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Old 04-10-2017   #41
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I've a 3.5F Rolleiflex ( a recent purchase ) and a Yashicamat 124 ( I've had this since 1983) the Yadhica has a less slick feel, dimmer finder but great lens . The Flex is better in all respects. The 124 is still an excellent camera and very capable
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Old 04-10-2017   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newfilm View Post
Rolleiflex is not very portable, also limit on just one focal length. If you want portable in medium format and one focal length and quality negs, Fujifilm GF670 is the one you want!
Gonna have to disagree, while my GF670 is wildly portable, my Yashica, which is about the same size as a rollei, has been to over 40 countries with me, without a hitch. Its been on week long treks in the andes, train rides through countries and endless walks through cities. Pretty damn portable.
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Old 04-10-2017   #43
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I don't know much, but the ground glass screens are very dim, and without the fresnel have dark corners...and edges. You might want to budget for a new screen and having the focus recalibrated for it. Yashica A are very light, but have three element lenses. Rolleicords don't have a shutter button, you push the shutter charging lever the other way to fire it. If I were doing this, I'd look for a Rolleiflex with a four element lens, and ideally a screen with a fresnel that's been calibrated, or one priced low enough that I could have a CLA and new screen put in. I think you'll need to be patient to get a good Rolleiflex these days. I can't seem to get used to the firing lever on my Rolleicord. I like my little yashicas though. edit: I made a mistake above, I have put Yashica D screens in my Yashica A, the original A screens have no fresnel.
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Old 04-10-2017   #44
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Sara

What you might really want, especially if you have a Hasselblad already (portable) but not for a bag... is something like a Fuji GS645. It folds, has a great meter and RF, a fantastic lens...one of the best shooters I every used. Sorry I sold it.

It's very small and you would be amazed at the picture quality. The rest is up to you.

Is it a few more bucks than an ancient TLR, needing service? Probably. However, there's not anything like it for the specifications you are talking about. I like square but frankly, get over it, at least for something really reliable, modern, for a constant bag companion.
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Old 04-10-2017   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hogarth Ferguson View Post
Gonna have to disagree, while my GF670 is wildly portable, my Yashica, which is about the same size as a rollei, has been to over 40 countries with me, without a hitch. Its been on week long treks in the andes, train rides through countries and endless walks through cities. Pretty damn portable.
Interesting! while i have the opposite experience, the folder has been going with me on trip while the rollei stay
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Old 04-10-2017   #46
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https://torontophotog.smugmug.com/Ph...iflex/n-dRk4x/

My MX. Have had it since around 1955. Screen is darker than later models. If used it more, I would get a Maxwell screen.
Get a flex, not a cord. flex is more sturdy and the film advance level is sexier than the knob on a 'cord )
Prices are all over the map but well worth it.
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Old 04-10-2017   #47
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I realize I am changing the subject.....(see above), but I think it is worth considering the G645 family of cameras.

http://www.dantestella.com/technical/ga645.html Here is Dante's take

I have a GA645Zi....not much larger than the rest.....motorized zoom, film winder, great but slightly slow glass. Would easily go in girlie bag and you wouldn't break a sweat.

Dante called these a Texas Hexar....that was really a bit over the top. He was just riffing on the big 6x9 Fuji RF's....Texas Leica.

And I also have a Yashica 124G.....a lot of fun....but not a stowaway camera like almost all the fujis.
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Old 04-10-2017   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranchu View Post
I don't know much, but the ground glass screens are very dim, and without the fresnel have dark corners...and edges. You might want to budget for a new screen and having the focus recalibrated for it. Yashica A are very light, but have three element lenses. Rolleicords don't have a shutter button, you push the shutter charging lever the other way to fire it. If I were doing this, I'd look for a Rolleiflex with a four element lens, and ideally a screen with a fresnel that's calibrated. I can't seem to get used to the firing lever on my Rolleicord. I like my little Yashicas though.
I have mixed feelings about this advice. I got a brighter screen for my 2.8 and it is very nice to look down and see the bright image on it, but I do find it a bit harder to focus than the old ground glass. So it's not an unambiguous improvement. I was also so used to the ground glass that it worked like a sort of extinction meter for me -- I could tell where the exposure needed to be from the difference between what I saw in front of me and what I saw on the screen. I lost that when the Maxwell screen was put in.
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Old 04-10-2017   #49
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Fair enough, I'm not an expert. My Rolleicord screen is too dark. Comically dark, imo. I think a matte surface with a fresnel would be good, rather than a 'brite' screen. Yashica screens are fine, the matte is fairly coarse, and they have the fresnel. edit: I made a mistake above, I have put Yashica D screens in my Yashica A, the original A screens have no fresnel.
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Old 04-10-2017   #50
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Did I mention the focusing screen? Its an Achilles heel for me. So the advice to get a camera with as good of a screen as possible is good advice.

