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Thread: TLR or SLR?

  1. #21

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    I've been using Mamiya TLR's for about 30 years--almost as long as I've been using any camera. Even without a Paramender, you can estimate pretty well how to correct. When using a tripod, a center column model works best. It's not perfect but it works pretty good.

    My biggest complaint with Mamiya TLR's is that they feel a little top-heavy when used hand-held--kinda "tippy", if you know what I mean. To a new user, they are also kind of hard to understand. They're really not complicated but they seem so with all the levers, dials, buttons, etc. The lack of useable depth of field scales can also be a problem, especially for landscapes.

    I've been using a Pentax 645 outfit--original manual focus models--for about a year now. To me, it's a vast improvement in ergonomics. The primary reasons I continue to use the Mamiya is that I like the square format sometimes and the twin lens design is great for shooting infrared films with opaque filters.

  2. #22
    Snapper's Avatar
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    TLRs are great and would thoroughly recommend the Mamiya C330f. Actually, having said that, I will be selling mine shortly as I don't use it as much as I should and it needs a good home. PM me if interested.

  3. #23

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    [Going back a couple of posts]

    Why is the non-removable back on the C220 a problem? The only alternative for the C330 is a single sheet holder, and that's of limited utility to most people.

    None of the TLRs feature mid-roll exchange. That might be an issue so some people.
    I feel, therefore I photograph.

  4. #24

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    [QUOTE=grahamp][Going back a couple of posts]

    Why is the non-removable back on the C220 a problem? The only alternative for the C330 is a single sheet holder, and that's of limited utility to most people.
    QUOTE]

    AH... because I ain't most people.


    tim in san jose
    Where ever you are, there you be.

  5. #25
    Donald Qualls's Avatar
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    Coming in late here, but -- TLR for me. Why? Because I can get TLRs with excellent optics and robust mechanics that fall within my limited budget. In fact, I just bought a second Kodak Reflex II (to give me a backup in case my attempt at 120 conversion fails) for under $20, shipped (though it's rare to get one that cheap, they usually run about $50 plus shipping).
    Photography has always fascinated me -- as a child, simply for the magic of capturing an image onto glossy paper with a little box, but as an adult because of the unique juxtaposition of science and art -- the physics of optics, the mechanics of the camera, the chemistry of film and developer, alongside the art in seeing, composing, exposing, processing and printing.

  6. #26
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    This seems to be more of a Mamiya thread, but I toss my two cents in...

    I was at the same juncture about a year ago; wanted to play with MF but was too cheap/couldn't afford the Mamiya/Bronica/Hassy slrs...

    I got some good advice from other APUGers (as usual) and started trolling ebay for a Yashica tlr. To make a long story short, I wound up with a "124G" and a "D" and love them both. They're easy to use, take snappy photos and most of all, they were CHEAP!

    The problem now is that I like the photos so much that I want an slr too (a little folder would be kinda fun, too)...and the Mrs. won't let me go near that subject unless I'm willing to unload at least one of the tlrs...and and one of my 35's! And that's just not happening.

    The point is: If you're not sure if MF is for you, go with the cheapest option. If you're pretty certain that you'll stay with MF, then go for the best that you can afford...

  7. #27
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    Sparx,
    Go for the TLR fellah! I've used Mamiya TLRs and SLRs and (IMO) the TLR is quicker in use. Couple it with a trigger grip and you've got the stability issue sussed. You don't actually need a paramender if you've got a geared column on your tripod. Just mark the distance between the lenses on your column (fnarr, fnarr ) and when you're ready to go just crank it up. I did it this way with an ungeared Benbo and never had any problems. BLIGHTY.
    Norman is an island.Time and tide wait for Norman.

  8. #28

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    Well I have to chime in here... nobody mentioned another jewel - the Koni Rapid Omega. A real workhorse of a camera, 6x7 (OK, if you only have a 6x6 enlarger, shoot square in your head) and built like a tank. Limited to only 4 lenses (one of which you probably will never find) but great optics. You can pick them up very reasonable on epay. Lately there have been several in the $100 to $150 range, and you can have Greg Weber do a CLA or repair if needed.

    Take a look at http://medfmt.8k.com/mf/korapid.html
    Those who don't think Photographers have the skills of REAL artists such as painters obviously have not had to spot my prints.

  9. #29
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    TLR? SLR?

    I have owned both and can say they all have their good points. The one camera I truly regret selling was my yashica mat 124( and my M3 doublestroke). The Mamiya TLR's are great also, I had a 330 with the paramender etc. What I found I didn't like was the 6x6 format.....it just didn't work for me yet I have seen many others that do stunning work with it...I'm just challenged I guess. SLR's are great too but you are going way up in price, especially for a hassy. If you are not sure about moving up to med format try getting a good Yashica mat 124($200) and experiment. If you don't like med format it will still be worth the $200 when you are done. I would also suggest finding an inexpensive 6x9 folder these can be great camera's and the 6x9 is the same ratio as 35mm just a way bigger neg.
    No escaping it!
    I must step on fallen leaves
    to take this path

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by sparx
    I'm looking to move up to MF but am faced with a problem - price. The only MF SLR's even vaguely within my budget are Bonica 645's. Surfing through eBay has offered another route - Mamiya C330 TLR.

    Aside from the obvious problem with parallax error is there any reason why I shouldn't seriously consider this camera? The C series Mamiya's are particularly appealing because of their ability to change lenses but, unless i've misundestood, the C330 is the only one that can be changed with film in the camera.

    Please help.
    Please don’t confuse a “problem” with a feature – the parallax of a TLR, so often mentioned with respect to a disadvantage, is easily overcome with care in operation. And care of operation is one of the features of MF photography, isn’t it? Other “disadvantages” are also overstated in many contexts.

    One feature common to all TLRs, which I personally find bothersome sometimes. is the relatively dim finder(s). A rangefinder such as the Koni Omega mentioned in a previous post is very good if this is your personal problem. I love the lens system of the Rolli but I chose the Mamiya C330f for the interchangeable lens system. I never use a Yashica but believe you would be quite satisfied with one as an experiment to realize the potentials etc of the TLR system(s). Cost wise it may be your best deal.

    I have friends who use the Hassy system and frankly, though I would love to own one so I could say I own one, I have never been able to convince myself that 4-5 times the cost would be worth it. Sorry.
    I love the smell of fixer in the morning. It smells like...creativity!
    Truly, dr bob.

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