Rolleiflex 6006 - opinions please.

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Colin Corneau, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,878
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Location:
    Brandon, MB
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Came across a minty condition 6006 recently. It only has the 80mm with it, along with 2 batteries.

    I have a Bronica SQ-Ai with an 80 and a 50, along with a few backs and an eyelevel finder. I guess my situation is I have more options with the Bronica but am interested in the quality of the Rolleiflex.

    What are your feelings on this camera? I am interested in the plusses but more so in the minuses in the interests of making an informed decision.

    As always, many thanks
    Cc
     
  2. Edwardv

    Edwardv Member

    Messages:
    397
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I have used the Rollei 6006 and found it to be a very nice camera, the metering system is very accurate and do love the Zeiss lenses. There are 2 models for the 6006, 1 and 2. Two is the latest. See this article on the 6008 by Philip Greenspun. If I had the cash I would get the 6008i and my lenses of choice.

    http://photo.net/equipment/rollei/6008

    Good luck.
     
  3. Edwardv

    Edwardv Member

    Messages:
    397
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Oh, I failed to mention; I use Bronicas SQAi 6x6 and ETRSi 645.
     
  4. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,878
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Location:
    Brandon, MB
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    It's a gorgeous camera and no doubt the lenses would amaze and create wonder.

    I just can't imagine ever finding accessories or a wide angle for it without dropping trousers and grabbing my ankles.
     
  5. BobNewYork

    BobNewYork Member

    Messages:
    1,067
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2008
    Location:
    Long Island,
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Yeah - but sometimes you just have to suffer for your art...:D

    (Sorry - in a very flippant mood this AM!!)

    Bob H
     
  6. JRJacobs

    JRJacobs Member

    Messages:
    238
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2008
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    A friend of mine has a 6006 and it has given him nothing but troubles with the electronics. Not sure if it is a fluke, but I thought it is worth mentioning.
     
  7. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,878
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Location:
    Brandon, MB
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Yeah, I was wondering about the electronics. It's a great camera, optical quality certainly superior...but if something quacks up? Hmm...

    As for suffering, let me show you my Visa bill sometime.... :smile:
     
  8. deisenlord

    deisenlord Member

    Messages:
    481
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2004
    Location:
    Minneapolis,
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I have a couple of 6008's and I'm happy with them but they do have their downsides.

    - Everything is electronic and they are completely intolerant to getting wet. Even getting a little wet they will simply stop working.
    - Lens have electronic aperture and if the blades have any oil on them they won't properly stop down in the cold. I live in MN so I use them in very cold conditions.
    - Batteries are stupidly expensive. I've gone to purchasing cells off the internet and rebuilding the packs myself.
    - The lenses are great but are certainly more expensive then their Hasselblad equivalents.

    I really do like the cameras but I think if I had to do it over I'd just do a blad that doesn't require batteries.
     
  9. DMCarbo

    DMCarbo Member

    Messages:
    20
    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Killingworth
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Hi Everyone,

    I have a 6008i and absolutely love it, image quality and metering is insane. I almost did not purchase one after reading about the electronics and Battery problems. I have had mine for just about a year and have actually used it in mist and snow without any trouble - perhaps i was just lucky ? I have used it on 2 aerial photography flights that were less than smooth and had no trouble. Thought about the Blad like deisenlord but am glad i chose the rollei - blad has its own issues too dont forget! Ebay is full of good buys for every thing you can imagine in the rollei 6000 system
     
  10. per volquartz

    per volquartz Member

    Messages:
    454
    Joined:
    May 31, 2003
    Location:
    los angeles
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I use a 6001. Incredible camera with incredible optics. It just works and works and works!
    And no dark slides to fumble with...



    :smile:



    Per Volquartz

    http://www.pervolquartz.com
     
  11. Smudger

    Smudger Member

    Messages:
    288
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2004
    Location:
    Dunedin,New Zealand
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I sold my Hasselblad outfit to buy a 6006 Mark 1 : The lenses were equivalent in performance but the camera was nothing but trouble.Big mistake.
     
