Contax 167MT Camera Review

2100 1181 Drew Chambers

The highlight of my year, every year and without fail, is my trip to the United Kingdom. My primary vocational pursuit is academic research, and each year my field’s premier conference convenes at New College, Oxford in a later week of March. Philosophers of education—a small but hearty subfield of philosophy—converge on the University from all over the world. Together, we present our papers, share full-course dinners in New College’s great hall, and enjoy pints in the basement pub at night. 

Just ahead of one year’s conference, as I was building on a newfound love for analog photography, I purchased the famed Carl Zeiss 50/1.7 Planar for the Contax/Yashica Mount. James wrote about the 1.4 version previously, but it’s said that the 1.7 is sharper and cheaper to boot. At the time, I was working as a public high school English teacher. My salary was modest relative to the cost of living in Boston and my wife was in school full time studying to become a veterinarian. Money was stretched. Up to then, I’d never purchased a single lens costing more than $75 U.S. Having heard the Zeiss mythology, I figured that a 50mm C/Y-mount lens was a surefire way to drink the Zeiss elixir for a good benefit-cost ratio. I think I ended up buying the Planar for around $150. 

I could only buy the lens at the time and, frankly, didn’t even know where to start when it came to C/Y bodies. I planned to adapt the lens to my Fuji mirrorless, which I was still using regularly to save on film costs, get images back immediately, and continue learning how to better control my settings (live view is a tremendous help). 

My early shots with the lens were massively satisfying. The images I produced were sharp, saturated, and featured the renowned 3D pop that people speak of when they speak about Zeiss glass. All was well in mid-January, but next steps still had to be taken. The lens needed a camera.

A Ghost Story of Cameras

The next step was to find a way to use my new Planar with film. So, I ended up buying a gnarly looking Yashica FX-3. This is not a Yashica FX series review, but for reference, the FX series Yashicas use the C/Y mount and are tiny, manual SLRs. Apart from a meter, the FX-3 has virtually no special features. Mine was ratty in looks and I never got batteries for the meter, but it did what I wanted it to, which was allow me to use my Planar on film. Best of all, I purchased it bundled with a Yashica 50mm f/2 lens for just $25 total. 

The Yashica netted me some nice photos, thanks to the lens, but ultimately it did not fit the bill for an altogether great camera. With Oxford on the horizon—a prime chance to memorialize my time meandering down cobblestone streets between English Gothic buildings with my close friends—I felt the urge to buy a genuine Contax camera. 

I began my trek into the annals of Contax camera history to find which one would fit the bill. I was looking for a camera that was affordable but powerful. The previous fall, I had purchased a Nikon F2, but it turned out to be far from my ideal. I was learning (and I’m now trying to embrace the fact) that I prefer having some modern features in my analog photography. The F2 is a beautiful beast. I know its heritage and acclaim. But for me, the Nikon and its DP-12 prism are too heavy and too manual to be totally enjoyable. 

In this moment, I realize that my review of the Contax 167MT is turning into a tale of cameras past, and might fittingly be called A Camera Carol. In Prose. Being a Ghost Story of Cameras. But these cameras were all for the benefit of my edification and now their ghosts are for yours. Through the misty vestiges of the F2 and the FX-3, there came into view the camera I needed: the Contax 167MT. 

Getting the Camera in Hand 

The 167MT and its incomprehensibly sub-100-dollar-pricetag called to me from eBay. I thought it’d be the best match for my waiting Carl Zeiss lens, and I now know that decision was the right one, because after shooting with the 167MT no other Contax body seems too enticing, despite the hours I’ve spent thinking about buying an RX, or the ST, or the RTSs. (And I know someone will tell me in the comments section that I haven’t really experienced the cream of the Contax crop until I’ve tried one of those, or maybe it will be the AX or the Aria, but trust me – the 167MT is no meager camera). 

Days before I left for England, the 167MT showed up at my doorstep and away we went. 

