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  1. #11
    fotch's Avatar
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    The recommendation of the baby press camera is right on. Easy to shoot handheld, or as a field camera with limited movements, ground glass, close up capacity.

    Interchangeable roll film backs for any of the formats or sheet film.

    What more can you want?
    Items for sale or trade at www.Camera35.com

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by thegman View Post
    Hello all,
    Currently I shoot almost exclusively 35mm, only stopping to shoot a little digital if I don't want to carry my Zeiss Ikon. I'm now interested in trying medium format, and have a few questions.

    I'm looking to blow up pretty big, maybe 40" across if I take a photo worthy of it, is it worth getting a 6x7 camera vs. 6 x 4.5 to squeeze out a bit more resolution or is 6 x 4.5 enough for most things?

    I don't like the idea of buying into a dead system, I think it make investing in lenses a bit of a worry, so I'm currently considering:

    Mamiya 645 AFD - These are inexpensive, modern and wide angle lenses are cheap.

    Mamiya 7 - 6x7 negative is probably a good thing, the range finder system I am used to, and they are pretty portable, only downside is the price of the body and a wide angle lens. And the range finder, much as I like them, does not allow precise framing.

    Hasselblad 503cx - Inexpensive, legendary, but maybe the most cumbersome to use.

    Fujifilm GF670 - The most expensive, 80mm lens may not suit me, but it's drop dead gorgeous and it's portability is probably the best.

    At the moment the 645AFD is winning, on price, modernity, and cheap wide angle lens availability. I wonder about portability though. Is there anything else I should be considering?

    Thanks a lot!

    Garry
    Not to be a party pooper, but if you really need to blow up to 40 inches wide, I'd go for a 4x5 camera. There are many excellent models for very little money, and many of them can be used hand held, if the light is strong enough. Then again, if I wanted to blow something up to 40 inches wide, I also would likely not be shooting hand held.

    If you insist on medium format, I would suggest a 6x9 camera, for sheer negative width (as well as the aspect ratio that it shares with standard 35mm cameras). I am partial to the Mamiya Press system for shooting this format hand held (or on a tripod, for that matter ), but there are several Fuji rangefinders that shot this format, and lots of medium format press cameras that do so.

    Also: Since when has the Mamiya AFD been inexpensive? There are many other 645 options that are just as good (better, I would opine), and for far less money, including Mamiya's own pre-AF models.
    Last edited by 2F/2F; 07-16-2010 at 07:56 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  3. #13
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    If you really, really want to enlarge to 40 inches and maintain quality, 4x5 would be my minimum....5x7 or 8x10 would be even better. If you really want to shoot handheld, I'd consider the Hasselblad (most flexible, high quality), Mamiya 7 (bigger neg, more expensive, limited lens options, great handheld), or a Rolleiflex TLR (exquisite, old, wonderful). I have both a Rollei and a Hasselblad. The Rollei is wonderful to shoot handheld plus is is small and light....and limited to a single lens. The hasselblad is way more versatile and can shoot at very short focusing distances with tubes. It is handholdable, but is happier on a tripod. For me, the upper limit for 6x6 negatives is about 20x20.....I can't enlarge beyond that anyway!

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    If you really, really want to enlarge to 40 inches and maintain quality, 4x5 would be my minimum....5x7 or 8x10 would be even better. If you really want to shoot handheld, I'd consider the Hasselblad (most flexible, high quality), Mamiya 7 (bigger neg, more expensive, limited lens options, great handheld), or a Rolleiflex TLR (exquisite, old, wonderful). I have both a Rollei and a Hasselblad. The Rollei is wonderful to shoot handheld plus is is small and light....and limited to a single lens. The hasselblad is way more versatile and can shoot at very short focusing distances with tubes. It is handholdable, but is happier on a tripod. For me, the upper limit for 6x6 negatives is about 20x20.....I can't enlarge beyond that anyway!
    If by hand held you mean standing solidly in one place, taking your time to compose and focus, holding the camera very still against your chest and gently firing the shutter, I will argue that any leaf shutter camera with a waist level finder will do just as well as a Hasselblad (for instance, Mamiya RB/RZ).

    If you mean shooting action, then I will agree with you that a Hassy is better, due to its easier/accurater () follow focusing and smaller/lighter characteristics.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  5. #15
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    I have enlarged both color and black & white to 24"x36" from 35mm.

    That said. I had a Mamiya C-330 and now I have a Hasselblad 503 CX and a Hasselblad 903 SWC. Hasselblad with a prism handles like a large 35mm camera. It is easy to use hand held. It is smaller and less bulky than Bronicas or equivalent Mamiyas.

    You should go to camera stores and handle any camera that you are thinking of buying. Perhaps renting. That will answer the important questions about YOUR handling the camera that no one here can answer for you.

    I do not think that you will be dissappointed with a Hasselblad. It is a complete and large system with lots of backs, lenses and other parts readily available.

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  6. #16

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    Precise composition=SLR, compact=Hasselblad
    Soft release, leaf shutter, not as precise composition capability=Mamiya 7ll.
    Quality lenses=either.
    IMO the Hasselblad actually feels smaller than the Mamiya and with the pistol grip beneath the camera is very easy to handle.
    With the grip your left hand supports the camera and trips the shutter, your right hand adjusts speed, aperture and advances film.
    For use with moving subjects the Mamiya because the image is right side up. With the Hasselblad the image doesn't move the same direction on the screen when you move the camera. If you add a prism the camera becomes very heavy relative to the Mamiya.
    Heavily sedated for your protection.

  7. #17
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2F/2F View Post
    If by hand held you mean standing solidly in one place, taking your time to compose and focus, holding the camera very still against your chest and gently firing the shutter, I will argue that any leaf shutter camera with a waist level finder will do just as well as a Hasselblad (for instance, Mamiya RB/RZ).

    If you mean shooting action, then I will agree with you that a Hassy is better, due to its easier/accurater () follow focusing and smaller/lighter characteristics.
    I just don't have the arm strength to handhold those RB/RZ/Pentax 67s

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    I just don't have the arm strength to handhold those RB/RZ/Pentax 67s
    You don't need arm strength! Hang it around your neck, let it rest against your chest, and use the WLF. My whole point was that when doing this, there will be no difference in hand holding ability between these cameras and a Hassy. Add a left hand grip with a hole for a cable release and you are even more stable.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

    - Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)

  9. #19
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    I guess I'm biased but the manual Mamiya 645 has produced prints for me that are 40 inches across with excellent sharpness. It's an inexpensive system with great glass (try the 45mm 2,8!) and excellent build quality. It's fast handling--I've personally found it more pleasant to use than a Hassy-- with a wealth of accessories. My next suggestion would probably be an RB. Excellent lenses, inexpensive (full kit for about $350) and huge negatives. You should just try renting a system for the weekend and see what make you happy.

  10. #20

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    I agree with the 6x7 or larger suggestion... 6x4.5 just isn't enough of an upgrade over 35mm IMO. My vote is for the mamiya 7, as it's far less bulky then a 6x7 slr.

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