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First, try removing the batteries and then reinstalling them. If the problem persists, you may wish to try a new battery. If this doesn't solve the problem, you will need to send this camera in for repairs. Parts for this camera are hard to find so you will want to have an experienced Contax repair company to repair your camera, like TOCAD.
TOCAD is the only repair company for Contax in the United States that I know of. Here is there site: http://www.tocad.com/
The internal lithium battery in the 167mt is a proprietary unit that is not replaceable (there was a time when you could return it to the factory for replacement but it is a very tricky job and they were destroying too many cameras so they stopped doing it). It's only purpose is to retain settings (like frame number and which mode the camera is in) when the main batteries are changed so the camera should still work fine if the internal lithium battery is dead.
The 80s 167MT uses good old fashioned mechanical links between the camera body and lens. Remove the lens, and press the depth of field button. If you don't see the lever that connects the aperture control from in the camera body to the lens move, then something's obviouly broken in the camera body.
it sounds like its set up for a very slow shutter speed
ie:30sec's? and your getting triger happy trying to rush it to take the photo and get it over with, check when film speed its set on and what shutter speed its set to,and stop poking the mirror about or its going to cost you big time bucks getting it fixed,
Normally the problem is simply that the pictures are slightly overexposed. Despite all the fancy names manufacturers stick on their metering systems, the camera doesn't know what you're taking a picture of. They basically strive to make the entire scene a medium gray. As a result, some highlights may be blown out, just as some shadows may drop out. Generally, dropped shadows are more acceptable than blown highlights.
If a picture is really important, bracket. Take one shot at the metered exposure, then another a stop under (and perhaps one a stop over, if you're feeling paranoid). It was common for a National Geographic photographer to spend an entire roll on one shot, trying different light angles and exposures. After all, film is far cheaper than air fare and hotel rooms.
One advantage of shooting digital is that you can see the results immediately, and correct for blown out highlights.
with electronic cameras, it is the control circuitry. send it for service. your service agent probably will replace the complete pcb as they don't know or wouldn't care to diagnose which minor component went wrong.
I have a very vague memory (I used to sell cameras many years ago) that there is a stop at ASA 400 to prevent you accidentally selecting a faster speed. I do remember something of the sort on a camera of that era but it may not have been the Contax. IIRC, you have to lift the dial a *second* time (i.e. a bit higher) to get it past the stop. Hope this helps but it may be a red herring!