Looking back on the photos now, I’m instantly transported to those days. Revisiting these photos for this article stirs my longing even more strongly than it otherwise would, on account of the fact that COVID-19 has forced organizers to call off this year’s conference. Even now, at my desk, I imagine I’m there in the crisp March air with my Contax camera swinging around my neck as I try to keep up with my friends on our walks, pausing here and there to take a photo. 

I am there walking through the cloisters of Magdalen College with Mark, Doug, and Yoshi, us in our blazers with tobacco pipes gently smoldering. The best argument in favor of the 167MT is its ease of use relative to its capability. On our walks, I could quickly move between spot and center-weighted metering, and just as quickly flick between aperture-priority (Av), shutter-priority (Tv), and manual (M) exposure modes. There’s also three different full program modes – normal, low shutter speed, and high shutter speed. I also prefer an electronic film advance so I can shoot quickly, and the 167MT has that, too. 

Exposure Milestones 

The Contax 167MT is wicked fast, with a maximum shutter speed of 1/4000th of a second. This means that shooting at wide apertures is possible even in bright light. Worth noting is that the 167MT was one of the first cameras ever to implement auto-exposure bracketing control, or ABC. ABC essentially takes one frame overexposed by 0.5, 1, or 1.5-stops depending on your settings, followed by a frame correctly exposed, followed by a frame underexposed by the same stop(s). In the single drive mode, you have to depress the shutter three times to cycle through one bracket, but in continuous drive the camera will take the three-shot bracket with one shutter click. For those unfamiliar with auto bracketing, the camera does not take multiple exposures on one frame but rather three different frames with different exposure values (EV) each. This helps ensure you’ll get the shot in tricky lighting. 

Importantly, the ABC feature is switched on with a rotating lever and switched off with the same lever. So, if you switch the lever to 0.5, the camera will continue taking three-shot brackets until you switch the lever back to 0. In most cases, this is probably a minor point, but it could make for unintentionally exposed shots if you forget to stop bracketing. 

The ABC lever is conveniently stacked under the exposure compensation dial which offers exposure compensations of +2 EV to -2 EV in 1/3rd stops. Also quite convenient, the ABC feature works in tandem with the exposure compensation. So theoretically, if you knew you wanted to overexpose a composition but weren’t sure by exactly how much, you could set the compensation dial to +2 and the ABC lever to 1 and as a result you’d get a frame with EV +1, EV +2, and EV +3! Now you know you’ll have your ideal overexposure. 

This is a rather long digression on some exposure features which are now, in the digital age, rather commonplace. But in truth the 167MT’s ABC feature was groundbreaking in its day, and even now it’s not a common line item on the spec sheet of the most popular classic film cameras. As a photographer, I use exposure compensation fairly often and occasionally like the safety that bracketing provides—if I have a shot I know I want perfect, ABC gives me the peace of mind that I’ve got three chances to get it right with some systematicity. To my knowledge, only the RX, ST, Aria, and RTSIII Contax SLRs have ABC.

An additional exposure feature, the Contax 167MT offers auto-exposure lock (AEL). To my dismay, the AEL only works as a switch rather than a half-shutter freeze or separate button. This means that to lock in your exposure, you start with the spot meter, center your spot on your exposure reference, and then switch the exposure to AEL thereby preserving the spot meter reading until switched back. That this whole operation is connected to the off/on switch in a diagram of off makes the switching between settings a bit messier still. 

Exploring Oxford with the Contax 167MT 

Friedrich Nietzsche wrote in his 1882 book The Gay Science, “It is our custom to think in the open air, walking, leaping, climbing, or dancing on lonesome mountains by preference, or close to the sea, where even the paths become thoughtful. Our first question concerning the value of a [person] is: Can it walk?” And Ludwig Wittgenstein, one of the 20th century’s greatest philosophers, famously suggested that philosophy is therapeutic. 

