Konica Hexar RF review
My good friend and passionate camera aficionado Dan K has put together a detailed and very informative review of this great camera. Read on and find out about the Hexar…
I find a lot of beautiful items, here are some of the best
As the camera hunter I get to find some pretty nice bits of kit. A lot of cameras come and go, but some of them really stand out. I never get tired of doing this but sometimes there are real highlights to doing the job. Here is a selection of my personal favourite finds that I have been lucky enough to come across since I have been doing this.
Konica released a few special edition Hexar AF cameras
This is your chance to own some of them (or all of them). I have currently got three very special Hexars available for purchase. These are all exceedingly rare cameras, so you be be the envy of your friends by owning them.
I don’t really need to go into detail about the Hexar AF, I have done that in other posts.
So, without further ado, here are the Hexars.
Konica Minolta Hexar AF 35mm Rangefinder camera Gold anniversary Exc
No 98 of only 300 made, this camera is boxed and with all original paperwork.
This camera has signs of use and marks on the coating of gold, it is by no means a mint camera by my standards. Though it is still a beautiful camera, of that there is no doubt and it would be certain to have the laydeez swarming around you, as if you were a movie star.
The camera is in perfect working condition and the lens is clean. This is still a collectors camera, but not a showpiece collectors camera.
¥130,000 plus shipping
Konica Minolta Hexar AF 35mm Rangefinder camera Rhodium Mint
This is the ultra rare and ultra desirable Rhodium version of the camera. There were hardly any of this version made, and they came with the beautiful off-pink Rhodium coating and custom brown leatherette.
The lens and viewfinder are both clean with no hazing or fungus, there is no visible dusting. There are very very light marks to the body. It does not come with a case or anything, just as is. Regardless of that this is an extremely collectable camera and a must for any serious collectors set. This is a legendary piece of camera history, get it before anyone else.
¥100,000 plus shipping
Konica Minolta Hexar AF 35mm Rangefinder camera Brown leather. V. Rare. Mint
This is a very rare version of the camera, with brown leather covering the body. Officially these were never made, but a few made it out of the factory. Apparently from what I have discovered, this was a sample unit passed to select stores to check for sales viability, but this one made it out of the store! This is about as rare as it gets, you will not find another like this for a long long time.
The lens and viewfinder are both clean with no hazing or fungus, there is no visible dusting. There are light marks to the body, but that is it.
Come and own this piece of photographic history now.
¥75,000 plus shipping
So, there you go. Remember, I have mouths to feed (mine, mainly, my wife doesn’t eat much) which is why I sell cameras. Please don’t ask for silly discounts, unless you actually want me to call you horrible names. If you need more pictures or info about the cameras then please contact me and I shall send you everything you need.
The Konica Hexar AF has many talents, most of them hidden
Now, before people go and get their knickers in a twist, I do sell all of the cameras you see on this site, and that includes these fine Hexar’s, just contact me and you can find out how to have them for your very own.
Right then, now that all of the niceties are out of the way, cast your eyes on some lovely camera porn showing the charms of Miss September, the Konica Hexar AF.
This is the Hexar Af, not the rangefinder, but the autofocus version. This camera was first released in 1993 and was sold throughout the nineties as a point and shoot camera, although I feel that is an unfair classification, as it is more of a rangefinder than a p&s.
This camera runs with a 35mm f2 lens, that is considered by some to be one of the best street point and shott lenses available, though I would beg to differ, that spot should really be reserved for the Ricoh GR1V or the GR21.
Though this camera is no slouch, the 35mm lens is very sharp indeed. Some have said that it was modelled from the Leica Summicron F2, but that is not actually the case. Still, it is a very fine lens, and not the sort of thing you would expect to find in a ‘compact’ camera.
Now for some details, this camera uses an infrared focusing system, which can also be switched to manual. The focus is snappy and fast, and so far through my tests it has shown to be accurate too. The meter is actually on the camera body, as opposed to TTL metering, so be careful not to put your finger over the meter.
The camera body itself is made from cast aluminium, and you can certainly see the influence of cameras like the Leica in the design. The grip is Hexar all of its own though and fits quite nicely in the hand.
Just begging for your sweet caress
But I hear you bleat “what about the silent mode”? Yes yes, I am getting to that, be patient. It is true, this camera does come with a ‘silent’ mode.
Now the Silent mode on this camera is what really sets it apart from the rest of the rabble. Officially the silent mode only came on some of the cameras, as there was talk of copyright infringement, but the mode is on all of the cameras, you just need to find it through the arcane menu system. When operated the Hexar is more than just quiet, it is barely noticeable, you many even think that you have not taken a shot, as the auto focus, shutter and film advance are all covered by the silent mode. If you have ever shot a Leica then you know how quiet cameras can be, but this thing even trumps them.
Resplendent in their finery
The Hexar was officially released in several models, the most common being the black and the silver versions. There was also a ‘classic’ silver version released, to commemorate 120 years of camera manufacture by Konica, this one is as rare as rocking horse poop, as only 2000 were made. If your silver one says ‘classic’ on the top, then keep it and let no-one have it.
There was also a gold Hexar released for the same occasion, though only 500 were made and it is highly unlikely that they were used. Again, this is a case of if you have it, keep it.
One production sample that found its way onto the market was the Rhodium finish, which has a slightly pinkish hue (you can see it in the pictures). This camera was sometimes called the Titanium in some markets, but that label is incorrect as Rhodium and Titanium are completely different metals.
Unofficially there were a couple of models that were ‘released’ (by that I mean they were samples that found their way out of the factory). The brown leather finish black model, that you can see in these pictures was never officially made available for retail, but some pieces were passed to retailers to gauge customer response. Also the Hexar Half Frame found its way out onto the market. There was an official Half Frame RF, but never an AF, or so it is said, but I have seen one here in Japan with my very own eyes.
Now after all of this there is a downpoint to this camera, and it is a rather glaring one if you ask me…It has a maximum shutter speed of 1/250th of a second! Oooer blimey, that is pretty restrictive, but different folks like different strokes, so I am sure it makes plenty of people happy.
So that is it….Oh wait, one more thing. A lot of people think that you can no longer get this camera serviced or repaired. That is not true, not true at all. You can still get it done in Japan by Konica themselves. If you have a Hexar that is buggered, then drop me a line and we can work out how to get it back to you all shiny and working.
There you go, the Hexar, the quietest and possible most un-compact compact camera ever made.