A question to Bronica users

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by manet, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. manet

    manet Member

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    Hi,

    A question to Bronica users

    I have heard that the electronic of the sq series was being the weakness of these cameras.
    What think the users will be welcome.

    TIA.
     
  2. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Any electronic circuit can fail. Bronica SQ series bodies are pretty tough. Old S series lenses can wear out. SQ bodies don't AFAIK have a reputation for faulty electronics.
     
  3. manet

    manet Member

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    Thanks CGW for your prompt answer.
     
  4. Joe O'Brien

    Joe O'Brien Member

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    I'll second CGW's post. I've shot with a Bronica for a couple years now, and talk with someone who has shot them for many more years. I have never heard of faulty electronics.
     
  5. Pumalite

    Pumalite Subscriber

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    Any Bronica is excellent
     
  6. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

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    I've had my SQs for many years (almost fifteen for my oldest) and the only problems I have had are with the backs and leaking light seals, which is a fairly easy fix and is the one weakness of the Bronica. The glass is excellent.

    Pay attention to the battery. I learned recently that the battery check light can be fine but still lack enough charge to properly time the shutter. Mine was periodically missing the set shutter speed. New battery, no problem.
     
  7. moto-uno

    moto-uno Subscriber

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    Having the ETR,ETRSand ETRSI models, the camera electrics have never been a problem.The AE finders on occasion need light downward finger pressure on the front to get the meter to illuminate(or a piece of fowm between it and the film holder)

    regards,Peter
     
  8. Usagi

    Usagi Member

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    I have used my SQ-Ai now 8 years (before that it was used 6 years by previous owner).

    Electrics on the body, lenses, AE-finder, TTL, motorized grip and film backs works fine except two of my five film backs that has recently begun to show some problem with connection to AE-finder.

    As film speed information is read by AE-finder via simply contact pins, i guess that either those pins have worn somehow or these two backs are simply used so much that they do not fit stiff enough. The AE metering works if i push film back bit upwards.
    The film speed is determined by resistance, so the electrics on the backs are quite simple.

    Otherwise the biggest issue is batteries like already mentioned. However when using motorized winder grip, that is not a problem.
    The winder will 'go slow' before voltage drops enough to affect shutter.
     
  9. Tony-S

    Tony-S Member

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    No issues with my GS-1 system.
     
  10. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    I have heard of several circuit board failures with the EC series, but they are all very old now, and they were an early electronic camera.
    Parts should be available for leaf shutter Bronicas for quite a while yet, as factory servicing has only just stopped, and there are good places like Koh's to get them repaired.

    I have not heard of very many failures of the leaf shutter Bronicas, and most of those were not of the circuit boards, but were wiring and contacts. I have heard of some failures of the electronics in the lenses, though as the body does the timing I would think that's probably related to bad connections or contacts.

    That said, I have had one ETR-Si body fail to time the shutter, and the circuit board in an AE-III finder fail. So it does happen. But the overall reputation for reliability for the leaf shutter Bronicas is quite good. I would not consider the presence of electronics in the camera body to be a reason to not buy one.
     
  11. manet

    manet Member

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    Thanks to all for replies. I look for to buy a Bronica SQ-AI, I'm reassured ! :smile:
     
  12. phelger

    phelger Subscriber

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    Manet,
    you may find that the sqB gives you better value for money. The in-built light meter may be more difficult to work with than a simple handheld one which you should have in any case. That is how I argued before buying an sqb and I don't regret at all.
    good luck, we look forward to hearing what you decide
    Peter
     
  13. CGW

    CGW Member

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    The SQ-B is a sweet, no frills camera. None of my MF cameras have metered prisms and it's never been a regret. They do seem to be a little more difficult to find than SQ, SQ-A and SQ-Ai bodies. They were originally sold as a kit with a WLF, PS-B 80/2.8 lens, and SQ-B 120 back. The only downside is that 120 backs for the SQ bodies are scarce and pricey relative to 220 backs--which can be used with 120 film.
     
  14. Usagi

    Usagi Member

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    SQ-B's only downside is lack of Bulb exposure, have to use T -setting via the lens.
    It might also lack mirror lock up, but I am not sure.
     
  15. CGW

    CGW Member

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    The SQ-B does have MLU. Just to clear up any guesswork, have a look here:

    http://www.tamron-usa.com/assets/pdfs/sq-b.pdf
     
  16. Usagi

    Usagi Member

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  17. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Think the confusion starts with the "kit" lens for the SQ-B--the PS-B 80/2.8 that lacks the "T" switch found on other S and PS lenses. The linked manual above explains the work-around for "T" exposures.
     
  18. JonPorter

    JonPorter Member

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    The Bronica SQ is a wonderful 6x6 system with excellent lenses that are very affordable. I've had the SQ-A, SQ-Ai and SQ-B. The only problem I ever had was with the batteries in my SQ-Ai. Bronica had to compromise the camera to fit in the TTL flash circuitry by switching to four button batteries instead of the standard 6V battery. Button batteries were designed for 1970s 35mm cameras, not 120 SLRs. I finally got so fed up hassling with them that I sold the camera and bought an SQ-B, which I've been very happy with. It you don't need a meter prism that's the model to get. Or else get the motorized winder grip for the SQ-Ai as mentioned earlier.
     
  19. NJS

    NJS Member

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    Not a downside at all since B mode drains the batteries anyway, same feature is missing also on SQ-A body.

    I like the feature of metering prisms, especially the older ME prism where shutter speeds are also available in half-step increments.
     
  20. manet

    manet Member

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    Thanks for these interesting features to know.
    And thx to CGW for the link. For to compare it with the other models, replace sq-b by sq or sq-a or sq-ai...

    jp
     
  21. antmar

    antmar Member

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    Never had a problem with my SQ-A, I always got amazing results from this camera. The AE prism works great if you know what you are doing and makes the camera really fast!!!
     
  22. mbsmith

    mbsmith Member

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    I've had my SQ-A kit for about 5 years with fairly extensive use, and have never had any problems with the electronic shutter being faulty. In fact, I haven't even had to replace the battery yet! The only real issue that I've had is replacing the light trap / seals on my 120 and 220 backs, which I consider routine maintenance with most older camera gear.

    I've been very happy with the SQ-A.
     
  23. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    But four button cells are the functional equivalent to one 6V battery. I've opened 6V silver oxide batteries, both Mallory PX28 and Eveready 544, and inside were four button cells. So there is no real difference. If there was a problem with your SQ-Ai it might have been with the battery holder or some other issue. If you didn't like the fiddling with button cells, well there is that about them.