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  1. #31

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    Of course if I knew my way around a handheld meter I would know how they work. That's kind of the definition of "knowing my way around" something.

  2. #32

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    h.v., what CGW was saying was that if you know how to use [any kind of] meter, you'd have no trouble using a [handheld] meter. I'll sum it up for you to the best of my ability, though:

    A handheld reflective meter works just like the one in your camera. You point it at the object you want to meter. No need for a laser or viewfinder, as the area it measures will have a relatively large radius. By contrast, an incident meter works almost in reverse: you hold the meter in front your subject and point it towards your camera lens. This measures the light falling on the subject, rather than the light reflected off of it. This negates the need for an 18% grey card in many (if not all?) cases. A spot meter was mentioned before - this is just a really accurate reflective meter, allowing you to meter a much smaller radius.

    I think that what CGW was getting at is that using a handheld meter will teach you about metering in a completely different and, in the end much more in-depth way than using an in-camera meter ever could.

    To his point, though, much of the above info is pretty easy to find. I think my first source with all of this was Wikipedia, actually. Some hands-on time with a meter will teach you far more than reading every could, though. If you have a DSLR (I know, I know...), try throwing it in manual mode and metering with a handheld meter. This will let you bracket and get a feel for metering without burning through yards of film and gallons of developer.

    Good luck.

  3. #33
    olleorama's Avatar
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    Look at youtube for using a light meter. Maybe you can find something on TLRs there too?

  4. #34

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    Gotta love YouTube. I'll restate my Wikipedia suggestion, as well.

  5. #35

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    Okay, sorry all for the late response ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Cole View Post
    As someone said, yeah, just buy LyleB's 124G. The G is fine, the 124 might be cheaper if you see one.
    I really hope this is the last time I have to mention that I don't currently have the funds for LyleB's 124G.

    I don't feel like pasting all that I'd need to paste to answer these inline so:

    1. Luna Pro SBC is just what I have. The Luna Pro F is the same, except it also works as a flash meter. There are many other good meters available. The earlier Luna Pro was designed for mercury cell batteries that are no longer available. There are work arounds to use them but the SBC uses a 9v battery, available anywhere. The point is to just be sure you can get batteries for your meter. The Luna Pros are very large though. Definitely a hand full, and for street shooting you might want to get something smaller. There are many on the market. Watch the classifieds here. Also as a direct answer to your question:

    http://www.largeformatphotography.in...ad.php?t=84013

    But as I said, that's a pretty physically large meter. Take a look at some currently available new:

    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/sc_sea...ers&rfnc=2609&

    EDIT: Oops, that's an older LunaPro, not an SBC. My mistake.

    Something like this is small and should work fine:

    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/401208...er?cat_id=2609

    Or if you prefer digital:

    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/4006-G...er?cat_id=2609

    You can get a good meter for less money used, of course.
    Thanks for the suggestions, but those are really expensive. I searched "Sekonic" on KEH and looks like a lot of EX+ for $7-25. I think that may be a better option. I'll also check local stores to see what they have to offer me.

    They do look strange to people who aren't photographers and most will have no idea what they are or what you are doing. But I never stick my meter in the face of someone I don't know well enough, either. Just meter something else in the same light - but it sounds like you are new enough to manually metering that this may take some practice. It's easy.
    Well, I guess if the meter is small enough, many wouldn't even notice. Anyways, I usually don't even meter the person before I take their picture with my 35mm camera as that would take to long and the moment would pass. I usually just meter the sidewalk and unless there is new lighting (such as shadows being cast) that generally works. The exposure isn't always right in the middle of the camera meter, but with the high dynamic range and whatnot, it turns out completely fine. I would assume that this is no different for 120 or 220.

