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120 film RF Folders 120/220 Format Folding Rangefinders, including the various classic Zeiss Ikontas, Voigtlander Bessas, and their Ruskie copies.

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Inexpensive 120 Folder Please
Old 12-23-2016   #1
wjlapier
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Inexpensive 120 Folder Please

Any recommendations on a folder that shoots 120 6x6 or 645? Mamiya 6 or Fujica 6? Or other? Limitations? I'm assuming no rangefinder in these. So, is there a 35mm equivalent camera for hyperfocal at f/16 on a sunny day. Finally, sharp and contrasty, and inexpensive--~$100 USD.

Thanks!
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Old 12-23-2016   #2
xayraa33
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I would go for a Franka Solida III for that modest spending money, get one that was properly overhauled and in good nick.

The 3 element Schneider lens on these make a great portrait lens and is equal to its Zeiss triplet equivalent in every way.
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Old 12-23-2016   #3
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There is no 645 or 6x6 folder that sports a 35mm equivalent (60-65mm actual focal length) lens. 75mm is as short as you'd get, and they are cheap and plenty.

There actually is a 6x6 camera that does hyperfocus at f/11 on a sunny day with a 60mm lens though. Not foldable, but it's quite compact and light. It's called the Holga...
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Old 12-23-2016   #4
KoNickon
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Look for a Zeiss Ikon Signal-Nettar (the "Signal" refers to a red flag that pops up in the finder to tell you that the shutter has been tripped). 6x6, red window, no RF, very decent Novar three element lens that gives excellent results. You should be able to get one for well under $100.
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Old 12-23-2016   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoNickon View Post
Look for a Zeiss Ikon Signal-Nettar (the "Signal" refers to a red flag that pops up in the finder to tell you that the shutter has been tripped). 6x6, red window, no RF, very decent Novar three element lens that gives excellent results. You should be able to get one for well under $100.
A good recommendation!
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Old 12-23-2016   #6
mothertrucker
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How about this Zeiss Ikon Super Ikonta with a buy it now of 74 dollars

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Zeiss-Icon-6...8AAOSwdzVXoEvI

Nevermind! just saw the shipping is 124 DOLLARS. That is crazy town.
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Old 12-23-2016   #7
wjlapier
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Who replaces bellows? Or is this something I could do? Looking at a video of bellows being removed from a camera it doesn't look to intimidating.

Looking at a Zeiss Ikon Netter now.
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Old 12-23-2016   #8
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Whatever comes up at the right price: see http://rogerandfrances.eu/photography/exercise-52316

Cheers,

R.
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Old 12-23-2016   #9
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My Moskva-5 folder did cost about US$100, including leather case and original box and the mask to change from 6x9 to 6x6.
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Old 12-23-2016   #10
Sarcophilus Harrisii
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What about a Voigtlander Perkeo? Seems to meet all your criteria, should be procurable within your budget in many locations. Voigtlander bellows endure better than most, the odds of not having to replace those on a Perkeo to use it are quite decent. You'd be hard pressed to find more image quality in a smaller package in any format.
Cheers,
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Old 12-23-2016   #11
tunalegs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wjlapier View Post
So, is there a 35mm equivalent camera for hyperfocal at f/16 on a sunny day.
No, because that would defy physics. Even if a lens used on 120 gave an equivalent angle of view to 35mm on 135, the hyperfocal distance as well as the depth of field would be different. You would need a 35mm on 120 lens to get the depth of field of a 35mm lens (I know this is a slight oversimplification, but let's not get into rocket science...).

One of the big attractions of medium format is that you have more (selective) control over depth of field than you do with 135. Embrace it.

Play around with this, and have fun: http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

As for my suggestion - I would ignore folders entirely.
I've been having lots of fun with an old Pilot 6 SLR. It is slow to use, but one doesn't have to worry about pinholes in bellows, or out of parallel lenses, or other common folder problems. It is also very compact, more so than an open folder.

