I have owned my Olympus Trip for several decades but have never taken it seriously, until lately.

When I first bought the Trip I tried it out with a 400 ASA film of that period and was not happy with the results, preferring one of my Olympus OM SLRs, or an Exakta VX2a, all used with a slower film.

Slowly, over 35 years, it occurred to me that the Trip might be worth trying again, this time loaded with ILFORD FP4 PLUS, giving it the benefit of a level playing field. Also, some of the EMULSIVE posts about the Trip told me that I could be missing something.

To renew my acquaintance with the Trip I took it for a walk around my local village. It was refreshingly simple to use the camera due to its small size and lightweight. For the walk up Screel Hill the little Olympus fitted so easily into my anorak pocket that I was totally unaware it was there. Even the auto exposure system behaved faultlessly after so many years, despite all I have read regarding selenium exposure systems.

Screel Hill - Fergus Foster
Screel Hill – Fergus Foster

My film was developed in RO9 1:50 for around 14 minutes at 20 degrees Centigrade, then the negatives were scanned with my trusty Epson V550 flatbed scanner.

The resulting photographs were a very pleasant surprise.

My conclusion is that the lens is first class, the exposure system excellent, and the camera so lightweight that it can be taken anywhere including to the top of my local hill. I can now see why David Bailey sometimes used one.

~ Fergus

 

 

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5 COMMENTS

  1. A lovely set of images Fergus – I particularly like the bridge group. I suspect your Trip has spent much of its life in low-light conditions – this seems to prolong the life of the selenium cells. I have a Zeiss folder from I would guess 1930s-40s which has a selenium meter that’s covered by a metal flap and that still produces acceptable results given the latitude inherent in B&W emulsions (and my developing technique!)
    The metal flap has a small rectangular hole in it to give a ‘high light level setting’ but inspite of that small amount of exposure to ambient light, the thing still seems to be OK.
    As and when the Trips’ meter gives up, it’s alway possible to use it on the flash setting in conjunction with an external meter. That setting gives either 1/30th or 1/60th shutter speed depending on which version you’ve got.

    • Thank you for the comment John. My trip did indeed spend the last 20 years in the original soft pouch. I did once know about the flash setting/light meter trick, but had forgotten so am glad to be reminded.
      My cameras of choice in descending order are Olympus OM20, OM10, OM40 all used with a fantastic 35mm f3.5 lens. These are closely followed by my two working Exaktas with a Schacht 35mm f3.5 lens which contrary to all the reviews I find easy and enjoyable to use.
      Like you I have some Zeiss folders, but unless I can get them CLA’d probably will not get much more use.
      Seeing my little article in print is tremendously encouraging, so I am looking forward to many more analogue pictures.

  2. I’ve just bought a trip on eBay and I can see why everybody seems to rave over it. Really impressed with the results I got, shooting HP5 on both one of the snow days and on a fairly bright sunny day a short while later. Definitely going to be one of my regular film cameras

    I just did a post on my blog about it; I’m posting this comment from my wordpress account so if you want to read it you should be able to find it okay

    • Glad you bought a Trip 35 Andy, you won’t regret it. I had a quick look at your blog and the photographs look very good. Do you plan on posting more pictures on your blog?
      I usually use an OM20, but when climbing hills at my age the Trip is a “no brainer”.

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