With the prices coming down on these two cameras I have considered one of the two. For those who use them I would like to know your experience. I have read alot, but you know how things fly on the net. People talk about jamming the shutter and how pricey they are to fix. I just am interested in dependability. What attracts me to them is simpilcity of operation. Is it true the backs are a pain to load? Using the Fuji 645ZI is great, but the one thing I miss are simple manual focus and basic operation. Most of the ones I talk to around here just try to steer me away from them, but no one I have talked to here ever owned one. Monte Johnson.
Monte, in the two years I've had my 501CM, which is similar, I've never had a problem with the shutter or anything else. There is a slight learning curve involved in loading the back, because loading film into the transport with the emulsion facing outward is not exactly intuitive (my previous MF camera was a Mamiya C330). But it becomes easy with practice. The simplicity of manual focus, shutter and aperture settings were attractions for me, also, and I haven't been disappointed. Other features I like are a very robust construction, and the fact that it's almost foolproof in terms of preventing dumb things like shooting with the dark slide in place, or removing the back with the dark slide out. Batteries not included......or needed!
I asume the 500 & 501 series are pretty much the same. I had heard the backs are not as easy as others. That does not concern me too much I can learn. I have been spoiled by the Fuji though. I don't think you can screw that up. A year or so ago I looked at them but the price was too high. Still new the 501CM is exspensive, but the older 500 series are not bad. I like total manual control over my exsposures. I also like the looks of the 6008 Rollei, but the hasselblad seems to be more basic. Not battery dependent. What do you use for a light meter? I have done well with the meter in the Fuji, but wish I had a handheld one many times. Monte Johnson.
Monte, I use a Gossen Luna Pro (digital), usually in incident light mode. It seems to be right on, but I bracket anyway. Once, when the battery died, I ended up using the TTL meter in my Minolta 35mm and that worked OK too, but I definitely needed to bracket that time!
If a person shoots mainly BW is there a difference which 80 lens you get? There is so many. CF,CFE,C, CB and so on. Is it smart to buy these cameras like the 500CM used and lens used? I know reapir cost on lens shutters,backs can be exspensive. Might be i should just pick up an Fuji Gw67011 and be happy. I am a dreamer,but would like if I buy another camera to find one that is truely a keeper. Monte Johnson.
I'm not sure which lens the 500 is designed for, but the 501CM uses CFE lenses. I've shot both color and BW with the 80, 120 and 250mm lenses and have very good results with both.
I think there's a bit of a risk involved in buying used gear, so it's best to make sure you get it from a reputable source, like KEH. Besides, what guarantee is there that you wouldn't have the same kinds of problems with the Fuji?
Thanks again Bill,
I am not doing anything right away to many other things take first place. I have bought the last two cameras from KEH and have felt I got what I wanted. So I am sure I will use them again. I am not sure when I do make a change if Hasselblad is the way I want to go, but I do like the basic operation of their design. I would love to do 4+5 but that might never happen. I am happy with the Fuji and I have great prints from APX 100,Delta 100, Fuji Acros and Ilford Pan F to prove it, but it has some limits. It is not so easy to manual focus which I like for critical work and for tight portraits it does not do well. No camera does it all but After shooting with Zeiss glass on my contax I just cannot let go of that. Monte Johnson.