Silver copy: From Craiglist. Sold to me by the daughter of the original owner, her father, a semi-pro photographer in the Pittsburgh area. A nice clean copy, fully working. Came paired with FDn 50mm f/1.8 lens with a 1984 Olympics lens cap on it. Both much newer than the camera. It is possible this is a later camera, however the camera box, which came from the same seller, indicates the 50mm f/1.8 SC. I recall this one was $20 along with the extra non-Canon lenses, manual, etc.
Black copy: Another Craigslist find. A very usable AE-1 with a fair amount of wear, bought locally from the original owner. Had a third party lens on it, so I swapped things around a bit. Original lens was likely a FD 50mm f/1.8 SC.
What’s So Special?
The first A series Canon Camera. Also one of the first TTL autoexposure cameras available, the AE-1 was an extremely popular camera in its day, and is still used by many today.
I’ve seen this listed as an acceptable camera for college level film photography classes today, while the same class explicitly did not allow the later AE-1 Program. Perhaps it is because the AE-1 does not have a fully automatic mode
- Extremely durable, classic Canon design
- Shutter lock switch, missing on many contemporary Canon designs like the EE Auto
- Some argue this is one of the best manual SLR cameras ever (just Google it…)
- Camera is battery dependent – nothing works without a battery
- No automatic/program mode
- Aperture priorty or manual modes, as with most Canon’s of the 70s
- Does NOT support the screw on “sports grip” which later A series bodies typically allow
- Manufacturer: Canon
- Country of Origin: Japan
- Made in: Japan
- Introduced: 1976-1984
- Camera Type: SLR
- Lens Mount: FD / FDn / FL in stop down mode
- Format: 35mm
- Battery: 6v 28L or 4x LR44
- Dimensions (cm):
- Serial (silver): 1626938
- Serial (black): 2839910
- Eyecup: standard Canon
- Strap: standard Canon
- Motor drive: A series motor drive options
- Suggested Flashes:
- Canon Camera Museum
- Canon AE-1 on Wikipedia
- Canon AE-1 on Camerpadia
- Canon AE-1 article at B&H Photo