. I found I liked the older cameras more and the lens on this one didn’t fit any other camera I owned. So given I am out of work a while, it had to go. I don’t regret it, I think I have less GAS now.

10 thoughts on “Contax NX

  1. Tobybrownson says:

    What a gem, if you’re feeling the way to do them maybe time to hit eBay sell some stuff to fund more lenses for the cameras you like. You can always start a new blog(please do, I like your writing style as much as your photos) about you fave cameras and your adventures.


    1. windswept007 says:

      Thanks, I definitely will as I like writing them. I like having the collection of cameras. Selling them from Japan is annoying. I will wait until I am back in the uk…maybe start a shop with darkroom, ha.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Jim Grey says:

    I can see why you call this one a keeper!

    I predict that the fun of trying new-to-you old cameras will keep calling you back to the thrift shops and used-camera stores.


  3. Marcus says:

    I had the Contax N1 for a while, the NX’s older brother. I really loved it, but the 24-85mm lens was a bit slow and finding anything else is nearly impossible in Korea. That said, it produced beautiful slides. The spot meter died after a little while and I couldn’t get it fixed. I gave the camera and lens to a friend who said he never uses spot metering.


      1. Marcus says:

        Yes, I am, actually. I also had the Contax 645, another beautiful camera. It’s a shame that digital killed Contax just as it was releasing excellent cameras. (I don’t know what really killed Contax, but it died just as digital became popular).

        Liked by 1 person

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