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Thread: Going bessa?

  1. #51
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    I just got back from a low light project shooting an autofocus Nikon SLR and a Bessa R4. It was not too dim, but I was using slow wide lenses and EI 200 with flash. (Non-flash reading with the Bessa was f4 at 1/8). I can't say one is better than the other in terms of low light focus, they both have advantages and disadvantages. I was using wide angle lenses (35mm and 21mm) and near the end of the night I had pretty much reverted back to zone focus for both cameras.

  2. #52
    Rol_Lei Nut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dugrant153 View Post
    Well, I received the NikonF3 H2 screen and it's actually made focusing worse for me when light is low.... believe it or not. I guess maybe a G2 screen might fit the bill but at this point I think I'm done trying to make this work for low light. When there's plenty of light, it's good. I think this screen requires some amount of light to work. :P
    Rollei_Nut softly mumbles to the wind something about Leicaflex SLs...
    M6, SL, SL2, R5, P6x7, SL3003, SL35-E, F, F2, FM, FE-2, Varex IIa

  3. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rol_Lei Nut View Post
    Rollei_Nut softly mumbles to the wind something about Leicaflex SLs...
    I just tried an R5 (big mistake) and it's an amazingly beautiful camera .

    I managed to play around with a Bessa L (body only - no VF). It really felt like a toy and it was super light. Mind you, no lens or VF attached but I got the sense that it would not last my wedding assignments. Maybe that's just the feel but the build quality may be deceptively better than I thought? I think the R3M is of much better construction, if I remember correctly.

  4. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Corneau View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong but Bessa's require batteries, no? That alone would rule out a body for me.
    As someone else pointed out, this isn't accurate--there is no battery-reliant Bessa without a mechanical sibling.

    But secondly... you're already carrying film that you have to change every 40 frames, max (if you bulk-load your own 135). A battery is 1/50th the size and weight and you have to change it once every few years. You're worried about being battery-reliant? Seriously? If you're on a critical assignment, you'll have a second or third body anyway. My eyes roll so hard they fall out every time I see this line. Nothing personal, I just can't begin to understand. Especially from Leicaphiles, who happily use cameras whose focusing mechanism is rendered unpredictable from a bump against the wall.
    -brian hayden
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  5. #55

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    Quote Originally Posted by zumbido View Post
    But secondly... you're already carrying film that you have to change every 40 frames, max (if you bulk-load your own 135). A battery is 1/50th the size and weight and you have to change it once every few years. You're worried about being battery-reliant? Seriously? If you're on a critical assignment, you'll have a second or third body anyway. My eyes roll so hard they fall out every time I see this line. Nothing personal, I just can't begin to understand. Especially from Leicaphiles, who happily use cameras whose focusing mechanism is rendered unpredictable from a bump against the wall.
    I don't think pros worry about it that much, but hobbyist travel photographers can get bitten pretty badly by a dead battery at the wrong time. I only packed one camera because of limited space and a recalcitrant spouse, I remembered to load up my pockets with film but didn't remember that I might need a battery (hey, I haven't needed one in the last few years!), and I'm halfway up a mountain in Outer Elbonia when suddenly my camera poops out on me. Avoidable with some foresight, but mighty unpleasant if it happens and arguably a good reason to favor cameras that, at least, aren't *dead* dead if you made that mistake.

    Arguably, everybody should be able to plan ahead and cover themselves for this kind of thing. On the other hand, it can be kind of nice to have one thing less to worry about. It's enough to make me prefer a mechanical shutter, all other things being equal; but I'm kind of flaky about planning ahead and more organized people may not care.

    -NT
    Nathan Tenny
    San Diego, CA, USA

    The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
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  6. #56

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    How is good is the Bessa viewfinder for users with eyeglasses?
    "Far more critical than what we know or do not know is what we do not want to know." - Eric Hoffer

  7. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by mgb74 View Post
    How is good is the Bessa viewfinder for users with eyeglasses?
    It doesn't bother me---I haven't noticed the framelines blacking out or anything, and I think I have good visibility to the edge, although since I don't have a 35mm lens I haven't really checked.

    -NT
    Nathan Tenny
    San Diego, CA, USA

    The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
    -The Little Technical Library, _Developing, Printing, And Enlarging_

  8. #58

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    So I just heard from my loc photo shop that the distributor for Voigtlander in Canada has gone out of business. Soooo.. no new Bessa's in Canada for awhile.

    Looks like the used market is the way to go ... At least in Canada!

  9. #59
    Colin Corneau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zumbido View Post
    As someone else pointed out, this isn't accurate--there is no battery-reliant Bessa without a mechanical sibling.

    But secondly... you're already carrying film that you have to change every 40 frames, max (if you bulk-load your own 135). A battery is 1/50th the size and weight and you have to change it once every few years. You're worried about being battery-reliant? Seriously? If you're on a critical assignment, you'll have a second or third body anyway. My eyes roll so hard they fall out every time I see this line. Nothing personal, I just can't begin to understand. Especially from Leicaphiles, who happily use cameras whose focusing mechanism is rendered unpredictable from a bump against the wall.

    Well, good luck with that ocular condition of yours but keep in mind batteries = fail for a whole lot of other reasons than just wearing out.

    They also fail in cold weather. Not even that cold, to judge from the experience of a friend of mine this past year. Nothing matters other than missing the shot.

    I'm also mistrustful of extra electronics that, frankly, you don't need. It's just one more thing to go wrong. And when things go wrong, you don't get the shot (see:above).'

    Getting into pissing matches over brand names is childish, but I've yet to have this 'bump on the wall' syndrome you speak of, and neither has anyone I know. I'm just sayin'...
    "Never criticize someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes. That way, you're a mile away and you've got their shoes."

    MY BLOG - www.reservedatalltimes.com
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  10. #60
    Colin Corneau's Avatar
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    I'm also just sayin' that a used Leica -- one of those mechanical bodies -- can be had for near the price of a new Bessa. An M2, M3 or M4 body are out there. Mechanical Bessa bodies are also the way to go, if that's viable, although I'm not familiar with those offerings...best of luck with the search.
    "Never criticize someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes. That way, you're a mile away and you've got their shoes."

    MY BLOG - www.reservedatalltimes.com
    YOU SHOULD LOOK AT THIS SITE - www.colincorneau.com
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