Rollei 35 B camera - Any other users?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by John Austin, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    Back to being a beginner - This is good - For years now I have made snapshots on various cameras, starting with Leica + 35mm Summicron, to Voigtlander Vitessa to Retina 119 (circa 1936) - Now I have been given a Rollei 35B

    I have worked out how to use it, sort of, but would like to hear from other users of these cameras - The one I have beside this laptop has a Triotar, which I am told is not good, but my mind is open to the real results after tomorrow's test film

    If anyone has any actual experience to share I am interested - Tomorrow I will have my own 10x8" test results to see - I don't intend to load the film in the my 10x8" DeVere and make 36x54 inch prints, I only do that with 35mm HIE, just not very often

    This will be a relief from my big prints of the Southern Ocean

    John
     
  2. Someonenameddavid

    Someonenameddavid Member

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    Remember you can't collapse the lens unless you have wound on.
     
  3. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I have a Tessar and Sonnar versions. Neat little cameras. I'll bet the Triotar is decent at least at f/5.6!
     
  4. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    Triotar is better than Sonnar and Tessar , thats why Rollei produced hundred thousands of Rolleicords with them. Its is the best lens I have ever seen from Zeiss family. Do a flicker search and see the BW results , there are too many idiots say about the same about Leica.
    If you are from low contrast family or reverse , it produces masterpieces , especially where the skin and lots of thin line details present in one place.
    Thanks to idiots , I have Rollei 35S with 120 dollars price tag. But you must try lower speeds before burning lots of frames.

    Umut
     
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  5. ROL

    ROL Member

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    Mine is sitting on my desk in a ziploc bag, awaiting repair (to the film transport mechanism, I believe). Frankly, I don't really see any real advantage to using it, either pragmatically or artistically, over pro digital P&S, at the small film format level. Not sure what you're asking, but here are some slideshow transparency examples from last century, when it was the bomb: California Haute Route Parts I & II
     
  6. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    I have one of the german made ones, and I like to use it for hiking / landscapes / snapshots.
     
  7. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I have the 35 LED with the triotar. I print my 35mm negatives about 4x6" and find the lens OK in most situations. I really like the angle of view afforded by the 40mm lens.
     
  8. mr rusty

    mr rusty Member

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    Yes, I have a 35B and use it from time to time when I want the small size. I originally had one from '77 thru '85 as my only camera and shot hundreds of photos during my time in the merchant navy. Nothing wrong with the Triotar - particularly at 5.6 and above. The original one gave up eventually and I replaced it with an identical one a few years ago for old times sake. Here's one of my gallery photos taken with it. http://www.apug.org/gallery1/showimage.php?i=66063&catid=member&imageuser=35532.

    One tip - if using it with a flash, hold the camera upside down or the bottom mounted flash gives everybody's heads a dark shadow halo!
     
  9. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    Dear Mustafa,

    While we might have a liking for Leica in common, I usually disagree with your posts (especially their tone), which do nothing to usefully convey the real qualities of Leicas to others.

    In this case I must even more forcefully disagree: while the Triotar (and similar lenses) in their various incarnations make good portrait and "pictoral" lenses, for almost all other parameters they certainly don't equal a good sample of a Tessar or a Sonnar (they also vary in their incarnations - but in the Rollei 35 versions there is no doubt).

    In any case, the Triotar is probably better than most zooms... :smile:
     
  10. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I like turtles.

    I mean Sonnars!
     
  11. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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  12. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    Thanks everyone,

    The dawn is slowly dawning - Then out with the camera - If the meter is not working I won't be too worried as I have a tiny Gossen Digisix

    The reason I have abandoned the Leica as a snaps camera is that it is big enough to be a nuisance to carry, the Vitessa is slightly better in that it goes flat - What I want for snaps is slightly wide and tiny - Hence the Rollei 35B

    Results will be posted after it is light enough to do something

    John
     
  13. Mark Crabtree

    Mark Crabtree Member

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    The Triotar is a nice lens that might be perfect for P. H. Emerson style Naturalistic Photography - sharp, with some softening toward the edges.

    I'll be looking forward to seeing how it goes.
     
