What is a good rugged everyday carry?
I'm transitioning into 120 only and I'm looking for an everyday carry.
I want something rugged and compact; that is, a camera that I can throw into a domke wrap and into my backpack. I have Rollei's and I love them, but they feel a bit delicate to be honest.
Ideally it would be all-mechanical but a battery would be OK too. No autofocus. Options that I am considering:
-Classic folder: Agfa Super Isollete, Zeiss Ikonta's, and etc.
-Modern folders: Fuji GS645, Fuji GF670, Plaubel Makina 67/670
-Non-folding: Mamiya 6 (the 7 is more bulky).
1. Anyone have a size difference between the Mamiya and the Makina?
2. Do you think these cameras are equally sufficient for every day carry use? My thinking is that the classic folders are the most rugged but worst ergonomically.
I had a Zeiss Super Ikonta III, I think it is a pretty outstanding camera, my only beef was the act that you've got to somehow thicken the film to allow adequate frame spacing. The advice I read here is to apply a few inches of duck tape to the paper backing. That works great, but it's a pain on the move.
I use a Rolleiflex GX right now, and don't find it at all delicate, but it's a matter of opinion really.
My brother used to have a GF670, and it's IMHO maybe the best new camera made in the last 5 or 10 years, I doubt you'd find it more sturdy than a Rollei though. It is a wonderful camera though, in pretty much every regard.
For rugged, I'd probably say Rolleiflex. The older folders, well, I've had the Ikonta and Bessa I, and they both had their issues. Solid enough, but we're talking cameras over 50 years old.
If was to buy another medium format camera, I think it might be a GF670. Or if I was after wide angle lenses, a Fotoman dMini.
A simple, lightweight, compact type-120 camera is the the Agfa Isola in its version with the Agnar triplet lens.
I am a fan of Zeiss Nettars, which can be picked up pretty cheap - though not as cheap as in the past. Slightly more up-market is the non-super Ikonta. The bellows on the Zeiss folders have stood up with time, unfortunately Agfa's bellows develop pinholes/sieveholes.
The 3-element lens on the Nettars works awfully well, as does Agfa's Apotar.
Whatever folder you get, see if you can find one with a Prontor or Compur shutter - the 3-speed Pronto (25-75-200) can be a bit limiting though covers most hand held shooting.
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I have a Zeiss Super Ikonta 531 (6x4.5) for just that purpose it's very small and extremely well built did I mention that it is super small super portable and all around great. It's available with aTessar or a Novar lens both are great. Agx is also right the Agfa folders are very underrated and for carrying around they are great they just lack a RF. Also don't dismiss the postwar japanese folders like the minon six super cheap uncoupled Rf and good triplet lens.
The one I refered to is very simple: only two short times and two apertures...
But really lightweight. Shutter cocking and film wind are coupled. Release on the body. Double-exposure safety lock. No lens cover but fairly recessed lens.
Last edited by AgX; 10-26-2013 at 06:54 AM. Click to view previous post history.
My current everyday is a C220. A Mamiya 6 or one of those little Fuji rangefinders would also suit.
I used to carry an RZ67 (still do, when going for walks) but that became a problem with bicycling.
The Rolleiflex was used by the press at one time, so durability wonn't be an issue. However, I do understand not wanting to knock it around and have it end up with unsightly dents and dings.
There are a lot of 6x4.5 and 6x6 folding cameras. A nice little Agfa, Zeiss Ikon or Voigtlander would fit your needs. The 6x6 Agfa Isolette III has an uncoupled rangefinder and either an Apotar (triplet) or Solinar (Tessar type) lens. The folding mechanism is extremely sturdy.
An early 6x4.5 Ikonta folds very flat and is perfect for slipping into a backpack or the pocket of a jacket.
The Voigtlander Perkeo is a well-made lightweight camera.
I use a mamiya 6 with it's great optics for that purpose;even with two extra lenses, it's a small package.The Gossen Digisix has proven to be a valuable addition though.
Last edited by RalphLambrecht; 10-26-2013 at 11:13 AM. Click to view previous post history.