  12. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

    Messages:
    268
    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
    Location:
    San Diego, C
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    My personal opinion is that these are among the most rapid handling medium format systems out there, and the lenses are superb. But the camera system has an achilles heel - the need to have a GOOD power source, and working batteries for them are quite scarce. A few years ago, Rollei was selling a power adapter that allowed the camera to work off of either AC or remote battery packs - which could be made from 10 standard Li On, Alkaline, or Ni Mh rechargeables. Unfortunately, those packs are not small enough to fit in the battery chamber, so you need to be teathered to the camera, and keep a battery pack in your pocket if you used this. But at least I can be sure that I will have an easily available power source for this system if one of the regular obsolete but working NiCad packs bites the dust during a shoot.

    But in any case, assuming that you have a couple of good batteries and a charger that does a good job of conditioning the packs so that they stay good, I really like the system.

    One other general comment. One of the things I like about MOST medium format systems is that they really slow me down, relative to either Digital or 35mm - and they force the shooter to work FAR more deliberately. But the Rollei 600x is such a fast handling system that it, really alone among the various MF systems I've used, really doesn't slow you down that much except when changing film - and if you have pre-loaded enough film inserts, even that doesn't slow you down particularly. So this is, in some sense, a bit of a double edged sword. These Rollei systems are really alone among MF systems in allowing you to shoot nearly as quickly as a good 35mm system.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2009
  13. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

    Messages:
    2,297
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2003
    Location:
    Floriduh
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I sold off my 6006 late last year. I was just not using it and I didn't seem to want to pick the camera up anymore. My general impression is that it is a hell of a camera with a 80 lens rated as one of the best ever and it proved it to me. I had gotten just amazing pictures with it, but I grew tired of the weight and bulk of all my MF equipment and got out of it. I also owned a Hassy 501cm but I liked the Rollie better. I only wished they had made the 6006 a manual body instead of motorized. The weight would have dropped and maybe the size as well. If I were to do it over I'd go for a 6008i if the funds were available but for the right price the 6006 is hard to beat. Accessories can be accumulated over time and extra lenses were sometimes pricey when I had mine.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. bill spears

    bill spears Member

    Messages:
    565
    Joined:
    May 30, 2007
    Location:
    Cornwall Eng
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Interesting thread this. I picked up a mint 6008i + 4 lenses a while back and was blown away by the sophistication, handling and quality feel it had. However ....... it 's given me nothing but trouble !! Problems with the mirror return, especially in cold weather and now I think the film wind on mechanism has broke. The times it has worked ok it's given me stunning quality, and the handling and features are superb but this doesn't make up for the let downs. The biggest pain is trying to find a repairer here in the UK - any suggestions anyone ??
    I've gone back to using my old faithfull RB67 system which has had alot of abuse but just keeps going. The lens/ image quality I find no difference than the Zeiss (for the work I do - up to 16x20 image B+w handprints) and best of all if you do break it you can replace secondhand for very little money.

    Bill
     
  16. Rob Skeoch

    Rob Skeoch Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    983
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Burlington,
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    I don't think you're going to like what I have to say. I bought a camera a number of years ago with an 80mm lens. I also bought the 150 and a 50 new. The camera has a wonderful design and was a joy to use... but the photos weren't sharp. I took it to the repair centre and they said the screen was in up-side down... but the second repair guy said it wasn't. They got in a huge argument regarding which way the screen should go in.

    A few weeks later I was shooting a wedding with the camera. I'm at the back of the church and the organ is just starting to play Here comes the bride. I take one more shot of the bride and dad before they start up and the mirror breaks off.... actually breaks right off and the camera starts flapping inside on continuous with the mirror off.

    Most likely i should have dumped the camera, kept the lenses and bought a new 6008 but I was too gun shy... and didn't feel the repair people knew what they were doing.

    I switched to Blad but have since switched to the Pentax 645 because I like the AF.

    Just my 2 cents worth.

    A sales clerk said they were over engineered and I believe he was right.... but I did love plugging the flash into the camera instead of the lens.

