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The rare and ellusive Rolleiflex sonnar Tele TLR
Old 11-29-2018   #1
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The rare and ellusive Rolleiflex sonnar Tele TLR

I was hanging out at an antique furniture mall and there was a camera shop. Mostly damaged cameras rentes to appear in movie sets... I asked for Rolleiflex w/ no hopes for anything good but the owner said he had something to show me. So i grabbed for the forst time a Rollei tele.. it has a Sonnar 135mm (f/ 4.0 if i remember correctly) and the angle, depth of field, compression... is amazing. Fantastic camera for studio portraits, fashion etc... Camera was mechanically clean. Lens though had some kind of haze. It could be from the front element only and it did not have a lens cap. It could be the matter of cleanning ... or not.

It was not expensive. This is not your usual ebay Rollei. I am not buying it since i am moving into vintage 35mm though... but it was amazing to handle this camera. The lenses are heavy. It has a different balance from the tessar 75mm 3.5. Anyway, i am not a TLR guy.
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Old 11-29-2018   #2
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While certainly not as common as the garden variety Rolleis with 75mm or 80mm lenses I don't think the tele-Rollei is actually very rare. On the other hand, the wide angle Rollei is a little bit harder to find.

The tele-Rollei does take a very nice photograph though. Probably the biggest downside is that it can't focus up close. I don't remember exactly what the minimum focus distance is but I think it is around 2 to 2 1/2 meters.
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Old 11-29-2018   #3
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Originally Posted by Pioneer View Post
While certainly not as common as the garden variety Rolleis with 75mm or 80mm lenses I don't think the tele-Rollei is actually very rare. On the other hand, the wide angle Rollei is a little bit harder to find.

The tele-Rollei does take a very nice photograph though. Probably the biggest downside is that it can't focus up close. I don't remember exactly what the minimum focus distance is but I think it is around 2 to 2 1/2 meters.
You are right on both accounts. The wide Distagon is much harder to find. I tried the focus and yes, it does not focus close. Rollei sold close up filters but the shop owner did not mention any.
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Old 11-29-2018   #4
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I have a Tele but I could not afford a Wide Rollei. Both are awesome "photo making machines"! The BMW of Medium Format Cameras.







It brings out the photographer in me.
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Old 11-29-2018   #5
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001 by Nokton48, on Flickr

I have the Bellows 135mm for the Hasselblad, same lens as TeleRollei, focuses to 1:1. Kind of the same but sort of different. Shown with my other Blads.
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Old 11-29-2018   #6
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Deadly Weapons! WOW!
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Old 11-29-2018   #7
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001 by Nokton48, on Flickr

I have the Bellows 135mm for the Hasselblad, same lens as TeleRollei, focuses to 1:1. Kind of the same but sort of different. Shown with my other Blads.
the shop owner sold a super wide biogon a week ago for 1.200 dollars. Itīs the Hasselblad i want.
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Old 11-29-2018   #8
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I have the SWC for a wide angle MF camera.
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Old 11-29-2018   #9
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I have the SWC for a wide angle MF camera.

That 38mm biogon lens is out of this world. I dully ignored it cause i decided to be a tele/normal photographer for a loooong time. But since i found out about Mimmo Iodice... i want the camera. Do you know his work? Extraordinary black and white photographer.
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Old 11-29-2018   #10
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Nice set of Blads, Nokton 48.

If I need (strange and very flexible word "need") medium format wide angle I most commonly use the A 35 on my Pentax 645. Not quite as big of a negative as the 6x6 but still very useful.

As for Signore Jodice, I knew nothing of him until your post colker. This will take some research for sure. Always a thrill to meet new photographers.
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Old 11-29-2018   #11
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That 38mm biogon lens is out of this world. I dully ignored it cause i decided to be a tele/normal photographer for a loooong time. But since i found out about Mimmo Iodice... i want the camera. Do you know his work? Extraordinary black and white photographer.
No, I don't know him, but I will next search for examples of his work. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 11-29-2018   #12
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“Some kind of haze” is separation in lens elements and does not clean out. It’s a defect that is there to stay.
The Rollei tele is prone to separation unfortunately. Many of them suffer from it.

I once had a Tele that I bought from a prize winning Dutch photographer and felt the need to sell it. The fellow here that. Ought it had it taken apart by his ‘technician’ since it had a slight spot where focusing was less smooth. It was a perfectly fine camera but somehow once it was ‘repaired’ all kinds of defects suddenly ‘revealed’.