Folks still pushing the flex over the cord. I still like my cord as much or more than my flex. Image quality seems the same to me, and its lighter and still plenty fun. The last model (Vb) has user replaceable focusing screens, but you can get a new screen into any of these guys....best to let a good technician do it?

But....Are you sure you wouldn't want an Anscoflex? Beautiful with all the pretty light-blue/green plastic and the clever slide up operation (never need a lens cap). Mine even has a matching vinyl blue-green strap and case. The lens even looks like its glass. No need to hassle with shutter speeds or apertures -- the fixed 1/60 and f/11 makes operation very simple. The ultimate TLR!
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I want rolleicord
Old 04-10-2017   #51
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I want rolleicord

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranchu View Post
Fair enough, I'm not an expert. My Rolleicord screen is too dark. Comically dark, imo. I think a matte surface with a fresnel would be good, rather than a 'brite' screen. Yashica screens are fine, the matte is fairly coarse, and they have the fresnel.
Yes , Huss, I changed the subject because I thought Sara's question a bit ambiguous, despite the declaration of a title.

But coming back to TLR.....at my age these cameras are difficult to focus and it takes patience and a sharp eye really helps. Possibly a Rick Oleson or Maxwell screen an improvement. But it's a totally different experience from a OVF. On my TLR, including the Rollei 2.8F I used to have, always flicking up the focus aid and cramming against my eye. Even same with the Blad.
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Old 04-10-2017   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hap View Post
Yes , Huss, I changed the subject because I thought Sara's question a bit ambiguous, despite the declaration of a title.

But coming back to TLR.....at my age these cameras are difficult to focus and it takes patience and a sharp eye really helps. Possibly a Rick Oleson or Maxwell screen an improvement. But it's a totally different experience from a OVF. On my TLR, including the Rollei 2.8F I used to have, always flicking up the focus aid and cramming against my eye. Even same with the Blad.
Consider a different approach! Use the focus magnifier but hold it at waist level to focus. You don't see the whole image so it's a slightly longer process -- focus, put the magnifier down then shoot but I find it easier to focus that way. The eyelevel magnifier is also a bit more powerful so it's easier to focus with.
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Old 04-10-2017   #53
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The only medium format camera more portable than a Rolleiflex/Rolleicord is a folder. The Xenar lens is a capable lens, but the Xenotar and Planar is sharper with more contrast. Unless you plan to shoot at 2.8 a lot, save some $ and get a 3.5 model. I have a Maxwell screen and it is a huge upgrade over the stock screen.
There are some remarkably small TLRs. The Ricohflex is among the smallest, smaller than a rolleicord, indeed in extreme dimensions it is more compact than a lot of 35mm cameras, rangefinders included:

sizes by Berang Berang, on Flickr

Then there is my favorite MF SLR, the Pilot 6, which is essentially like having the bottom 2/3 of a TLR. Much smaller than a folder.

Pilot 6 by Berang Berang, on Flickr

Both these cameras are exceedingly primitive though.
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Old 04-10-2017   #54
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Originally Posted by newfilm View Post
Interesting! while i have the opposite experience, the folder has been going with me on trip while the rollei stay
I have the wide GW670 that I take with me now, but when I was hiking in Peru, i took the Yashica and the folder. The only reason I keep the Yashica at home is because the Fujis have built in meters. And I don't need two 80mm f3.5 lens cameras
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Old 04-10-2017   #55
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Seconding with the Rolleicord option, I started off with one for sub-$100 (+$50 for a CLA/adjustment) and to be honest it's similar to my 3.5 automats I obtained later on (besides 1930's chracter but that's another story).


Rolleicord IV 140704 Pro400H 003
by Eugene Ong, on Flickr
Can't really complain with results like this for sub $150USD
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Old 04-10-2017   #56
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I have a Rolleiflex 3.5 F, and 2.8F, both "whiteface', which were the last ones produced before production halted. Then production resumed with the GX and FX, which have built in silicon blue meters instead of the cadmium sulfide meters of old. The F and earlier cameras are old, so factor in the need for servicing.

