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  1. #1
    snegron's Avatar
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    Rollei 35 RF Feedback

    I have noticed that the Rollei 35 RF is in the same price range as the Bessa R2A. It is advertised as having an M mount and all metal (aluminum) body. Is this Rollei 35 RF comparable to the Bessa R2A? It looks similar in size and ergonomics to the Contax G series rangefinders. Anyone out there want to share experiences they have had with the Rollei 35RF?

  2. #2
    DBP
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    The Rollei has 40, 50, and 80mm framelines. Otherwise, it is essentially the same camera as the Bessa R2.

  3. #3
    snegron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DBP View Post
    The Rollei has 40, 50, and 80mm framelines. Otherwise, it is essentially the same camera as the Bessa R2.
    Thanks for the feed back. I tried looking up more info on the Rollei 35 RF, but there really is not much out there. Is it battery dependent like the R2A or mechanical speeds like the R2M?

  4. #4

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    It's mechanical like the R2M.

    For anyone who likes 40 mm lenses, it offers a nice alternative to the R3 because the magnification is the standard 0.7. The 40 mm frame lines are much easier to see thanthe ones on the R3 & the 80 mm frame lines work quite nicely with a 75 mm lens as well as with Rollei's 80.

  5. #5

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    Adding to what everyone said, the body of course is a silver powder finish with gray grips. The body is pure Cosina -- a repainted and rebadged Bessa-R2.

    However, that shouldn't dissuade you, because it's a very good camera. Ensure that the rangefinder image is accurate and not misaligned (still a Cosina weakness, some six years into production of various models).

    On the plus side, the body is reliable, and because it's a manual Copal shutter, the batteries are needed only for meter.

    Build quality of Sonnar lens is excellent, and the focal length makes it a nice all-purpose lens.

    I've not had any problems with this camera, other than the body picking up one nasty scratch.

    See my mini-review here. I meant to take a photo of the camera, but I've misplaced the camera in my room and can't seem to locate it.

  6. #6
    Mike Kovacs's Avatar
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    Mike, do you think its in the same league as your Zeiss Ikon RF?
    If it says Zeiss or Rollei, the answer is YES!
    My Flickr Gallery

  7. #7

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    No, not even close. The Rollei 35 RF is a nice camera, but it's still Cosina Voigtlander. The Zeiss Ikon is a much better camera. The Zeiss Ikon is tighter with a better rangefinder and a feel of precision -- more German than Japanese.

    My Rollei 35 RF rangefinder is out just a hair vertically (again, something that still seems to bedevil Cosina). And of course the mechanic Copal shutter in the Rollei has that somewhat loud Cosina "clack" while the modified electronic shutter on the Zeiss Ikon is more subdued.

    I always thought Rollei should have done more to differentiate its product from the Bessa-R2, beyond paint and body covering. Great lens, but nothing remarkable enough to pay extra for the Rollei.

    The one lens I would like to see return is the 135mm Sonnar. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

  8. #8
    DeanC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elekm View Post
    No, not even close. The Rollei 35 RF is a nice camera, but it's still Cosina Voigtlander. The Zeiss Ikon is a much better camera. The Zeiss Ikon is tighter with a better rangefinder and a feel of precision -- more German than Japanese.
    Um. Doesn't CV make the Zeiss Ikon?

    Dean

  9. #9

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    Cosina produces the Zeiss Ikon, but it is not a Cosina design. Cosina is the subcontractor making a product according to Carl Zeiss specifications and quality standards.

    There is some sharing of parts, but it is not a Cosina clone.

  10. #10
    DeanC's Avatar
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    Sure, but I think that makes the difference in quality more about the difference between $579 and $1300 than between Zeiss and CV.

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