At Oxford, my friends and I combine the two in walking while philosophizing. Oxford is home to winding streets, austere courtyards, expansive meadows, and countless small places to feel cloistered from the world. The walk I prefer the most is one that’s a little over a mile and a half. 

You move off of High Street into the Porter’s Lodge of Magdalen College before exiting into St. John’s Quad, where there stands an ornate gate and a courtyard cobbled and tiled. At this point, you move into the College’s cloister from where you can see the Great Tower rising above through the corniced, stone windows. You make your away to Addison’s Walk which winds around the River Cherwell and Holywell Mill Stream. The Walk circumferences an expanse called the Water Meadow, and toward the far northeastern section of the walk you can move onto a new path that will take you to the Magdalen Fellows’ Garden. 

That path then finds its terminus in a clearing, holding a small pool and a bench of one halved log on two stone half-circles. We’ve spent hours sitting here, talking, pacing, and standing. And all the while, on this one particular trip, I had my 167MT in my hands or hanging at my chest. 

Handling is superb. Right away, my hands find the grips on the back and front of the camera. My thumb rests naturally in the back grip and my fingers curl around the cradle of the front grip. The back of the film door has aggressive striations to keep the camera locked in place, even with a casual grip.

This may seem insignificant to some, but the way a camera handles is extremely important to me. I don’t want something that hurts to hold or feels awkward. I also don’t want something over-engineered. And please spare me the sticky rubber which inevitably deteriorates in time; I’m thinking of my new Minolta a7, which I just had to thoroughly scrub with rubbing alcohol to remove the rubber entirely since it had become a gross, sticky mess. The 167MT’s ergonomics are ideal. The rubber is solid, clean, and just the right amount of grippy. The grips themselves provide rests for my fingers so that I hardly notice holding the camera while shooting. 

On my Oxford romps, the camera felt electrifying to use. Maybe it was the perfect spring day getting to me on the day I arrived in Oxford, but walking and shooting with the 167MT felt as natural in my hands as my boots did on my feet. 

Focusing is also a breeze. I’m notoriously less-than-flawless at nailing focus with SLRs. For some reason, I just can’t seem to tell when I’ve hit perfect focus. While I still miss here and there with the 167MT, that is purely due to my own failings. The stock focusing screen is bright and the viewfinder magnification is a respectable .82x with 95% image coverage. The screen also features a split-image circle surrounded by a microprism ring. Altogether, there are multiple aids for manual focusing. Thanks to these aids, I felt like I produced photo after photo on my visit that captured excellent focus. 

Sadly, for many, there are a great deal of pubs in Oxford that serve only English beers. As an American, I am inundated at every restaurant and bar—which seem like a distant memory by this point—with craft beers. Like anyone subject to peer pressure and capitalist propaganda, I myself have developed a preference for craft beers. Luckily, in the north of Oxford on St. Giles’ street, there exist a few pubs that offer a more international selection. The Lamb and Flag is one such pub. Aside from pretty well supplied taps, they also have fridges around the corner from the entryway bar that are stocked with innumerable Belgian beers. 

So, in the Lamb and Flag, around pints of Deliriums and Orvals, I need to shoot wide open at f/1.7 to compensate for the quintessential pubbish darkness. Even when shooting wide open, though, I still managed to nail focus where a friend’s eye closest to me is sharp while a half inch to the eye’s left and right begin to soften. It may have been luck, or it may have been the magnification, microprism, and split-image. 

The Contax 167MT is functionally high-class. I feel that it allows me to think for myself while shooting but provides me all the implements I need to do that. Even the thoughtfully designed viewfinder exposure readout is helpful. On the pentaprism hump, just above the iconic Contax logo, the camera has an elongated oval window which uses ambient light to illuminate the exposure settings and frame count in the viewfinder. However, when you half-depress the shutter button, the readout glows with a soft orange light, easy-to-read even in the dark. 