I have a Maxwell screen on the 3.5, and the original on the 2.8F. The Maxwell screen is definitely brighter, but the original may have a bit more "snap" to show when focus is achieved. But, that could also be due to the reduced depth of field from the f/2.8 lens!

The pictures from both are lovely, but I would go with the 3.5F, only because it is a bit smaller and lighter. Also, the filter size is Bay 2, which costs far less than the larger Bay 3 size on the 2.8 cameras.

For compact carrying, the TLRs are unbeatable. Mine travel in a Lowepro Nova Micro case, which is quite small. (Lowepro has discontinued this case).

I do have the Minolta Autocord also, which is robust and easy to use. The soft metal focusing lever often gets bent when the focusing gets stiff from old grease. The trick is not to try to straighten them out, as the metal work hardens with movement, and will eventually fatigue and snap on you. Just leave it as it is, and use it once you've had the camera cleaned and relubed.

Someone mentioned a rangefinder. I have the Voigtlander Bessa IIIW, which is the wide angle version. It is NOT more compact than the TLRs. The body is rectangular and fairly big. The lens on my camera doesn't retract. It is fast to use however, given that it has auto exposure.

The bottom line is that if you really want Rolleiflex quality, get a 3.5 E or 3.5 F, and have it serviced.

If you just want to try a TLR, then the Autocord is a very good start.
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Old 04-10-2017   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Lai View Post

I have a Maxwell screen on the 3.5, and the original on the 2.8F. The Maxwell screen is definitely brighter, but the original may have a bit more "snap" to show when focus is achieved. But, that could also be due to the reduced depth of field from the f/2.8 lens!
Actually they both have f2.8 viewing lenses.
The Maxwell screen helps for some but others prefer the original ground glass.
My last f2.8D had a Maxwell I liked a it lot. Much better for the dim settings I used the camera in.
An earlier F2.8 I had was fixed with a Modified Mamiya screen. That also was excellent.
I never replaced screens in my f3.5 or Rolleiflex T copies.
The Original Ground glass has a "smoother" sharper image than any of the fresnel bright screens but it is dimmer.
Each set up has its advantages and disadvantages. Nice to have choices
Most serious Rollei users end up with a couple of cameras set up for different situations.
Best to start simple with a nice clean original version and go from there.
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Old 04-10-2017   #58
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Originally Posted by Ong View Post
Seconding with the Rolleicord option, I started off with one for sub-$100 (+$50 for a CLA/adjustment) and to be honest it's similar to my 3.5 automats I obtained later on (besides 1930's chracter but that's another story).


Rolleicord IV 140704 Pro400H 003
by Eugene Ong, on Flickr
Can't really complain with results like this for sub $150USD
Definitely get the Rolleiflex. As this pic shows Rolleicords leave weird streaky light lines all over the negative.
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Old 04-10-2017   #59
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The girl wants a Rolleiflex, simple as that. I have a Rolleiflex 75/3.5 E Xenotar - it will be great for you if you find one $400 - $800 depending on condition. Make sure the self timer still works, if not it means a Clean, Adjust and Lube job. The Planar is a little more expensive but not necessary. Both Xenotar and Planar are exactly the same. Xenotar is cooler, the Planar is warmer in image rendering. You don't need to get an F or an 80mm - they are more expensive.

The Xenars is as good as the Xenotar/Planar at f11. The Tessars are great too - both less expensive $300 - $500 depending on condition.

The Rolleiflex is compact - far far more compact than my Hasselblad for sure.

You don't need a metered one. If it needs a CLA - it's worth the repair. Patience!

Sara, I hope you find your Rolleiflex during your search!

Misty morning and gum trees
Rolleiflex 75/3.5 Xenotar, Y/G Filter, Kodak Plus X (1989)


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Old 04-10-2017   #60
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Yeah that's good. I love Xenotars.
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Old 04-11-2017   #61
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I had a Rolleicord II, III and V (w/o b) - that last one is the prime Rolleicord in my opinion (the b moved the focus to the other side prohibiting one hand usage). Each Rolleicord generation usually reflects its quality in price (meaning a II is not as good but way cheaper). The II came for way under 100€ and the V for about 200€ (they cost more now I think).
I now use a Rolleiflex 3.5 E Planar which not only optically outperformes the Cords but has a MAJOR advantage: very even frame distances. Someting you might value when you own a Nikon Scanner.
I was never really looking for a 2.8 since it's not even a full stop more and it weights too much IMO (I also prefer the 75mm over 80mm).

