Bronica Medium Format Owners Thread

Messages
5,845
Name
Shaheed
Edit My Images
No
The rotate to lock also works to hold the shutter open in bulb, you can lock it with the shutter open or closed, at least you can on mine, dunno about SQ's.
I suppose it makes more sense if you are an auto winder, I am an auto winder, doesn't matter what camera it is after taking a shot I wind on, even if I'm putting it back in the bag its a wind on no matter what.
Experience has taught me not to be faffin about like as clumsy oaf with a fiddly rotary shutter button trying to lock it with the camera ready to shoot, and I don't have to because.......I have a darkslide..:D
Also as with most old cameras that are subject to the odd mechanical anomaly once in a while, not being able to diagnose that "anomaly" there and then with the ability to remove the back, renders the thing useless till you get one.
I'm a big fan of darkslides....:D
You don't know the powwwwwer of the Dark Slide
 
Messages
329
Name
Alan
Edit My Images
Yes
Recently joined the club with an SQ-AM that was highlighted in the bargains thread here, with a metered prism finder. Only done one roll of FP4+ so far and pleased with the results (apart from the frame after I put the dark slide back in and it still fired).

Just came across the chimney finder on ebay for £50 and decided to take the risk. It was described as faulty because the adjuster does not zoom. My thought is it's a dioptre adjuster, so it shouldn't zoom.
 
OP
OP
skysh4rk
Messages
3,031
Name
RJ
Edit My Images
No
Recently joined the club with an SQ-AM that was highlighted in the bargains thread here, with a metered prism finder. Only done one roll of FP4+ so far and pleased with the results (apart from the frame after I put the dark slide back in and it still fired).
I'm glad to hear that you are enjoying your Bronica.


Just came across the chimney finder on ebay for £50 and decided to take the risk. It was described as faulty because the adjuster does not zoom. My thought is it's a dioptre adjuster, so it shouldn't zoom.
Well, "zoom" is the wrong word, but the dioptre on that viewfinder is relatively important, if I recall correctly. For instance, if the viewfinder were stuck at a particular dioptre strength without any possibility to change it, it could be impossible or very difficult to determine focus on the focusing screen. It will depend on what setting is it set for (i.e., dioptre strength), your eyesight, and your viewing distance. Fingers crossed it is something that you can work with.

I had one for a short while, but the waist level finder is lighter, packs up smaller, and provides larger magnification, so it was hard to justify keeping the chimney finder around.
 
Messages
329
Name
Alan
Edit My Images
Yes
Does anyone know how to release the shutter on a Bronica SQ lens while it's off camera? I understand the two levers with the red and green marking can be used to cock it, but no idea how to release it. I also understand that both the camera and the lens need to be in the cocked position to mount, and unmount a lens. If I can I'd like to release the shutters while lenses aren't in use to reduce tension on the shutter spring.
 
Messages
2,320
Edit My Images
Yes
They are designed to be stored cocked so there is no need to uncock them. Doing so increases the chance of you damaging the shutters.

I'm not sure what you actually mean by 'spring'. The shutter is actuated by an escarpment rather than a spring. The best way to preserve them is to fire them on a regular basis and not worry about the spring.
 
Messages
3,590
Name
Carl
Edit My Images
Yes
Has anyone used the 50mm MC lens for the ETRS? Seems to be quite a bit cheaper than the PE lens, but from what I've read it's not nearly as good? If anyone has used it, I'd like to hear your thoughts!

edit- or the 40mm PE/MC lenses too, if anyone's used them!
 
Last edited:
Messages
468
Edit My Images
Yes
Was reading about MC and PE lenses recently. Apparently, the PE series have different optical formulae, and the improvements are more apparent in the shorter lenses than the longer ones. I don't how big the differences are, or what's different in terms of the resulting photos. I have a vague recollection that the PEs have half-stops on the apertures, and the MCs full stops, but worth checking. I suspect the optical differences are maybe quite subtle, based on the assumption that the MCs weren't so bad that nobody used them.