The camera is just dang cool. It’s tough, features the classic Contax edge and corner smoothing, and looks sexy in its black lustre. Even the blue LCD screen on the top is somehow better looking than any other top-plate LCD I’ve seen. While walking around with it, even I, an academic wearing a wool blazer and talking about some obscure philosophy terms with friends who look equally esoteric, can look cool. 

All Good Things

The camera is amazing, and I genuinely love it. But it’s imperfectly perfect. My main gripe with the camera is not that it doesn’t have a multiple-exposure capability (eye-roll emoji) or that it relies on an electronic shutter, but rather its control system. For a camera that is otherwise beautifully and effectively designed, the controls are far from ideal. 

Aperture, of course, is controlled on the C/Y lenses themselves and, as I mentioned, the exposure compensation gets its own dial. But unfortunately, the shutter, ISO, and exposure mode are controlled using some combination of a slide triggers and buttons. For the exposure mode and the ISO, you have to hold down either the ISO or MODE button and then flick through your options using a little slider on the other side of the camera. When in Av, Tv, or M modes, you’ll need to use that same slider to flip through shutter speeds, which can be confirmed on the LCD screen on the other side of the camera. 

This fiddling with a slider is not ideal and some simple changes could have been made to the camera controls that would have made it essentially perfect. It’s as simple as adding a dial designated for the shutter, with the drive mode stacked underneath it (identical to the exposure compensation and ABC control stack). After this, just make the exposure mode button work without the slider since there are only six exposure modes to flip through, and it wouldn’t be cumbersome to rotate through the whole list if need be.   

Is the Contax 167MT perfectly functional without a dedicated shutter dial? Sure, but it’s these small design shortcomings that keep the 167MT from being totally supreme. All in, the camera helped me preserve a single perfect week in a place where my spirit feels at home. For that week at least, it really was the camera I was looking for all along. 

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Drew Chambers

Drew Chambers is a former high school teacher and current master's student at Harvard University. He lives in Waltham, Massachusetts with his wife and their perfect dog. Outside of teaching, reading, and writing, Drew spends most of his time listening to indie rock. He is happy when photographing.

All stories by:Drew Chambers
  • Great review. My Contax 167MT story is similar in a way, I was in the UK in 2018 and the Contax 139Q I had with decided it needed a service. I needed an affordable option to keep shooting, and found a 167MT body complete with a TLA30 flash unit for 75 pounds. So all the photos of that trip were made with this camera, which is still have. I do prefer the 139 Quartz for daily use, but there are times when the extra capability of the 167MT is very handy. I agree that the sliders are not the most intuitive way to reach menu settings, but at the time they probably thought it was a thoroughly modern way to do things! Great camera nonetheless.

  • Great review Drew. The 139Q was actually my first Contax, but it was the 1/4000 top speed that drew me to the 167MT. Its a superb travel camera for the simple fact that it takes four AAA batteries.

    For the benefit of others, its helpful to point out that the Program modes on the 167MT, (as well as the RX, ST, 159MM and Aria) will only work with the “MMG” and “MMJ” lenses. These can be identified by f/22 being marked in green and a small protruding tab at the mount. The camera will automatically switch to Av mode with all other lenses.

  • I was unfamiliar with this camera until I read your review. I have a Minolta 600si film SLR and it has an easily used auto exposure bracketing mode that is set from a switch on top of the camera. I inherited this camera a few years back when my father passed away and I got it from him in almost unused condition. In addition I have to say that the 600si is one of the easiest full function manual to full auto SLR cameras I have ever used. Plus the grip and ergonomics are just excellent. I used to have a second one and in a burst of reducing my collection of camera gear I sold it last fall along with a couple of outstanding Minolta lenses, 50mm 1.4 and 100mm 2.8 macro. I regretted that decision so much I have just bought two 600si bodies on eBay, one with an extra grip. And I plan to buy another 50 1.4 and a 100mm.

