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120 / 220 film RF's 120 / 220 format rangefinders including Fuji, Koni-Omega, Mamiya Press, Linhof 6x7/6x9 cameras, Mamiya 6/7 among others, but excluding the 120 folders and the Voigtlander 667 cameras that have their own forums.

View Poll Results: Your wishes :: Bessa IV - 6x9 or 6x12 - and what lens?
6x9 - 110 mm 36 14.63%
6x9 - 80 mm 70 28.46%
6x9 - 50 mm 54 21.95%
6x9 - different (please share) 2 0.81%
6x12 - 120 mm 9 3.66%
6x12 - 85 mm 29 11.79%
6x12 - 65 mm 42 17.07%
6x12 - different (please share) 4 1.63%
Voters: 246. You may not vote on this poll

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Bessa IV - 6x9 or 6x12
Old 10-29-2010   #1
Matus
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Question Bessa IV - 6x9 or 6x12

Relax - I am just starting an innocent poll here [but let me remind you that I also started the poll on wide angle Bessa III less than a year before its introduction .. ]

Ok - knowing what Fuji/Voigtlander are capable of and approximately for how much - what would be your choice for Bessa IV ?
- 6x9 or 6x12 ? And what lens?
- Of course the camera would have the AE, coupled nice rangefinder and such.The lens would be fixed of course.
- The camera would be FOLDING (should compare to Bessa III 80/3.5 thickness-wise)

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So - make your choice and tell us why. I am not asking about your opinion on feasibility of such camera - just your preference.
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Please not I do not dare to guess possible lens speed as that is beyond my knowledge and I do not want to give you false hopes for wide and fast lenses
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I came to this as I started to look for viable compact 6x12 cameras and there are simply none. Polaroid 110 & 900 conversions are hard to call compact ... And event the 6x9 cameras are either large [Fuji GW/GSW] or rather old and only with "normal" lenses
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Last edited by Matus : 10-29-2010 at 12:29.
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Old 10-29-2010   #2
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Yeah, right. A whole new body. And why folding? Inherently more difficulty in maintaning parallelism, and no need anyway when dealing with a wide-angle lens. Likewise, not much need for a coupled RF with a wide-angle.

I know you didn't want to hear about the feasibility, but then again, there's no point in speculating on pure fantasy. Also, what do you mean by 'viable' (the normal definitions are 'capable of growing to maturity' or 'capable of reproducing itself')? Do you mean 'cheap'? 'Cos if you don't, and if you can do without the RF, options (new and used) include Linhof, Horseman and a couple of Chinese makers.

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Old 10-29-2010   #3
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Roger, the "viable" was not the best word, sorry (I did not mean cheap). I mean simply some reasonably compact camera. All those scale focus professional cameras one can buy today are designed around the idea of using one body and multiple lenses. The cameras are rather bulky, large and heavy. There was a 6x9 RF in the past - the Fujica G690 and it indeed proved that the camera is hard to make light or compact that way. I would rather see something that reminding of the new/old bessas just in 6x12 format ...
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Old 10-29-2010   #4
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A folding 6x12 would be cool and unique. You could easily take medium format panoramic while traveling. I'm not sure of the focal length, but I think a 28-35mm equivalent would be the best. I think it would be around 95-105mm, but not sure.

There are a lot of 6x9 folders in existence, but all have "normal" lenses. Producing a 6x9 with a normal lens, means Voigtlander is competing with a vast used market. The other option is a 6x9 with a 24mm lens equivalent.
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Old 10-29-2010   #5
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6x12 please, and wide; make mine a 65mm or perhaps a 75mm. Why? I like the perspective and the ratio, and the shorter lens helps keep the whole camera more compact. I'm interested in the Dayi 612 (ebay #270646219043) but the design is so clunky. Surely it is possible for someone to come up with a more elegant implementation.
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Old 10-29-2010   #6
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When I win the Lottery the Linhof 6x12 is at the top of my list. A Bessa/Fuji/VC 6x12 would be awesome. Like Chris, I like the sound of the Dayi and other Chinese knock-offs but they just look a bit crude.

On eBay I saw a Chinese knock-off of an Alpa. It had the proper high-end Schneider lens and a very similar design but you could see gaps in the wooden grips and other flaws. They still wanted $$$$, just not $$$$$$$$$ Alpa money.
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Old 10-29-2010   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisN View Post
6x12 please, and wide; make mine a 65mm or perhaps a 75mm. Why? I like the perspective and the ratio, and the shorter lens helps keep the whole camera more compact.... .
Good point.

I was able to figure out a few 35mm equivalencies. I can't only think in terms of 35mm.