I have the 40mm PE and the MC 50, 75 and 150, and can't say I've felt like something was missing, but I haven't really bothered looking. If I was buying now, I'd probably chase after PEs unless the price difference was a big one, at which point, I'd want to know more about how optically different they are.
 
Last edited:
Messages
5,629
Name
Trevor
Edit My Images
Yes
Has anyone used the 50mm MC lens for the ETRS? Seems to be quite a bit cheaper than the PE lens, but from what I've read it's not nearly as good? If anyone has used it, I'd like to hear your thoughts!

edit- or the 40mm PE/MC lenses too, if anyone's used them!
I bought the 40mc. I didn’t know there was anything else. Always perfectly happy with it, and in fact all the Bronica lenses I’ve used.
I don’t believe in looking for a reason not to own something..
 
Messages
3,590
Name
Carl
Edit My Images
Yes
Was reading about MC and PE lenses recently. Apparently, the PE series have different optical formulae, and the improvements are more apparent in the shorter lenses than the longer ones. I don't how big the differences are, or what's different in terms of the resulting photos. I have a vague recollection that the PEs have half-stops on the apertures, and the MCs full stops, but worth checking. I suspect the optical differences are maybe quite subtle, based on the assumption that the MCs weren't so bad that nobody used them.

I have the 40mm PE and the MC 50, 75 and 150, and can't say I've felt like something was missing, but I haven't really bothered looking. If I was buying now, I'd probably chase after PEs unless the price difference was a big one, at which point, I'd want to know more about how optically different they are.
I bought the 40mc. I didn’t know there was anything else. Always perfectly happy with it, and in fact all the Bronica lenses I’ve used.
I don’t believe in looking for a reason not to own something..
Thanks guys :) The 50 PE's seem to be about two and a half times as much as the MC's, although there's a lot less of them around it seems. If the MC lens is almost as good, then I'll likely just get one over a PE, as I can get myself a 50 MC AND a 150 PE for the price of a 50 PE!
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
Has anyone used the 50mm MC lens for the ETRS? Seems to be quite a bit cheaper than the PE lens, but from what I've read it's not nearly as good? If anyone has used it, I'd like to hear your thoughts!

edit- or the 40mm PE/MC lenses too, if anyone's used them!
Well I have the 50mm MC and first used it at the meet at the peak to check it out, but with a stack of 35mm film, taking up room in the freezer, to get through haven't used the Bronica or Mamiya 67 since... even going abroad.
Results? well the time I squashed the Bronica shots down with the same shots taken with a 35mm camera..to 1000px on the longest side and with no cropping you had to look carefully to see the difference, so not much useful info for you there. Anyway I'm happy with the lens.
Maybe some one going to Scotland with ETRS 40mm and 50mm could let you take some shots on your Bronica to check out yourself ?
 
Last edited:
Messages
4,668
Name
Peter
Edit My Images
Yes
Was reading about MC and PE lenses recently. Apparently, the PE series have different optical formulae, and the improvements are more apparent in the shorter lenses than the longer ones. I don't how big the differences are, or what's different in terms of the resulting photos. I have a vague recollection that the PEs have half-stops on the apertures, and the MCs full stops, but worth checking. I suspect the optical differences are maybe quite subtle, based on the assumption that the MCs weren't so bad that nobody used them.
I recall something similar between the S and PS lenses for the SQ. The interesting thing there was that the correction was meant to be more critical at wider angles, but I also read somewhere that it was the teles that had better correction, so I'm guessing there won't be much difference in the real world. I suppose that really critcal slide work possibly benefited from having reliable half-stops, but I can't see it being that much of an issue with colour print, and certainly not with B&W.
 
