Bronica ETRS AE II meter problem

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by stradibarrius, Sep 17, 2010.

  1. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    I have just added a Bronica ETRS kit to my stable of cameras. The AE II meter/prism moves erratically and is off a couple of stops compared to my hand held meter.

    Any Ideas as to what may be the problem?
     
  2. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    Do you have more than one lens to try with it? Sometimes the lens is not communicating properly.
    I suggest carefully cleaning all the contacts between lens and body and between finder and body. Don't use an abrasive such as a pencil eraser to do it as they are gold plated.
    Make sure the battery is fresh, preferably silver oxide. Bronica recommended that first, alkaline second and don't recommend lithium. Clean the battery contacts, too.
     
  3. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    The new battery I put in the camera was in the camera bag that came with the kit so I guess it could have lost some of it charge. It was still in the blister pack but it could still be old.
    I have threes lenses and it does the same with all three. I did a visual inspection o f the contacts and they all look new. very shiny and clean, but I know that there could be just enough there to cause a problem. Battery compartment also was very clean. The owner had taken the old battery out because he was not using the camera and did not want the battery to corrode in the battery compartment.
    I will clean the contacts and try a fresh battery today. Hopefully that will do the trick. If not do you have any other suggestions?

    Do you know it this is a typical problem with this camera/finder? I have no experience with Bronica gear. All of my MF gear is Mamiya. My Mamiya m645 meter is dead on. I hope that is true with the Bronica as well.
    This camera and the lenses seem to be extremely well made. I am impressed with the build quality and ergonomics of the camera.
     
  4. wiltw

    wiltw Subscriber

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    Metering prism probably needs to be serviced.
     
  5. wiltw

    wiltw Subscriber

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    Initially true, but Tamron later said the lithium version of the PX-28 was perfectly fine only for the ETR(Si), but not the SQ or GS. ETR is fine with alkaline, silver oxide, or lithium battery.
     
  6. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    They never said it was perfectly fine.

    In the larger cameras they say silver oxide is "Best", alkaline is "Good" and of lithium they say "Forget it".
    For the ETR series they say silver oxide is "Best", alkaline is "Good", and lithium is "OK". That equates to "usable" more than "perfectly fine", as I see it.
    It's still not recommended. Only silver oxide is the recommended battery.

    www.tamron-usa.com/bronica/batteries.asp
     
  7. wiltw

    wiltw Subscriber

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    To me 'OK' equates to perfectly fine. After all, NiMH works best in flash units, so they could be 'recommended' (reuse, recycle times, and no memory) and NiCad might be 'good' (reuse and recycle times) and Alkalines are 'OK' (long recycle time, no reuse). Matter of semantics. Tamron has not cautioned against the use of Lithium in the ETR for any reason, after all.
     
  8. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    The reasons Tamron gives are in the section of their website I linked to, and I don't think the analogy you give really fits.
    It's not just semantics. To say it's perfectly fine is to imply there's no difference. There is a difference. Just because they have not cautioned against it doesn't mean they think it's just as good. It's clearly not the recommended battery. Lithium is usable; I have one in one of my ETR-Si's and it's working without any problem that I can see. But, if I had a problem with a meter or some other part, I would install a new silver oxide battery so as to eliminate the battery as a possible variable. And that is the point of my recommending that the OP install a silver oxide battery.
     
  9. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    I just got a LIKE new AE-II view finder nad the meter doesthe same thing which is basically showing everything over exposed no matter what my shutter and aperture are set to.
    All contacts are clean and I installed a fresh new battery. I have tried 3 lenses and the same results.

    Any other ideas?
     
  10. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Use your hand held meter n ssave yourself some grief.

    Built in meters are never accurate.
     
  11. Josh Harmon

    Josh Harmon Member

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    I have a ETRS with a AE II meter and mine is spot on, when I shoot slides (Velvia/Astia) my exposures are spot on even with filters... That being said, have you checked the contacts/mount where the prism is mounted? Is the glass on the bottom of the prism fogged or marked?

    I would recommend getting yours "tuned" up but on KEH a new AE prism would probably be cheaper unfortunately.

    I love my Bronica and yours should work!

    -Josh
     
  12. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    I have several cameras where the meters are great so I disagree that the built in meter are nevr correct. That said I have checked and cleaned the contacts on bothe the prism and the lens. This is the second AE-II. I have tried two new alkaline batteries and three different lenses. The only thing that is common to the problem is the body...
    I have been just using my hand held meter and am really pleased with the results from this camera. Actually I seem to be producing better photos from this camera than my Mamiya M645??? I would have never expected that.
    I would prefer that the built in meter work but if I can't figure out the problem I will just us my hand held as suggested.
     
  13. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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  14. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    Alkaline batteries and I have only tried moving the E/C settings back and forth to see if ti may possibly be dirty? But remember this happens with two different VF's, both of them in excellent condition.
    I have the prism manual and it sheds no light on the subject.
     
  15. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    Well since you say it happens on 2 different metered prisms, contacts are the problem, or it's the body electronics. Try em on another body? Clean the contacts with a pencil eraser? Do any of em look worn down and uneven? Is the prism locking on tighly enough or does it have alot of up n down play in it? Does the meter read differently when you move it on the mount? Mounts can be adjusted too.
     
  16. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    If I remember correctly, the contacts are gold plated, so it's not a good idea to clean them with an eraser. Or any other abrasive. Alcohol's OK. Agreed that it could be some problem with the contacts or body electronics.
     
  17. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    I have an electronics background and the contacts are bright and shiny. They do not look worn at all I will try cleaning them with some de-natured alcohol. If that does not do it then it must be body electronics???? I don't have another body test out but the camera takes excellent photos, I just have to use my hand held meter which is not the end of the world.
     
  18. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    I've seen your pics and they are wonderful. Be sure to switch off the prism so it doesn't interfear with the exposures. Hand hels is the way to go, I love my spot meter.

    Maybe one day you will come meet another body in your travels and can try the meters on that.
     
  19. stradibarrius

    stradibarrius Member

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    Good idea. Thanks for your efforts.