I have a C330S and love it. I would concur with Steve's comments re size and weight (and may steal them to use at a later date - he puts it so much better than I do! ). On good days it's known as "The Brick". On bad days it's known as "The Millstone"!
It does, however, make damn fine pictures. I have the 55, 80S and 180 Super lenses and all are diamond cutters. I use it exclusively for B&W - I did put a roll of Velvia through it and it exposed just fine, but the tonality was not the same as through my Nikon glass (which I find I prefer for this application).
My only real gripe is that a useless focussing scale and the lack of DoF preview conspire to make life tricky at times. This can be worked around with a hotshoe rangefinder and a DoF table, and it wouldn't stop me from recommending the camera system, but it's worth knowing about in advance.
All the best,
Last edited by FrankB; 03-22-2007 at 07:40 AM. Click to view previous post history.
The destination is important, but so is the journey
I've used Rolleiflexes and C330's extensively, though I have neither now. Both are excellent, but in different ways. If I were buying one now, I'd lean toward a Rollei because of the simplicity, light weight and optics, though there are no apologies to be made for the 330's optics.
As for the low-angle view problem, just focus on the screen then compose with the sports finder.
I have a Rollieflex, a Yashica Mat, and a Mamiya C220. It's the C220 every time for me. I love the interchangeable lenses, and my wife got a reflex hood for it on ebay that I like a lot. There's also an attachable handle (at the tripod 'port') that makes it very easy to handhold, although I always prefer to use a tripod. The bellows makes it a very competent close-up/macro kit when used with the paramender or comparable parallax 'fixer' (like marking a spot on the tripod center column that corresponds to the distance you need to raise the camera to overcome the parallax.) Though heavier by a good bit than the Rollie, or Yashica, I completely prefer it.
I have a C330 with 55mm, 105mm and 180mm and all apprpriate lens shades and paramender, you're more than welcome to borrow. I also have two Rolleicords and a Rolleiflex with Tessar you could try out. Unfortunately my Rolleiflex with the Planar needs a CLA.
You may have already realized this, but with the TLR you can hold it up over your head, ground glass down to frame and focus. This gets the camera up over peoples heads, even for you...
Originally Posted by copake_ham
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I have a pretty complete M/F SLR set. But if I'm going to be carrying that much weight I tend to go with 4x5. I'd have the same thoughts with a C330.
For on the go easy carrying M/F it's a Rolleiflex 3.5F for me.
Although they seem similar, a Rolleiflex and a Mamiya are completely different cameras. The Rolleiflex has one lens set; the Mamiya has interchangeable lenses. The Rolleiflex is small and light and unobtrusive and elegant; the Mamiya is none of these things. Hold both in your hands, and you will get the difference instantly.
In boating terms, a Rolleiflex is a sleek one-design; the Mamiya, a cabin criuiser, more flexible, but bigger and heavier. A Rolleiflex is a joy in the hand; the Mamiya is a chore to lug around.
Use your SLR for its interchangeable lenses, when you need that flexibility, but get a Rolleiflex for the times when you want to go strolling with your camera.
I haven't used the Mamiya, so I can't compare Rollei vs. Mamiya.
But... I'm one of the people mentioned several times that if reduced to one camera, I'd take the Rollei.
I have a Rolleicord V and a Rolleiflex of about the same vintage. I own perhaps a dozen cameras, nothing really expensive. Couple 6x9, couple 35mm SLR, 4 MF TLR, a Widelux 35mm.
But the Rolleis both feel precise in use, like a micrometer. They have great optics. Film is easy to load in both. Parts, service, and repair are easily available. They're reasonably small and light, while still being sufficiently robust that I can travel with them on motorcycle trips (sometimes even offroad motorcycle trips).
I prefer the crank wind and shutter release of my Rolleiflex. But my Rolleicord V has a bright viewscreen, with a "Rule of Thirds" grid just as I asked for when I had had it CLA'd. So the bright viewscreen usually trumps the 'Flex's crank and shutter button.
Someday I'll get around to putting a brightscreen in the Rolleiflex, and sell off the 'Cord. Someday.... but am in no hurry. I love 'em both.
I have not had any experience with the Mamiya C series TLRs. I have only had experience with several Rolleiflex F series and T series cameras, and a Yashica 124G. Though I do not use it that frequently my Rolleifelx 12/24 3.5F Zeiss Planar was my favorite of all my TLR cameras. As mentioned, elegant, well built, excellent balance, very good for parallax adjustment, and beautifully sharp lens with excellent color and contrast. The Zeiss Planar (2.8 and 3.5) and Schneider Xentar (2.8 and 3.5) lenses will give your Hassy lenses a run for their money and may actually outperform the Hassy lenses.