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Circuit Breaker

Here’s an expensive Kickstarter for a new 35mm SLR camera

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From £350 body-only

Nostalgia sells, and plenty of companies have sought to use this to their advantage. The latest is a Kickstarter for a pretty expensive manual SLR 35mm film camera from a company called Reflex. The camera has an interchangeable lens mount so you can shoot with lenses produced by other brands. The camera comes with an M42 mount, but other mounts for Nikon F, Olympus OM, Canon FD, and Pentax PK lenses are also available. That’s probably its largest selling point. If you’ve got old glass around but no camera body to use it with, Reflex’s camera might be an option for you.

The camera also has an interchangeable back that means photographers can keep another roll of film preloaded and quickly change over to a new roll if needed. It also features a LED light source and a flash unit with three intensities. Photographers can use the LED light continuously if they want. It has a shutter speed of 1s–1/4000th and supports an ISO of between 25 to 6400.

The Kickstarter has a goal of £100,000, and more than £73,000 has been pledged at the time of publication, with 28 days left to go. Reflex says if funding reaches £150,000 it’ll add Bluetooth connectivity to the camera so that it can connect to smartphones, which seems a bit superfluous for an analog camera. A planned app will enable photographers to capture metadata and make notes about each shot.

The camera doesn’t come cheap. It costs more than many classic manual film cameras you could probably pick up on eBay or your local vintage camera stores. The early-bird price of the camera body-only is £350 (around $458), but it does come with the lens mount. The retail price is £399 (around $522). For a starter kit that includes the camera and a prime lens, the early bird price rises to £439 (around $574). Shipping is expected to begin in August 2018. Reflex seems to be a new company so the usual caution with crowdfunding projects applies.