612 = 35mm equivalent
120mm = 52mm
80mm = 26mm
58mm = 18mm
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Old 10-29-2010   #8
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Think in terms of the vertical, an 80mm lens is "normal" on 6cm tall 120 film. This is just twice as wide as a 6x6 negative. So while a 80mm lens on 6x12 maybe get as wide as a 24mm lens on a normal 35mm camera - the height will be nice and normal, like a 50mm lens on a normal 35mm camera. People standing in the frame won't look distorted.
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To anticipate this from Fuji, think about this.???
Old 10-30-2010   #9
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To anticipate this from Fuji, think about this.???

At 6X12, Fuji potentially has that panorama covered. Their excellent offering of the GX 617 could simply be masked down to 6X12. To me, that infers that they would not develop a competing product in their line. Furthermore, they have an excellent and for it's format, not too heavy, solution in 6X9.

That is the GW690 and GSW690. Not nearly as heavy as the original G690, they also cover a frame format and focal length that I think would preclude any offering from Fuji in 6X9.

If you've not held the last model GW690, I doubt that Fuji or any other MFR could come up with a lighter or smaller 6X9. The glass is superb and the shutter is robust.

Yes, it lacks a meter, but is therefore not dependent on batteries. I still use the "Texas Leica" original G690, which may be heavy, but offers me a slightly extended 100mm lens and the 65mm lens for a one body/2 lens solution. That setup is lighter than carrying two of the later 6X9's, the GW and GSW for two bodies with fixed lenses.

Sorry, but I think your fantasy cameras have been well covered by Fuji in the past, with hardy cameras that last a long time, and are quite plentiful used.

PS. It's quite naive of you to ask for preferences without feasability studies and justifications. Here at RFF, we simply do not work that way. You can't stifle the creative minds on this forum.

Last edited by kuzano : 10-30-2010 at 06:10.
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Old 10-31-2010   #10
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As Frank noted, in 6x12 there's the Linhof; and also the Horseman, Dayi, Gaoersi and Fotoman offerings, at various quality, capability and price levels. And as nice as it is, the GSW690 will not give me the perspective that a 65mm lens on a 6x12 will give.

So in the meantime it's back to making do with a wide lens on the dSLR, and cropping to 2:1. And dreaming of doing this with film.
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Last edited by ChrisN : 10-31-2010 at 00:21.
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Old 10-31-2010   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisN View Post
As Frank noted, in 6x12 there's the Linhof; and also the Horseman, Dayi, Gaoersi and Fotoman offerings,
... and Fuji was one of the pioneers and long time market leader in the 6x17 format. It is not entirely unlikely that they might issue another one - indeed I'd consider a 6x17 from them more likely than a 6x12.

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Old 10-31-2010   #12
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Personally I'd like the equivalent of a GSW690 with a built-in spot/matrix meter and added aperture-priority autoexposure.

But I can survive without it.
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Old 11-03-2010   #13
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6x8

Very pleasing proportions, very few cameras have been made that use this format.
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Interesting you should mention 6X8 format...
Old 11-03-2010   #14
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Interesting you should mention 6X8 format...

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Originally Posted by Pablito View Post
6x8

Very pleasing proportions, very few cameras have been made that use this format.
I didn't notice this previously in this thread, so don't know if this has been mentioned.

Fuji made both the GW680 and GSW680 in 6X8 for the home market (Japan). I think they made them in the II and III versions. You can find them quite readily from Japanese sellers on eBay. Occasionally they come up as selling in the US, as some of them made it across the Pacific by private sale to tourists. I don't think any camera dealers shipped them to the US.

I've seen them often on eBay.
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Old 11-11-2010   #15
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I should have stated this explicitly in the wish list above - there would be of course not reason why a 6x12 camera could not provide 6x9 (or even 6x8) images just like the current Bessas do 6x6/6x7

Yes - there are the meter-less GW/GSW Fuji cameras, but because of the fixed lens are rather bulky. And AE is such a nice thing ...
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6x10
Old 11-28-2010   #16
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6x10

I voted for 6X9 w/ 80mm, but I really want a 6x10.

In my experience, lolly-tong folders end with heartbreak anyways. I'd opt for a Fuji GW690 II and save the extra $1500 for film.
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Old 11-28-2010   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pablito View Post
6x8

Very pleasing proportions, very few cameras have been made that use this format.
Are you a fan of 645 then?

Same proportions.... [I've got a real weak spot for the Bronica RF645...]

Last edited by tonal1 : 11-28-2010 at 01:53.
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Old 12-03-2010   #18
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I'd rather spend the money on a lens or two for my 4x5 Horseman, I already have the 6x9 back for it. A dedicated camera with fixed lens is a little too specialized for my taste. Though if I were to get one, it would have to be *wide*.
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Old 01-05-2011   #19
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6x6 with a 80/3.5 Tessar

Not that I can afford any of them, mind but since you ask, that's what I'd want if I won the lotto.

