The Contax T2 Revisited

Good day you camera lovers! Today’s special episode was brought to you by YOU the people! πŸ™‚

For while I have tried to move on, to bring new cameras to review for you, it would seem you good camera loving folks want more on the Contax T2. And I’m going to give it to you!

THE CONTAX T2 REVISITED

In my latest video, I address some things that may not have been clear on my first Contax T2 video from 2018. Also on this video, I develop one roll of film, and then we look at the results!

A WORD ON YOUTUBE AND BLOGGING TOGETHER

I kind of put myself in a hole when I dedicated myself to making YouTube videos to accompany my articles. That’s why my blogging has slowed down quite a bit. It’s just a lot of extra work to make these YouTube videos and if you have a decent blog, and you’re in the same predicament, wondering whether or not you should make a YouTube channel, my advice is…DON’T DO IT!!

But hopefully I have enough written articles on enough cameras to keep people reading for some time.

But in this game, just as with almost anything, you’re only as good as your last post it seems so I’m not resting on my laurels πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘πŸ»

THE “INFAMOUS” YOUTUBE VIDEO

Now the funny thing is that while the subscriber count is low, the views on certain videos are decently high. Now “high” is subjective. For a guy with a million subscribers, a thousand views is nothing. So I see it in that perspective. The video below on the Contax T2 has at this moment 8K views and counting, which for a guy with 198 subscribers I’d say is decent. It’s really all about the topic, in this case the T2.

In this video posted nearly a year ago, I had the “balls” or as some may say, the GALL to say things that sounded negative about the almighty Contax T2 point and shoot camera! And some people really don’t like that! πŸ™‚

I’m proud to say that I was among the first to buck the trend of glorifying this already highly praised camera, and maybe over-hyped camera to give people “Five Reasons Why You DON’T Need The Contax T2.”

In this video, I stated that the prices for this camera has gone too high and came to the conclusion that a nearly 30 year old electronic camera with a high potential for failure or reliability problems is too much a gamble at its current inflated prices.

While I received some flack for that, it seems the majority of the folks agree with my reasoning because there’s a much higher percentage of “likes” vs “dislikes” on that video. I’ve always said my audience are the most educated people on YouTube! But I don’t mind if you disagree with me. We live in a democracy and I like it that way! However, I do find it a little funny when people are “disgusted” enough to click that dislike symbol!

I used to be sensitive to “dislikes” but now I realize the more views you get the more dislikes you will get so it’s a necessary evil I guess πŸ™‚

A CONTAX SUPER-FAN

For folks to understand where I was coming from in that video and am coming from today, I think it would be good for the audience to know my Contax past.

I consider myself a Contax “Super-Fan.” After years of using Minolta, then Canon and Nikon, I discovered Contax.

I started with the Contax T original, the tiny manual focus rangefinder around 1996 or 1997 and I’ve worked my way to all of the T series cameras. In addition, I’ve also used the G1 and G2 and a myriad of other Contax cameras and lenses. I speak from 20 plus years of experience with Contax equipment. If you want to talk about Contax SLRs, I love to talk about them too! But one thing at a time, today we are talking about the Contax T2 πŸ™‚

PERSPECTIVE IS EVERYTHING

A lot of the folks who want this camera today, and arguably the ones who helped raise its prices are young people, twenty somethings, millennials. Since I started using the Contax brand in my twenties, I totally understand the feeling of awe and amazement when using a camera like the T2.

But today, and after more than twenty years of using Contax, I still love the brand but am now much more aware of what it is and what its potential shortcomings are. What is it? It’s a rebranded Yashica!! You may know this, but you won’t know where I’m coming from until you feel it.

I humbly say I’m a Contax “O.G.” which is a word the kids like using these days for someone older or an “Original Gangsta!” Basically, what that means is I’m one of the few “original” folks you’ll find on YouTube who actually used the gear in its heyday of the 1990s. There are quite a lot of us actually, happily shooting Contax still, but just not many of us on YouTube.

Now I’m NOT saying, oh be impressed cause I’ve using Contax gear for twenty plus years. What I am saying is, those twenty plus years and the experience count for something and what it counts for is perspective.

I was in my twenties when I started using Contax or shall I say Contax/Yashica. It was an amazing feeling when I got my first Contax, the Contax T. So I know how you youngsters might feel when holding or dreaming of the Contax T2.

I’m repeating myself but today, more than twenty years later, while I still get a kick out of using my T2 or any Contax gear, I see things in a different perspective. I see it as a glorified Yashica camera, which in and of itself is not a bad thing. Yashica was a great camera manufacturer and if they were still making the T2 it would totally be worth the $1000 or whatever they might be asking for it.

But the reality is Yashica of the Contax/Yashica era is out of business of making cameras and the T2 is a nearly thirty year old point and shoot camera with no more support should something go wrong with it. And only one place I know will even attempt to repair them.

Thirty years is risky for any electronic camera, but the main problem is that the T2’s prices have inflated to where it is MUCH costlier than other electronic point and shoots of its era, thus making it much more of a gamble these days.

