Ovation Applause AE-32 guitar refurbisment

A long time ago, probably sometime in the 1980s, I bought an Ovation Applause AE-32 steel strung, acoustic guitar. I remember buying this because I wanted to own an Ovation, which were very much the ‘in’ guitar at the time, and couldn’t afford or justify buying one, but I could afford the Applause version. I can’t remember now what I paid for it, but I don’t think I bought it new and I have a vague recollection I may have […]

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Pluggable USB microscope review

This is a look at a novel little device I bought a few days ago – a USB microscope made by pluggable. I bought this device for about £35 from amazon, and the main driver for purchasing it was to see if it would provide a good image to use in my continuing 8mm telecine project. That is something I will investigate in the next few days and weeks, but in the mean time I’ve been trying out the device […]

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Misty photos

A couple of times over the last few days the weather has been misty when I’ve been out to take Freddy for his morning walk. As I’ve progressed on the walk, the Sun has broken through and created some wonderful misty views across the field. Both times, I’ve regretted that I didn’t have a proper camera with me, but I managed to take the misty photos below using my smart phone. Although I’m glad I was able to capture the […]

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Olympus 35 ECR rangefinder camera

The Olympus 35 ECR is a fully automatic, 35mm film camera with a fixed 42mm f/2.8 lens and rangefinder focusing aid which was produced by Olympus in the early 1970s. Camera Images My Olympus 35 ECR I was given my copy of the Olympus 35 ECT by a fellow camera collector, with a note explaining that there were some problems with it. To be honest, that was a couple of years ago now and I can’t remember exactly what is […]

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Kodak Instamatic M2 cine camera

In the late 1960s and early 1970s the Instamatic range of cameras from Kodak were very popular and were responsible for many people trying photography as a hobby and progressing onto more advanced models. As well as still cameras, Kodak also made a similar range in cine cameras, and this post takes a brief look at one of those models, the Instamatic M2 cine camera. Kodak Instamatic M2 cine camera images My Instamatic M2 Cine Camera This cine camera was […]

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Bosch EasyControl room stat and smart rad controllers

This post describes my experience of using the Bosch EasyControl smart room thermostat with smart radiator controllers. Although it will probably be of no interest to anyone who visits my site for it’s photographic content, I hope it will prove useful to people thinking about specifically purchasing the Bosch EasyControl unit or another smart room stat. Bosch EasyControl System The Bosch EasyControl system is a modern replacement for the standard central heating timer and combines the job of room thermostat […]

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Mamiya/Sekor 500 DTL 35mm camera

This is a quick pictorial review of the Mamiya/Sekor 500 DTL 35mm SLR camera which was introduced by Mamiya in the late 1960s. Mamiya/Sekor 500 DTL images My Mamiya/Sekor 500 DTL camera This camera is one of a very select few in my collection in that it was gifted to me. In fact, it was surprise gifted to me by a fellow camera collector John Bear, who also runs a vintage camera site called Camera Portraits. The story is that […]

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Moving from Lightroom to ON1 Photo Raw

A couple of weeks ago I posted how I was trying out Alien Skin Software Exposure X4 as a possible replacement for Lightroom after I’d cancelled my Adobe subscription. Well, in the end I didn’t plumb for Exposure X4, but instead went for the latest release of ON 1 Photo Raw 2019 instead. As I explained in my previous post, I ended up cancelling my subscription to Lightroom quite quickly and so was left without a photo editor. Just as […]

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A quick look at Alien Skin Exposure X4

Earlier in the year I wrote a post about a software photo package called ON1 Raw because I was planning to cancel my subscription to Lightroom. Well, a couple of days ago went ahead with the cancellation, but instead of ON1 Raw I actually started trialling Alien Skin Exposure X4 as my photo editor. Although I had planned to cancel Lightroom in November, in the end I cancelled it on October 30th and in quite a hurry. I was looking […]

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Site Changes coming up to simonhawketts.co.uk

I’m finding it difficult to get the time to post articles to this site at the moment because of other work and personal commitments. As well as a major landscaping project in the garden, we are having a new boiler fitted in a couple of days and then we are re-designing and refitting our 20 year old kitchen. On top of this, I’m also planning how I’m going to move my woodworking / DIY workshop from its current location in […]

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Elmo E-80 8mm silent projector

This post looks at the Elmo E-80 projector which is a standard 8 model made by Elmo, a very reputable manufacturer, in Japan in the early 1950s. Elmo E-80 Images   My Elmo E-80 projector I bought this Elmo E-80 projector from eBay as an addition to my small (but worryingly growing) collection of movie projectors. It was sold as a working unit and it does power up and seems ok, but the two core mains lead supplied with it […]

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Specto 500 8mm silent projector

This post is the first in a short series which looks at the Specto 500, a standard 8 cine projector which was made in the UK in the early 1950s. This part is an introduction to the projector with some pictures. Specto 500 Images My Specto 500 Projector I bought my Specto 500 projector from eBay because I want a vintage projector to show my collection of 8mm films with. Although I have various more modern projectors, mostly Eumig machines, […]

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Chinon C-300 8mm projector

The Chinon C-300 is a budget, 8mm projector, capable of showing both standard 8 and super 8 films which was made in about 1976 and retailed in the UK by the Dixon’s high street store. Chinon C-300 Images My Chinon C-300 8mm Projector I acquired my Chinon C-300 from eBay when I first became interested in collecting 8mm cine films. I bought it because I wanted a projector which could play both Standard 8 and Super 8 films and which […]

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Eumig P8m 8mm silent projector

The Eumig company produced many high quality, reliable cine projectors but probably their most famous model was the classic P8 unit. The model featured in this article, the Eumig P8m, was an upgrade to the original unit, and was probably made in the mid to late 1950s. Eumig P8m Images My Eumig P8m 8mm Silent projector I purchased my copy of the Eumig P8m, 8mm silent projector as an impulse buy from eBay. Although I have a Chinon C-300 projector […]

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James with Freddy the Cockapoo

We recently spent a weekend at the Elvden Centreparcs and I took this picture of James holding our Cockapoo puppy Freddy in the garden of the Starbucks above the sailing lake with my mobile phone. I really like the expressions captured on their faces, although I wish had taken the photo with my XT-1 and a longer lens so I could have de-focused the background a bit. Unfortunately, that wasn’t possible as at the time I took this picture all […]

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