Thank you for all the responses! I look forward to seeing what I can pull out of this little camera. One reason I wanted to try 120 film is to see the difference. between it and 35mm. Thanks again!
What you can get from 120 film really depends on the camera.
I can get very decent negatives with my 6x4.5 Bronica ETR system, however those cameras make it very simple as you just use a handheld meter, transfer the settings, compose, focus and shoot. As it's an SLR what you see is what you get, so you know it's in focus and the composition is exactly what you want.
I also own a 1930s Zeiss Ikon folding camera which shoots 6x9 on the same 120 film, that thing is very difficult to handle as you have to guess the focus and you're stuck with either a tiny and a bit rough "brilliant finder" (a mirror and a couple of lenses, you look into the top) or a crude pop-up frame finder. The lens is first rate but it's difficult to be sure of focus and framing. While it was obviously intended to be cradled against the user's chest in portrait orientation I will be using a tripod next time, and carrying a 35mm camera to use as a rangefinder.
Interesting. I'm going to have to see. I've seen some sample images and they look decent but I'll see when I get the E100g film developed. (They included E100g film as a bonus.) The other two rolls are B/W which I'll develop and scan (and hopefully print...if I get something I like) myself. I have a 35mm yashica rangefinder which I really like but I'd love to get a TLR (I've been sort-of watching them on ebay for some time)
It really depends on what you want it for. My view of TLRs would be that they can be superb cameras, fun to use and capable of excellent results. However, they're inherently limited by the fixed lens and lack of interchangeable film backs. The Bronica ETR series are probably the best balance between quality, price, and flexibility - you can find a usable one with standard lens, 120 back, and maybe some other bits for £200 or less here, which brings it down to top end 35mm money.
Whatever you buy, do the research first. I've seen a glut of ETRS which seem to be missing the dark slide and winder crank, while the latter is merely irritating (you can get a speed grip/winder for not a lot of money, weirdly the only person selling the cranks here wants more for them than a winder costs!) the former makes the interchangeable backs useless as you can't remove it from the body unless the dark slide is in place, so you're effectively stuck with the one back. Best advice would be to find which accessories are harder to get hold of separately and then buy one which has them fitted.
The Debonair is similar in theory and practice to the Holga I started MF with.
Originally Posted by cepwin
"Toy" cameras like these can produce great work and are fun to use and can teach you a bunch about film. Given the lack of exposure adjustments one of the first lessons will be how to pick the right film for your uses.
Personally I go for fast (400) to really fast (800+) negative films. These films, color or B&W, are very tolerant of exposure variances. Conversely, transparency films like the E100G you are playing with, like very precise exposures and that's not a really a toy camera's strong point.
As for the hope of comparing typical 120 film results to typical 35mm results by using the Debonair, um, that's about as scientific as trying to compare strawberries to steak to decide which tastes best.
The reality is that they can both taste good or bad, just not the same.
A TLR like you are looking for will provide a better comparison of the capabilities of 120 and 135 film in a technical sense.
Still and yet, IMO that's a poor way to pick a tool.
Every camera I own helps me look at and portray the world a bit differently than the others.
Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR
"We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin
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FWIW, in 40+ years I have never worried about removing the tape before the film goes into the developing tank. I do fold it over on to the other side though, to make loading slightly easier.
Originally Posted by Alex Muir
“Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”
Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2
If you're really worried about it, you can buy 120 containers: http://www.freestylephoto.biz/820381...ainer?sc=24100
Thanks Matt(s) and Mark for the additional input. I shot my first roll which was expired E100g they included. I spoke to bluemoon about getting it processed and she said with expired film like that cross processing is recommended..ie process in C41. My debate now, since I have C41 to do it myself or let them do it. It was really a "try out the new camera" sort of roll. As for cameras I have been looking and I see a lot of Yashica A TLRs on the bay...usually $70-100 but I also see KEH has some nice outfits usually in the $200-300+ range. The reason I'm interested in 120 is the increased resolution of having a bigger negative and the plastic cameras are fun but I want something that is adjustable, etc..and heck..the TLRs just seem cool. (And I'm sure would give nice results.)
A nice TLR is a very good camera. I have a Yashicamat 124 and a Mamiya 645 Pro. The Mamiya is way more versatile with its interchangeable lenses and film backs, the latter allowing film changes in mid roll all you want, and it's AE Prism finder and motor winder grip. It's really just like shooting with a very large 35mm motorized SLR, plus easy mid roll film changes. But I enjoy the Yashicamat more. It's much smaller and lighter and easier to carry when doing something else, even accounting for also carrying my Luna Pro SBC light meter, which is a big handful of meter. No midroll film changes and no lens changes which can be limiting but can also be "focusing" - use your feet to zoom (not always possible though) and decide what film you are going to need for what you are about to shoot. If you can live with the fixed lens and no mid roll film changes and think you'd like one, go ahead and get a good TLR. If you get a good one and don't like it you can almost certainly sell it at little if any loss.
I stick the tape down all the way too. When ready to process I peel the tape loose with the lights on. I just hold the film and backing paper down with one hand (you have to hold it anyway, just be sure you hold the end down) and peel the tape with a thumbnail on the other hand. Once the tape is loose I can turn the light off with the hand that just peeled loose the tape and then load the film. Easier said than explained - there's nothing to it. Loading the 120 film on a reel takes a bit of practice but you'll get it down and on some reels anyway once you get the hang of it it's easier.
Just how expired is the E100G? If it expired in the past couple of years and has not been stored in hot conditions, room temperature or cooler, I'd just have it E6 processed. If it's very old, that's different. You can cross process it, but bear in mind that people do this for the wild color and effects and you aren't going to get a good comparison of formats comparing that to normally exposed and processed 35mm film.
Thanks Roger. It's 2005 and has been in cold storage..so perhaps E6 would be better? Yes, they seem very nice....I definitely want one it's just a matter of what I want to do now. I did notice the Mamiya does have interchangeable lenses so a $300 Mamiya might be a better investment than a Yashica just for the versatility.