Prism Finder for Hasselblad - is it helpful???

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by paul_danehower, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. Does anyone use a Prism Finder for their Hasselblad or similar camera? I am having a hard time seeing the whole frame under certain lighting conditions with just the standard viewer. Is it worth getting one.? Thank you!
  2. I use a prism finder with my Bronica GS-1. I wear glasses and need a correcting diopter on the finder to comfortably view the whole screen when not wearing my glasses. It is the best thing to being there and I highly recommend a prism (with a hand grip too).
  3. I like waist level finders and don't have too much problems using them -- except I'm not too tall and sometimes I would like to get an eye-level vantage point than navel-level or chest-level. So I added a finder to my equipment and find it quite useful when waist-level finder is less than optimal. Mine is an older 90 deg finder, which was a lot more affordable than a newer... but there are times when I wish I went for a newer finder with meter.
  4. I use the NC 2 on all of my Hasselblads......I love it and never shoot without it, except on my Superwide. But I do have an adapter that allows use on that camera too but have never needed to.
  5. I think i will check out some on ebay. Thank you again for the responses. ! : )
  6. I have a PME51 for mine. That has a 45 degree view angle, and has an internal meter. Meter aside, I think it provides a much clearer image than the WLF. It also flips the image to the right way round.

    The, operational, cost is weight. In particular on something like a 503cw with standard lens - a neat and light setup - it will changing the handling significantly.
  7. I have an HC1 90 degree prism finder. I occasionally use it when I am shooting closeups with the 120mm MakroPlanar and the camera on a tripod. Otherwise, it makes the camera too heavy and awkward for hand held shooting and the 2.5X magnification, rather than the 4.5X of the WLF, makes it impossible for me to focus the 50mm Distagon and difficult to focus the 80mm Planar. At some point I'll probably try an NC2 to see if the 45 degree angle helps with the awkwardness but I'm not optimistic.

  8. I use a PME51 on a 503. Yes its easier for hand held and "street" photography but for some reason I prefer waist level for still life and portraits.
  9. The 90 degree prisms result in rather awkward handling. A 45 degree prism however improves handling no end, Doug. Better - i find - than with the waist level finder.<br>I used to use NC-2 prisms. Excellent things. Replaced them gradually with PME meter prisms, as good as the NC-2 prisms, a little bit larger, offering the additional benefit of a very good meter.<br><br>The perhaps best thing about this is that you can swap from prism to waist level finder, or the other way, whenever you want or need.
  10. I have two 45 degree prisms, one with a meter, and I wouldn't be without them. It is easy to see the entire screen, regardless of the light. The viewing angle is useful from nearly eye level to ground level. It's easy enough to replace it with a waist level finder for more magnification (5x v 3x) or when copying documents.
    Except for some older versions, 90 degree prisms can't be used with a digital back (or a 70mm back).
  11. Great info.. thanks again.! Have a great weekend guys!
  12. I had a PM-45 with my CM. I liked it over having the standard waist-finder, bare screen, except it does crop approximately 10% around the border. Further cropping, if critical cropping used. Thats all.
  13. I agree with Q.G. about 90 degree prisms. I tried one, and they are not for me, because they make me hold the camera higher than I'm comfortable with. Yes it is awkward. I use the PME 45 degree metered finder; however I have not used the metering function in a long time, so I could be just as happy with the non-metered version. I use either my PME or my waist-level, as the need arises. The prism, however, keeps stray light off the focusing screen, giving it an advantage over the WLF. The chimney finder is good for shielding stray light as well, though it forces you to hold the camera lower than does a prism.
  14. i'm not much a fan of the prism finders. have got a pme3 but rarely use it because: (i) i wear glasses and have difficultly seeing the entire frame; and (ii) the i find it harder to focus accurately compared to the wlf.
  15. I have one of the 45 degree finders as well ... I forget the model, but it's one of the ones without the meter. I find it to be a lot more comfortable when I'm using a handgrip, but much less comfortable when I'm not using the grip. Without the grip, holding the camera up to your face requires bending your wrist at kind of an odd angle. You could hold the camera comfortably using both hands, but then you can't focus the camera without the image bouncing around a little in the viewfinder.
    I also never use the prism finder with a tripod, unless I'm photographing someone much taller than myself. I'm 6', so that doesn't happen very often.
    Of course, your hands might be a different size, you may be more or less comfortable bending over, blah blah blah, milage may vary, blah blah blah.
  16. Someone using the Kiev 45 degrees meter finder?
    I've read good opinions on the meter but not about luminosity and focusing screen requirements.
    Maybe Paul could also profit from opinions on the subject.
  17. In direct comparison to a Hasselblad NC-2, the Kiev copy appears to offer slightly more viewfinder magnification, appears to be a very little bit brighter too. The differences are small, small enough that it could be my imagination. And the correction lens i have in my NC-2's eyepiece (not on the Kiev-copy - i know: i could have removed the correction lens for a true comparison. Didn't want to get the spanner wrench and do all that) will have an impact on this.<br>So perhaps better to say they are equal in both respects.<br><br>A real difference though: the Kiev copy has a slightly larger field of view (less cropping), and less rounded corners on the mask below the prism.<br><br>A very good copy, i would say.<br>The prism itself appears identical in shape. The silvering, however, is less good in the Kiev, resulting in prism-vertices being just visible as dark lines in the viewfinder image. None of that in the Hasselblad original. The slightly larger crop and less rounded corners are an improvement on the Hasselblad original.
  18. Alvin, adding a correction lens really helps quite a lot.<br>I had mine ordered/made (only had to be ground down to the correct diameter) by a optician. Cheap enough.
  19. Good day
    Q. G. . thanks vm for the info
  20. Mixed feelings on my part.
    I was never without the NC-2 45 degree finder when shooting events like weddings and still use it if I'm working with possibly rapidly moving subjects like wildlife. Yet, I only used it for portraits when doing full length images like a bridal pose in the studio and wanted a higher camera angle. All other portraits were and are done with the waist level finder. Same with table top work unless the camera is so high that I can't look down into the WL.
    I also absolutely never use the prism for landscapes. It seems to limit the viewing area a bit and makes it harder to judge both composition and focus when using filters such as the Polarizer, especially in combination with a red filter.
  21. I have a PME 5 with my 501CM. The view through the finder is amazing. The added weight and height changes the camera's ergonomics a bit but I really like the ease of composition through this set up.
    If I had to replace the finder I think I would get a finder without a meter. It adds to the cost and I like to use a handheld meter anyway.
  22. I have used a prism finder on my Hasselblad for years along with a Grid focusing screen. It has been perfect for weddings.

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