Can you tell me a little more about Bronicas and MF in general?

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by cigrainger, Jun 1, 2007.

  1. cigrainger

    cigrainger TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    1
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The ETR SI specifically. The bodies with 75mm f/2.8 lens and 120 backs seem to be going for very reasonable prices on KEH in EX condition. I'm thinking about getting into MF in the next few months and I've heard Bronicas are great. I really just can't find much information about these. Are Bronica more known for their rangefinders? How does this model compare to the Mamiya M645? How's the glass? What would you recommend with that kind of budget (~$600)?

    I'd be using it mostly to shoot landscapes, but really that would include cityscapes as well. I'd probably also use it for set-position street photography, and maybe some more "detail" shots around the city. Mostly I'd be trying to achieve "fine art" photos in and around Edinburgh that I can use for large prints that I could sell.
     
  2. Steph

    Steph No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2006
    Messages:
    1,314
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Steventon, Oxfordshire, UK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I don't have experience with the Bronica ETRS/ETRsi but I use a Bronica SQA (6x6) and the quality is great. I use 50mm and 80mm lenses and get great results. Apparently, the 40mm and 150mm lenses are also very good. From what I read elsewhere the build quality is better on the SQ cameras compared to the ETR cameras.

    I would go for a Bronica SQA or SQAi as I like square pictures (but of course I am biased). Avoid the Bronica SQ (older camera without mirror lock-up) and maybe the SQB (metering prisms cannot be used on those). If you don't like square picture, you could go for a Bronica GS (6x7).

    I think you cannot go far wrong with any Bronica SLRs as they are very good value and offer great performances.
     
  3. cigrainger

    cigrainger TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    1
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Square pictures are fine with me. Using more of the negative is better in my opinion too. The SQA looks to be readily available on KEH in EX condition for much the same price, and obviously if it has better build quality, I'm all for that. Thanks for the help!
     
  4. cigrainger

    cigrainger TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    1
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Wow, I just read that with the Bronica SQ-Ai, you can use a 35mm panoramic back. Is that common? That would be awesome.
     
  5. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,603
    Likes Received:
    137
    I think it is fair to say that the Bronicas and Mamiyas are comparable optically and mechanically. The later models of the 645 Mamiyas (645AF model and later) have plastic bodies and are therefore quite a bit lighter. The Bronicas are heavier. I use Mamiya equipment mostly because I've used it for decades and I like the later model plastic bodied cameras. My 645E, as an example, is lighter than my Nikon D80 (with battery installed) and the lenses are lighter, too, for the most part. I used RZ's in the old days but I wouldn't subject myself to that now that I'm an amateur again. The Mamiyas also have a broader system mostly because it has always been a more popular brand.

    It's pretty hard to go wrong with any of them. I'm sure you'll get great images with whichever model you choose. If you find one that is cosmetically pretty, it will most likely have less use and that's a good thing.
     
  6. newrmdmike

    newrmdmike TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,107
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    it varies.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    hmmmmm. . . well, i bought a mamiya 645af with 80mm f/2.8 and 120 back in ex+ or ex condition from keh for $600 and would recommend one to most anyone interested in getting into mf photogaphy if they are happy with the 645 format.
     
  7. newrmdmike

    newrmdmike TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,107
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    it varies.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    oh, and i've looked at lens charts that put mamiyas very close to zeiss, especially with the 80mm.

    i havn't heard anyone say that they have ever used a lens that they could tell was sharper than the mamiya 80.
     
  8. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    Messages:
    5,454
    Likes Received:
    41
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    No offense, man. But you must not have been around much. Let's see. How about a LF Biogon. That would kill any mamiya glass. Oh, and any of the glass made for the Rollei 6008 would do it too. I'd bet that the Pentax 120 Macro could as well. The list goes on..

    Now that doesn't mean the Mamiya is bad. I've shot with it, in manual and auto focus, as 80mm is the stock length on the 645's as you said. It's a great lens. But I wouldn't call it the sharpest thing I've ever seen.
     
  9. newrmdmike

    newrmdmike TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,107
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    it varies.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    ! no offense taken, thats really what i've been told, and thats the only experience i have to go on.

    the chart did put mamiya and pentax really close if i remember right.

    EDIT: (oh, and i havn't been around much!)
     
  10. nealjpage

    nealjpage multi format master in a film geek package

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2005
    Messages:
    3,479
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Oregon
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I've got a Bronica ETRS with the stock 75mm lens. I've been very happy with it. I'm not sure about the quality of it vs the SQ series, but it's built like a tank and is really easy to use. Go for it.
     
  11. cigrainger

    cigrainger TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    1
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Thanks for the input guys. I'm really new to MF photography, but its looking really good, and I could possibly fit it in my budget along with a Canon P Rangefinder -- I'm DONE with 35mm SLRs for several of my own reasons. Mostly because when I want a "portable" camera, I'm happy with just a fast 50mm for street photography, don't need or enjoy entensive telephoto, and I find 35mm SLRs too big and bulky for street photography the way I do it. I also like the speed of rangefinders, no mirror blackout, and more image than just TTL. No mirror slap and a more gentle shutter means 1/30 or maybe even 1/15 shutter speeds without much camera shake as well, rather than bottoming out at 1/60.

    Anyway, thats a lot and there are other personal reasons. My point is, I'm getting away from 35mm SLR. The MF I'm going to get is going to spend most of its time on a tripod. I'll probably get a wide angle, normal, and macro lens for it. I've seen MF macro of flowers and such, and I LOVE the idea of being able to shoot macro shots and blow them up to huge proportions. I'll use the MF with slow film on the smallest aperture (f/64?) for cityscapes and shots of landmarks around Edinburgh so they're pin-sharp and the people disappear. I also intend on using it for nature landscapes and "fine art" photography so I can blow it up. Maybe get a few shots of Edinburgh from original angles and make some prints to sell during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this summer.

    Anyway -- I guess that gives an idea of what I'm trying to achieve. I don't need Hasselblad quality, although a friend who goes to RISD says she thinks of Bronica on the same level as Hasselblad.

    If you have any advice, suggestions, etc, let me know. I like the idea of using as much of the negative as possible, but as I said I'm looking at a maximum budget of about $600 or so. I will already have a handheld light meter, so no need to budget that in. I suppose I will need a heavier tripod than the one I have now though...
     
  12. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,603
    Likes Received:
    137
    No offense, man, but have you tested all these lenses or are you guessing? I assume you are since you are "betting" on a Pentax lens. The reason I say so is that I have tested many Sekor lenses and Zeiss lenses over the years and my conclusions wouldn't match yours. I could give you "list goes on" also but you wouldn't care for the conclusions.

    I don't have any experience with the 80mm AF Sekor but I do own an 80mm f2.8N Sekor for the manual 645 and it is every bit as straight, bright, contrasty and sharp as the 80mm f2.8 Zeiss Planar. No, I'm not guessing. I've tested them both.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

bronica

,

bronica rf645 misalignment maximum distance

,

bronica rf645 vertical rangefinder adjust

,

bronica sqb

,

bronicas compared

,

can i use bronicva lenes on d300

,

sharpest bronica etr lenses

,

vertical rangefinder alignment bronica rf645