The Olympus XA is a wonderful pocket size rangefinder camera. To my knowledge, it’s the smallest rangefinder ever made. Equipped with a fantastic 35mm f2.8 Zuiko lens is a great camera to carry everywhere. Small and light, it can easily fit in your pocket.
It only works in aperture priority mode, so you just set the aperture and the camera does the rest. I would prefer course a manual mode on top of that, but given it’s other benefits, I can live with that. Just choose f5.6 and set the distance to 3 meters,( pretty much everything is on focus with these settings) and you are ready to shoot.
Other features of the camera include a lever for exposure compensation and a great almost touch shutter button which allows you to shoot a very low speeds.
I use it almost exclusive it with ISO 400 black and white film (TRI-X or XP2), this combo makes it an ideal camera for street photography. Being smaller and lighter than a Leica M, i have find myself many times choosing the XA over the Leica M for my everyday walks. The Leica M of course has a superior image quality, but the XA is great for those times when you just want a fast almost point & shoot like camera with the benefits of a rangefinder.
All images below are taken with the Olympus XA camera (the panoramic landscape photo is composed from two stitched images with the XA, so it can also be used as a good landscape camera!)
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