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FORUMS Other Digital Cameras Medium Format Digital Cameras and Backs
Thread started 06 Mar 2016 (Sunday) 14:17
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Where to find as much info as possible?

 
gremlin75
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Mar 06, 2016 14:17 |  #1

I've got it in my mind lately that I want to give shooting medium format film a try.....issue is I know next to nothing about shooting film or medium format cameras in general.

I've been trying to do some research but can not say it's been going very well. The further I dig the more confused I get.

I started off thinking I'd just get a Rolleiflex and have a go at it. But then I decided against a TLR camera. Then I started thinking about a Mamiya RB67....then a Mamiya 645, then a Pentax 645n....then I started looking at Hasselblad and decided I was going higher then I'd like to budget.......

Basically I'm looking for a large source of info on the different types of cameras, camera systems options, lenses, flims, ect and the pros and cons of each.

So is there any place that is a one stop shop on all things medium format?




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Wilt
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Post has been edited over 1 year ago by Wilt.
Mar 06, 2016 14:47 |  #2

You can go to a few sites, such as these

http://istillshootfilm​.org ...medium-format-photography (external link)

Consider not only the camera format differences, but also consider shooting film (depending upon emulsion type) can be fairly different from digital, yet the similarities make it not all that different as one might think.

After you acquaint yourself with the basics, come back to ask specific questions.


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gremlin75
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Mar 06, 2016 16:40 |  #3

Thank you wilt, that was a great place for me to start. Cleared up the differences between 120/220 film and the different back formats (6x6, 6x7, and 6x4.5).

I hate asking or talking about "effective field of view" but this is one time where I feel I need to. I'm used to shooting digital crop cameras (canon and Fuji) and I've never worried about 35mm "effective field of view". Basically because I have no 35mm/full frame background so I just shoot the focal length I like for the situation I'm in. But going into MF territory I can no clue what focal length I'd want to get for things like portraiture or landscapes (the two things I'd like to do). What would be the "crop factor" (or I guess anti crop factor) for 66, 67, and 645 compaired to "full frame" or APS-c? (FF is fine and I can figure out aps-c from there)

Also on that note, how do I figure out aperture depth of field difference. Meaning, I know the depth of field I can expect on a 50mm lens at f2 on an apsc sensor. Once I figure out a lens that would give me a similar FOV how would I go about figuring out the maximum aperture I need to give me similar or thinner depth of field?

Now this question is just a shot in the wind, any suggestions on a camera system that won't break the bank?

I think I'd like a camera with different backs that I can switch. Kind of wanted something that would take a polaroid back as well but Fuji discontinuing the fp-100c has killed my desire for that now. Something with a waist level view finder and possibly the option for an eye level view finder but still pretty iffy on if I'd want anything but waist level finder. My desire for different backs has ruled out the Mamiya or Pentax 645's. My desire to go as cheap as possible pretty much rules out Hasselblad. So I'm thinking that leave me with Mamiya rb67. Are there other options around the same price that I should be looking into?




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Wilt
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Post has been last edited over 1 year ago by Wilt. 6 edits done in total.
Mar 06, 2016 16:53 |  #4

Don't think of a crop factor per se...645 and 6x7 are very different in aspect ratio than the overlong format of 135, which is more similar to 6x9 in medium format. Too many 'equivalent' analysis use diagonal yet the ratio of diagonal to short side is not the same. The following give you 'equivalent FOV on short dimension of frame'...

Normal lens: 2 * short dimension: 48mm (135) like 85mm (645) like 110mm (6x7)
Very wide angle: 1 * short dimension: 24mm (135) like 42mm (645) like 55mm (6x7)
Short tele (portrait): 4.2 * short dimension: 100mm (135) like 180mm (645) like 230mm (6x7)

'Same DOF' at equivalent FOV (what the above factors do give you) are about 2 f/stops smaller for 645 and about 2.3 f/stops smaller for 6x7.

Consider Bronica gear and it is pretty common to find a Bronica kit for about $300 that cost $3000 when new!
Bronica is leaf shutter lens set, analogous to Hassy. The Bronica SQ series is square, like Hassy, too. The ETRS is like the Mamiya 645 as 645, but leaf shutter rather than focal plane shutter. The GS-1 is like RB67 in frame size, but without revolving back; but it also is not a tripod queen like the heavy RB67. All have interchangeable viewfinders, but waist level is often hard to find (and expensive because of the rarity on the market). (The Pentax medium format is one of the few medium format SLR with fixed finder.)