I also had an Flex Automat Tessar but the taking lens was too scratched for my taste and also uncoated. You might be lucky and get that one cheapish with a nice looking lens.
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Old 04-11-2017   #62
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Old 04-11-2017   #63
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Old 04-11-2017   #64
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When Dana was born.

Rolleiflex 2.8D, Ilford XP2

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Old 04-11-2017   #65
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no interchangeable lens, no fast lenses, can`t do close up, really is not portable once you get one in your hands.

Image is reversed left to right which make tracking moving subjects backwards.

Decision is yours
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Old 04-11-2017   #66
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Lovely focus on your wife's hands, Raid.
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Old 04-11-2017   #67
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Quote:
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no interchangeable lens, no fast lenses, can`t do close up, really is not portable once you get one in your hands.

Image is reversed left to right which make tracking moving subjects backwards.

Decision is yours
On the basis of your criticisms, then, noone should ever use anything other than a small SLR (excel at close ups; fast lenses; no image reversal; very portable). Okay...

On the other hand, the larger format gives plenty of scope for cropping if you need a larger object size; close ups are not quite as straightforward as with an SLR, but Rolleinar lenses mean it can be done (why would you say it can't? This is not right.). A Rollei is less portable than a 35mm rangefinder for instance, but far more portable than most large format cameras (or even a DSLR with decent sized zoom). Ie like nearly every other aspect of photography, it's relative, not absolute. As far as the reversed image is concerned: haven't you ever heard of sportsfinders?

OK, clearly you're not a fan of the camera type, that's fine. But if you're going to be criticise TLRs, at least be reasonably accurate about it.
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Old 04-11-2017   #68
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Lovely focus on your wife's hands, Raid.
Thank you. I was trying to get such an image, but I was not sure if the 80/2.8 could deliver it well.
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Old 04-11-2017   #69
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Quote:
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no interchangeable lens, no fast lenses, can`t do close up, really is not portable once you get one in your hands.

Image is reversed left to right which make tracking moving subjects backwards.

Decision is yours
I'm pretty sure they can handle it, considering they've already got experience using a Hasselblad.

Beyond that, f/2.8 is a fast lens, they can do close ups, and yes, if you've ever actually held one (and I suspect you may not have) they are portable.

I have no idea where people get this absolutely ridiculous idea that TLR cameras are huge and awkward; They are in overall dimensions rarely much bigger than a 35mm SLR, and the control layout is as convenient as any other camera can be (heck I'd argue that a Rolleiflex makes more ergonomic sense than a Leica).
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Old 04-11-2017   #70
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On the basis of your criticisms, then, noone should ever use anything other than a small SLR (excel at close ups; fast lenses; no image reversal; very portable). Okay...

On the other hand, the larger format gives plenty of scope for cropping if you need a larger object size; close ups are not quite as straightforward as with an SLR, but Rolleinar lenses mean it can be done (why would you say it can't? This is not right.). A Rollei is less portable than a 35mm rangefinder for instance, but far more portable than most large format cameras (or even a DSLR with decent sized zoom). Ie like nearly every other aspect of photography, it's relative, not absolute. As far as the reversed image is concerned: haven't you ever heard of sportsfinders?

OK, clearly you're not a fan of the camera type, that's fine. But if you're going to be criticise TLRs, at least be reasonably accurate about it.
Off topic a little, how do you do that bold thing with the text?
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Old 04-11-2017   #71
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Off topic a little, how do you do that bold thing with the text?
You should have a little "b" button just above your compose window that gives you Bold text (highlight the text you want to bold before clicking the button). Next to it should be buttons for Italic "i" and Underline "u". Otherwise, highlighting the desired text and then using the Control + b/ i/u keyboard keys should do the same thing (with a Windows computer, anyway).
Cheers
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Old 04-11-2017   #72
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Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald M View Post
no interchangeable lens, no fast lenses, can`t do close up, really is not portable once you get one in your hands.

Image is reversed left to right which make tracking moving subjects backwards.

