Quote Originally Posted by 2F/2F View Post
I think you are simply learning that getting the $#&@ing shot in the first place, and getting it in focus, counts for a lot more than the shot's technical details in terms of sharpness, grain, etc. IME, it's consideration number one of picking a camera for a specific purpose. IMO, if you cannot get what you want with medium format, get rid of it, or use it for more suitable subjects. A camera is worse than useless if working with it is causing you to miss timing and focus. There is nothing more frustrating than knowing exactly what you want to focus on and exactly when you want to click the shutter, but stumbling over the camera and missing it.
+1

If a tool is keeping you from getting the job done, get rid of it.

Quote Originally Posted by F/1.4 View Post
The Nikon's AF is much faster, smoother, more reliable, almost no shutter lag, much smaller, less intimidating, shoots more pictures, and is MUCH cheaper to shoot.

BUT..The pictures generally aren't crisp like the Mamiya (when it's in focus, mind you), and grain is much more intrusive.

The films I generally shoot are either Portra 400 or 400H (depending on my mood).

So far, it seems like most clients have been OK with the quality, but I did have a couple clients complain about the pictures being blurry and grainy. They were perfectly in focus, it's just that I was shooting at f/1.4 and film doesn't have that digital sharpness, not to mention 400 speed 35mm film is grainy compared to MF or digital.
With regard to client expectations, do you show them examples of what to expect?

The few times that I have been bit on this its been because I didn't do a good job before the shoot of explaining what I provide, really showing my style and my prints.

The clients were simply in the market for a product I didn't offer and I didn't spot that problem in time, I was too hungry for the sale.

Quote Originally Posted by F/1.4 View Post
I'm torn on whether to just suck it up and try to make the Mamiya work, or try to see what I can squeeze out of 35mm.

I do not want to shoot digital.

I can't think of any wedding/portrait photographers that shoot primarily 35mm, they're all Medium format(on a Contax 99% of the time) or digital.

Thanks in advance
You have identified the problems, every machine of every type has, for lack of better descriptors, a personality and a skill set.

The question is really are you willing to adjust to get the MF advantages.

It is my understanding that Jose Villa actually uses both the Contax and 35mm. The 35mm for the faster candid work, the Contax for (my words here) the money shots.

Jose will actually direct the action when needed for the money shots.

This isn't the classic formals by any stretch nor is it the normal PJ style so many shoot today. If the couple does something fun that he couldn't get, he'll have them do it again.

His direction also comes in the form of nudging clients into situations that give him the shots he sold them.

Because he is willing direct when needed, he's not in so much of a rush and can keep his shot count down and still get exactly the what he needs to get on MF.