    2. Any 124 or 124G will have a lens. The lens is not interchangeable so they don't list it separately. Likewise the WLF. It's an 80mm f/3.5, roughly equivalent to a 50mm on a 35mm camera. They also all have a WLF. That's just how they are made - it's built in. The Yashica also has a pop out magnifier that, by holding your eye close to the magnifier, gives an enlarged view of the ground glass. It also has a "sports finder" which is really just a framing aid. You can focus separately then use the sports finder to frame a shot from eye level.
    Yeah the 124/124G seems like a great camera (though I have a few questions about it posted at the end). After reading a bit more about the camera, and TLRs in general, I found the Mamiya TLRs are the only one with interchangeable lenses. Odd, but I guess Yashicas and Rolleis have high quality glass anyways, so it's not some cheap Kodak or Nikon electronic zoom lens for a point and shoot. Besides, I don't think I'd need anything other than 80mm, because I love 50mm in 35mm terms. If I need wider, I can always pull out another camera.

    The magnifier doesn't give a zoom effect. You can see all the way to the edge of the ground glass and the edge of your image, it just makes what you see look larger and thus easier to judge critical sharpness.
    Am I right in thinking the "ground glass" is the lower of the two lenses, or the one closest to the ground? If you're doing that, then what's the point of the top/upper lens?

    Download the manual if you're really interested in these cameras. It will make a lot of things more clear. The 124 and 124G also differ in how the pressure plate is set for 120 or 220 film. I have a 124 so I don't recall how the G works, but both will use both 120 and 220 film. This isn't a big thing nowadays as not much film is available in 220, though the excellent Kodak Portras ARE.
    Will most definitely look at the manuals. I was excited to learn more about 220 film, only to find out there is hardly any 220 film available. Oh well.

    Thanks!


    3. Metering - you don't "point a laser" at anything! For a reflected light reading you point the meter at the subject, or more specifically at a part of the subject you wish to render as a medium gray shade. An incident reading is taken (with a different meter or by setting a versatile meter for such) by holding the meter at the subject, pointing it at the camera, and reading the light falling on, rather than reflected off, the subject. By taking a reflected reading of a calibrated gray card (available online) you get the same reading as an incident reading and you're sure you're measuring a value that is the shade the meter is giving you an exposure for. By "metering for prevailing light" I just mean, well, just that. Meter a medium gray value, or a gray card, in the light like the subject and if the light is about the same you don't have to take another reading for each shot. I often just keep a guesstimate exposure set and "wing it" if I don't have time to meter it. This does take some practice and experience, though.
    What do you mean by medium grey shade? I'm assuming it has to do with the grey card. I had been informed years ago about grey cards but they were extremely hard for me to wrap my head around. I think that had to do with trying to understand the technology and thought behind it. Anyways, if I'm remembering correctly, you take this card of grey shade out with you and you meter off that to get the best possible exposure numbers. That incident meter seems more complex and annoying, so I think I'll look out for the reflected sort.

    If it's really important to have more than 12 shots (or 15 for a 645 format camera) you can get 220 film in the Portras and some Fujis (mostly aimed at those wedding photographers who still use film) with twice as much film and thus exposures on the roll. A roll of 120 is a bit cheaper, usually, than 36 exposures of 35mm but not greatly as it has nearly the same surface area coated with emulsion. You can also, as discussed here, carry an extra back, pre-loaded inserts, or just an extra camera depending on the type of camera.
    Well, there is apparently a local lab that will do 220 film, so I guess 220 is an option after all. I'd just have to get the film from out of province, I think. But hopefully I can get the hang of rewinding and loading so that it isn't the hassle that it sounds like it'll be. Then I can just bring multiple 120s.

    Because the Yashica Mats appear to be all in one, I wouldn't be able to bring an extra back pre-loaded with film , I suppose.

    4. The reason MF has less depth of field has to do with the lenses. A normal lens for 6x6 cm, like on my Yashica, is 80mm. It will have the same DOF as an 80mm lens would on a 35mm camera but that would be a short tele on a 35mm but normal on a 6x6. A 50mm lens on a 6x6 camera like the SQ-B would have the same depth of field as a 50mm on a 35 camera, but it would be a wide angle instead of a normal, and would have less depth of field than the 28mm lens on a 35mm camera that would give about the same amount of subject in the frame.

