what is 2 1/4 square format? obvious newbie

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by roberto_leriquemo, Apr 11, 2005.

  1. is 2 1/4 square the same as 645 format? what common bodies come in
    2 1/4 square? hassie, mamiya, contax, etc?
  2. 2 1/4 sq is in inches

    645 is 60mm x 45mm
  3. 2 1/4" is the "old" way of saying 6cm. The common formats from 120 or 220 film are 6cmx4.5cm, 6x6, and 6x7. Lot's of brands have cameras in these formats. Other sizes that you will find are 6x8, 6x9, 6x12, and 6x17 (all in centimeters).
  4. thanks for the quick response. so 2 1/4 square is actually a 6x6 cm. if a client is requesting a shoot in 2 1/4 square, what must the photog use? a body that is for 6x6? and there are common brands available in this size i assume. recommendations on a lower priced body for this format size?
    thanks again
  5. Most if not all (not sure here) Twin Lens Reflex cameras are 6x6. Mine is anyway. (Mamiyaflex TLR). 120 roll film = 12 6x6 exposures. (I think I just read somewhere they are actually 55mmx55mm.)
  6. 6x6 is going to be most Twin Lens Reflex cameras as well as many models of Hasselblad, Rollei and Bronica. Some 6x7s can also be shot in 6x6 with an appropriate back (or cropped down later).

    If you go to the "Learn" section, you'll see some good discussions on questions like this.
  7. "if a client is requesting a shoot in 2 1/4 square, what must the photog use? "<p>Not trying to be rude, but it sounds like the photog needs to get some more experience with medium format before taking on said client.
  8. Not to be rude, you are rude, he asked a question, give him an answer not an opinion of his abilities.
  9. "recommendations on a lower priced body for this format size"

    There are many camera designs that you can find in 6x6. I picked up a 6x6 folder for $15. It takes great photos, but I don't think I'd use it for client work. I think the Mamiya TLRs do a great job, and are very affordable. In an SLR design you might look at a Graflex Norita 66; no bells and whistles, but the 80mm lens on mine is as sharp as the 80mm planar on my Hasselblad, and they go for pretty cheap. Look into Bronica 6x6 SLRs; there are some great deals out there.
  10. Roberto,

    Wouldn't it be easier if everyone used real units ? ;-)

    2 1/4 square is as others have said, 6x6cm (actually about 56mm x 56mm). The other size you will see mentioned with imperial units is 2x3 (actually 2 1/4 x 3 1/4) which is more commonly known as 6x9cm. So, look for a 6x6 Hassie, Bronica, Mamiya, practically all TLRs, many old folders, etc.

    Above this, there are a whole series of metric and imperial sheet film sizes, so 9x12 (cm) is smaller that 4x5 (inches) just to confuse maters!

    For the full low-down, take a look at http://medfmt.8k.com

  11. I'd missed the request for a budget alternative.

    Paul's recommendation for a good web site is right on target - specifically, you should look at http://medfmt.8k.com/mf/budget.html , which makes good recommendations for MF on a budget. After reading that, I went out and got a Kowa 6, which is a truly great 6x6 older camera (though after spending $350 on the camera and two lenses, I discovered I also needed $135 worth of work done on it -- which will happen with the older cameras).
  12. 2 1/4 square/ 6x6 cm was the common low cost or free box camera in the 1950's; in the amateur brownie format; ie 120 or 620 roll film. Before the instamatic came out in 1963; this is what alot of folks used for snapshots. Hundreds of rolls were shot with these cameras; for each pro roll shot. Drug store processing was farmed out; and was typically small B&W prints; available is a day or two.. Verichrome was sold radically more than Kodacolor. The free and few dollar cameras had fixed focus; a one element lens. The film plane was often in an arc; for better focus off axis. The 120 format is over 100 years old; the first films were wooden spools. Today folks focus on the minority group of 2 1/4 square cameras sold; ie the ones with better lenses; and name brands.
  13. Well said Sheldon.
  14. Go for a Kowa Super 66 in good shape or refurbed.
  15. Notwithstanding the above criticism of Sheldons advice (not opinion) above, it is pretty sound IMO. My experience (extensive) is that clients asking for medium format work are really asking for a high level of quality, even if they don't know what it really means. Now a photographer that has never user used MF, much less know what it is, has a seriously low possibility of handling the gear much less turning in an acceptable result.

    Extensive practice IS required for any gear, whether 35mm or 6x6cm or ....etc.

    Roberto, I encourage you to try the MF format, it is very rewarding, but don't take on a client with your first roll or film.
  16. I agree. I dont think Sheldon was being rude, but realistic. A good photographer knows his
    own boundaries and will/should not sell stuff that he/she has not had experience in.
    Especially, the square format will be a new concept that requires framing technique that is
    different from 35mm or 645.
  17. Give 'em 6X6 pinhole negatives!
  18. Medium format is a more modern term for 620 and 120 roll films; the Brownie format. . The term "medium format" to me in the 1950's might be an oddity; like using the term SUV or cell phone then. Alot of books just mentioned roll films; roll film cameras 2 1/4 square; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 etc. Medium format seems like a 1970's and later term. Lantern slides 3x4 inches are/were used in backgrounds of plays; movies. A medium format slide means to me the 6x6 rollie ektachromes I shot and had mounted.. The 645 format goes full circle in my brainl this was the same size about as the old Kodak Holiday and Brownie Bullet in 127 film size.
  19. 2 1/4 inch square is the original and correct term and the size of the film gate. This is
    quite a lot less than 60mm, so the term "6x6" is just poncy if not downright misleading.
  20. Well, first off, a MF camera is at it's simplist level, a light tight box with a lens on one end and film at the other. A shutter lives somewhere in between. Anyone with a well balanced knowledge of photographic methods in any format should be able to adjust and figure out a shutter speed, aperture combination to make a professional photograph if they have the knowledge and talent in any other format. That holds for 35mm,6x6, to 4x5, etc. Learn the mechanics of loading and unloading film in the 120 format and go shoot some images. Of course, if your level of professionalism relies upon the knowlege built into your superduper all automatic latest german/japanese gizmo laden camera, you won't have a chance in any format.

    That said, the best, for the money, 2 1/4 square equipment comes with a "Mamiya" on the front along with a C220 or a C330 designation. Some of the earlier Mamiya TLRs are just as good, just not as dependable because of age. If you are shooting table top, get a paramender device to allow you to focus and compose, then move the camera up into the exact shooting position. Of course, Hasseys and the like don't have that same disadvantage, but at quite a cost difference.

    best of luck,

    tim in san jose
  21. in response to Kelly... in the 1950's, medium format meant 4x5.


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