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Old 03-01-2011   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
... 'capable of reproducing itself'...
I'm happy to know I'm viable
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Old 03-01-2011   #21
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Given the Fuji connection, perhaps the equivalent of a product-improved GS645/GS645W pairing?
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Old 04-14-2011   #22
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Why not a compact Plaubel-Makina IIIR style camera? Interchangeable 50, 65, 75, 100, and 180 plus parallax correction?

For 2000+ dollars, this is what the Bessa III should have been in the first place. The Makina II through IIIR's interchangeable lenses don't couple to the rangefinder, so there would be no competition from that vintage system.
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Old 04-14-2011   #23
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How about a Zero Image 612 multiformat? Wouldn't have to worry about a lens and covers 6x6 through to 6x12. It's reasonable small and very light and looks great in teak and brass.
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Old 05-01-2011   #24
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Zero image? Pinholes are lame, unless you do it on 8x10 sheet film and contact print that ****. Even then it's questionable.

6x12 is for old sweating men with old sweating hands who want to drag around big cameras to show off. Lots of options already available, AKA: GRAFLEX.

6x7 is OK if you're into that sort of stubby look. 6x9 shoots just like 35, easy peasy. Nobody has made anything portable in this size since 1960 (fuji 6x9 cameras are huge).

Most old 120 folders except the Makinas are worthless for enlargement: they were meant for contact printing. Hence the destruction of resolution by front cell focusing and lack of film flatness. Finding a 6x9 plate camera with a roll adapter is a solution out, but most lack rangefinders.
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Old 05-10-2011   #25
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6x9 with 80mm is like a super-sized 135-format with a 35mm lens. 35mm is one of my absolute favorites on 135 and having an "equivalent" with humungous resolution from a negative more than 5x larger - I think this would be awesome!

BUT - one thing that IMO would be an absolute necessity for any future Fuji/Bessa folder would be the ability to close the camera with at least 1 filter in place! Since so many folks shoot MF in B&W, which almost invariably means using some kind of contrast filter, having to remove the filter (and find somewhere to put it) before closing the camera (or alternately leaving it open, and putting a lens cap on it...) sort of defeats the purpose of being able to fold the darn thing! YMMV, of course
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Old 05-10-2011   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruby.monkey View Post
Personally I'd like the equivalent of a GSW690 with a built-in spot/matrix meter and added aperture-priority autoexposure.
Yes, Please. or a GW/GSW690III with the same. And a switch to shoot 6x6. I need squares, sometimes.
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Old 05-13-2011   #27
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Nice topic Matus.
I would love a Modern 69 folder with a 105mm lens. An "Update" if you will of folders from the past. For me a spot meter would be grand. I have been shooting a Gaeorsi 612 with a 75mm. It is fun and provides very nice negatives. My problem is then what? I don't have a 4x5 enlarger and my Bessler 23Cii does only up to 6x9 and not particularly well. Scanning is OK with V700 but I still need to improve my technique. Shooting such a big negative for me is aimed at printing though.

Scanning is just OK some flare in this sample as well
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Old 05-31-2011   #28
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anything wider than a 6x9 would cost crazy money, and would be extremely low volume sell, today...
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gsw690
Old 07-01-2011   #29
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gsw690

Having just purchased a Fuji GSW690 with the 65m lens, I can attest to the sharpness of the lens and the huge size of the camera. It is heavy - to the point that I thought that I would return it as soon as it arrived from KEH. However, once I put a strap on it and started walking around with it, it really is nicely balanced and really has been fine on my shoulder for an entire day. The downsides for me are the lack of metering and the need to change film really, really frequently. But, the results seem worth it (sorry for the lack of images).
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Old 01-26-2012   #30
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yeah the thing is this kinda already exists in the cheapest-maintaining-quality way in the gaoersi and dayi, both of which can be gotten at 6x12 for under $1000 including vf and cost of lens. they are very compact and seem to produce great images. how can, and why would fuji compete with that?

i myself am thinking of rigging up a nice schneider or kodak 90mm lens to the holga pano i received for xmas...
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Old 01-26-2012   #31
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You are probably right. But all these current 6x12 options have only scale focus (or ground glass) and are large and bulky.

Just thinking loud here - what about buying 2 of the Bessa III, sending them off to SK-Grimmes together with an Wide Field Ektar 80/6.3 or Angulon 90/6.8 .... and couple of grands $ It MUST be possible with enough dough
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Old 01-26-2012   #32
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interseting idea matus! kinda like mine of puuting a real 90 on the holga, but a lot more expensive. and those gaeorsi and dayi 6x12's really are not big at all, but they are zone focus...still at 6x12 youre not gonna be doing portraits, right? probably landcsapes, buildings, some street secenes, things easily measured, especially at F8.
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Well, don't overlook Razzle for his Obsession
Old 01-30-2012   #33
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Well, don't overlook Razzle for his Obsession

He can do them in 6x12 or 6x17.

http://homepages.ihug.com.au/~razzle/index.html

Me, I use my Fuji G690 with the 100mm lens, on a tripod and take two closely comparable 6X9 negs/transparencies, on a tripod. Have had great luck having them scanned and stitched at any length up to 17cm.
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Old 01-31-2012   #34
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Quote:
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Zero image? Pinholes are lame, unless you do it on 8x10 sheet film and contact print that ****. Even then it's questionable.