    I've bought a fair amount of stuff from KEH and never had a problem. But I think it would help you a lot to see some of this gear, if there's a local club or something where you could meet others that shoot MF.
    Thanks, that makes sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by EthanFrank View Post
    h.v., what CGW was saying was that if you know how to use [any kind of] meter, you'd have no trouble using a [handheld] meter. I'll sum it up for you to the best of my ability, though:

    A handheld reflective meter works just like the one in your camera. You point it at the object you want to meter. No need for a laser or viewfinder, as the area it measures will have a relatively large radius. By contrast, an incident meter works almost in reverse: you hold the meter in front your subject and point it towards your camera lens. This measures the light falling on the subject, rather than the light reflected off of it. This negates the need for an 18% grey card in many (if not all?) cases. A spot meter was mentioned before - this is just a really accurate reflective meter, allowing you to meter a much smaller radius.

    I think that what CGW was getting at is that using a handheld meter will teach you about metering in a completely different and, in the end much more in-depth way than using an in-camera meter ever could.

    To his point, though, much of the above info is pretty easy to find. I think my first source with all of this was Wikipedia, actually. Some hands-on time with a meter will teach you far more than reading every could, though. If you have a DSLR (I know, I know...), try throwing it in manual mode and metering with a handheld meter. This will let you bracket and get a feel for metering without burning through yards of film and gallons of developer.

    Good luck.
    Thank you for the in-depth explanation. So, if I use a reflective handheld meter, I must download that grey card and use that as well otherwise the meter would be rendered moot? As for DSLRs, I always do manual mode and manual metering (with in camera meter), same with 35mm SLRs. But I like your idea of trying the meter first with the digital to sort of learn my way around it before I start wasting film. Maybe with that in mind, I should look at buying the meter prior to the camera, because I know once I get the camera in my hands, I'd want to start using it rightaway, regardless of whether or not I've mastered my meter.

    Quote Originally Posted by olleorama View Post
    Look at youtube for using a light meter. Maybe you can find something on TLRs there too?
    That's actually a brilliant idea. How did I not think of that?

    ----

    Ok, some new stuff...

    120 developing

    So, I don't yet even process 35mm film, but I would eventually like to, probably in the coming months. I would probably like to do this as well with 120. Based on what I've read, it seems like the development process is similar, it's just that you need to use more chemicals per roll and that it's much trickier to reel off the roll of film. So my question is this: is it really that tricky? Is it something you get the hang of quickly?

    The Yashica Mat 124/124G

    So I read the 124G only has shutter speeds between 1 and 1/500. How do you guys make do with such limiting shutter speeds? 1/500th a second is surely not fast enough for getting big apertures when it's sunny outside. And I'd rather not forceably limit myself to shaded areas or overcast days, so is there still good depth of field at f/8 or higher? It's pretty medicore when used on my current systems. Even f/3.5 isn't really that great. I usually like f/2.8 or lower, but when it's sunny out I don't mind going up to f/5.6 or so.

    Anyways, I think the 124G is my top choice currently, followed by the Minolta Autocord.

    Thanks, everybody.