Moral of the story, keep them away from incompetent repairmen.
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Old 11-29-2018   #13
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I am quite fond of the 135mm for the Mamiya TLRs. It's a nice focal length for the 6x6 format and plenty sharp.
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Old 11-30-2018   #14
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I am quite fond of the 135mm for the Mamiya TLRs. It's a nice focal length for the 6x6 format and plenty sharp.
The "Rollei TLR's are the BMW" but Mamiya TLR, C-series the Toyota version.
They just keep om shooting! Heavy but very sharp due to film running straight and flat..
In Mamiya there are other long lenses, 105 some with viewing diaphragm,
the 135mm, two versions of 180mm. The early 180mm which I owned was so sharp, useless for professional portraiture! Slapped piece of tape across element, later diffusion filter similar to "Softar" by Zeiss..
The Rollei 135mm requires a proxar; close up lens to focus close..
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Old 11-30-2018   #15
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The Rollei 135mm requires a proxar; close up lens to focus close..
Yes. Rollei wouldnīt let close distance missing from their menu. Those were the times of perfect cameras which would not compromise and say "sorry... canīt do that. Maybe our next model.."
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Old 11-30-2018   #16
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Yes. Rollei wouldnīt let close distance missing from their menu. Those were the times of perfect cameras which would not compromise and say "sorry... canīt do that. Maybe our next model.."
They made 0.7 and 0.35 Rolleinars especially for the Tele Rolleiflex (which, being Bay III can actually also be used with most 2.8 Rolleiflex models, too). These bring focus in and if that is still inadequate standard Bay III Rolleinars may also be stacked onto Eg the 0.35 for really close range imaging. The arch exponent of this technique was undoubtedly Sanders McNew, who has made many portraits this way.
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Old 11-30-2018   #17
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Those Bay III Rolleinars are not cheap! I've looked for them a couple of times and have been amazed at the prices that people want for them. Maybe one day I'll come across a set that are in my price range.
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Old 11-30-2018   #18
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I can confirm that the Mamiya TLR 135mm is a worthy and obtainable option. Close focus built in.
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Old 11-30-2018   #19
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The "Rollei TLR's are the BMW" but Mamiya TLR, C-series the Toyota version..
If Rollei TLR's are the BMW, and the Mamiya TLR the Toyota............

Then the Hasselblad 135mm F5.6 T* Planar-S is the Apollo Moon Buggy

And it is not that expensive. I paid $350 for the Bellows, and $300 for the Planar, and $75 for the exotic Bellows Lens hood. And not that hard to find these around. One of Hasselblad's sharpest lenses.

And it's part of a system that contains literally HUNDREDS of extra parts. Nobody else 6x6 is EVEN CLOSE. And it can be repaired easily and painlessly. Believe it or not it's easily hand holdable, but uses a double cable release.

For my $$$ it's Hasselblad all the way. Also like Mamiya TLRs and 135mm's very much for what they are. Apples and Oranges.


Hasselblad 135mm F5.6 S Planar by Nokton48, on Flickr
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Old 11-30-2018   #20
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post







It brings out the photographer in me.
I've seen many of your snaps over the years professor but these ones...just first rate beautiful!
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Old 12-01-2018   #21
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Originally Posted by Nokton48 View Post
If Rollei TLR's are the BMW, and the Mamiya TLR the Toyota............

Then the Hasselblad 135mm F5.6 T* Planar-S is the Apollo Moon Buggy

And it is not that expensive. I paid $350 for the Bellows, and $300 for the Planar, and $75 for the exotic Bellows Lens hood. And not that hard to find these around. One of Hasselblad's sharpest lenses.

And it's part of a system that contains literally HUNDREDS of extra parts. Nobody else 6x6 is EVEN CLOSE. And it can be repaired easily and painlessly. Believe it or not it's easily hand holdable, but uses a double cable release.

For my $$$ it's Hasselblad all the way. Also like Mamiya TLRs and 135mm's very much for what they are. Apples and Oranges.


Hasselblad 135mm F5.6 S Planar by Nokton48, on Flickr

Totally different cameras. Rolleis are silent and discreet. Lighter to carry around. Hasselblads are noisy... Yes, they can be handheld but bigger cameras feel better in your hands.

No one will dispute itīs build quality or lens sharpness but itīs an entirely different camera from a Rollei TLR.

I like the SWC biogon... i want it and will shoot w/ it. The rest of the system is nice to look at but itīs a studio camera best served w/ assistants loading film backs .
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Old 12-01-2018   #22
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I've seen many of your snaps over the years professor but these ones...just first rate beautiful!
Thank you very much.
Lina and Dana are teenagers now, and I am glad that I took many photos of them growing up over the past years. Their photos replaced photos of canyons and mountains and other photography targets I used to have until we had our children. No regrets. Children cannot get young again. Mountains stay in place for ages.

I had with me three cameras for a dedicated Rolleiflex Day.
2.8D, Tele , and the 3.5F. I even used a tripod and light meter.
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Old 12-04-2018   #23
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The Tele is a great camera. Somewhat rare, about 8000 made, though for some reason they are not in the same demand/price-range as the Wide. Still, a clean tele is $1000-1400+ all day long, and one without separation is $1500-2k usually.
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Old 12-04-2018   #24
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I like the camera and lens, and the 0.35 adapter works great for me.



I did wait for a later model (white face) since they don't have the separation tendency.
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