Just got my first roll of film processed from my new (to me) Canonet QL17 GIII. I've been watching these cameras on eBay for a while now and found this camera for less than $70! It's in fantastic shape and (now that I've seen the results I can confirm) it worked right out of the box. It even had a roll of film in it from the previous owner - which I did not expect. Definitely exposed the whole roll when I opened the camera to see how things looked inside :) Oh well.
I was looking for a camera that was compact, had good, fast glass and that wouldn't break the bank (film photography is expensive enough on it's own). I have wanted to try shooting with a rangefinder camera for quite a while, especially after following the likes of Bellamy Hunt (aka JapanCameraHunter). I did a lot of my research on his site to figure out what camera would be a good fit for me so if you ever see this, thanks Bellamy, for all the in-depth info on the world of film photography. I wound up with a great little rangefinder that sports a fast f/1.7 40mm fixed-lens. Ain't she a beaut?
I am absolutely blown away by the quality of the images. I just threw in some dusty ol' drug store film - Kodak 400 - and took a walk through Lunenburg on a frigid day in March. The one thing I was worried about was the battery. These Canonets originally took these sketchy mercury batteries back in the 70's and this one came to me with an Alkaline battery which some folks claim can throw off the in-camera light meter which, in turn, can affect the camera's auto-exposure feature. I can confirm that the camera's light meter was a bit off compared to my own light meter but the prints still came out looking great. Here is a comparison to show you what I'm talking about. You can see the Canonet's auto-exposure gave things a bit more light than my own light meter called for. If this is the worst of my camera's problems then I'm more than happy!
So here are my faves from the first roll through my new Canonet! I'm really pumped to get some more film going with this little fella - gotta try some black and white soon. If you have experience shooting with the Canonet please leave a comment with any Pro-Tips you've learned.