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First shoot with an m6


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As this is my first post, i would like to thank everybody for all these years reading from you.

 

I found this forum trying to solve all my doubts when i get an M9 in 2010... Broken sensors, glass selection, manual settings, inspirational photographers, all of you have been an important guide for me to improve...

 

i didn 't want to post anything till i feel myself i have something important to say or to ask for.

 

Next week i will get a M6ttl. I know that i will need many rolls trying to get my path, but i would like to know what combination of film and lens will you use if next week you were about to shoot your first one.

 

I have 4 lenses: a 2.35, a 2.90, a 3,4.12, and a 0,95.50...

 

i would like to try B&W film. And as it is an 0.85 M6, i have thougth in 50mm, and 200 iso film...

 

What would you do?

 

PS: Thanks in advance

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A little over two weeks ago I got an M3 to "complement" my M9-P, so while I don't really know how well the approach described below is going to work in the end, it's at least all very fresh in my memory.

 

My approach has been to start with a baseline setup as close as possible to what I normally use — the 50/1.4 ASPH at ISO160–640 — and systematically explore the possible alternatives by changing one variable at a time.

 

From what I read online, the older B&W films (which I believe are Tri-X and HP5+, both nominally ISO400) have a very wide dynamic range, and are forgiving of errors in development. I ended up going for HP5+ with ID-11, since the Ilford chemistry came in slightly more convenient packaging.

 

I've been trying to expose at least one roll per day, and develop+scan every two days, which keeps the feedback loop short and hopefully increases the rate at which I learn. Each day I generally try to do a dozen frames or so in each of a few different conditions (daylight, evening light, artificial light) and bracket shutter speed and aperture in a consistent pattern. I find film exposes very differently to the M9; in sunlight I've generally been overexposing by half a stop relative to the M9 and ISO320, and in incandescent light by about one stop.

 

Because I'm still trying to come to terms with the exposure side of film, I haven't done anything interesting in development — I've been using the default settings in the Massive Dev app, aside from a few chemical mix-ups (most of which have still resulted in recognisable images).

 

Once my exposure success rate improves, I'll work my way through the newer films (the Deltas and so forth), then maybe try different developers. I'll also start using more of my lenses (although the 50 and M3 is such a good combination I've actually not missed them).

 

Aside from my B&W experiments, I've been using a lot of Portra 400, but that feels like cheating since I just drop it off at the local lab.

 

Slightly off-topic now… as a member of Gen Y I've grown up with digital cameras, and the M9 is a great product. The M3 is something else entirely. It's a joy to use, delightfully ugly, and it feels better than than any device I've ever owned. My M9 has been sitting in a drawer for the last two weeks, and I suspect I'll only go back to it for low-light performance and 24–35mm lenses.

Edited by BenD
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Id get some tri-x and push to 1600 with the 35 cron (but it depends on what youre shooting and youre shooting style). The only issue is with the 0.85 finder you need to make sure you keep the camera level as you tend to tilt the camera so you can see the full 35mm famelines. If you fancy some colour portra 400 is a very nice choice.

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Some photo labs do not have much experience developing 'real' B&W film anymore. Even a lab of one of the best dealers in Antwerp managed to mess up the second film I gave them. That is why i only trust a specialist pro lab with my films now.

 

 

Unless you intend to have your film processed lab that still does a lot of analog processing, it is best to start with a C41 film like the Ilford XP2 or Kodak BW400CN. That gives you the best chances of good processing.

 

 

As a bonus with these films your exposure will be less critical since it can be exposed at iso rates from 200-800 ASA. You can even expose one frame at 200 and the next at 800! This is something digital users take for granted but is impossible to do with a normal film.

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Stick to one film while you get used to shooting film. Don't mess around shooting lots of different film, find one and stick with it for a while. When you have learned how to shoot with that, then try others.

 

If you are processing your own black and white film (which is cheap and very easy to do), it is important to stick to one developer too, otherwise you will get to be all over the place.

 

But the most important thing is to have fun shooting

 

Good luck!

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I would buy a roll of Ilford FP4 and rate it at the recommended 125 ISO, bung on your 35mm lens, go out and shoot the roll and either process it yourself (remarkably simple) or get it processed in a pro lab following Ilford's recommendations. If you don't want to do your own processing IlfordLabs have an excellent mail-order service including good scanning.

As previously said - have fun.

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It all depends on what you are planning to shoot.

You probably know that you've got an amazing kit, so apart from subject matter I would recommend to stick with the lens you use most on your m9 - the one you know best.

As for film and developing - choose one or maximum two films and one developer and do it yourself.

It is the only way of really knowing and understanding what's going on and it's actually really easy.

Personally, I would start out with a rollei rpx (100 or 400 depending on lighting) in rodinal with Noctilux.

The rpx is an impressive film at a good pricepoint and in combination with rodinal, the oldest, best and easiest to use developer out there, gives you a very classic b&w film look.

 

Would be nice to hear what you are planning to shoot and hopefully see some results.

 

Congrats in the m6ttl - an awesome camera (got one myself) - and with your lenses it should work a treat!

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Portra 400 is amazing. Fantastic skin colours and ridiculously flexible exposure-wise. I have exposed one and the same roll from EI100 to EI1600 and had it developed at 400 with good results. It's like having a digital analogue camera. Plus it scans very easily too.

 

I agree with Andy's suggestion to stick to one film, with the slight variation that I'd stick to one colour neg, one b/w and, if you want to raise the bar slightly (due to the narrower exposure latitude), one slide film. Get to know these films before moving to others.

 

As for what lenses to use, well, there's no difference to what you've used before except that you will notice how much slower lenses require faster film. The M system is great in that it allows handheld shots at 1/15 or even 1/8 but to be sure of sharp images use faster film (>ISO400 in my way of shooting) in indoor situations or darker surroundings. Steady hands is also a skill.

 

Cheers and welcome to analogue

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Thanks for all your advices...

 

I found very useful the idea of sticking to one film, and one lens... So i bought 4 rolls of for my first weekend. I choose ilfordHP5plus400. I had them even before the M6 arrived.

I have shooted a roll with the 35crom. But i have liked more the few shoots that i have done with the 50 (maybe because of the 0,85 magnifier and my glasses)... I will use these two.

Im writing down the aperture and speed of each shoot. Im trying to make the first shoot with ttl arrows, the second under, and a third overexposed... just to see. Im even using a Sekonic to check the first exposure.

 

Its very early for me thinking about developing, so i will have to wait next monday to bring my rolls to develop and see what has happened... But its been really nice not being distracted by anything but shooting. Not even the result of the shoot...

 

Its nicer than i´ve though to hear the shutter sound,... and to think if everything is really ready (the light, the composition, the shadows, ...) before pressing it...

 

And I didn´t miss m9 viewer...!!!

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