Messages
4,206
Name
Dave
Edit My Images
Yes
Just took delivery of an ETRS this morning from WYCameras. Already been out to put a roll through it and I'm sold already! Love the process and looking through a waist level viewfinder is just fantastic! Just have to see how the photos turn out now, they literally are just a wander round our local spinney shooting whatever took my fancy - wanted to try the camera out as soon as.... Not that I'm a great film photographer with non metered cameras, I just end up confusing myself where to point my old Weston lightmeter.... Such fun tho, this MF lark could become quite addictive :eek::)
 
Messages
2,320
Edit My Images
Yes
I find waist-level finders have a beneficial effect on my composition. I think it is because you look at the viewfinder image rather than just have it as your field of view as you do with an eye-level finder.
 
Messages
2,320
Edit My Images
Yes
Just received these back from Ag Photo this morning. Bronica ETRs, Fomapan Creative 200 film and no idea as the the developer. As mention just above, I use the waist-level finder and also use a Leningrad selenium light meter. (looking a bit darker on here than they did before I posted them.)

Bronica-15-38.jpg
Bronica-13-37.jpg
Bronica-2-35.jpg
Bronica-8-36.jpg
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
I find waist-level finders have a beneficial effect on my composition. I think it is because you look at the viewfinder image rather than just have it as your field of view as you do with an eye-level finder.
...but the problem with the ETRS and similar cameras is for vertical shots and really needs a prism. Dave probably know this and might have one to turn his ETRS into a competent large SLR.
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
Which is why I carry a pentaprism finder with me when using the Bronica but, actually, I rarely use it.
Never taken my prism off since I bought the Etrs about 30 years ago, but I know what you mean about the view from a waist level finder as it looks terrific on a RB67.
 
Messages
4,206
Name
Dave
Edit My Images
Yes
A quick question if I may. How difficult is it shooting the ETRS wide open at f2.8.

I’ve tried a few shots and seem to miss focus completely. I’m guessing wide open is quite difficult to adjust to being a noob to the Bronica, just wondering if this is the case and I should stick to a more conservative f stop :D
 
Messages
2,320
Edit My Images
Yes
I have no difficulty focusing wide open. Which focus screen do you have? If there is a split image centre, focus should be easy, particularly if you take your time.

A possible issue is if you are using a waist-level finder for close-ish subjects , focus at eye level and then drop the camera to waist level.
 
Messages
8,593
Name
John
Edit My Images
No
for anything close, f/2.8 is a pretty shallow sliver of sharp on 645
I suppose it depends on the qualities of the focus screen and its alignment
 
Messages
4,206
Name
Dave
Edit My Images
Yes
Thanks John, I believe my ETRS has a plain focussing screen not a split screen which would certainly make focussing easier.

I’d tend to focus with the WLF and magnifier close to the eye and then drop the camera to waist level. I did wonder if this maybe the cause moving the focus plane given that I’m guessing the DoF will be very shallow.

More testing and investigation for a split screen I gues maybe the order of the day.
 
OP
OP
skysh4rk
Messages
3,031
Name
RJ
Edit My Images
No
Thanks John, I believe my ETRS has a plain focussing screen not a split screen which would certainly make focussing easier.

I’d tend to focus with the WLF and magnifier close to the eye and then drop the camera to waist level. I did wonder if this maybe the cause moving the focus plane given that I’m guessing the DoF will be very shallow.

More testing and investigation for a split screen I gues maybe the order of the day.
I both focus and compose with the WLF up to my eye if shooting at wider apertures, especially for closer distances. I only drop it down to waist level at narrower apertures where I know have some depth of field, so focusing isn't as critical, or at longer focusing distances (after pre-focusing).

For what it's worth, I find the more modern Bronicas (i.e., ETR series, SQ series, and GS-1) have very good focusing screens, although I prefer the plain screens to the split screens, as I find the split screens just get in my way.
 