    -rob
     
  17. canuhead

    canuhead Member

    Messages:
    660
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    Southern Ont
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hey CC,

    Are you still looking for a different mf love ? Give me a holler, am considering what to do with a 500c I don't use anymore.


    ttyl,

    Fred
     
  18. Iwagoshi

    Iwagoshi Subscriber

    Messages:
    455
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2007
    Location:
    NorCal
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    For medium format it's all that I use. Today the basic system is reasonably priced, but it's the extras that add up. An extra magazine, which btw are great, goes for $400+ new, $200 used; film inserts, $75; filters (bayonet IV mount) $100-200; spare battery, $170, etc...

    The electronics have taken a big hit on the www, but I have not had any problems. A freshly charged (new) battery gives me hundreds of frames, the extra battery bought on auction gives me less than a hundred. I have a box-full of battery fuses and have yet to use any. So yeah, I'm pleased with what I have, and If I did not already have a 6x6 it would be my first choice to buy. But buyer beware, these are pro cameras worked to death, and the stuff up for auction are highly suspect of being quite used and abused. For me, I knew to previous owner and knew the equipment was annually CLA'd.
     
  19. momus

    momus Member

    Messages:
    2,706
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    Lower Earth
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I've had to change the way I do things because I've had too many problems w/ old cameras w/ old electronics, and even worse problems trying to get these cameras repaired. It's forced me into a position where I will only buy a camera that I have a shot at fixing myself, which means basically using Crown or Speed Graphic cameras or MF folders. I still have a soft spot for the more inexpensive Rolleiflex 3.5 Xenar but know that if it breaks I stand no chance of repairing it. The upside is that if you stick w/ Voigtlanders w/ Heliar or Color Skopars, Isolettes w/ Apotars or Solinars, Weltas w/ Schneider or Tessars etc you will still get some mighty nice photos.

    I've also heard a few stories about buggy 6006 cameras, so it sounds like a bit of a risk to me.
     
  20. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

    Messages:
    7,514
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have been using my SLX (predecessor to the 6006) since 1986 and it has served me well and is still going strong. Recently rebuilt my batteries for only the 3rd time in all those years. I bought it used and decided I would upgrade to the latest model if the SLX breaks. I'm still waiting to upgrade :smile:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2009
  21. Iwagoshi

    Iwagoshi Subscriber

    Messages:
    455
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2007
    Location:
    NorCal
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I have two dead battery packs that I want rebuild, who was your battery vendor? Thanks.
     
  22. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

    Messages:
    268
    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
    Location:
    San Diego, C
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I've picked up two extra 120 magazines for the 6006 for $74 and $61 on ebay in the past couple of years, and any number of film inserts for something around $20-25 each. One needs to look ahead, because you can't just know there will be 6006 stuff available when you might need it, as you can with much more common Hassy or Mamiya gear.

    The 50mm and 80mm lenses are truly sensational. I find I don't shoot longer lenses though in this system. BTW, if anyone is interested, I just put my 250mm Sonnar on ebay for a great price, because I never use it.

    I too would like to know a good source for a battery re-build.
     
  23. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

    Messages:
    7,514
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 15, 2009
  24. deisenlord

    deisenlord Member

    Messages:
    481
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2004
    Location:
    Minneapolis,
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    You can order pre-built packs at www.batterystore.com. Its the 8 cell pack in style 17. Makes the job very simple, just two solder connections and your done.

    Ike
     
  25. Greg_E

    Greg_E Member

    Messages:
    775
    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I stopped reading part way down the second page. My suggestion is use what you have and enjoy it, if you find something lacking then buy the piece that you need (new lens or finder, etc.).

    If you are just plain tired of the SQai then by all means find something that will make you happy. The Rollei looks really nice, but unless you are making a living with it, it might be very hard to justify the price of the lenses.

    For similar prices I think I would get a Mamiya 7II which has been said to have really great optics.
     
  26. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Member

    Messages:
    268
    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
    Location:
    San Diego, C
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Nowadays, the cost of Rollei 600x / SLX lenses are not so bad if you can find used ones, the 80 and 150 generally sell for under $300, and the 50 and 250 sell for under $500. New ones sell for 4 times those prices. Considering the quality of these lenses, that's pretty reasonable. Sure, Mamiya RB/RZ and Pentax 67 and Bronica lenses are less, but Hassy lenses are at least as much, and they are basically the same lenses.