New sl66 coming my way

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Cinema, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    Well, not new per se, but new to me. Can't wait to start shooting with it. I really haven't been so excited about a camera purchase in a long time, i've dreamed about this one :smile: . can anyone comment on the 120 s-planar vs. the 150mm sonnar? And HFT vs. Zeiss branded lenses?
     
  2. Wishy

    Wishy Member

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    Please note the following NEVERs

    NEVER put an unwound back on a wound body (Or visa versa) - always always make sure they're in sync
    NEVER change the shutter speed after you've mirror lockup'ed
    NEVER do anything less than a full turn both ways. If your back isn't moving smoothly, it needs a service. Continue to try and fiddle with it and you'll end up with your back still needing a service and your camera needing some unlocking.

    Be careful with her and she'll treat you well. I love mine and wouldn't swap it for anything in the world. (I do augment however with a mamiya 6)

    My understanding is the Rollei and Zeiss made lenses are both of equally high standard. The coating on the HFT lenses is better than the non-HFT so in difficult light, sure there is a difference. But its a medium format camera and you will want to be using a hood anyway.
    Don't have any direct experience re the 120mm vs 150mm. The 120mm is apparently very sharp (but note that its f5.6, so some of that might be depth of field related, and some will be eroded by the fact its harder to focus). The 150mm is a bit softer and suits portraits better.

    A decent strap is worthwhile getting. Hoods are a must IMHO
     
  3. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    Thanks! I will definitely keep all those in mind. another question, even though some lenses and accessories are listing as having the same bayonet mount, they seem to be described as fitting specific rollei mf slr bodies. for example, sometimes i see bay vi lenses specified for slx bodies on sale but sl66 lenses are in another category even though they have the same bay vi mount. why is this? they will not mount interchangeably on rollei mf bodies right?
     
  4. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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  5. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    derp, i should've realized that. don't know what i was thinking. This is an amazing site kudos to whoever started it, i've been clicking through it for the past couple days. hadn't seen that link though, thanks!
     
  6. Wishy

    Wishy Member

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    Yup, bay6 will allow you to interchange hoods and reverse the lens, but its also got a specific bayonet

    You can't use the SLX, or later 6006/6008 PQ lenses on the SL66
     
  7. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    Enjoy. My favorite camera by far. Was influenced years ago by Barry Thornton to go the SL66 route.

    Personally, at least for the 80 Planar, I like the non-HFT better for portraits and macro. Something about the more moderate contrast I like (but by no means "flat"!). Though even for landscape work it's perfectly fine. I have both the HFT and the non-HFT 80 so have been able to compare them directly. The rest I have (50, 120-S, 150 and 250) I shoot with hoods and have never felt "darn, wish I had the HFT version!". The 120-S vs. the 150 is hard to say, they are both no slouches though the 150 is much easier to focus I feel. The newer 120 Macro-Planar is touted as being superior to the 120-S but I've never used the former so cannot say. Most of my macro work is using the 80 Planar alone, with extension tubes, or reversed.

    One thing to watch for on these babies is the bottom metal "triangular" tripod plate. Many older ones have loosened some and according to some repair people I've spoken to the only way to tighten them at that point is a jury-rigged drill and pin install to tighten everything up. Though that said one of my SL66 bodies (I have three) is loose like that and I ratchet down a quick-release plate to the bottom before mounting onto the tripod and that seems to take care of that issue.

    Recently I bought an adapter to allow use of large-format lenses with #0 Copal shutters. Have not had a chance to make much use yet but it's one of the bennies of this system!

    Here's my SL66 set on Flickr, feel free to check them out:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/rich8155/sets/72157600025526149/
     
  8. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    That would be Mr. Sean Ross, assisted by some very good volunteer moderators.
    Click the FAQ up on the left to find out more.
    And welcome!
     
  9. Wishy

    Wishy Member

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    Instead of one of the commercial copal 0 options I concerted a loose part of a bellows set (bought on its own, didn't split it!) to a 77mm filter thread.
    I've the converted a number of random doublets, projector lenses, etc for the same 77mm thread, and given the SL66 has a focal plane shutter all is good :smile: Certainly allows some qwerky images.
     
  10. Renato Tonelli

    Renato Tonelli Subscriber

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  11. Brickbird

    Brickbird Subscriber

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    Cinema......Congratulations on the purchase. I have 2 bodies and the 40 Distagon, 2 80's, and the 150. The stated caveats are well advised and with care it should not let you down. I've had one body for over 20 years and it's never been serviced. I occasionally check the shutter speeds on both bodies with my tester and they still are within 10% of dead on up to a 60th. I still have about 20 rolls of Verichrome left and will take one out for old times sake. The lenses are obviously sharp but give a "classic" look to prints. I also studied the "Edge of Darkness" by Barry Thornton. I highly recommend his book as he was probably one of the masters of the Rollei SL66. Amazon.com does have copies of it as I just checked their site. Pick one up, you'll be glad you did....................

    tw
     
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  12. Rollei fan

    Rollei fan Member

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    I have SL66E, I like it a lot, but it is a bit heavy. Shooting macros with it is fun, here some flowers with Planar 80mm HFT. :smile:
     

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  13. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    An SL66 is a great camera, wish I had one!

    Jeff
     
  14. AdrianW

    AdrianW Member

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    The SL66 is a wonderful camera to work with. All my lenses are older non-HFT ones and so far I have not run into any problems with flare, but I am careful to always shoot with a lens hood in place.

    These two photos are from my recent exhibit of black and white portraits. Both were shot with the 150mm Sonnar lens which I’ve found to be extremely sharp. With a high powered loupe I can easily read the date and time on the digital watch that the man in the family photo is wearing. It’s even possible to make out the fibers of the watch band.

    Enjoy your new (to you) camera!
    Adrian
     

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  15. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    great images, guys. Any recommendations for ball heads that I can use with this camera? not looking to spend a fortune. I have a digiball but this is by far the biggest camera in my stable and its not big enough. i heard the tilt when used can get in the way of a lot of tripod heads.
     
  16. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    I had one years and years ago - but I thought that the built in bellows made the thing a bit too klunky and awkward for me... I thought the hasselblad system was better for my purposes. I sold the SL66 for $150 to the local photo shop in the early 90s (they said there was low demand so they couldn't give much for it... ack)
     
  17. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    Anywho, I went with an arca swiss monoball. Should be fun finding a plate that works... just kidding!
     
  18. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    That's the one I use with my SL66.
     
  19. Cinema

    Cinema Member

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    great, how does it handle the tilt? do you just use the universal plate?
     
  20. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I bought two plates for the head years ago, I think from RRS. At the time I bought them for specific camera bodies I had, I now forget which I bought for specifically but one is rectangular and one square. I use either on the SL66 and just make sure I mount the plate in a way that does not interfere with the tilt.