Measuring Shutter Speed Mechanically

By Paul McKay

I recently came across a video - featuring our new vintage camera partners Kamerastore - that has over 2 MILLION views on YouTube!

It's from the channel 'Smarter Every Day', founded by Destin who is on a journey to 'explore the world through science'. He shoots film and inevitably made his way to Finland to see the Kamerastore set-up for himself.

 


 

Why I love it

 

The video is an excellent demonstration of why we were so thrilled to partner with Kamerastore on our range of vintage film cameras 😅 Destin is blown away by the demonstration from Ari - a member of the Leica repair team - showing how to mechanically check shutter speeds.

The background being that when camera manufacturers (like Leica) were first making cameras that shoot at speeds approaching 1/1000 seconds - how could they check that they were accurate? You can't set a stopwatch that fast, and in the 1920s there was no digital means to check.

But if you spent the equivalent of an annual salary on the latest camera, you wouldn't want to have to buy film and pay for development to test yourself! You would want to trust the results straight away.

I won't ruin the details - but if you're interested in the mechanics of cameras then please enjoy the reveal.

But the video also gives a sneak peek of the Kamerastore operation, and the level of expertise that the team bring to every one of their camera checks. At one point Destin meets an engineer who qualified as a camera repair technician before the owner of Kamerastore was even born!

 


 

The attention to detail

 

Clearly the mechanical means are not always going to be faster or more accurate than digital machines. The team have pulled together a review of exactly how many ways they test shutter speeds: How Accurate is your Film Camera?

And this is just one of the tests they do before shipping any cameras out to us!

So when you buy any of the vintage cameras available from our store, you can be confident that a lot of attention and care has gone into understanding its exact condition.


Leave a comment

Ready to dive in?

Keep Reading

View all
Pentax 17 Camera Review: A Modern Wonder

Pentax 17 Camera Review: A Modern Wonder

The Pentax 17 film camera has arrived! I've been lucky enough to be involved in the testing of the camera, and can now share my experience. How does the camera feel in my hand, what do its different settings mean, how does it perform in different lighting situations, and what are the results with different films? I’ve put thorough multiple rolls and taken literally hundreds of sample photos with the Pentax 17 so we have lots of images to learn from. Let’s get started!
Summer of Phoenix - A Holiday in Greece

Summer of Phoenix: A Holiday in Greece

I spent last week on the Greek coast - the southern tip of the Peloponnese to be exact - and took the opportunity to shoot some Harman Phoenix 35mm film! While it was brilliant fun to test it through the dark winter days when it first launched in December 2023, I've been waiting to see it shine in the sun.
Vintage stereoscopic cameras, Sputnik and Stereo Graphic, displayed with an antique stereoscope in the foreground.

A Glimpse into Stereoscopy: Two Views, One Camera

Stereoscopy, stereoview, stereoscope, lenticular, anaglyph, beam splitter, parallel view, sequential view... it's time to explore the world of stereoscopic photography!  In celebration of International Stereoscopy Day on the 21st of June, we asked our resident stereoscopy enthusiast and ambassador, Tom Warland, to share his insights and journey with this creative form of photography.