Bronnie vs Hassy - B&W only - What do I lose?
I've set my sights on a 6x6 system. My inclination is to Hasselblad but the Bronica is well respected system as well. I'm looking at Hassy C lenses and Bronica PS lenses and they'll be used solely for B&W with most of my work being nature and landscape subjects.
I'm planning on a 50/80/150 kit. Adding a 60 at a later time.
I like the fact that the Hassy is mechanical but I'm not against electronic cams. What do I give up from the Hassy if I go with the Bronica? I'm mainly concerned with contrast and sharpness but are there any functional issues that might pop up as well?
Thanks for you input. I've only been an active reader of this community for a short time but I have learned so much and I'm glad to be a part of it.
You give up it being mechanical, that's really about it.
Functionally, other than the fact that you're dead without batteries, I find my bronica much more capable than any of the Hasselblads I've used (Just 500s and 501s).
Contrast and Sharpness are for the most part indistinguishable.
The Bronica PS line of lenses are amazing.
There are never funny locking issues.
The advancing in the backs is always very consistant with near perfect spacing, even in the older backs.
MLU is easy to use, multiple exposures are easy (but not accidental).
You also gain the ability to use TTL flash and aperture priority metering through a prism.
Nothing to lose except for pretty chrome and operation without a battery.
Because I wanted a 6x6 that would run without batteries and I used a handheld meter anyway, I bought a Bronica SQB. Fully manual which suits my needs perfectly. I don't think I could tell the difference between a picture taken with a Hasselblad C lens and a Bronica PS lens, so to me it came down getting what I wanted out of a 6x6 at the best price, so I went with the SQB and it's just what I wanted.
Originally Posted by jmooney
I have both a Bronica 6x4.5 system and a Hassey CX-series.
What you "lose" with the Bronny is nothing more than the CZ lenses of the Hassey system (i.e. only a real Hassey fanatic would argue about the quality of simple light tight boxes with hand crank film advance mechanisms matter).
If you want to pay for German glass then you should go with a Hassey. If you consider the Japanese glass to be as good as German - then go with the Bronica.
Does that matter?
I'm not certain it does; but it can lead to "flame wars" to an extraordinary degree to point this out.
Such "wars" will include the superiority of glass that can involve historical, ethnic, racial and technological points of contention - to name just a few.
So, have fun reading the answers you get here.
You also might want to do a thread search here for other info and opinions - of which there are many.
Originally Posted by jmooney
As someone already mentioned brand comparisons are sure to get the folks excited. One area to investigate, if you plan to keep and use the system well into the future, is the availability of parts and service for whatever make and model you chose. My experience is that there are more repair options for Hasselblad (i.e., independent technicians).
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Rental may also be a point to consider: if you travel and suddenly break a lens, does it matter to you whether you can find a dealer with a spare one to rent for a day? In some situations, it doesn't matter (e.g. 6 month trekking in Central Asia...), but rental is also a good means to use the amazing lenses you don't need often, and can't justify buying.
Using film since before it was hip.
"One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal
, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11
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I have had several medium format systems such as pentax 645nii,pentax 67, bronica s2a (old...).
Now i bought a hassy 500cm with 80/150/250. I never believed the stories about the hassy lenses, until i made a comparison between my pentax 645 and hassy. It just looks better for me.... I can't tell if it is the sharpness, dof or both. It is just different and I like it.
Best would be to have several cameras besides each other and make the same pics, and afterwards see how they differ.
I've used Bronica for a decade and for a short while Hasselblad UK lent me a 501CM and lenses which I used alongside the Bronica, to persuade me to convert. Frankly I couldn't see enough difference in the photographs to make the move worthwhile.
Which is not to say that there aren't some factors you ought to think about.
The Bronica is to my mind more intuitive to use and won't jam so easily if you get sequencing wrong.
The point about repair availability above is probably valid. And there's another angle to it- it will be a lot better if you have a repair centre for your chosen brand convenient to your home. If that applies to one rather than the other then that would be enough to swing it for me, and my commitment to Bronica is not entirely divorced from the fact that the main UK repair centre is a fifteen minute drive away so I can meet the people doing the work and demonstrate a problem.
That said I think the average Hasselblad might suffer fewer reliability problems than the average Bronica of the same age. But note that I'm saying "average" and there will be troublesome Hasselblads just like unreliable Bronicas. It all depends on the precise example you buy and again, if I could find a camera with a known history of trouble free, steady but not hard use, then that would weigh heavily on my brand choice.
You'll save a lot of money buying a Bronica - or alternatively you'll get a lot newer camera/lenses for your money.
I'm personally not convinced by the "no battery" argument. It isn't hard to keep a spare set of LR44 in the bag and I've never found conditions that have made the batteries fail to function.
The name on the front matters a lot to some people. If you're the sort of person who will always have a thought at the back of your mind that a decision in favour of Bronica is a decision for second-best then get the Hasselblad now and enjoy it.
I find it hard to only go with reason in things like this. I have neither the Bronica or Hasselblad but personally, i would like to own a Hasselblad some day. I just like the look of it and don't have to convince myself with reason. (If I was to go with reason I would shoot digital, and how fun would that be?)
Oh Matti, now you've done it.
Originally Posted by matti