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  1. #1
    Jaime Marin's Avatar
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    Nikon FE Medium Format Equivalent ?

    I really want to start shooting medium format but I feel like this is a whole different ball park from my 35mm experiences. I currently have a Nikon FE. Is there any Medium Format camera out there that has similar features to my FE? As in metering and mostly manual operation? Any other suggestions as to a easy to use and quality MF camera would be great too. Thanks!

  2. #2
    tomalophicon's Avatar
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    Try the Pentax 67

  3. #3
    MattKing's Avatar
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    A Mamiya 645e has some similarities.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  4. #4
    Mark Fisher's Avatar
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    Based on your question, consider a Pentax 645...but a lot depends on what kind of photography you wish to do. If it is a lot of hand held work, the P645 is a good option. The Pentax 67 looks and to some extent behaves like a big 35mm camera if you have a metering prism, it is really big and heavy. Some folks use it handheld, but most people keep it permanently mounted to a heavy tripod. If you mostly work off a tripod, though (I do), it is a great option. If you really want to work with an in-camera meter, you could also consider any camera (like Bronicas) with a metering prism, but they do handle much differently than a 35mm.

    Personally, though, I'd recommend learning how to hand meter regardless of the camera you get. The metering will be more accurate as you learn how to do it plus it forces you to think about your exposure and lighting more. It really isn't that difficult or inconvenient. That opens up pretty much all options in medium format.
    Last edited by Mark Fisher; 08-05-2011 at 02:53 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  5. #5

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    Must it be an SLR? If not, the Mamiya 7 has a built in meter, very easy to use, and quiet as a mouse. Also Rolleiflexes are small, and some have meters.

  6. #6
    2F/2F's Avatar
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    I'd go for Mamiya, Pentax, or Bronica 6x4.5 cameras. Though the Pentax 6x7 is laid out a pretty much just like a 35mm SLR, I actually think the Bronica 6x4.5 SLRs with the thumb winder feel the most like a 35 of any medium format camera I've used. They are smaller/lighter than the P67's, and they are a bit closer to the 35mm aspect ratio. None of the 6x4.5's I named feel that much different than a 35mm camera to me. In fact, they are the about same size as – or even smaller than – some modern SLR cameras with zoom lenses.

    My personal favorites are the '80's Mamiyas with exchangeable magazines and a right hand grip. They feel the most intuitive to use to my mind/hand. That will vary person to person, though. Maybe you can go to a camera swap meet and try out a few different kinds to see how they feel.
    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)

  7. #7

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    Owning,and really liking,the FE2 and MD12 motor,I think you would really enjoy the 645 Bronica ETRSi with its associated motor drive.
    My ETR never had the motor, just the thumb-wind speedgrip, but it was the goods for wedding photography in the day.
    Later, a Hasselblad ELM - but,15 frames before you reload is arguably better than 12.

  8. #8
    bushpig's Avatar
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    Too vague a question, Jaime.

    You need to specify what format you want to shoot (6x4.5, 6x6, 6x7!, 6x9, etc). That plays a huge part.

    Also, what sorts of subjects you enjoy shooting helps too.

    And let's not forget budget!

    I personally own 3 medium format cameras: A Zeiss Ikon 6x4.5 (about to be given to a good friend), a Koni-Omega Rapid M (Awesome and Konica, but rangefinder and I prefer SLR), and a Mamiya RB67 Pro S (My main shooter).

    Listen to every suggestion, and try to find people near you with the cameras so you can hold them and see what you like.

    Also, DON'T let ANYONE tell you that the RB67 cannot be handheld!

    "Don't believe the hype"
    -Public Enemy

  9. #9

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    Rollei 6000 series.

  10. #10

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    I can only speak from experience and would say if you are looking for the closest match then Mamiya M645 1000S is the way to go. I owned and loved my Nikon cameras from years past and my two main cameras were the Nikon F2 with the DP12 finder (F2AS) and the FE2. I ran more film through the FE2 and truly loved that camera. About four years ago a fellow wanted to sell a Mamiya M645 1000S kit to me and the price was to good to pass up. The camera had only four rolls run through it and look as if it were bought yesterday. I mean like new! It came with 55mm, 80mm f1.8, 210mm lenses, Plus, a standard prism, AE prism, waist level, sports finder, all the manuals and a beautiful aluminum case. I set it aside as no.1 I'm not a big 645 format fan and no.2 I already had a Pentax 67 outfit, two Rollei's, Hassy SWC and three other Hassy SLR's. One day I thought I'd try it out and was really taken by how much it reminded me of the FE2. I then picked up a winder for it and it really did some singing. With the AE prism and winder it was like using a slightly large FE2 with winder. I could set it on aperture preferred and blast away. Well, the winder is a little slower so I should say shoot away instead of blast away. The only drawback to this system was that it took film inserts instead of interchangeable backs, but your FE or FE2 doesn't have that anyway. Now, some other cameras might be closer to your FE, but for me, this was a perfect match and the lenses on this camera were excellent. In fact I couldn't believe how good that 210mm was. Alas, like most of my film stuff it's gone now, but certainly not forgotten. JohnW

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