Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by raymond_tai, Aug 30, 2005.

  1. I have a 203FE and am very happy with it. While I bought it for use
    with the 110mm and 50mm/2.8 FE, I like to use it more and more with C
    and CF lenses in C mode. I would meter wide open, set the shutter
    speed from the camera's reading and then adjust the aperture I want
    with the EV lock. Very fast and effective. My question: is the
    205TCC functionally the same as a 203FE but with spot meter? I
    understand from research that the 205 series has other functions for
    the zone system but I am not so interested in that. I would like to
    use the 205TCC the same way I am using the 203FE now but for the
    times when I prefer a spot meter. Thanks in advance.
  2. Raymond,

    I acquired one of the first 203FE's produced. (1st in Southern Hemisphere I believe!). I used it extensively for about 12 years, after which it suffered a 'fatal' problem. Hasselblad replaced it with a brand new at no charge!

    While waiting for the change over to take place they lent me a 205TCC so I could keep working. A major assignment I needed it for was a concert performance shooting from the back of the upper tier of a three tier theatre. I have always done this (annually) on the 203FE with ease. The spot metering of the 205TCC is very accurate, but requires you to 'point' it at various areas of ther subject. So you must understand the Zone System, and your application of it. The 203FE, IMHO, behaves like a 'fat spotmeter', or accurate averaging meter, and is faster to use.

    The 205FCC is a little slower to use if you are working with the inbuilt meter, compared to the 203FE inbuilt meter, which, as you will know, can be used on 'A' priority and approaches 35mm speed of decision making and shooting. The 205TCC is essentially more deliberate.

    If you are working in 'C' mode this may not be such an issue. If you are using a tripod, the 205TCC could be PITA to read various areas within the frame you choose.

    Hope this helps a bit.
  3. Thanks John. This helps alot. I use my cameras handheld and can't always depend on
    perfect lighting for photography. So I would like a spot meter to get the correct reading off
    the subject's face. When I was using a Nikon F i generally meter off the subject's skin and
    then add +1N for Tri-X. I thought I can do the same using the 205TCC. The 203FE meter
    sometimes cover too much for the scene. Best regards,
  4. You can use the 205TCC in "aperture priority" as well, in several modes. I generally use "Z" mode. When you trigger the meter, the shutter is set to expose for Zone 5, which is displayed on the screen. You can then use the arrow buttons to increase or decrease the zone setting (and exposure) according to your judgment as to the proper placement of the measurement. This has to be done while pointing at the original target.

    If you point the camera at other targets without pressing the meter button, the perceived zone of other areas is displayed without changing the exposure setting. However, you can use the arrow buttons to place the new area in any zone you wish. Hence, you can survey the scene and deal with highlights (reversal film) and shadows (negative film).

    Pressing the shutter release half-way turns the meter on, but does not update the reading. (If the blue meter button is pressed for more than a few seconds, the meter is disables (as in a tight camera bag). You must press the shutter release half-way to activate the meter again.

    In short, the 205TCC is just as fast as the 203FE if you meter from an area you judge to be zone 5 - green grass, north (blue) sky, grey card - whatever. Using a spot meter simply takes more discipline.

    Other metering modes work as follows: Auto displays shutter speed and is activated each time you press the shutter (not very useful for a spot meter), Differential works like Zone, but displays zero when activated and the difference in f/stops for other areas. Manual is, well, manual.

    The TTL flash metering is about the same in both cameras - center weighted averaging.
  5. Thanks Edward. Is it necessary to use the special E12 CC back for the 205TCC or will a
    regular E12 back do?
  6. The TCC back gives you contrast control - it affects the "Z" survey readings. I don't have one (though I would like the ISO setting feature). The A12/24 (whatever) backs work just fine, except you must remember to enter the ISO value in "Program" mode.

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