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Thread: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Montgomery, Il. USA
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    520

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    Any store that has employees interested in the stuff in the back room will be pretty good. The hard part is finding them. Too many "sales" clerks today couldn't find their ass with both hands.

  2. #12
    Michael Alpert
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    459

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    I stopped by Central Camera last month when I was visiting Chicago. I must say that I felt really saddened when I saw the store. Years ago it was thriving. Now it seems to be holding on by a thread. I don't think that the store has purchased any large format equipment for inventory in a long time. I bought some roll film and left. The people who work in Central Camera seem very nice; but, like it or not, they are witnessing the end of their kind of business.

  3. #13
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Mar 2004
    Location
    Albuquerque, Nuevo Mexico
    Posts
    8,115

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    I always stop in there when I am in Chicago. I can usually find something odd that I need and buy it. Over the years that has been everything from VCs to tripod heads. i hope they hang on. I think, because of their proximity to SAIC and Columbia, that they do allot of student business and students are big on film these days.
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    "Vocation to Solitude -- To deliver oneself up, to hand oneself over, entrust oneself completely to the silence of a wide landscape of woods and hills, or sea, or desert; to sit still while the sun comes up over the land and fills its silences with light." Thomas Merton

    KIRK GITTINGS
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  4. #14

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    Baraboo, Wisconsin
    Posts
    7,742

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    Quote Originally Posted by Trius View Post
    Because they were reliable. Some of the others weren't always.
    So it was their reliability that caused them to advertise their prices when there were 20 other places advertising the same thing in the same issue for much less? My question wasn't why they advertised, it was why they advertised their prices under these circumstances.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

  5. #15
    aleatorist David R Munson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    Shanghai, China
    Posts
    1,293

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    You know, I've walked past it a couple times, but only when closed. Next time I'm down in the loop I'll make a point to stop by.

  6. #16

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    141

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    I bought my very first view camera from Central Camera in the mid-1970s from, then owner, H.R. Flesh, whose father, I believe started the business in 1899. H.R. studied to become a doctor, and upon graduation, had to choose between medicine and the family camera store. Mr. Flesh's advise to me was to buy a low-end view camera (he sold me an Omega F) and to sink my money into good lenses (2 Schnieders). I still have & use both the camera and the lenses (although in the last couple days the bellows are getting their second round of taping up the pinholes). His advice has served me well.

    Rick Tapio

  7. #17

    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    108

    Re: Central Camera - Chicago - great!

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Alpert View Post
    I stopped by Central Camera last month when I was visiting Chicago. I must say that I felt really saddened when I saw the store. Years ago it was thriving. Now it seems to be holding on by a thread. I don't think that the store has purchased any large format equipment for inventory in a long time. I bought some roll film and left. The people who work in Central Camera seem very nice; but, like it or not, they are witnessing the end of their kind of business.
    I work around the corner from Central Camera, so I go by to window shop at least once a week. To me, the low point was about 6 months ago, when they had little in the way of new digital cameras and the same used equipment they had been displaying for quite a while. Since then, they still do not have as much in the way of digital as they had a year ago, but they have a lot more used film equipment on display. Prices are higher than other sources, but at least they have film and chemicals for sale (and recently have gotten some more chemicals in stock). I think the move away from digital is good, as there is no way they can compete with Best Buy, etc., on the PS digitals or with Internet sales on the high-end digital cameras. By serving basic digital needs and establishing themselves as a source for film and related equipment, they might just be able to survive.

    Bob

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