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Preview Polaroid Camera

G

Guest

Hi Folks,

Does anyone recall or have experience with the Preview or Preview II Contax Cameras which stopped production around 1986 ?

I myself am getting into more professional work and need a good polaroid system for my Aria and TLR. My alternatives are as follows:

1) Buy a used Contax Preview for about $600 and
use my existing MM lenses. The disadvantages
are that I only get a single shot per film
and that I have no TTL control for flash.

2) Buy a used 167MT and an NPC back, possibly
totalling around $1000. With this, you get
two shots per roll and can maintain all
AE modes plus TTL Flash ( assuming the TLA
360 works well with the 167MT )

3) Buy a use Nikon F3 with NPC Polaroid back.
This of course involves a new camera system.

Does anyone have experience with the Preview series or using Contax main bodies in this way ? or am I pushing 35mm into what a real interchangeable back medium Format system should be doing for me ?

Thanks,

Alan in Indianapolis
 
G

Guest

you are a candidate for the rollei 3000-system. interchangable backs, zeiss-lenses, smalll body, two viewers, ttl-flash. what do you need more? i am reflecting about buying it.
 
G

Guest

what is the difference between preview and preview II? i know that the body is a yashica fx-3. keep in mind: the angle-viewer is different from the standard one because there is no prism-system. i would forget the preview and use a polaroid 180 or 195 instead. there is a company who has rebuilt one of them. it a better choice to check. i did never understand why photographers use such polaroid-testshots. testing the lighting ok, but how people look? if i check such perfect shots i only see unnatural models. shooting is the best way the models look natural. and not fumbling around with technology.
 
G

Guest

>rollei 3000-system - i am reflecting about buying it.<

Good luck if you buy it. I really like that camera. I hear they may not be that reliable. Anyone use one for a while?
 
G

Guest

Jeff,
I bought one of the last new Rolleiflex 3003 cameras in the early 1990s. I had a few older lenses (Zeiss, partly made by Rollei), which I loved to use (the quality is quite similar to the Contax MF-line). But although the camera was a pleasure to use, I had trouble with one of the exchangeable backs (it did not always transport the film, so I got - unvoluntarily - multiple exposures). In spite of a check by an authorised service repairshop, who found the magazine functioning "in normal parameters", it did not work with my camera. In the end, I sold the whole system in favour of Contax gear. Although the same lenses for Contax are much more expensive than their Rollei counterparts, I felt I could not afford unreliable material. It's a pity, because in theory the 3003-system was simply ingenious.
 
G

Guest

contax 137ma has a similar mistake. i had double or halfway-doubleexposures shooting aerials. every second year the end of film-stop did not work. any camera can have problems. if it is not solved by repair or exchange then you have the wrong system. but changing the system if a back does not work on a camera is very strange.do you thing rollei invested so much time and money to produce crap? lens-quality is the same not similar! i have tested a rollei sx(6x6 motordriven). fantastic 80mm-lens! you need not test older lenses against newer contax-zeiss. the old quality -if there are differences-is still beyond the range of todays film-resolution. and: if you test: use rts III. all other options will not produce 100% comparison due to the lacking vaccum-system. and finally: stop this silly comparisomn of zeiss against other brands. buy used non-mm-lenses, they are cheap.
 

bobbl46

Well-Known Member
Re: what's the difference between Preview I and II.

Preview I :1982
Type A - Chrome back,1/1000s fastest speed, 1/125s flash sync.
Type B - Black back, 1/1000s fastest speed, 1/125s flash sync.

Preview II :1995
1/4000s fastest speed, 1/250s flash sync.

Preview I Chrome


Preview I Black


Preview II


Cheers, Bob.
 

bobbl46

Well-Known Member
Rumours say that it could be the S2. Makes sense, Preview I - mechanical FX-3? Preview II- mechanical S2?

Specs look right! But I don't know for sure!

Cheers, Bob.
 
C

chill

Quick question: Using the Preview cameras...is the image reversed left-to-right on the polaroid film ?

Thanks,

Alan
 
C

chill

I just purchased a Preview I, Black model with detachable right angle finder ( About $300 US ). I am so glad I did. I just did a handheld meter test with a scene which had overcast window backlighting. My meter said F1.4 1/60. Used the Preview, and found that I was WAY overexposed for this meter reading since it was difficult to compensate for the backlighting. Visaually examined the Polaroid, stopped down two stops...and nailed the exposure!

I came to a new appreciation for Polaroids recently while taking a course in commerical photography. The even more comfortable sell point for the Preview is that you can use it handheld as well as on the tripod. The detachable finder is useful for eyelevel...and then when removed, you can look through the top level viewfinder for low angle table top shots similar to the way you would use a waistlevel finder. Yes I could have bought a digital camera, but I think this is better since I get to use my existing lenses and retain their point of view.

Thanks for all the helpful comments here.

Alan
 

pkipnis

Well-Known Member
>Here is a tip for getting properly exposed outdoor photos. First there are two types of meters, reflective and incident. In the TV and movie business we always use incident to measure the light falling on the subject. In product photos we use spot reflective. Your meter is designed to expose for 18% gray. That's the universal standard. So... Buy yourself a Kodak gray card from your favorite photo dealer, it's not expensive. Then set the card in front of your subject and fill the viewfinder with the gray image. now your meter will set to that EV of the scene you're trying to photograph. Lock the exposure or note it so you can manually set it and compose and take your shot after removing the card from the scene. A second point is with averaging meters to pan the scene to get the total EV difference, i.e. sky 500 @ f8, ground 60 @ f8, subject 125@ f8. Now you know the average and expose for what you want dominate in the photo, or expose for the average and let the sky wash out and the foreground go slightly dark. You just got $500 worth of photo classes for free, go do your homework.
 
J

joeling

very nicely elaborated on the use of gray card. well done Phil.

cheers
joe
 
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