Decision is yours
After 9 years of having my Rolleiflex 75/3.5 camera, I don't have to think anymore. I just shoot. Your brain will get used to the format and technique in using the Rolleiflex. Practice, love - then it all comes naturally.
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Old 04-11-2017   #73
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Even the early Rolleiflexes are good cameras the dark screen is often the result of a deteriorating mirror, which can be changed for little money. Personally I prefer the look I get from the Tessar Rolleis not only are they usually less expensive but they are also smaller and fit better into my Hands. That said the Planar on the Rolleiflex is easily on par with the Planar on the Hasselblad if not better. Rolleis are great the build in parallax correction is one of the reason I prefer them over most other TLRs. Good luck with your search and to be honest go to a second hand camera store and handle the cameras, feel is much more important than the difference between a Xenar and a Planar you have to like how it handles.
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Old 04-11-2017   #74
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Originally Posted by f16sunshine View Post
Most serious Rollei users end up with a couple of cameras set up for different situations.
Well, I must be transforming to that serious level because I keep on searching on eBay for that number 2 Rolleiflex a lot more often these days. Well, honestly. One with color, the other on black and white. Color with the Planar, Tri-X with the Xenotar!
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Old 04-11-2017   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarcophilus Harrisii View Post
You should have a little "b" button just above your compose window that gives you Bold text (highlight the text you want to bold before clicking the button). Next to it should be buttons for Italic "i" and Underline "u". Otherwise, highlighting the desired text and then using the Control + b/ i/u keyboard keys should do the same thing (with a Windows computer, anyway).
Cheers
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Oh my! All this time using this forum I have not notice that This is useful! thanks!
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Old 04-11-2017   #76
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All I can tell you is that as a consummate gear switcher, the Rolleiflex 2.8E is the camera I have not sold, and probably will never sell. I upgraded it to take a Hasselblad Prisms and finders, and put in a maxwell screen. Combined with some of the great filters and accessories it's incredibly versatile for a fixed lens camera. Plus the 80mm Planar exudes character. I love it's creamy low contrast B&W and even color tones.
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Old 04-11-2017   #77
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I just had 2 Rolleiflexes overhauled, a 3.5F Planar and a 2.8F Planar. I tend to grab the 3.5 because its a bit smaller and it looks rougher, so I'm not as careful protecting it. I use the 2.8 with a prism for more work-related portraits. The lenses on close inspection all have imperfections: cleaning marks, and superficial scratches. You don't need perfect glass. Cleaning marks and small imperfections make no difference in the results, so no need to pay a premium for pristine.
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Old 04-11-2017   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronald M View Post
no interchangeable lens, no fast lenses, can`t do close up, really is not portable once you get one in your hands.

Image is reversed left to right which make tracking moving subjects backwards.

Decision is yours
no worries Ronald!
I think I am capable of handling a Rolleiflex

Image reversing is no different to the Hasselblad, which I have been using for at least 8 years now.

I'm not one to change lenses or shoot a close-up (I can do this on my Leica with my 50 if I wanted to). Close ups are super rare for me, unless I'm shooting video. For photography, my favourite subject matters are people.

And trust me, I have seen and held a $2000 Rolleiflex 2.8, and I know it's more "portable" than the Hasselblad, or a Mark III.
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Old 04-11-2017   #79
BillBingham2
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I'm really sad to re-read this post. RFF has for may years been a place where folks can come and get great advice and opinions about a wide range of topics. Links from around the world are usually shared that provide background information and years of research. Experience of what to look for when buying a new M3 DS or workings of a Leica Motor vs a TA Rapidwinder.

I haven't seen any where near the amount I have in the the past. I would have loved to offer some, but my hunting has been around RF MF bodies, old and new. While I've always lusted after a Rollei, it hasn't risen to the point of acting. I've found some really interesting sites on Japanese made TLRs (one even sports a Nikkor lens), but they are not Rollei's.

Cameras are a unique tool that transcends the practical into the creative. Some say it's the photographer, me, I'm a firm believer in that it can be the photographer and some times it can be the photographer and the camera. Having the right tool at the right time can inspire and liberate ideas, views, and a better you.

How about it all the TLR folks out there, can you share some guidance as what to look for? Experience with different models and the steps/effort you go through to take a picture and get ready for the next?

B2 (;->
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Old 04-11-2017   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBingham2 View Post
I haven't seen any where near the amount I have in the the past.
Are there any rangefinder camera Facebook groups? That is probably where lots of the traffic went.
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