Originally Posted by scott k
they are cheaper than hasselblad - Mamiya 6 or 7..
(but I don't know your price range - just bought one for 800$ - it's a lot of money, but cheap for that kind of camera..)
I happen to be partial to Hasselblads, and have no hesitation in using it as a walking around camera.
However, yes, from what I've seen, the Mamiya 7 is that good. I'd even venture to say it would take top drawer optics on the 4x5 to outperform a Mamiya 7.
Personally, I wouldn't have an over/under camera - that's a better configuration for a skeet shotgun. Rangefinders, while sometimes adequate, eventually will make you wish you could have seen what the film sees.
I have both the Hassy and RB67 systems and, even tho both present their own particular pains in the drain, they have their place, but ... that's only one person's opinion - I'm certainly not the "end-all" in this arena.
"Beer is proof that God wants us to be happy."
If you aren't printing square then why not 645?
Plenty of choices. Bronica,Mamiya or Pentax. I'd lean towards a system camera like the Bronica. Fairly cheap.
I'd not try to solve to many problems with one body. Pick the most important one or two problems and find a system that solves them.
Medium format RFs are a weapon for easily portable scenic / landscape photography, truly remarkable for wide work, albeit inappropriate for some other things where very precise framing is essential. An RB or RZ would be great for closeups and portraiture and macro and such, and there is a shift lens, but this camera was not designed ot do everything. The fuji gx680 family might be more appropriate for indoor and architectural stuff if minor shifts and tilts are needed, but it is a hefty piece.
I have a Horseman VH, which is a mini-view camera that takes a number of LF lenses and 3.25x2.25" sheets, the Horseman 6x9 back, and the rb 6x7 and 6x8 backs, among others. Very versatile, but.... not so good for wide, for that I have an adapter gizmo that I made. But you might consider scaling down to something like a Horseman or Galvin. The Horseman collapses to a tidy little package about half the size and weight of an rb, with a lens inside! Quite cute. But... at soem point, one has to do the math and decide whether standard LF lenses on a medium format body are the best way to go. For many/most things, I think the system is a winner, but for other things....
Overall, though, I am quite convinced that the rb system is the best deal on wheels, it's super modular and robust. Much is said about its heft; when travelling, if you pack in a couple lenses, those lenses and backs really add weight and are rather bulky. But... once I'm set up, I'm very happy to have its stability, and I see absolutely no compromises in the newer lenses.
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Like you, I also shoot mostly B&W landscapes with the occassionally something else thrown in. My main camera is my Tachihara 4x5. My #2 camera, which I had prior to moving up to 4x5, is a Bronica SQa. Great camera with very good lenses. And right now, extremely cheap, too cheap in fact. I've greatly reduced my Broncia outfit, from 2 bodies and 5 lenses to 1 body and 3 lenses. But still, my Tachihara outfit is lighter to carry around (minus the film holders), and in the NM mountains, that means a lot.
As Nick mentioned above, if you're not printing the 6x6 square, you could look at a Bronica ETRS outfit; lighter weight than the SQA but just as cheap.
Or, if you don't like hauling a bunch of 4x5 film holders around all the time, get a 6x7 back for the 4x5. I have a Calument C2 in 6x7 and also an old Adapt-A-Roll 620 back in 6x9. For me, they come in handy for shooting color.
I have definitely considered a 120 back for the Shen Hao, maybe even one of the 6x12 backs.
Originally Posted by r-brian
I'm not getting any younger and I'd like to get some hight quality film images from mountain tops so light weight would be very nice. I've thought about building a 4x5 'hobo' style camera for my 90mm Super Angulon for such occasions but I don't know if I'll do that. Besides the weight of the film holders, tripod and all the other accessories is at least half of the issue.
When not using my Shen Hao, I use my SQA. One body, three backs and three lenses covers most eventualities and weighs in at about half my Shen Hao kit with 10 holders and 3 lenses (excluding the tripod). The Bronica lenses are electronically timed (leaf shutter in the lens, electronics in the body) so it does need a battery to work (with one manual "emergency" speed).
Good luck, Bob.
There's always the oft-forgotten Bronica GS-1. It's a (slightly) smaller and lighter version of the Mamiya 6x7 SLR's, though arguably not as robust. I am able to handhold mine for an afternoon and not come home with back problems.
"Technology is a big destroyer of emotion and truth. Opportunity doesn't do anything for creativity. Yeah, it makes it easier and you can get home sooner, but it doesn't make you a more creative person. That's the disease you have to fight in any creative field.. ease of use." - Jack White
(Don't flame me too hard for this...)
The Mamiya 7 is a great camera if you like wide to normal lenses. The 150mm sucks and the 210 is pointless. So, you can buy the 43mm, 50mm, 65mm or 80mm. It's quiet and lightweight. As a two lens kit, I would go with the 50mm and the 80mm.
But I am seriously partial to my Hasselblad 503cw. I've owned a mamiya 6, mamiya 7, pentax 67, and a Fuji 6x9 but I always go back to the Hasselblad. I've taken the camera all over the place without ever an issue. With the way prices are falling, you can do pretty good with a tight budget, which you did not mention the amount.
If you do buy a Hasselblad, buy CF or CFi/CFe lenses as the older C type lenses are getting harder and harder to find parts for.
The Hasselblad can be transformed into anything you want it to be. It has the waist level view finder, a 45 degree and a 90 degree view finder. You can shoot 6x4.5 and 6x6. Lenses for the 500 series camera are 30mm 40mm 50mm 65mm 80mm 100mm 120mm 150mm 180mm 250mm.
Landscapes to weddings, it's a great system.