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gremlin75
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Mar 06, 2016 19:38 |  #5

As always wilt, great information. Thank you so much!

I Started looking into Bronica and think I've fallen for the gs-1. Though it seems finding a 645 back for it will be the most difficult thing, and of course I'd fall for what seems like the most expensive of the options. The difficulty of finding a 645 back might put the gs-1 on the back burner and push me back to the Mamiya RB67. I thought the RB67 lenses were leaf shutter lenses as well. Am I mistaken?




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Wilt
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Mar 06, 2016 21:48 as a reply to gremlin75's post |  #6

Yes RB67 lenses have leaf shutters, mechanically timed (similar to large format lenses)
The newer RZ67 are electronicially timed by the body, shutters in the lenses (like Bronica).


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Kolor-Pikker
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Mar 07, 2016 05:10 |  #7

You might also want to check out apug.org, as far as I know it's one of the largest active analog photography forums online.


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Wilt
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Post has been edited over 1 year ago by Wilt.
Mar 07, 2016 08:53 as a reply to Kolor-Pikker's post |  #8

http://www.apug.org ...meras-and-accessories.72/ (external link)


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KirkS518
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Mar 20, 2016 16:37 |  #9

WARNING - This is a bit a of a rambling about my take and experiences with MF systems I use and like, so it's a bit biased. :)

Without a doubt, the best overall resource for all things film will be APUG.org as mentioned.

I started into MF with an RB67, then added a Yashica 124G, then a Mamiya M645 system, and then the Mamiya TLR's (C220, then C330), and lastly, a Fuji GA645. I have a ton of other MF cameras that basically just sit, with the hopes of either using them one day, or selling them.

If you're new to MF, I'd start with something 'manageable' to start with. The RB/RZ67 system is beastly and somewhat intimidating to begin with. They were designed as studio cameras (read; to sit on a tripod), but are hand holdable (down to 1/15 sec for most). Nothing beats those big beautiful negatives, but knowing what I know now, I wouldn't have started with the RB67 system. Between darkslides and interlocks, you can forget a lot to get that shutter to fire. If you have to have a 6x7 negative, look at the Pentax; it'll handle most similarly to what you're used to, and is a great system.

TLR's are for the most part very lightweight, almost all produce amazing negs, but with most TLR's, you're limited to fixed lens (Mamiya being the exception). Parallax is the only bad thing I think I would say about TLR's. Great for starting out with, but not because they can't satisfy for years, but they're just easier to start off with. Framing/composition takes a little getting used to in the square format, but that's a short learning curve.

6x6 SLR's are nice, but I have limited experience with them other then a Bronica that I wasn't very fond of. Hasselblads are the king of kings, but you need to sell the kingdom to buy them. And from what I see, it seems they're like owning an exotic car; expensive repairs, expensive maintenance, and things that make them not intuitive that can cause problems (putting on a lens in specific order, etc.).

645 format is a great format for folks that are inherently partial to a rectangular format similar to 35mm or digital. It gives you what you expect as far as framing and composition. I think all 645 systems are expandable, (except for the P&S cameras) and in the Pentax family, it's a smooth transition. I'm partial to 645, but absolutely love my M645.

First thing you really need to decide on is the format you like the best; 6x4.5, 6x6, 6x7, 6x9. Then go to the camera(s) that suit your needs the best.

If you prefer the handling of 'standard' design SLR's, look at the Pentax systems (6x45 or 6x7), but if you're open to different ergonomics and handling, look at everything else.

My personal order of preference of what I own for daily use it's;
Mamiya M645 System
Yashica 124G
Mamiya C330
Fuji GA645
Mamiya RB67

The Mamiya systems are really affordable (ie, cheap), and probably give the most bang for the buck. 124G's have gotten stupid expensive recently, and I don't think the value is really there at current prices.

I also have a Rapid Omega (press camera), and a Graflex, but never use either of those.


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Where to find as much info as possible?
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