Sorry Guys and especially Shutay!
Your post is extremely informative.
Time to go shopping on the Bay for Bronica and the same thing will happen to that as with the Contax 645 prices.
No wories mate, no apologies necessary. Actually, I got my complete Bronica SQ setup from Camera Exchange in Melbourne during a visit there to see relatives, as well as a very nice RF645.
To be honest, I think the verdict on using Bronica in the digital age is a mixed bag. Used Bronica systems are so cheap and such good quality it is giving a lot of enthusiasts a low entry point into quality medium format shooting on film. But in many places now, film can be very difficult to work with due to dwindling mainstream interest. I can understand people moving away from Bronicas for certain practical reasons, so it's not so easy to recommend someone to go the Bronica+MFDB route if they asked, "Hey, I want to get into MF digital. Which system should I go for?" Today, my answer would be, "Go get a Mamiya 645 AFD or if your pockets are deeper, an AFD II."
Also, Bronica/Tamron never did the system any good where the digital age was concerned. It's as though they never took digital seriously. Ask anybody today who knew of Bronica and 99% will tell you there are no digtial options for it, even though the current Leaf Aptus S brochure still lists Bronica SQ-A and ETRS as available mounts.
Main show stoppers:
- If it's important to you - pathetic wide angle options, in my view perhaps as bad as if you use a 48x36 sensor on the RZ67. Although I largely live without it at the moment, I do encounter situations where I would like a wider view.
- Limited or no auto exposure options if you use a digital back, as far as I am aware. The AE Prism Finder S you see in my shots above does not have an ISO dial, and the body cannot get ISO information from the back. If you're handy with a soldering iron, you can create a cheap, simple, but rather ugly modification to add an ISO dial to your prism...