Zenza Bronica ETR WLVF

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Dcexpressions

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Hey everyone,

I have a simple question if anyone would know by chance. I could just try myself but I’d rather not waste a roll of film experimenting. Lol

Given the high price of a Bronica WLVF, could I just shoot without my prism finder attached? I know some other cameras are doable this way, or will it introduce unwanted light?

Thanks in advance,
Derrick
 

cramej

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I was about to start typing "what high prices?".....wtf is going on with ETR wlf prices? Oh, right, the certain level of price fixing that has been going on with ebay. ☹️

Blad, Mamiya and other Bronica WLFs are less expensive, but prices overall seem absurd for what is a folding piece of sheet metal.
 
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Dcexpressions

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I was about to start typing "what high prices?".....wtf is going on with ETR wlf prices? Oh, right, the certain level of price fixing that has been going on with ebay. ☹️

Blad, Mamiya and other Bronica WLFs are less expensive, but prices overall seem absurd for what is a folding piece of sheet metal.

Yea exactly! Like, I definitely have the $200 to spend but do I wanna spend it on such a small thing? No… lol

So I’m curious if shooting without the prism works or not on Bronica cameras.
 

cramej

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You'd probably be more frustrated than anything using it without a finder. Any stray light pretty much destroys brightness and contrast on a focusing screen. Indoors might be ok, but outside would be unusable.

You could, however, probably fashion up a mat board "finder" and gaff tape it to the camera body.
 
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Dcexpressions

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You'd probably be more frustrated than anything using it without a finder. Any stray light pretty much destroys brightness and contrast on a focusing screen. Indoors might be ok, but outside would be unusable.

You could, however, probably fashion up a mat board "finder" and gaff tape it to the camera body.

Ok ok… so what you’re saying is it would give a lot of glare, which is understandable. But it wouldn’t effect the film much?
 

choiliefan

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Before I found the proper WLF I made a rectangular shield out of glued balsa wood, painter flat black. It would be very easy to create one out of foam-core.
It's a friction fit...
 

cramej

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Ok ok… so what you’re saying is it would give a lot of glare, which is understandable. But it wouldn’t effect the film much?

Shouldn't affect the film at all. The mirror rises to block the finder during exposure.
 

wiltw

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The reflex mirror of the Bronice ETR/SQ/GS must fully rise, blocking off any light from entering via the focusing screen, BEFORE the interlocks allow the shutter to open!
Besides blocking stray light entering the sides via the metal surround, an added benefit of the WLF is the magnifier which increases precision of focus.

The WLF was a $135 option in 1990...inflationary increases from 1990 to now make today's pricing 2.27x the 1990 price, or $306 for same item new today.
 
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MattKing

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A WLF for a 6x4.5 camera is a strange accessory, because it is only convenient to use if you never take photos of subjects in portrait orientation. An upside down image held off to one's side is not ideal for cameras that were often employed handheld to take photos of people.
For that reason, relatively few were sold when they were current, and relatively few are likely to be found on the used market. Thus the high prices.
I have one for my Mamiya 645 Pro. I rarely use mine, but as a special purpose accessory, it is good to have.
At a local car show, a few years ago:
44a-2018-08-19b-res.jpg
 

Moose22

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A WLF for a 6x4.5 camera is a strange accessory, because it is only convenient to use if you never take photos of subjects in portrait orientation.

Same here.

I have one for the ETRSi and use it for landscapes, where I like the WLFs. I sometime like to get down on the rocks and eyelevel finders mean crawling in the dirt. Not that I haven't done that to get a shot, but I digress.

I use the eye level finder and a grip like... 80% of the time, at least. I got the WLF with my camera, otherwise I don't know that I'd pay the prices they go for today. Rather get another lens, which are still bargains for the quality.

Nice car pic, BTW.
 

MattKing

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lxdude

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So I’m curious if shooting without the prism works or not on Bronica cameras.

Yes, you can just take off the prism. You don't have to have the WLF. But the comments about the drawbacks of no WLF are valid.
 
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