  14. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    First test roll, only 10 exp', is drying - Looking with a loupe shows the Triotar is definitely an f5.6 and lower lens, so I now have 400 film in to see how that looks - This morning's tests were with a short end of UltraFine Xtreeme 100 at 1/30 at full aperture as I was too hasty to wait for light, but in the end it is a dull day anyhow

    jbaphoto120427d2020.jpg

    In my enthusiasm I showed the Rollei 35 to Grub in her ossiary - This dog lacks respect for anything other than walks, food and chasing rabbits, parrots and kangaroos

    Later, first test prints, of the winter wood pile chopping space - Firstly 10x8" then 11x14" - Much better than I expected in the centre and I think the foreground and background are out because of DoF being shallow at f5.6 - I purposely suspended comparison with my 35mm late Summicron because such comparison is pointless and the 35mm Summicron will get much better use with RG in Freo - Unless I am given a Leica CL, that could change everything

    However, the cheap Ultrafine Xtreme film is nothing like my favourite Delta 100 - For next year's snapshots I have ordered some of the Agfa Ortho 100 on offer, which I will now chase up as I have not heard from Field that he has received the money - The ortho is mainly being bought for use in the 1936 Retina alternative snaps camera - I enjoy making snapshots with funky cameras almost as much as I enjoy clambering down cliff faces with a 10x8" kit, actually more - The joy of 10x8" comes in when I load the film in the enlarger and make the first test prints - Then it all makes sense - Half way down a cliff face it does not!

    Anyway, the Rollei 35 with Triotar is a very useable tool and a little bit funky
     
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  15. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    The reason I do not use a P&S digicam for the snapshot work is that our family and friends adore the 10x8" BW snapshots of Rae, the dog, garden, beaches and all the other snapshot things that get posted across the world - An emailed digital image file does not have the same quality of thingness that a silver jelly print has - I admit a digital email does not get splashed with wine on a 'fridge door, but that adds to the fun of real prints

    John
     
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  16. johnnywalker

    johnnywalker Subscriber

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    How is the 35B related to the 35S? the 35B looks to have quite a different arrangement of controls than my 35S, although they look similar in some respects.
     
  17. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    From my experience I think a lot of these "tests" are of dubious value unless it's stated that the cameras have been recently confirmed to be in good working order and focus tested by a professional technician. Seems the lenses are not that hard to disassemble and many in the past have done so. Also the interior mount where the lens locks into place when pulled out can loosen somewhat over time and use causing minor to serious misalignment issues too. Unless people are "testing" cameras that have been confirmed to have no lens or focus issues the results will be flawed.

    I had a 35T I was a bit unimpressed with. I had a CLA done on it and the technician told me the lens had been disassembled and not reassembled properly and was off. After the CLA it was the bomb! Same with a 35S where the mount had the lens slightly wobbly, again once fixed the results were scads better.

    This same thing happens with people's anecdotal reports on their older Rolleiflexes and Rolleicords. Bent front standards, bent backs, etc all affect lens performance and the reporting of not being impressed with Planars, and statements of Xenars and Tessars are as good or better arguments etc.

    All the lenses on these TLRs and Rollei 35's are phenomenal if the cameras are in fine working order. Being 40-60 years old many have been stored poorly or banged around a lot. About 90% of Rollei 35's I've cone across have minor to serious dings in the corner! Those not spending the money to get a solid CLA done are very much chasing a false economy.
     
  18. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    My tests were, and I apologise if this was not clear, to see if it would perform as a tiny reliable snaps camera that I could carry around without the weight and "isness" of a Leica - Being seen in public with 10x8" is bad enough -

    The tests show the camera I have here is in good order and the lens is suitable for my snapshots and it is not yet in need of a CLA - My long time friend JP had the camera from new - I will add my voice to yours in reference to good professional care for equipment and not destroying cameras by home made repairs on a kitchen table after a few beers, it has happened - I repeat that I only tried the Rollei Triotar to see if it is sufficient for my 35mm needs, I have not tried to compare it to the 35mm Summicron, that would be stupid

    My 35mm Summicron has gone to RG in Fremantle, so it will be back in work across Western Australia and Asia

    Now for some snaps to illustrate its planned use

    jbaphoto020507E19.jpg jbaphoto070129A.jpg jbaphoto110214A.jpg jbaphoto111222A05.jpg

    For reference, Greg and Debbie working in Greg's studio was Nikon F, and perhaps calling it a snap is misleading, RG with Zero was on a Leica and the two pics of Rae with Zero and stealing a Christmas Tree are both on a Vitessa
     
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  19. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    I have just processed the second roll from JP's Rollei 35 with Triotar. Why did they design such a sweet little camera with such a poor lens? I was expecting it to get sharp in the centre when stopped down to f11 - f22, but no, it is not giving sharpness anywhere at any aperture. In the late 1970s I tried a Rolleicord with a Triotar for a few months, that got sharp in the centre stopped down and the corners were bad enough to have "character", which was fun. The 40mm Triotar is just boring. Now to look for a Tessar or Sonnar lensed Rollei 35, as I like the basic camera

    RG suggests a Leica CL for my snapshot work, but too many $$$ and they are only for sale body only, the lenses having disappeared into the aether