New To Film - Need Help On Which Camera To Buy


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Feb 25, 2012
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Hello everyone!

I'm about to start school and am looking for a 35 mm slr film camera and would really appreciate some help. Which camera should I get between the following: Nikon F3, Nikon FM10, Canon AE-1, Pentex K1000, and Promaster 2500 PK?

I would like to keep my budget below $220 and am not sure if streching it for the Nikon FM10 is worth it?

Also, is Ebay a reliable place to purchase a film camera?

Thank you so much!
I see that you own a Canon Rebel XS DSLR ... you could consider one of the 35mm film Canon EOS cameras, as they use EF lenses.

Are you intending on keeping a film SLR and it's lenses for the long term ... or just for school ?

If it just for school I would suggest a Canon EOS camera such as the EOS A2 or Elan for cheap.
Thank you so much! Yes I do own the Canon Rebel XS - would like to upgrade within a year though. I would like to continue on with film as well as digital, past school...
Then you should consider a camera system (Film/Digital) that can share lenses/accessories ... so look at the Canon EOS film line.
If you have any EF-S lenses ... they will cause vignetting on the EOS film cameras.

Now, there are no EOS film camera's made in the old metal body/chassis like the camera's you have mentioned earlier ... the entire EOS line is plastic/metal ... so you will have to live with that.
What do you have with your XS right now?

Normally, I would agree that you should stick with the Canon EOS line since you're already 'invested' in it - but if all you have is a Rebel and the kit lens, I don't know that I would call that an 'investment'. Especially when you consider that you're planning on replacing it within the year.

Your choices will be somewhat limited with a $220 budget, but there are still very good EOS bodies to be had for that price:
...And tons more.

Also, IF all you have for lenses right now is the EF-S kit lens, you will have to buy a new lens too. EF-S is for digital crop sensors only. For full-frame digital or 35mm, you need EF lenses.
I only have one lense as of now - the lense that came with the kit. It's 18-55mm lense.
Btw, I most likely will be replacing the Rebel with another Canon withing the next year.
Btw, I most likely will be replacing the Rebel with another Canon withing the next year.
I thought so.

I just meant that if you really wanted, say, that F3 - don't let a Canon kit lens stop you.

Right now, no matter what 35mm camera you buy, you are also going to have to buy a lens for it. That 18-55 lens will not fit it.

If you stick with Canon, the 50mm 1.8 is the least expensive EF lens you can buy (around $100 new). It would work on the film camera and your digital camera.

So... Switching from Canon wouldn't really be a huge added expense. I'm not trying to talk you out of a Canon camera (I have a few and love them) - just want to make sure you understand that there is no practical reason that you 'must' buy a Canon film camera. You need to either add enough money to the budget to buy a lens (even if you go with Canon), or get a cheaper camera (don't worry - there are tons of those too).
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Thank you very much for both your suggestions.

I am still in school and it's only my third photo class. I will definately invest in a better lense in a few months for the Rebel XS as the kit lense I am not too crazy about.

I found a few deals on Ebay for the Pentex K1000, Nikon F3, and Canon AE-1. I'm drawn to all three of these cameras but do not know which to go for...?
Forgot to mention, the ebay deals come with body and lense!
If you like the Pentax K1000 and Nikon F3 ... I suggest you look at the Canon new F-1, F-1n, or FTb.

I had the Canon new F-1 ... best 35mm film camera I ever owned.
I never liked the viewfinder info of the A/AE series, it was not made for manual exposure shooters.
I looked into the F-1 and F-1n on ebay and it's way above my budget.
It's FTb QL you're talking about right? What makes this camera better than the Pentax K1000 or Nikon F3?
The Canon FTb QL is like the Pentax ... fully manual ... not much extra stuff.

The Nikon F3 and Canon New F-1 battled eachother for the Pro camera crown. I personally think the Canon is the better camera.
Both camera's were designed with very high quality materials, very bright viewfinders, interchangeable screens and viewfinders, many accessories ... etc.
Apparently the Nikon has sunk very low in resale value if you can find it under $200.00 ... both camera's used to retail up to $1000.00

Canon F-1 Camera Body New Model - Read! | eBay
Hi, thank you for all your help. I agree with you, I'm more drawn to Canons and I will eventually look into that camera, but as of now it's above my budget.

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