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  1. #11
    guitstik's Avatar
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    I have all the cameras that have been mentioned and a few that have not. In the 40's and 50's there were several Japanese companies that were building TLR's, I have a Walzflex that takes fantastic pictures but it did need a service to fix a few minor problems. Check out this page for a list of cameras http://www.tlr-cameras.com/japanese/index.html and Google TLR's to find more. There are plenty out there that can be had a good price. The one that I get good results with is my Argoflex. Argus is an American company that produced many fine cameras back in the 30's (note that I said "is", they are still in business), they made several cheap TLR's but if you can find the early Argoflex, they are easy to work on and take some great pictures and I only payed $30 USD for it.
    Thy heart -- thy heart! -- I wake and sigh,
    And sleep to dream till day
    Of the truth that gold can never buy
    Of the bawbles that it may.

    www.silverhalidephotography.com

  2. #12

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    Another TLR that I have and use often is a Weltaflex, I only paid around £40 for it, and the Meritar lens stopped down to around 5.6 is very sharp, it is not as rugged as the Rollei's, but it delivers good results,is light to carry, the only dis advantage, which for me is very small, is it is red window wind, but in 3 years it has not given a problem, and has been used a lot,was my favorite until I got the rollei's, another worth considering is a MPP Microcord 2, with the prontor shutter and the Ross xpres lens, in my opion, having used several cameras with that lens,better than the tesser that it was copied from,Richard

  3. #13
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    Rolleiflexes are not that expensive unless you go after certain models. I'd look for a 3.5F with the Xenotar lens, not the Planar. You won't be able to tell the difference between the results from the two lenses, but people will pay twice as much for the one with the Planar. I think you can get a user one for under $400. IMO, they are one of the best Rolleis for a user, especially if you get one with 220 capability.

    Go with a Rolleicord and things get even cheaper. They are often sold for under $200, and more beat up ones can even go for under $100 sometimes.
    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)

  4. #14

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    How much of a real difference am I going to see in my negatives between the various more popular TLR's?

  5. #15
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    The post WWII TLR's have coated lenses, the Yashica yashinons are good stopped down but they are a little prone to flare, the Rolleiflex's with Xenar's and Tessar's are a little less prone to flare but all these lenses are Tessar designs and sfter at wider apertures, particularly at the edges and corners.

    The Rolleiflex's with Xenotar & planar lenses are very much sharper at wider apertures, and are just as good as Hasselblad, Mamiya, Bronica etclenses, but by about f11 the Tessar type lenses catch up.

    Ian

  6. #16

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    That depends entirely on your idea of image quality. A camera with Zeiss or Schneider lenses is nothing to sneeze at. I'd choose based on based on camera condition, build quality and lens quality. As someone said, all of these are getting old. A broken camera with a great lens is pretty useless. Will you see a difference between an image made with a Rollei versus a Yashica? Maybe, depending on the conditions. Just going from 35mm to 120 film is going to give your images a big boost regardless of the camera involved. As with anything, you get what you pay for. I personally own a 1953 Rollei 2.8C. I love it and it has produced good images for me for 30 years now. I've used it a lot. I'll never sell it.

    Peter Gomena

  7. #17

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    What is expensive?

    You said Rollei's are expensive, but look at it this way. If you buy a $500 camera and use it for a few years, and then sell it for $450, you have had a top of the line camera for only $50. Others will pay $50 for a camera and not get the enjoyment out of it that they would from an expensive camera, and when it jams up in a few years, they will have a camera that is not worth repairing. Get what you want and don't worry about the money, unless ofcourse you can't afford it. This applies to most things in life, not just cameras. Ric.

  8. #18

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    Take a look at the 3 series Mamiya TLRs (C3, C330, etc.). It was the the only system to have interchangeable lenses. And because of that, it camera has a very long bellows draw which allows for really nice close-ups. The 2 series is similar except the winding on and cooking the shutter are separate actions. The down side is they are a little bigger and heavier than the Rollei style TLRs.

    Minolta also made very nice TLRs in the vein of the Rolleis.

  9. #19

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    I have a Yashica A and D. Happy with both. The D had a gummed up shutter when I got it. A very quick trip to Dean's Photographica for a CLA (under $60) and it's working beautifully now.

    Unfortunately, I see on Dean's site that he is no longer accepting new repair work. These are simple cameras, so I'm sure you would not find it difficult to find another repair shop.

    Unfortunately, this will probably become more of a problem as the older repair men, the ones with the real experience working on these old models, retire completely. This is the reason I'm sending most of my old bodies in for overhaul as I can afford it. I figure do it now, while it's still relatively cheap. That way, they should last for another couple of decades anyway, and it will be a plus if I ever want to sell them.
    Last edited by LyleB; 01-29-2011 at 12:15 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  10. #20
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    There's 3 or 4 quite nice Rolleiflex's/Rolleicords for sale via a UK dealer all sub £100/$160, they are post WWII so with coated Xenars and Tessars. I'm quite tempted to get one to replace my Yashicamat 124

    But then I think, well I know, maybe I'd be better paying a little more, get a good 60's Rolleiiflex with a Xenotar or Planar, a user - mechanically & optically sound but not mint though . . . . .

    Ian

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