Pilot 6 by Berang Berang, on Flickr

Hero Dog Clock by Berang Berang, on Flickr

volkswagen by Berang Berang, on Flickr

If you're adamant about having a folder, there are many decent quality Japanese made 645 folders which are often overlooked by collectors, and consequently cheaper than their German equivalents. Leotax, Konishiroku Welmy, Petri, and so on. The pre-war Japanese cameras are generally of poor quality and often not working, but the post-war cameras are often comparable to European makes, and usually cheaper to buy in good condition.
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Old 12-24-2016   #12
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With old folders, that is it, they are old. Until you have one in your hands and get a chance to use it with film, you can't know that it is a good one or not. That doesn't mean they aren't good photo takers when they are in good shape. And fortunately, a good many of the old folders were made to a high standard.


I have a couple of old Welta 120 folders. One is both 6x6 and 645. The 645 does have the mask. Both are good performers. I also have a couple of Fujica. I have yet to use either of the two I have. They need the shutters cleaned and I just haven't gotten around to it.

I also have a Zeiss Ikon 6x9 folder. A light, thin camera when folded. It is usually found for less than the 6x6 folders as it just doesn't seem to be a popular format. It is a surprisingly good performer with its Novar lens. I was actually surprised. And I was really surprised at how much I liked the 6x9 format. Of course it does eat up a little more film, getting 10 photos per 120 roll as opposed to 12 with 6x6 or 16 with 645. But it is often the 120 folder I want with another camera kit. Worthy of consideration.
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Old 12-24-2016   #13
Paul T.
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I have been using my dad's Zeiss Nettar 515/2 recently. Just processed the first two rolls, and the ones where I nailed focus are amazingly sharp. I simply zone focus, like he did. The Nettar or Novar lens is fine, as you'll pretty much always be at f/8. It's been lovely using it, as this is the camera he used to take photos in Italy, wartime, or when he first met my mum.

All that said, given the price of film, if I were buying one I'd go for a slightly newer Super Ikonta or similar, I think it would be handy to be able to check the focus when you really need to.
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Old 12-24-2016   #14
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I regret having sold my Franka Solida IIIE. It had a good Schneider lens 80mm/2.9 and an uncoupled RF.
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Old 12-24-2016   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul T. View Post
I have been using my dad's Zeiss Nettar 515/2 recently. Just processed the first two rolls, and the ones where I nailed focus are amazingly sharp. I simply zone focus, like he did. The Nettar or Novar lens is fine, as you'll pretty much always be at f/8. It's been lovely using it, as this is the camera he used to take photos in Italy, wartime, or when he first met my mum.

All that said, given the price of film, if I were buying one I'd go for a slightly newer Super Ikonta or similar, I think it would be handy to be able to check the focus when you really need to.
For a long time I used my father's Welta Welti (35mm). He acquired it after the war. It was a really great little camera. Inside the back door, near the film plate, was scratched the name Hurvitz. I carried it in Viet Nam. Unfortunately it was made unusable in a house fire.
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Old 12-24-2016   #16
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Franka Solida. The name matches camera. It is solid.
Perkeo isn't.
Zeiss Nettar was smallest folder I ever have. 645 version.
All under 100 folder I have requered service, BTW. It is DIY possible. I didn't liked Perkeo for it. Nettar was easy. Franka as well.
Moskva-5, here is the reason why most of them are like new. Avoid at any cost.
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Old 12-24-2016   #17
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I once had a red Moskva 5 that had a Moskva 4 lens. I did not bond with this camera, so I sold it.
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Old 12-24-2016   #18
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Now I've gone and done it, Christmas present for myself:



Semi Leotax with built in RF, on its way from Japan to me now.
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Old 01-04-2017   #19
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I decided to try this Leotax folder. Amazingly tiny and feels really well built. Everything looks good to go.

Anyone care to suggest someone who could replace the bellows in case they need it?

Untitled by wjlapier, on Flickr

And the seller included a box of Fuji Neopan ( 1961 expiration date ). I'll give it a test run with some Reala I have a few rolls of.
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Old 01-04-2017   #20
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If you like the 35mmeq field of view then a Fuji 645 with the 60mm lens would be about the only option. That is a bit narrower than 35mmeq. Or the Fuji with a 45mm lens which is closer to 28mmeq.
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Old 01-04-2017   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spanik View Post
If you like the 35mmeq field of view then a Fuji 645 with the 60mm lens would be about the only option. That is a bit narrower than 35mmeq. Or the Fuji with a 45mm lens which is closer to 28mmeq.
Yeah, I know. I'll see what this can do. Definitely will slow me down.
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