  6. #36
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    Am I right in thinking the "ground glass" is the lower of the two lenses, or the one closest to the ground? If you're doing that, then what's the point of the top/upper lens?
    In any twin lens reflex, the top lens is the one you actually see through. The bottom lens is the one that takes the picture. Look at a close up picture of any Mamiya twin lens and notice that the shutter and aperture ring is on the bottom or "taking" lens. The film is positioned directly behind the taking lens. There is a stationary mirror in the body of the camera positioned behind the "viewing" lens. Both the taking and the viewing lens will focus together at the film plane. The mirror mentioned above is stationary, unlike the mirror in any slr which moves out of the way to allow the film to be exposed. Light entering through the viewing lens (remember--there is no shutter or iris aperature blocking the light path) bounces of the stationary mirror and is reflected upward to the ground glass of the waist level finder. If you have the opportunity, try holding and looking at any brand of tlr; this will give you a much better idea of how this thing works. In your previous post you asked "how do you know that you've taken a picture" since there is no moving mirror and consequently no mirror blackout. Quite simply, you listen to the sound of your shutter going off. Theoretically, with far fewer moving parts, the time lag from pressing the shutter release to exposing the film should be far shorter than with any slr which has to raise up the mirror, stop down the aperture from it's natural wide open viewing and open the shutter before the film is exposed. In the tlr or rangefinder for that matter, you press the shutter release, the leaf shutter opens, the film is exposed and the shutter closes--that's it. Hope this helps in your decision making process.

  7. #37
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    One thing I don't think I saw mentioned (although there is a lot of text here!) is that the MF SLRs tend to be noisy because of all the mirror mechanism and size. I have a Bronica SQ-A and it sounds like a gunshot being fired compared with the little click out of my Yashica 124G. I have never used a Hasselblad or the Mamiya RB67, etc, so I can't compare to those. Not to be too negative, but I'd say your budget is a bit thin for medium format. With patience you can probably get something for that, but it may be a little more worn out. Many of these cameras are 20 to 30 years (or more) old, and were often used by commercial photographers, so they could suffer a bit in that process. In the Bronica SQ series, for reasons I have yet to understand, a body can often be had for less money than a WLF.

    I agree with the other comments about the virtual invisibility of TLRs -- maybe they're associated with grandparents or elderly uncles -- or maybe folks don't understand where they are pointed. I don't really do serious street shooting, but on the few occasions out in public where anyone has noted my Yashica, it was taken as an opportunity to reminisce about the good old days.

    DaveT

  8. #38

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    I should probably mention that I think I'm going to focus on a TLR vs MF SLR. Aside from the Bronica, they seem rather clunky and expensive. The Yashicas and Autocords I've seen are within my price range and still in good working condition, plus the TLRs just seem so neat and better suited for street photography. Based on the photos I've seen, both the 124G and Autocord have great image quality, even though I don't recall ever seeing either used by pros or for high art stuff (always Rollei if it's a TLR, it seems).

    Agfarapid: Yeah, that's how I read TLRs worked. So what is this "ground glass" thing? I kind of assumed that you could hear a quiet leaf shutter clicking with a TLR to know you have taken a picture. I was just kind of stating it based on my background. I'm used to the screen blacking out, so if a camera isn't doing that then I'm immediately thinking, well then how on earth do you know if you've taken a picture? Obviously, you can tell by pushing the shutter and then the click of the shutter.

  9. #39

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    Get an Autocord. Send it to Karl Bryan who will overhaul it, clean it up, get it working smoothly. And then go shoot for the next ten years or so. For real fun, scab a Hasselblad NC-2 prism on top. This shows a Yahsica-Mat with the prism, but the prism is now on an Autocord. The lever focusing on the Autocord is very quick and responsive, and the prism gives a corrected view-

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The first 36 of the first group and all of the second group were shot with this setup-
    http://dandaniel.zenfolio.com/p92646000
    http://dandaniel.zenfolio.com/p311823083

    A shutter release has a feel. A good release will have a bit of loose travel, a bit of resistance, and at some consistent point the shutter fires. After you use a camera a bit, you get a handle on just where the actual release moment is in the travel, what it feels like, etc. Both TLR and rangefinder cameras have no mirror black-out. Neither do view cameras. Or Brownies and folders. And most Polaroids.
    Last edited by Dan Daniel; 12-10-2011 at 01:33 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by h.v. View Post
    So what is this "ground glass" thing?
    The ground glass is the focusing screen-the translucent matte surface upon which appears the image you look at while focusing, framing and composing.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.



 

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