I just happened to be at my parents at the right time yesterday.

Thankfully I was helping my dad with some computer problems as mom pulls out a camera bag and asks “Can we throw this away?”

No, you may not! She had pulled out an old, black camera that looked like a point and shoot, but after careful inspection, I realized she held a pocket-sized rangefinder. The camera was an Olympus XA, an old film shooter from the 70s-80s, and apparently a classic. Realizing my excitement, my dad offers it to me, saying he bought it in Panama, probably sometime in the 80s. I can’t wait to shoot a roll through it to see how pictures come out.

Olympus XA Rangefinder
Olympus XA Rangefinder

With a sharp and contrasty lens, it has features normally found on larger camera, but with a size you can slip in your pocket. I plan to keep this little guy in the car, for those moments where you need something quick to take a shot. Almost fully automatic, with mini focus tab, aperture and ISO settings, I’m amazed they fit it all in.

Not only is it feature loaded, the camera is sleek. A sliding dust cover rounds out a nifty clam shell design, fully metallic. One of those that just feels good to hold in your hands.

_MG_9611
Lens closeup, a venerable 35mm f/2.8 “F-Zuiko” with square aperture

Enough talking! I’ve loaded a roll of Fujichrome 200 and need to burn through some film. Happy shooting to me.

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