  • leicalibrararian April 30, 2020 at 3:18 am

    I agree that the 167 is a good camera, which becomes great when allied to the excellent Zeiss glass. The CX/Y cameras can mount what I regard as the best equal zoom made for film cameras, the 28-85/f3.3 Vario-Sonnar. The other one being the Leica 28-90 Vario Elmarit-R. You would still have to pay around $3000 for a good example of the latter, whereas the Zeiss can be had for around 15% of that – a real bargain. I use one of these zooms on my digital Leica M240 with a Novoflex LEM-CONT adapter.

    There are three well known faults with the 167, all easily repairable. The switches on the top right hand side (looking from the back of the camera) are not well sealed and from breath condensation, tend to become corroded, exactly the same fault as my Leica R4 had. The top of the camera needs to be removed to clean these and unless you are a confident camera DIY enthusiast, with a good bag of micro tools, I would leave this to a professional camera repairman. There are lots of ribbon cables, which have to be re-folded exactly correctly to get the top back on (it took me some hours on my 167 a few years ago). The second fault and the same provisos apply, is that the connections to the battery compartment tend to get dry solder joints/corroded connections and may need to be thoroughly cleaned and re-soldered. The final fault and really the only one everyone can repair themselves, is gooey light seals. Unless they have already been replaced, every 167 will need these doing. Make yourself a chisel scraper from a wooden ice-lollipop stick to get the old seals out, doing a final clean with Zippo lighter fluid on a lint free cloth, to get all the old adhesive off. You can then use the rounded end of the lollipop stick to press in the new self-adhesive seals, which you can buy from These are more accurately cut than other suppliers’ seals I have bought in the past. I just bought a set for my Leica R4 from them – perfect fit.

    My personal choice would actually be the Contax RX or RX-II for two reasons. Firstly they are newer than the 167 (effectively the 167’s replacement) and secondly they have the brilliant focus confirmation/active DOF tool in the viewfinder but make sure the LCD screen in the VF has not faded or gone faulty, which they tend to do. Yes a little more expensive than 167MT but IMHO worth it.


  • Great review and writing about this Contax 167! I have both the RX-II (clearer viewfinder than the RX as they abandonned the active focus/DOF indicator in the viewfinder) and the Aria (such a small camera, perfect for travel). I love how Contax designed these cameras. They feel very comfortable to hold and to use, the ABC bracketing is indeed a very useful feature (it’s also present on the Contax G1/G2) and the display of the various functions of both cameras is intuitive enough to be easy (perhaps they simplified it from the 167?).
    And there are, of course, the great Zeiss lenses. If there’s one “all around” lens I’d recommend, it’s the Vario-Sonnar 35-70/3.4, exccellent and covering exactly what needed for a large range of photgraphic purposes. As a wide angle fan, I also like the Zeiss Distagon 25/2.8.

  • I had an experience with the Contax 167MT a couple years ago. I got called to the office of a manager in the laboratory where I work. She had unearthed an old box of camera and imaging equipment that belonged to one of our retired pathologists who had recently passed away, and she knew I liked “camera stuff”. Inside the box was a Contax 167MT, a Tamron 35-105mm zoom in C/Y mount, and a rather nice Tamron Adapt-All 90mm f/2.5 macro lens. So I took these items home, cleaned them all up, read a downloaded version of the camera manual, and went out to shoot some film.

    It was easy to tell from the finishes and the feel that the Contax 167MT was meant to be a premium camera. Mine was in very good shape, with no gooey rubber and with only one small scratch on the camera back. I thought the viewfinder was bright and modern but I was not over-enthralled with the hands-on experience of using the 167MT. For what it was the camera seemed unnecessarily heavy, perhaps trying to exude a sense of quality, durability, and premium-ness through weight. I thought the controls were fiddly and was not a fan of using flicking a switch left or right to adjust shutter speed. I was puzzled by the design of the camera, having such a small, low-profile switch to change shutter speeds while also having such a comparatively gigantic and chunky knob dedicated just to exposure compensation. It seemed a strange mix of “newfangled 1980s digital tech” and classic camera design features that just fell flat for me. Another characteristic of the 167MT that bothered me was how loud it was between the shutter actuation and automated film advance. It emitted such a sharp, stereotypical electronic shutter/advance sound that it was impossible to shoot around people and not have them look for where that noise came from. Granted, my 167MT hadn’t been serviced in who knows how long, so it may have been louder than one fresh from a CLA.

