You say you like to take people pictures, but how? Street photography, posed, studio? Bear in mind that using a MF camera with a waist level finder means just that, you'll be shooting from the vantage point of your stomach, about the viewpoint of about an 8 year old child. This would probably be most noticeable if you were fairly close to a standing subject, but still it's a different perspective than eye level. If you don't enlarge more than 11x14, your probably not going to notice the difference between 6x7 and 645. The 645 is a much easier camera to handle. I've used all medium formats and found that to me the Pentax or Mamiya 645s with eye level prisms are the easiest to use if your out and about. The basic Pentax has the advantage of multiple exposure choices including my favorite, aperture priority, and a built in motor drive. I also like the old Rolleiflex and Rolleicord cameras, as they are light and have decent lenses. (the newer ones have better lenses) The RB67 and RZ67s are great cameras, but are heavy and somewhat awkward to use hand held. If money is no object buy a Hasselblad. It'll last forever, and give as sharp a picture as you can take. If money is a real issue, buy a Holga, and just have fun taking weird pictures. There are lots of options for you to choose from, and you will definitely see the difference from 35mm with almost all of them. (except maybe the Holga) Good luck, and try to enjoy the process.
hmm, lots to think about. I'm not stuck on 6x7, actually would prefer 6x6 but can't afford a 'blad (really mostly caught my attention cause the price on the RB67 was so low)
about the people pictures, my favourite is studio - though that is not that accessible all the time, so mostly 'life'/journalism styled
Many TLRs are reasonable, and I've even thought about getting one.
The reason I don't is because the RB's modular system is so darn handy that it can adapt to almost any need. It even seems to me that there's a nice 6x6 shot in every 6x7 frame if I want it.
Go with the RB67, just can't beat it.
I bought a Yashica 124G a couple months ago, and have been continually impressed.
My 1st foray into MF was with a TLR. A Yashica Mat124 - what a great experience that was. It got me hooked into MF with it's amazing "feel" and *HUGE* negatives. Since i really like Minolta, i flipped when i learned Minolta made a TLR (the Autocord). I promptly sourced one and love it.
Fortunately/unfortunately i met someone who had a Mamiya RB67 Pro-S. It was "love at 1st sight"! I was immediately intrigued with it's Revolving Back (RB) and how modular the camera is. Everything from a nice selection of lenses, formats (more than just 6x7), view-finders and more!!! Also, these cameras are/were professional grade/quality through and through so image quality potential was top notch. The cameras are also reknown for durability - something important for me because i take my camera outdoors alot. And finally, the price of admission was very low - especially for the quality received.
You should look at the Bronica GS-1 as well. Its smaller and easier to handle than the RB/RZ cameras. Doesn't have a rotating back, though.
Originally Posted by Markok765
I want to thank Mustafa for his comments about the Rolleicord/triotar lens camera. His pictures posted are great, to my eye. I have collected 3 of these cameras over the years, including the original model with the metal deco panels instead of leather. They are all pre-war, with uncoated lenses, but still work. A few years ago, my wife and I, and her visiting daughter went to Oxford MS to William Faulkners old home, "Rowan Oak" to take some pictures. I thought it would be fun for each of us to use one of these cameras, and compare results. With low expectations, we were quite surprised with how much we liked what we saw in the prints. The photos looked like they were actually taken back when Faulkner still lived there. I made my step-daughter some prints to take home with her, because she liked them so much. When I mention this to other photographers I usually get a look like "seriously?" The pictures are not razor sharp, high contrast pictures. But they have such nice tonal range and detail. Quite a vintage look for sure. I've got a couple of post war Rolleiflexs with coated tessar lenses, that take great pictures also, but have a different look, edgier, more contrast, but still not quite like modern lenses. This is what I love about photography, after over 40 years taking pictures, there's always something new to try, things to learn, still using film.
"I use different equipment, to see how something will look photographed with that camera or lens" - agnosticnikon
"I photograph, to find out how something will look photographed" - Garry Winogrand
A 6x6 TLR is a great place to start. A good one will give you a big jump in negative size, and give you a chance to decide whether a waist-level finder works for you. A Mamiya C series TLR gives you the functionality of interchangeable lenses, but is larger than some other good choices (like the Yashica options).
There is even a good, if somewhat dark prism finder.
I've added an RB67 to my options in recent years, but the Mamiya C330 I've had and used since the 1970s is still a very useful option.
This was shot with a C220 a couple of years ago that I sold because I didn't think I needed as many backup cameras. Either body, plus two lenses, fits within a very nice, compact kit.