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  1. #11

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    Yes, 6X4.5 is a 6cm X 4.5cm negative. 6X6 is 6cm x 6cm negative. They all use 120 film. 6X6 will give you 12 frames per roll, 6X7 will give you 10, 6X9 will give you 8 etc...

  2. #12
    wy2l's Avatar
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    MF Suggestions:

    Several. Keep reading the web (this site has a literal gold mine of data, take the time to read it). Make every effort to touch and feel the real thing, because personal choices are important.

    What's your budget? Do you want a built-in meter, or use a hand-held meter?

    My own opinion: I owned a Mamiya C330 TLR, and never liked it... others may disagree, but it never felt right. I have a Pentax 67 II and it feels right to me, Avoid the 645 format, it's just too close to a 35mm (yes, size matters... bigger IS better). If possible, avoid very old equipment, like Bronica S2 or folders. You have to make a decision: Very inexpensive (like a Yashica D {6x6 format}), or a expensive (Bronica SQ or SQ-Ai or Hasselblad). Check out the Fuji 6x7 and 6x9 rangefinders.

    A very useful accessory is a tripod. Doing a comparison between hand-held and the tripod will make you a true believer, even if you and arms of steel and shoot at 1/125 second.
    Last edited by wy2l; 05-31-2013 at 09:43 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Add content.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by James-EG View Post
    I'm actually a bit confused as to what those different ratios mean, is it just the shape of the pictures produced?
    While (almost) all MF cameras use 120/220 film, they produce images of different size and ratio on the negative. 6x4.5 cameras are usually horizontal (landscape) in format and you will get 16 images per 120 roll, 6x6 are square and yield 12 images per roll, 6x7 will either be horizontal or have a rotating back and yield 10 images per roll. The larger the negative, the greater the resolution of the final image- and, in the case of SLRs, the larger the camera that takes it. Although all of these formats are a big step-up from 35mm. Some people look down at anything less than 6x7, others (such as my self) love composing with the square image of 6x6. 6x4.5 SLR's tend to resemble 35mm cameras in handling the most. I don't own either, but limited experience and reading has indicated to me that both the Bronica ETRS and Mamiya 645 systems are highly capable, versatile and light. Others with more experience using those systems could speak to the differences better than I, although I've thought about getting a Mamiya 645 at some point just to use the 80mm f1.9 lens, which is the fastest regularly available lens for any MF SLR.

    If you have a great price on a Bronica ETRSi, I'd say go for it. It's usually possible to resell equipment for little, if any, loss if you decide another system meets your needs better.

  4. #14
    one90guy's Avatar
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    I have 2 tlr's, a Yashica A and Rolleicord III, and the Bronica SQ-A, each have plus's and minus's. I carry the tlr's more due to weight and mostly rely on "Sunny 16" but do check myself especial on some light conditions with a hand held meter. The tlr was my first medium format camera and they are hard to beat in the cost if you are wanting to explore medium format. Good luck, there are many good choices and sound advice here.

    David
    “In the end, it's not going to matter how many breaths you took,
    but how many moments took your breath away.”
    ― Shing Xiong

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by James-EG View Post
    EDIT: After some more searching I have found a Bronica ETRSi, in almost new condition with 75mm lens, what are your thoughts on this?
    How much?

    ETRSI complete kits can be had for less than $300. I would consider a complete kit a camera body, 75mm PE lens, manual speed grip, 120 back, and a prism finder. You can possibly get a metered prism finder in a kit for about $300. If all you are getting is a 120 back, body, and waist level finder I would be aggressive on the price. A waist level finder is a pain in the rear on a rectangular format camera. The speed grip does speed things up.

    If you get your ETRSI for a good price it will be relatively easy to sell it if you decide to upgrade to some Zeiss glass. I own one but mostly use a far more expensive Rollei 6008i for the square format, superior lenses, and electronic cable release (zero vibration). I have to say though the images from my ETRS kit are nice. Rollei TLRs can be very sharp but they are very different when compared to 35mm SLRs. They are not everyone's cup of tea.

  6. #16

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    I didn't have time to read through all the replies but if you were to ask me, I would recommend a Bronica ETRSi or Yashicamat TLR for your first medium format camera. Both very durable with excellent image quality, while being affordable and "different" from the 35mm SLR-style handling.

    Edit: Even the Mamiya TLRs are very nice (C330 comes to mind here)

  7. #17

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    Thanks again for the replies, very useful! From what you have said it seems 6x6 or 6x7 seem to be the easiest to use or most versatile.

    wy2l: I do think I would prefer to get an SLR, mainly because if I bought a TLR then decided I still wanted to try SLRs then I wouldn't be able to afford it, so thanks for the help. I've been looking at the Bronica SQ series and I really like the look of them, but unfortunately unless I get lucky I don't think I will be able to afford one. And not to worry, I have a great Manfrotto 055CF tripod and 055 ballhead that I use with my 60D.

    Thanks jspillane, very useful information! But I'm still not entirely sure, would 6x4.5 be suitable? Or should I look to get something like 6x6?

    James
    James

    My 500px Profile --> http://500px.com/James_EG

  8. #18
    MattKing's Avatar
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    I have three different sets of Mamiya equipment - Mamiya 645 Pro SLR for 6 x 4.5, C330 TLR for 6 x 6, RB67 SLR for 6 x 7 (or 6 x 4.5 if I use those backs).

    If pressed, I could basically do everything I need to do with any one of the three.

    There are differences between the three though that make each set slightly better for certain things.

    If you would like an SLR, try 6 x 4.5. If you shop carefully, most likely you can get most of your money back on a re-sale.

    Each system has some complexities though, so read up before you purchase. As an example, the Mamiya 645 have a number of different models, and the feature sets vary a bit.
    Matt

    “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

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noble View Post
    How much?

    ETRSI complete kits can be had for less than $300. I would consider a complete kit a camera body, 75mm PE lens, manual speed grip, 120 back, and a prism finder. You can possibly get a metered prism finder in a kit for about $300. If all you are getting is a 120 back, body, and waist level finder I would be aggressive on the price. A waist level finder is a pain in the rear on a rectangular format camera. The speed grip does speed things up.

    If you get your ETRSI for a good price it will be relatively easy to sell it if you decide to upgrade to some Zeiss glass. I own one but mostly use a far more expensive Rollei 6008i for the square format, superior lenses, and electronic cable release (zero vibration). I have to say though the images from my ETRS kit are nice. Rollei TLRs can be very sharp but they are very different when compared to 35mm SLRs. They are not everyone's cup of tea.
    The camera comes with the speed grip and has started at £0.99 without a reserve but all the others on eBay are around the £200-300 price, but there are a couple around £100 without the speed grip too. From everyone else's replies, would the 6x4.5 format be good for me to start with?

    Thanks, James
    James

    My 500px Profile --> http://500px.com/James_EG

  10. #20

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    Thanks Matt, I have found a few Bronica ETRSi cameras on eBay that start relatively low and they use 6x4.5, so would this be a good starting point?
    James

    My 500px Profile --> http://500px.com/James_EG

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