Rollei SL66 unsharp pictures

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by andingi, Aug 29, 2007.

  1. andingi

    andingi Member

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    Hello together,

    I have a problem with my SL66. It producing only sharp pictures using a flash. Without flash, even with a tripot and MLU I get unsharp pictures. Only at shutter speeds faster or equal 1/250 s its getting sharp.

    Is this the normal way of Rollei? Is it realy shutter vibration? Could a shutter dumper be out of order?

    Also I get no realy sharp pictures using the tilt. The result is a soft picture from the near to the far away. No realy sharp (tilt) plane.

    Looking forward for helping ideas.

    best regards
    Ingo
     
  2. Ulrich Drolshagen

    Ulrich Drolshagen Subscriber

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    The shutter of the SL66 is famous for low vibration. No, it's not the normal way of Rollei. I think, your camera needs a CLA.

    If it's not sharp untilted it can not be sharp tilted.

    Ulrich
     
  3. JHannon

    JHannon Member

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    Have you tried the mirror lockup switch? It would eliminate problems caused by "mirror slap". It should still should be sharp even without the mirror lockup.

    Make sure the camera is not rocking or shaking on the tripod. The SL66 is heavy and has a large base and needs a secure tripod.
     
  4. bennoj

    bennoj Member

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    I'd agree something is wrong with your camera. I used to do 1-2 second exposures with my SL66 with no cable release (mounting hole was stripped) and got sharp pictures due to the weight of the camera.
     
  5. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

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    Make sure your focusing screen is placed correctly.
     
  6. JHannon

    JHannon Member

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    That is something to check. I have heard that the screen sometimes doesn't seat properly.
     
  7. naturephoto1

    naturephoto1 Subscriber

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    It is also possible that the camera focus is off. I had the infinity focus of one of my Leica R4SPs off and Leica USA had to make an adjustment.

    Rich
     
  8. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

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    In the SL66 this can only happen of the focussingscreen or the mirror is out of place. The screen is the most likely candidate. (And far less costly to repair:smile:
     
  9. skahde

    skahde Member

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    Flipping the screen was my first thought also. But if it was the screen then why does he get sharp pictures with flash and times shorter than 1/250th?

    The first could be due to stopping down more but the second?

    Best

    Stefan
     
  10. andingi

    andingi Member

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    Hello and thanks for the answers. But the thing is, that it takes sharp and crisp pictures using flash. So out of line adjustment of the screen os mirror can not explain this. I realy think it must be vibration. Does the SL66 has a damper for the shutter?
    Did you SL66 user get realy sharp pictures (sharp: viewing at 8x enlargement you can see details in the centre which are in the resolution of the film).

    best regards
    Ingo
     
  11. Ulrich Drolshagen

    Ulrich Drolshagen Subscriber

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    You have to care not to cut your eyes! Let it have a CLA. The dampers must be broken.

    Ulrich

    PS For reference have a look at this one. It was taken with my SL66.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 5, 2007
  12. Renato Tonelli

    Renato Tonelli Subscriber

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    Ulrich is correct. The camera needs adjustment. The focal plane is most likely out of alignment.
     
  13. SoulSurround

    SoulSurround Member

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    Everything on my website is shot with a SL66. And for all "Pure Souls" frames the shutter speed was never faster than 1/60th (it ranges from 1/8th to 1/60th). If this camera would always produce unsharp pictures (without a flash)... then it wouldn't have survived in the professional market so long.
     
  14. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    I hate to ask this.. but are you... ummm... using a tripod...??
     
  15. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    This is most likely your problem. It can be either the damping foam needs replacing, or the focus is off. I learned the hard way that picking the camera up by the lens, or lens mount can cause the focus to go out.
     
  16. David H. Bebbington

    David H. Bebbington Inactive

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    See original posting?
     
  17. Sparky

    Sparky Member

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    I dunno - I'm a bit suspicious of that. I can really see no other alternative to his problem if it's actually perfectly sharp with the flash but never at other times. It really seems like a support issue to me. I figured it wouldn't hurt to double-check by asking again...
     
  18. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    This is really off the wall, but try taking a photo with:
    1) the shutter set at the flash synch speed;
    2) the aperture set to properly expose the shot, based on ambient light; and
    3) the flash connected and turned on, but covered so it doesn't contribute to the exposure.

    If you get a sharp photo from this, there is something about the flash synch circuitry that is contributing to the issue (although I cannot for the life of me figure what it might be).

    Matt
     
  19. Fred Aspen

    Fred Aspen Member

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    Let's see, electronic flash is usually 1/1000 or better and if all flash pictures are sharp that would rule out focus screen/focusing problems.

    If pictures at 1/250 are getting sharp and 1/500 is okay (again not a focus issue) but speeds less than these are unsharp points directly to a lightweight tripod/handholding or shutter bounce, IMHO.

    Don't see that it can be anything else, right off the top without too much examination.

    Fred
     
  20. andingi

    andingi Member

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    Project closed

    Thanks to all.

    To close the project, I like to report about the solved problems concerning unsharp pictures with my Rollei SL66E.

    I found a very good and very friendly repair man, how worked for Rollei and still have all the necessary tools and measuring instruments. Though having CLA the camera by FFS in Braunschweig, the friendly repairman found several odd things causing unsharp pictures:
    • the focusing screen was out off line (thats my fault)
    • the lens board was dislined, i.e. unparallel to the film plane
    • infinity stop was out of line. Nice that FFS didn´t mentioned it, even I pointed it
    • the 150mm lens was very odd, the back lenses have to be moved exactly 1mm to the back. Nice ebay quality. It seems, that the back lenses are from some other 150mm not fitting to the front lenses. (each lens have errors and are collected in that they, that the errors are well "fitting" and the assembley is offering good results). And I was using the 150mm very often...
    AND
    the shutter speed was to slow: 1/500 instead of 1/1000.

    After adjusting all and also finding a solution for the 150mm tele, the camera works very well and is taking very sharp pictures with all of my lenses.

    My suggestion about shutter vibration is wrong. Setting the camera to B and pre releasing the mirror you can observe very well the caused vibration of the first shutter curtain. It is almost nothing. Also the mirror is very soft (The mirror prerelease is almost just for fun. Not like Hassy). Just the mirror back moving is causing a lot vibration, but then the show is over. It is realy possible to take good results with 1/60 by handhold camera and 80mm.

    I am very happy to have the SL66 repaired. It is very convinient to me 8using the twin and loving it). Especially the tilt is unique and very helpfull. Some LF performance in an easy to operate camera.


    At the end: happy end.

    Thanks for the tipps, especially to Ullrich.
     
  21. Mike Kovacs

    Mike Kovacs Member

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    So who fixed your camera? Inquiring minds want to know!

    Your 150 Sonnar lens was probably given a lens swap to increase its value on ebay. I enjoy my 150 Sonnar as well for its close focusing on the SL66 and tighter background coverage than the 80mm when used up close. A little sample of Canada from last week HERE, care of the SL66 and 150 lens.