THE CONTAX T2 REVISITED YOUTUBE VIDEO

So today in this article and on our latest video, we will look at my latest batch of photos from the Contax T2. I took extra care to pay very close attention to making sure I got the best photos I could out of it. For example, paying attention to the focusing, the settings, etc, and even how steady I was holding the camera.

The video may actually profile the images better because as many of you know, I can no longer post full sized photos here on WordPress. Perhaps I should post the set of larger pics on Flickr?

MY LATEST ROLL OF FILM SHOT WITH THE T2

Below are photos from my last roll of film with the Contax T2. All of these photos are from my vacation to Thailand and the Philippines in August. The film was Kentmere 400 developed in Ilford ID-11 which is pretty much the same as Kodak D76. Extra information is included in the captions, where applicable.

imgT2Buddhas019

“Buddha Brain” 2019. Bangkok, Thailand. Contax T2, Kentmere 400 in Ilford ID-11 Developer.

imgT2WatPhraK012

“Wat Phra Kaew” 2019. Bangkok, Thailand. You probably can’t see it at this resolution, but the image is very crisp and speaks well of the T2.

Resolution Test: This was one of the frames damaged during the development process but it is a crop of a wider image and is still able to show the crisp detail captured by the T2’s 38mm Zeiss Sonnar lens. When the lens is on, it’s on!

imgT2WatPh1018.jpg

The giant reclining Buddha at Wat Pho, Bangkok, Thailand. I focused on the Buddha’s face and the T2 did a superb job achieving focus on this shot.

imgT2WatPhraK013

“Sitting Buddha” at Wat Phra Kaew, Bangkok, Thailand. The statues and architecture at Wat Phra Kaew were amazing and the Contax T2 did a great job capturing the intricate details.

imgt2wpkyak016.jpg

“Yaks” are “giants” that guard this structure at Bangkok’s Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn.

imgt2floatman025.jpg

“The Float Man” Bangkok, Thailand. I’m always looking for charactersand this man at one of Bangkok’s famous floating markets had character written all over his face!

imgT2Marindu021

Marinduque Island in the Philippines is a beautiful and still rather undeveloped destination.

imgT2CampNetanya023

This looks like Santorini or somewhere in Greece, but it is in fact a spot in the resort town of Batangas, Philippines.

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The kiddies enjoying the pool in Laguna, Philippines. The Contax T2 is a great companion for life’s special moments.

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The kiddies finally get to chill out at the end of another long Contax T2 debate! πŸ™‚

AND SOME COLOR PHOTOS…

“Jesus On A Hill” 2018. Lucban, Philippines.

“Sweet Sugar” 2018. Contax T2, Kodak Gold 200. The T2 excels as a point and shoot, some people forget that! By the way, in today’s overly sensitive world, people may frown if you call someone by nicknames, etc, but if I know you and I know you well, would it be ok if I called you “Sweet Sugar?” πŸ™‚

“Nice!” 2018. Contax T2, Kodak Gold 200. The Contax T2 is a very nice camera, very nice. But at a price! πŸ™‚

CONCLUSION

What do you think? For me this was one of my most satisfying rolls with the Contax T2 in recent memory, even with some of my errors in film development. There are still lots of photos that I haven’t posted but I can say that the T2 performed nicely on this trip. I don’t know why but when I shoot b&w film, I always feel inspired to get better results.

Did I still have the focus issues that I have mentioned in the past? Yes, yes I did but by and large, the images were in focus. But that’s not to say that my particular T2 doesn’t have focus issues. If you’ll notice, the vast majority of my sharp shots are shots where the subject or subjects are far off in the distance. So infinity focus is not a problem. That, I’ve always known. My problem has always been achieving critical focus when the subjects are closer, ie, anywhere from 5 to 50 feet let’s say. Anyway, that’s a subject I will explore in future postings!

Needless to say, the Contax T2 is an awesome camera that takes great pictures. But it’s pictures aren’t great enough to justify the three-fold increase in price in only two or three years. Thus, my conclusion is the same today as it was last year when I posted my “Five Reasons…” video: The Contax T2 is a great camera with a great lens, but its prices have climbed too high and it is too much of a gamble due to its nearly 30 year old electronics that only one place will repair. I guess my opinion hasn’t changed much!

But if you have $700-1200 to blow on a T2 by all means get it! It’s the Contax T2 baby, gotta have it! πŸ™‚

If you have the T2 or an opinion on it, feel free to leave a comment, I’d love to hear from you!

STILL LOOKING FOR THE CONTAX T2? TRY THESE LINKS!

WANT A DIGITAL T2 EQUIVALENT?

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3 thoughts on “The Contax T2 Revisited

    1. Thanks Jim! Actually I had a longer write up on the YouTube part but edited out because the article was getting too long. Basically I said YouTube is a hard and it feels like I had to work for every last subscriber (which I don’t mind) and it would be a long time before you make any money on YouTube for all the work you put in.

      But don’t be dissuaded by it! Some people can multitask better and maybe you’re that guy! 😎 The editing is really what gets you though. Thanks for your comments!

      Like

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