6x12 is for old sweating men with old sweating hands who want to drag around big cameras to show off. Lots of options already available, AKA: GRAFLEX.

6x7 is OK if you're into that sort of stubby look. 6x9 shoots just like 35, easy peasy. Nobody has made anything portable in this size since 1960 (fuji 6x9 cameras are huge).

Most old 120 folders except the Makinas are worthless for enlargement: they were meant for contact printing. Hence the destruction of resolution by front cell focusing and lack of film flatness. Finding a 6x9 plate camera with a roll adapter is a solution out, but most lack rangefinders.
my bessa ii is tack sharp between f8-f22, and just fine for taking pictures of people between f3.5 to f 8 before becoming so sharp that you can see every pore on the subjects face.
ive made huge cibachrome enlargements from velvia and ektachrome

lots of factors, though,mine is a well used example, and the sharpest slides were made mid roll from film that had just been pulled through before having a chance to buckle or bow.

I've also found that well used examples are sharper than pristine ones, the ones with sharp lenses tended to get used alot over the past 60 years!

plus it fits in my pocket, i plan on taking it and a 3d camera as my only cameras on a trip to paris in may, both will fit in vest pockets. I plan on shooting ektachrome e 100g in both.

awesome travel camera.

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Old 01-31-2012   #35
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It seems a 6x9 with 65mm lens might satisfy most of us.
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Old 06-08-2012   #36
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Agree -- there isn't any used folder competition in that combination, I believe.

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It seems a 6x9 with 65mm lens might satisfy most of us.
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Old 08-09-2012   #37
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I just measured the size of a single exposure on the recently developed Velvia 100F roll from my Fujica GL690. It measures 56mm x 84mm.

Compared to 35mm format (24mm x 36mm), this 6x9 slide would be 2.3333 or 2.4 times the size.

If a new 6x9 rangefinder camera were to come out, it would either need interchangeable lenses, or has to come with at least two lens combinations: One to satisfy the 35mm equivalent focal length, and the other to satisfy the 50mm equivalent focal length.

In case of 6x9, 50mm equivalent = 120mm, and 35mm equivalent = 85mm (due to 1/2.4x crop factor).

Personally, I'd buy a 6x9 modern rangefinder by Voigtlander or Fuji that comes with any lens 70mm to 90mm in focal length.

6x12 and 6x17 are just too ... bizarre to my eyes.
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Old 08-17-2012   #38
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I would love a 6x7 folder with a 105mm or so.
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Not sure about your 35mm by 6X9 comparison
Old 09-05-2012   #39
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Not sure about your 35mm by 6X9 comparison

Quote:
Originally Posted by bugmenot View Post
I just measured the size of a single exposure on the recently developed Velvia 100F roll from my Fujica GL690. It measures 56mm x 84mm.

Compared to 35mm format (24mm x 36mm), this 6x9 slide would be 2.3333 or 2.4 times the size.

If a new 6x9 rangefinder camera were to come out, it would either need interchangeable lenses, or has to come with at least two lens combinations: One to satisfy the 35mm equivalent focal length, and the other to satisfy the 50mm equivalent focal length.

In case of 6x9, 50mm equivalent = 120mm, and 35mm equivalent = 85mm (due to 1/2.4x crop factor).

Personally, I'd buy a 6x9 modern rangefinder by Voigtlander or Fuji that comes with any lens 70mm to 90mm in focal length.

6x12 and 6x17 are just too ... bizarre to my eyes.
Using an area formula:

24X35 = 864 sq mm
56X88 = 4928 sq mm

Divide the 35mm number into the 6X9 area number gives you 5.7.

The 6X9 has 5.7X the film area that 35mm does. A testament to why a 6X9 image "blows" 35mm out of the park on IQ.

I've done this math over and over on all the 645, 66, 67, 68 and 69 compared to 35mm

I've also done this on 4X5 inch LF compared to 35, and all the MF formats.

Why??... Retired!!
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Old 09-06-2012   #40
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It's been a long time since I have started this wishful thinking thread. And I still think that 6x12 folding camera would be great to have.

All better 6x12 that are out there (Linhof, Horseman) are big, heavy, bulky and cost €2500+ with one lens and have no rangefinder.
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... Flickr galleries: New Zealand , Spain
... per camera: Olympus XA , Jupiter J3 , Rolleiflex T, Mamiya 6, Ricoh GRDIII shots
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