There are already several articles about the Samsung Fino 70s online, so I am not going to review this camera but talk about my experiences with the one I had kept in a closet for more than 20 years.
Theoretically, this camera does it all, winds the film, reads the ISO, focuses, decides to use the flash or not, selects aperture and speed, goes to the next photo and rewinds when the film runs out. It is frankly boring, but I have nothing against it. I bought it for my wife in the hope that she would take pictures and (selfishly) I would be in them. But it has been unused, so I decided I could take photos with it, just point and shooting, all automatic – I just threw a film and got on with it.
I bought the correct CR123A battery, a roll of Kodak Color Plus 200 and got ready to start the job. I did not expect problems since the Samsung Fino 70s was effectively new, but I was wrong! I installed the roll and when closing the back cover the closing latch broke. It was a new camera! Was! Frustratingly, the film that had loaded into the camera suddenly rewound back our of the camera and disappeared inside the canister before I could stop it. I don’t have a film retriever, so I couldn’t get it back out either.
Desperately, I decided to use a Kodak Gold 200 film that expired in 2004. Learning from the previous experience, I quickly fastened the camera back cover with adhesive tape. During the first photos the tape came unstuck and I thought that several negatives would be fogged, but fortunately it turned out fine.
My experiences handling using the Samsung Fino 70s would be best described as uncomfortable. I am only an amateur but I have been taking photos since the days when the Sunny 16 was the normal was to shoot – without a light meter, or even a rangefinder. I like to control the camera and not have the camera control me. Regardless, I went ahead and took the 36 (sorry 37) photos the roll of film gave me, looking for all kinds of scenarios and scenes to shoot in Barcelona. I did not know what the camera was doing, I could only decide to use the flash or not, or use the timer or not. I was not even sure what I saw in the viewfinder was going to be what I saw on the photo.
The artisan from the Joma store in Barcelona developed the roll for me. Unfortunately, it didn’t cooperate with me in terms of helping me achieve good results. The photos came out dark with excessive grain and lackluster color. This didn’t surprise me due to the age of the film.
I will tell you that the Samsung Fino 70s is capable of taking macro photos, but in the only one I shot it decided to focus on a distant background, it was frustrating. Partly it was my fault because I ignored the parallax correction lines in the viewfinder that asked to modify the point of view when shooting – but I’m still not sure why it didn’t focus on the near subject.
I did also allowed myself to process one of the Samsung Fino 70s photos to find out what could be obtained were I to spend some time processing the image to my taste.
While I was shooting the photos, I found a store that was selling the same camera and I took a picture of the shop window. The shot I took with the Samsung Fino 70s was out of focus – this camera kept on hating me! A few days later I returned with my Sony to take another shot for this article. Curiously the price had risen from 65 to 75 EUR…
If I didn’t know better, I would say that this Samsung Fino 70s was bewitched, or in some other way was trying to work against me. But that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it. In many ways, I am much more satisfied than I would have been had everything turned out perfect. If I wanted perfect, I could have just taken out my Sony. Without difficulty, there can be no sense of merit. Once again, shooting an old plastic camera has given me a lot of enjoyment!
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed my little adventure with the Samsung Fino 70s
You can see my other articles on 35mmc here