Messages
468
Edit My Images
Yes
I stick it on a tripod and just lean over a bit when I want to use the magnifier in the WLF. No camera movement means no change in focus point, and no parallax jiggery-pokery.
 
Messages
4,206
Name
Dave
Edit My Images
Yes
Just got hold of a split imaging focussing screen from WY cameras. Definitely going to make a difference for me rather than the plain screen.

Hopefully if the weather improves I’ll give it a good go this weekend with the 5 rolls of HP5 I’ve just ordered. (y)
 
Messages
119
Name
Anthony
Edit My Images
No
Hi,

Have just picked up an ETRS that I originally purchased way back at the end of Feb, but due to the rear film back safety catch failing, it had been away for repair for the best part of 5 weeks. This was due to the repair company Bronica expert only working part time. I bit the bullet as the repair was FOC from the shop and has a 6 month guarantee.

Whilst the body was away I picked up an ETRSi body still in its box for a very good price.

So I now have a ERTS with 2 x 120 film backs, waist level finder and grid focusing screen, speed grip, AE-II finder, 75mm f2.8 MC lens and a 150mm f3.5 MC lens.

I have a couple of questions:

What are the best options for a wide angel lens?

What body do you prefer, I see an immediate advantage with the ETRSi as it has a true Bulb position, and mirror lock up, but I could be barking up the wrong tree here as it appears that the ERTSi has a lot more plastic in its construction.

All feedback/comments greatly received.

Anthony
 
Messages
490
Name
Mathew
Edit My Images
Yes
Usually when choosing a wide angle lens the choice comes down to the 40mm and the 50mm. I think that there is something wider but it's more of a fisheye perspective? Between the 40mm and 50mm the 50mm is generally considered to give better image quality so the big question is how wide a lens do you need? Whichever you choose it's worth looking for the PE version as they are meant to be superior for both lenses.
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
Well I only have the 50mm MC as it was the cheapest and admit I've only used it so far at the meet at the Peak and the results were very good and whether you can see the difference using a PE lens I have no idea...but one tip using the AE-11 is:- don't leave it switched on as it flattens the battery.
Anyway IMO the Etrsi is a lovely camera and mine is set up with the prism like a large SLR and enjoy yours.
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
If you can believe what they say on the net is the 150mm f3.5 MC is better than the 150mm MC f4..well if you have the f4 and get sharp results you'll never know what you are supposed to be missing erm if there is a difference ;)
 
Messages
490
Name
Mathew
Edit My Images
Yes
Well I only have the 50mm MC as it was the cheapest and admit I've only used it so far at the meet at the Peak and the results were very good and whether you can see the difference using a PE lens I have no idea...but one tip using the AE-11 is:- don't leave it switched on as it flattens the battery.
Anyway IMO the Etrsi is a lovely camera and mine is set up with the prism like a large SLR and enjoy yours.
I must admit that I am only repeating the advice that I could find online when I was trying to decide which lens to buy. I bought the PE 50mm as I found one at the right price and it is a nice little lens.

Sent from my Hudl 2 using Tapatalk
 
Messages
4,271
Name
Richard
Edit My Images
No
I must admit that I am only repeating the advice that I could find online when I was trying to decide which lens to buy. I bought the PE 50mm as I found one at the right price and it is a nice little lens.

Sent from my Hudl 2 using Tapatalk
What you have bought is a extremely brilliant Lens.
 

excalibur2

My F4's Broken...
Messages
10,131
Name
Brian
Edit My Images
Yes
I must admit that I am only repeating the advice that I could find online when I was trying to decide which lens to buy. I bought the PE 50mm as I found one at the right price and it is a nice little lens.

Sent from my Hudl 2 using Tapatalk
If we both happen to go to a F&Cs meet we could use the same film, same subject and get the film done at filmdev for medium scan...for say one shot wide open and one at f5.6 to pixel peep to see the difference between 50MC and 50mm PE lenses. OR test them both on my camera or yours.
 
Last edited:
Top