the 45s are a lot easier to use handheld than the 90s for most MF cameras, I've found...but doesn't change the fact that the camera's not at waist level, where they're easiest to operate. Anyhow, I think our points have been made. Just didn't think it was fair to characterize the system from a single point of view... Post #12 is indeed the important thing.
Originally Posted by Sirius Glass
If you were using a Porro-finder, rather than a prism finder, I understand at least in part why you didn't like your C-series Mamiyas.
Those are dim!
Amen to that! I have the Paramender and I use it with my C220's. Fantastic accessory. When doing moderate closeups, it's easy enough to adjust for parallax error by eye. But when doing extreme closeups less than 3 ft. when precise framing is called for, you can't beat it. It will get ou on target every time. And you can have lots of opportunity to use the C330 for close up photography with the bellows focusing system.
Originally Posted by 2F/2F
On the subjects of lens quality and ergonomics, all I can say is that there were thousands of event photographers who built successful careers using these cameras. I'll bet there are still a few, I reckon, who use them selectively. Even in the dark ages, before everyone went bit crazy and became internet connected, a camera with inferior optics and fiddly handling would not have remained popular with the working photographer for very long.
So, does a Rollie have superior optics simply because they carry the Zeiss label? Maybe, maybe not. Heck, the lens on my little Yashica T4 Super carries a Zeiss label, but that doesn't make it "better" than any of the Nikkors I use on my 35mm SLR's. In addition to my two C220's, I have a Hasselblad with 50, 80, and 150 CF Zeiss lenses. I've shown well made photographs to uninterested third parties and asked them to choose which was made with the Zeiss glass and which was made with the Mamiya glass. The results of my admittedly informal survey indicated that you couldn't tell the difference. I could, but then I'm prejudiced, having known beforehand which was made with which equipment. Otherwise, no. They both look mighty good to me.
I guess I am the wrong person to opine about this topic, as I shoot regularly with a C33 or C220, an RZ67, and a Rollei 3.5F. :D
I don't have, or plan to get, a Hasselblad, however. I think they are lovely cameras, and I borrow one from time to time, but the things I would shoot with that sort of camera are covered mightily by the RZ. The things I want to and/or can shoot with a TLR, I do, as I find this style of camera the near-perfect tool to use for a lot of what I shoot. For shooting the things for which I simply want one lens in a compact (though heavy) package, I use the Rollei. Where TLRs fail, I use the RZ. When I want a square frame shot with an SLR, I crop from the RZ. True, the Hassy would be a great "in-between" camera, but I honestly don't think I'd be doing that much more with it than I do with the ones I already have, nor would I want to use the others any less often.
I don't find any of these four cameras to have a high fiddle factor. However, the one I fiddle most with is the Rollei, as I sometimes forget to put the film under that one roller. With the other ones, the fiddle factors are what makes the cameras worth using, IMO. The fiddle factor on the C220 involves cocking the shutter before shooting, and changing lenses, which is just as quick as with the others. Personally, I like having the shutter release independent of the advance for many things, and the interchangeable lenses are the big thing with the C system; the one thing that makes is stand above all other TLRs IMNSHO. If I don' want this, the C33 eliminates the need to cock the shutter before each shot (but it won't accept my 180mm lens, and is notably heavier than the C220).
IMO, you would have a fine camera with any of the above. Each has its pluses and its minuses, though.