    Despite the issues I described, my 167MT worked flawlessly and never hinted at being fragile. The images came out very nicely, a testament to the metering system of the camera. I am not sure whether my impressions of the camera would be any different if I had been able to use it with some of the coveted Zeiss glass instead of the Tamron lenses it came with. At the time, I didn’t think it would be worth investing in such glass if I didn’t like using the camera I’d mount them on. Besides, I had other SLRs from different makers that I did enjoy using and this Contax just fell into my lap from out of the blue. In the end the 167MT did not stay with me for long. I tried to sell it on my local Craigslist for a couple weeks and ultimately traded it in at my local camera shop toward a CLA on one of my other cameras. I did keep the Tamron 90mm f/2.5 macro lens though. So that was my brief experience with a Contax 167MT.

  • Super write up, The 167MT was going to my next camera after owning the Contax139, 137, 159MM ( loved this one) all owned from new when they came out. Obviously with Zeiss glass. In the end after a lot of electronic cameras I settled on a pre-owned Contax S2 which I traded my 159mm for back in about 1992 maybe. Still have the Contax S2 with Zeiss 50mm 1.7, which is a beautiful lens. In its day all the photo mags in the UK used it as bench mark for other lenses. I have shot Kodachrome 64 with the Zeiss and projected on a large screen using Lietz projector. Amazing image quality. Always preferred the shutter dial on the left which was unique to Contax cameras. Oxford, amazing place to photograph, lucky for me it’s only a hours drive ! Must visit more often. Old Tamron lenses back in the day were very well respected and used by professionals, I have 40 yr plus Tamron SP 90mm Macro. Super sharp. My old lenses are also utilised on a newly purchased Fujifilm X-T30. Enjoy your Contax.

  • Cool review of a cool camera.

  • Awesome review Drew! I’m a current New College student, and proud to say that film photography is still going strong in Ox 🙂

  • Great review the stand out feature for me, and you don’t see it on many camera is the program mode and its sub modes …. with the Contax MMJ or MMG lenses you can pop the camera in program and just go point and shoot .However it also has program Hi and Program low . Program Hi means the Program Mode tries for the fastest shutter it can and largest aperture , and Lo Mode Largest aperture .In modern cameras its sports mode and DOF mode .My F801 has this and also my Mz-s ( that has 4 program modes) .None of the other Contax’s as far as I know have this .I use Program Hi all the time for street photogrphy .Its a superb camera, perfect weight for me and easy to adapt M42 on to it which gives access to some of the older Zeiss …..anyway great write up….I,m glad some one finally rediscovered this gem

  • Some fantastic pictures here, Drew. You’ve really caught the honey-coloured look of Oxford in the sunshine (it’s my native city, so I like to see it looking good) and there’s humour too in the gentle depiction of serious-minded young men. And you had Orval! Not easy stuff to find but worth the effort.

    I’ve never tried a Contax but it’s a rabbit hole that often tempts me. I’ve got Zeiss lenses in compacts and love the punch the coatings give to colours and contrasts, but I tell myself the SLR lenses focus the wrong way and would be too hard for my Pentax- and Nikon-accustomed fingers to get used to. Whatever it takes to keep my wallet in my pocket. You, on the other hand, are not helping!

  • Nice review! I think the Contax SLRs of this era are under appreciated. I have the RX with the 50/1.7 and just enjoy the heck out of shooting it!

  • Shame on you sir, you just made me buy another camera!

  • You made some beautiful images with the camera. Is there a shutter speed dial? I did not see one in the pics. There is nothing like good zeiss glass. Well done and write more!

