Return of Diana camera after 35 years

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Unica Home is taking pre-sales orders on the long-out-of-production Diana camera, due later this month. The price is $50.
They are back! The Diana, considered a toy by some and the simplest camera by art school students is making a comeback. Unsophisticated at best, the Diana has been out of production for over 25 years. We have them once again. Explore your inner art school studentî with a new Diana!"

Originally produced by the Great Wall Plastic Factory in Hong Kong in the 1960's the Diana has become a cult classic, known for producing soft and dreamy images due to light leakage. Given away by Reader's Digest as a freebie, the Diana has been out of production for almost 35 years. A light, inexpensive medium (120 film) format camera, the "new" Diana has 4 f-stops and comes with a booklet, camera strap and lens cover. An additional change is that the camera has a removable lens, allowing for pinhole camera action!

Link (Via Bedazzled)

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  1. It’s sort of cool in a cheesy retro-object-fetish way, but for actual photography, I’m not convinced that you couldn’t get the same lo-fi results with a digital camera and Photoshop – let’s face it, you’re probably going to scan the prints and use Photoshop on them anyway.

  2. Digital+Photoshop is great and all, but there is always something a bit different about photos shot with an old film camera such as this. Plus, using the thing is half the fun.

    Anyways, looks like my wife is getting another camera to play with.

  3. Ah the Diana!
    I can still remember my dad bringing me one of these when I was about five years old.
    That was around 1970 and I still make my living in Photography!

  4. But why would I pay $50 for one, when I have two different models of this on my shelf that I bought for $3 a piece? These are still readily available at flea markets, antiques malls, and yard sales.

    I guess there is always the Urban Outfitters crowd that would pay that much.

  5. The very first photos I ever took were with one of these. I was 3-years-old and it was 1975. When I was in high school and entertaining the idea of become a photographer for real, I found the negs and marveled at my tiny eye’s sense of shape, light and texture. Also, everyone seems really tall. It was a grand thing to have, and I’ll definitely put one in the hands of my child.

  6. Does anyone develop 120 film professionally any more? I can envisage paying $50 for the camera and several hundred for a darkroom set up.

  7. Plenty of labs still develop 120 film, and with a little hacking (and some google searches if you need to) they can take 35mm film anyway, and expose over the sprocket holes.

    I have a new Diana and an old one, and even with the extra functions, I still prefer the original Diana.

    Quite rightly, Antikewl mentions that they’re available from the Lomo Society, and we gave them out as the official Lomo World Congress cameras in London this year.

  8. $50 is pretty steep for a what amounts to a crappy 120 camera. I’ll use my $15 Holga over it any day.

    There’s something really funny to me about the way it brags of having 4 f-stops. I have to wonder if it’s the same as the Holge “having” apertures.

    Oh, and…. it includes a lens cap. Gotta protect that lens, lest it should get scratched and produce a flawed photo.

    @ phasor3000

    I shoot with low-fi film, hi-fi film, and digital cameras. The amount of time/effort I have to put into recreating low-fi film effects from a digital image (which never quite hits the mark anyway) is better spent just shooting it low-fi in the first place. Film and digital are very different beasts.

  9. cool… thankfully i have a PXL-2000, and it sure is fun! nothing shoots like a PXL-2000 and that’s what so great about a DIANA, too. it has it’s own look and feel. sure you can fake it using photoshop but you’ll know, deep inside, that you suck because it’s not the real-deal!

  10. You’ve got to admire the business sense of the Lomo people, even if you don’t admire their methods. I love my Diana – I wouldn’t take out of focus, poorly rendered photos any other way – but like many other commenters I got mine cheap.

    Making a cheap plastic camera that used to be given away free and charging $50 for it? Genius.

  11. I got mine for fifty cents. It’s a “Raleigh”, a knockoff of a Diana, but made from the same molds. Even came with the original box!

    BTW, the dreamy effect doesn’t come from light leaks; it comes from the fact that the “lens” is a blob of plastic. The light leaks are just a side benefit!

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