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Overall 8/10 condition, comes with 6 months warranty
The AE-1 and AE-1 Program were both enormous financial successes for Canon, in part because they pioneered cost-cutting measures that competitors had difficulty matching. The AE-1 series of cameras employed plastics and metalized plastics pervasively in its assemblies, whereas its big brother the A-1 was built far more robustly with machined gears. As a result, the AE-1 often suffers from shutter squeal, or worse, catastrophic failure that is not economically repaired. Despite this, because of its relative scarcity and historical popularity, the AE-1 Program retains value on the used market according to KEH and other various dealer pricing data. Auction Price Tracker (apt) has exact price details about the AE-1
-----Reviewed by Anna Gawlak
When it comes to the internal workings and technical specifications of the Canon AE 1, we see a lot of promise. The AE 1 has often been described as having a foot in both fields when it comes to professional and amateur levels, but as I mentioned before, when it comes to beginners this is probably its greatest strength. The camera is fully manual, but also has a semi auto shutter priority or the modern TV mode, where the user can choose a desired shutter speed and the camera adjusts the aperture accordingly to get the perfect shot. This mode makes shooting a breeze and delivers great results. However, depth of field is out of the photographer’s control which can be a pain for some. This is one of the reasons why I feel beginners should first get the feel of the manual mode and the control it offers, so they have a complete idea of all that is possible and then can choose to try automatic modes if preferred.
The camera is also free of many extra bells and whistles and is clean and simple in terms of functionality which makes it easy for beginners to get a hang of. However, it doesn’t lack the basic necessary functions either. Manual exposure settings are also available for those who like more control, and would like to learn on this. However, there is no aperture priority mode. The camera also has manual focus which I feel is also great for learning.
The camera benefits from a range of shutter speeds from 1/1000 to 2 secs; the higher mark is impressive for its time, but the lower one could be better, but is still not bad. It also has a bulb setting for long exposures complete with cable shutter release. Some other capabilities which make it a great choice for beginners are the exposure preview button, depth of field preview, flash sync via hotshoe and cable socket and self-timer.
The viewfinder is a bit too simplistic and can make using the manual mode a bit difficult. There is no display for aperture or shutter speed, but only a simple gauge to aid in setting an adequate exposure. Under or over exposure is indicated by red areas and flashing LED lights, and a single M is used to indicate manual mode. For handling the focus, a split-image rangefinder is used along with a matte focusing screen. The viewfinder uses through the lens, wide-open aperture metering, and so is quite bright when shooting with FD lenses. However, it is difficult to see the entire frame without completely pressing your eye to the viewfinder; some of the screen is hidden because of the angle and perspective when viewed from a distance.