  • Very nice review! Believe me you are not missing out by using the 167 instead of the “pro” RTS models. I had two of those – RTS then RTSII and they both proved to be extremely unreliable.
    I do take issue with you searching for craft beers in traditional English pubs! Those English beers ARE craft beers! Grab a Delirium Tremens/Chimay/Duval etc when you grocery shop at Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s when back home..

  • I recently added a 167MT to my substantial film camera collection. Not sure if anyone else has had this issue, but when I look in the viewfinder, the top LCD isn’t lined up quite right and I have to move my eye around to see it. Not sure if this is just the way it is with these cameras or if the viewfinder in mine has shifted or slipped.

    • I have two 167MT and one of them has the same problem, I,m not sure if its the alignment or the LCD screen is failing as the screen on the other 167mt is much brighter……my solution because as it is a bit of a pain….. is just shoot the wonky 167mt in one of program mode all the time so basically P+S mode the other one I can shoot in any mode

      • The LCD on mine is very bright. The viewfinder just seems out of alignment, like it shifted or moved. Who knows with a 35 year old camera if it was dropped or got jostled around or something.

  • Hello,
    Thank you for the review.
    I have bought some time ago the 167 mt. It is my first slr . I have shot a couple of films with contax zeiss 28 2.8 and 50 1.4. The thing is that the scanned files i get back from the camera store seem to be constantly overexposed. The camera shop that i give my films is supposed to be specialised in analogue photography. First i thought that probably the camera meters for the shadows but this happens even when the scene has not big difference between shadows and highlights. I use aperture mode and center weight metering. Does it make sense to try to use spot lock exposure metering mode for the sky? Do i need to have the shutter button half pressed before i change my view to the final frame? Also, when i use the camera in very bright light, the viewfinder seems to be evenly foggy and dusted. Is this normal? My top lcd screen in the viewfinder seems to have a slight tilt in its lighting, as well. Also, I have read that the lcd screen on the top left of the camera body lights blue in the dark but this does not happen in my case. I really like the camera body and i want to work things out. English is not my native language. Thank you in advance for your input.

    • Happy to help if I can. First thing I would check is the lens aperture. If the aperture blades are oily, the blades may be closing slowly on firing the camera, leading to too much light hitting the film. Please take the lens off of the camera and close the aperture. Then look for oil on the aperture blades. If there is oil on the blades and the blades are closing slowly, you’ll need to have the lens cleaned. Let me know if this helps!

      • Thank you for the prompt answer. I have checked both lenses and they do not seem to have any oil on the aperture blades.

  • I purchased a contax 167mt back in 1995. It was a fantastic camera and with my contax t2 accompanied me on many trips. Unfortunately i sold the camera back in 2004 to buy a canon eos 10D, but i still miss my 167mt to this day.

  • I have a Contax 167mt in the hands of UPS right now, hopefully arriving Monday. The main reason for its purchase was so I can use the Contax data back D7 with it. I have the RX which I really like but its built in data back only prints dates up until 2019! Most data backs have a similar problem where they cannot print current dates. Well I’ve been told by multiple sources the D7 can print dates up to 2079 which will probably cover my photo taking lifetime. The RX is also very heavy when paired with the 85mm f1.4, maybe the 167 will be a bit more manageable. Anyways i look forward to using it. I also started with an FX-3, it was the Super 2000, I still love that thing.

  • Hello, for the alignment of the display in the viewfinder, there is an adjustment under the hood. I did this on mine, there is an adjustment screw for a mirror under the hood.
    I have an exposure problem on my 167MT. I think I was not on the green aperture of the diaphragm in high program mode. Could this have an impact?
    sorry for my english!!

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Drew Chambers

Drew Chambers is a former high school teacher and current master's student at Harvard University. He lives in Waltham, Massachusetts with his wife and their perfect dog. Outside of teaching, reading, and writing, Drew spends most of his time listening to indie rock. He is happy when photographing.

All stories by:Drew Chambers