I’m guessing that no-one, or hardly anyone, has heard of the Texet TX-500. From the mid 1980s? What about the Premier PC-500? It’s the same camera. It also goes under a Wizen brand, plus Fotorama and no doubt some others that I’ve not discovered yet. I do know of Texet, but as stationery providers such as calculators, certainly nothing concerned with photography! Needless to say I was intrigued when I came across this during a search for a cool looking retro red compact. Yes, I bought this camera because it is red. Why not?
I haven’t submitted anything for a while: I’m six months into a medical condition that largely effects my upper limbs, in particular so-called ‘clumsy hands’. This has greatly reduced my ability to write and type, and some cameras are just too heavy and fiddly for me now. I haven’t actually dropped any cameras or lenses yet (plenty of cups and dishes, mind!). Anyway, I have had a rethink about how I go about doing my photography.
When I got back into film a few years ago, the first camera I used was a nice looking vintage affair that I found on a boot sale stall – a Regula RM. I was attracted to its textured leatherette over gleaming chrome, clean lines and a cool badge of a ‘K’ inside a shield topped with a crown. This camera was a ‘King’!
The roll over from the 1970s into the 80s saw Agfa boldly launch two new 35mm camera systems. I say boldly as the implosion of West German camera manufacturing was all but complete, bar the shouting. Either Agfa was in denial or this was a genuine last ditch attempt to save the industry. These were the Optima Sensor Electronic series of viewfinder cameras (Hamish reviewed the 1035 here) and a set of SLRs called Selectronic. It is the latter that I am going to review here, more specifically the Selectronic 2.
Since I posted a while ago now about my exploits with a 35mm pinhole mod, I have been contemplating pinhole photography at medium format. You may have also read a more recent ‘5 frames’ of mine explaining my like for old bellows cameras, including the virtues of the 1950s Agfa Isolettes. So when I came across an Isolette that had been converted to pinhole, I jumped at the chance to acquire it.