New Medium Format camera

Discussion in 'All questions are good questions' started by Obi Col Kenobi, Aug 6, 2016.

  1. Hello all, Not sure where to post this, as I'm just after some first hand experience/recommendation for a camera. Essentially, toying with getting a decent medium format camera. Local camera store has a Bronica ETRS in stock, and I'm seriously tempted. But before purchasing, I thought probably best to check on here and see what you guys thought of it. I seem to recall @moroseduck has one?
  2. I really like my ETRSi. Pros are that the lenses are nice and sharp and I love having the ability to load up a bunch of film backs the night before heading out and being able to switch films around with little or no faff. Lots of accessories available for it too.

    Cons are that it's a heavy beast, and it's not a simple camera to operate. There are countless ways to mess up with it, or have it not let you fire the shutter or to just accidentally expose a film.

    Alternatives? Well, I do love my Yashica TLR. It's light, it takes great pictures and you can probably get one for under 100 on ebay. Plus I really like square format.
    Obi Col Kenobi likes this.
  3. I've got a Yashica Mat 124g, which is really lovely. I've been using it on a little project that I started with it called #120Faces (, where I'm trying to take 120 different portraits on 120mm film. But am quite tempted to change things up a bit, get another medium format camera with interchangeable lenses and take a few at a close focal range more around 200mm. Doe the Bronica not shoot in square format then? I always assumed most medium format cameras gave you the choice between 6x6 or 6x4.5?
  4. No, it's 6x4.5 only on 120 film. There is the SQ-A which is 6x6 and the gs which is 6x7.
  5. Ok, cool and thanks @IainK. What about the Polaroid Film backs? Do they work with the Polaroid 600 packs (from the likes of Impossible Project), or would I have to get some of that discontinued Fuji FP stuff? Sorry for the multiple questions! :)
  6. There is a Polaroid back for the etrsi, but I believe it only exposes the film as big as it can for 120 film (i.e. 6x4.5). I think the duck has one so maybe he can confirm that.

    I'm not sure with the 6x6 and 6x7 bronicas, I would assume it's the same deal.
  7. I would definitely second the recommendation for the Bronnie ETRSi, it is good value for money, takes lovely pictures and is just nice to use. I did have a polaroid back, but I improved it by turning it into a failed pinhole. You can pick them up for cheap, but I wouldn't bother, the image size is a waste of the film, and it is the Fuji pack film, not Impossible project.

    Regarding image size, I like the 6x4.5 ratio, and it gives you 15 shots to a roll. I wouldn't mind an SQ-A or a Hassie, but the quality from the 6x4.5 is just fine. I've looked at and played with the Mamiya RB67 and whilst the large neg is very appealing, they are a heavy ass lump of camera. The Bronnie is far more flexible and fun to play with.

    If budget matters, you can't really go wrong with one. If money is no issue then obviously a Hasselblad, or a Mamiya 7 are what I would want.
  8. Ok, so I took the plunge and got it. At the moment, I've only got the 75mm lens, a prism, a handle (had to get a handle as it feels more like a handbag and we all know how much I appreciate cameras like that!) and a 120mm back.

    Did a family photo shoot on Tuesday and took it along with me for that - did most of the shoot digitally, but obviously fired off a few shots. Hoping to finish the roll later this week. Will report back on how they come out.

    Generally though, I quite like it. Can see me using this quite a bit. Think I might have to invest in the 150 f3.5 lens next. :)

    On a separate topic, I'm loving the fact that my £15 desk chair from IKEA creates a perfect infinity curve with a white backdrop. Gonna have to remember that the next time I put something up for sale on eBay!
  9. Awesome! One of the best things about the bronny is how inexpensive the lenses are compared to a lot of the alternatives. Check out, he's got a few bits in stock

    Sent from my E5823 using Tapatalk
  10. You sure that URL is right? It comes up as a squatter for me.
  11. Oops, it's a., not. Com. My bad

    Sent from my E5823 using Tapatalk
  12. I have a 150mm lens. Quite affordable as it was the older style MC lens which are not as highly regarded as the more sophisticated PE lens. Mine still works well though.
  13. Good chap who runs it, I got the bulk of my darkroom kit from there and he couldn't have been more helpful.
  14. Yeah, John's a nice chap. It's just up the road from me so i like to drop in and pick up my film or chemicals and look around his Alladins cave of goodies

    Sent from my E5823 using Tapatalk
    Obi Col Kenobi likes this.
  15. Jealous you've got a place like that so close. Closest camera shop to me is at least an hours drive either way, and I live just south of London. There's one in Croydon apparently, but I don't fancy risking my life just for my love of photography. :)

    Will definitely check out what his got, so cheers @moroseduck

    Finished the first roll yesterday, though I don't think the second half of the shots will come out as the internal light meter stopped working yesterday. After a bit of investigation, turned out the battery had run out and I then read in the instructions that with no battery, it defaults at 1/500 shutter speed. Put a new battery in last night and all was fine.

    Typically however, earlier in the day I was at the local lavender fields, so thought I'd take some nice landscape shots - so fired off with the sunny 16 settings... Balls. :-(

    Pretty sure it was working for some portraits I took earlier this week, so fingers crossed.
    moroseduck likes this.
  16. No idea where the nearest olde time camera shop is to me. Probably Edinburgh at a mere 100miles+ away.
  17. Ok, so some good news, got the film back earlier this week and all the shots came out well. I'm guessing that the battery was on the way - probably enough juice in there to power the shutter, but it just couldn't be bothered with the light meter.

    Here's one of the shots I'm pretty chuffed with. Have removed dust and scratches, and adjusted some exposure levels here and there. But yeah, pretty pleased with the purchase.

  18. That's great. And it's a primary example of why I love medium format - you get a very intimate feel from having a wider angle of view blended with the compression of a 75mm lens.
    Obi Col Kenobi likes this.
  19. Cheers @Ade. I did another family portrait session this weekend and got through a roll of Kodak Porta 160, so will post some shots from that once I get them back from the lab. Going with Photo Hippo now. Sure, their scans are not are not up there Uk Film Lab, but they were pretty quick - had the roll developed and back within 3 days, and I can always remove dust/scratches myself.
  20. They are certainly good and speedy. My 110 roll just came back on a Sunday evening and they have only had it a few days. If it is important though I think I would still go to Ag Photolabs or even Ilford labs.

Share This Page