This started out as me simply listing my perceived pros and cons to limit my options as objectively as possible. But it grew... In the event anyone can be bothered reading through it, I am interested in constructive criticism of my thinking. Having no experience with Medium Format, are my assumptions correct? Some background: Im a weekend untalented amateur; 3 years ago I sulked at the failure of my most recent whiz-bang wonder and shot some film on my 35mm 70s RF and 80s SLR. I discovered that firstly, my best results were at least as good with film and secondly I really knew much less about photography than I thought I did. So I embarked upon a learning path that has now expanded to include a modest B&W darkroom (at a total cost to date of less than ½ a whiz-bang replacement! Aside from consumables of course). If Ive obtained no other benefit, at least Im away from my monitor when pursuing this branch of photography. My primary constraint is of course, talent/knowledge/experience which is constantly evolving (maybe even improving...). One of the potential avenues of improvement is equipment change. Quite a bit of research leads me to believe that the improvement Im likely to obtain though equipment upgrade will be modest, but the cost may also be modest. (say, the other ½ of the whiz-bang replacement cost, around $AU750) This has led me via loads of internet research (including apug archives) towards an interest in a larger negative. Id like some opinions on my assumptions (below) of benefits Im likely to obtain. Im constrained to max negative 6x6 and max enlargement 12x16 by my equipment. I could possibly increase enlargement to 16x20 for modest outlay, but I will need to see some improvements in my results before taking that step. All my photography is natural light (aside from family snapshots of course). Im considering 6x4.5/6x6 MF with a preference for 6x6 on the basis that I can crop down. My expected (hoped for?) pros in no particular order are: Increased tonal range. (is this real, or does it really come from skill/ability/exposure selection?) Ability to crop more heavily for given enlargement size. (To partially compensate for poor composition and/or limited lens choices, may end up as a con?) Sharper prints at 8x10 and 12x16. (likely, given my small enlargement capability, and based on my experience of significant improvement in this area with better exposure/development/film selection as I learn more, this will be not as much improvement as I imagine. opinions please?) Shorter rolls giving me (say) 1 roll per project and darkroom session. Possible ability to change film mid session (dependant on equipment selection, and might be a con in regard of my learning curve anyway) Much bigger contact prints/negatives and consequent easing of assessment. (this might be the biggest benefit?) Lesser impact of unnoticed dust while enlarging. Easier negative handling in the darkroom. Potential for use of higher speed films for a given enlargement size. (likely not relevant given my small enlargement capability) Manual functions (for equipment in my price range) encouraging slower/more thought about exposure and composition. Waist Level finder (dependant on equipment selection) My perceived cons: Cost Risk of premature failure of 2nd hand equipment. (there are options for mitigating this of course) Substantially reduced depth of field options. Reduced max shutter speeds (though I suspect Ill hardly notice) Possibly more difficult camera handling in some situations (depending on equipment choice and mitigated by retaining my 35mm kit) Increased reliance on tripod (this could actually be a pro?) Requirement for further investment on stuff Ive overlooked (eg, lightmeter once I get sick of using my SLRs metering, filters ins different sizes, ever more lenses/backs/finders etc, etc) Reduced ability to carry the thing in my motorcycle tankbag (dependant on equipment selection). Reduced ability to take a beating/more repairs from carrying it on my motorcycle on rough roads. And, well, cost again. If my assumptions are correct (or at least fairly close) and bearing in mind my budget, Im attracted to 2 contrasting options: 1. I think the best compromise will be a Mamiya 645 super/pro, with std lens and WLF plus a meter (Sekonic L-508?) and an adaptor for my cokin P filters if I can fit all that into my budget. Risk is around me damaging it while carrying it and likelihood of needing a major service. 2. But, tougher and more attractive (to me) is: An Agfa Super Isolette (from Mr Kreckel at certo6, assuming he is able to find one for me?), a hood and filters to suit and the same meter. Again assuming Im able to fit all this into my budget. I think this option mitigates the risks of service and me damaging it better, but is much more limited as a photography tool as my skill & interests evolve. For those with the patience for yet another camera thread and thoughts to share, thank you. Matt.