Mamiya calling it quits in the camera biz???

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Jim Chinn, Apr 21, 2006.

  1. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

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    I was going to post this in the doom and gloom sub forum but thought it might be more appropriate here since there may be major implications for those who are thinking of purchasing or recently purchased a new Mamiya camera with regards to warranty/repair issues.

    According to this site:http://www.engadget.com/2006/04/21/mamiya-apparently-bailing-on-camera-biz/ and a couple of others on the web, mamiya is calling it quits in the camera biz.
     
  2. naturephoto1

    naturephoto1 Subscriber

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    I can check with people that I know at Mamiya USA. I know that when I spoke with Lorenzo at Photo Plus East, In October, that Mamiya had put their all into the new digital camera (which was well beyond the scheduled release date) and that they had lost a lot of market share. Lorenzo had indicated that they were just struggling to stay in business.

    Rich
     
  3. Lachlan Young

    Lachlan Young Member

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    It is interesting that it is the DIGITAL equipment in Mamiya's range that has been suffering from 'stagnant sales' :smile: :smile: :smile:

    Lachlan
     
  4. donbga

    donbga Member

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    No not just digital but their entire line. One of the problems with Mamiya USA, IMO was their price structure for their film equipment. Much, much higher in the U.S. than what you could pay in Japan.
     
  5. Jim Chinn

    Jim Chinn Member

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    Is hasselblad the only remaining mfg of new medium format cameras or is there anyone else left?
     
  6. Paul Sorensen

    Paul Sorensen Member

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    With used prices what they are, I don't know if they would be selling much of anything even if their US prices were more in line with their Japanese prices. In this market, it is extremely hard to justify buying new, even if prices dropped by 25%.
     
  7. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Or Europe for that matter. For the last few years, I suspect Robert White had a pretty good business selling M7's to the US.
     
  8. DeanC

    DeanC Member

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    I hadn't realized how big the difference was until I went and looked after reading this. The Pro-TL kit w/ 80mm is $2999 at Adorama and $1364 from Robert White with the pound at 1.78261 USD...
     
  9. DBP

    DBP Member

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    There's still Pentax, Fuji, Rollei, Horseman, Seagull, and of course Arsenal (Kiev). Not to mention oddballs like Holga.
     
  10. naturephoto1

    naturephoto1 Subscriber

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    Yes, but if it is true that Mamiya stops the manufacturing of cameras, that will mean that there is no manufacturer (except Pentax) of 6x4.5cm or 6x7cm cameras with interchangeable lenses still in production.

    Rich
     
  11. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    That's great all these companies are going under. All my old cameras have now become collectors items, this will definately drive prices of film based equipment right up. I may have to wait a bit but I am sure the ddigital heads will be back.
     
  12. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    At the recent "Shooting the West Convention", the Pentax rep who spoke, indicated that there would be no more FILM cameras from Pentax
     
  13. PhotoBob

    PhotoBob Subscriber

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    Sure hope the rumour proves false.:surprised:

    I've been a content Mamiya user for some time and if I had to choose a format other than 4x5...probably would be the 645.
    Have made some wonderful images in some wonderful places with Mamiya equipment.

    That being said, if anyone is unloading Mamiya 645 Pro TL stuff really, really economically...let me know.:smile:
     
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  15. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I think DrewB was trying to sell his.

    Of course, part of the problem for these manufacturers is the used camera market. I love my Mamiya's, but I sure didn't buy them new! This'll be a major bummer if it turns out to be true. I always found some comfort knowing Mamiya still built the cameras I use!
     
  16. Lopaka

    Lopaka Member

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    I too have been a Mamiya user for a long time, starting with a C2 and a C3.
    I use mostly 645 and RZ now. While I hope this is not true, I predicted their exit from the business last year (I hate it when I'm right about those things).

    MAC Group (the US distributor) will probably be around a long time and is very good about service and finding repair parts. They also distribute Toyo-View and when the MF market started to tank, they signed on as US distributors for a bunch of other photo equipment.

    Mamiya's likely exit is due, I think, to some compatibility issues in the newer 645 cameras and failure to provide viable digital options to their pro users.
    Their promised digital camera and back was still not on the market 2 years after being 'announced'. This gives the market a bad feeling. Whether we like it or not, to be able to stay in business, a 35mm or MF manufacturer needs to sell digital in order to provide us with a couple of film camera options.

    I checked the Robert White site - most items are close in price to US, but their 'special buy' on new 645 PRO TL kit is a steal - comparable to high quality used prices. This may be a good buy for European or Canadian folks, even though it might take a couple of months to arrive in Canada. To the US, however, is another problem. It may or may not be allowed in by US Customs. It seems the MAC Group actually owns the Mamiya trademark in the US - which under US law, it is technically illegal for a dealer outside the US to sell new equipment directly into the US. Not true with most other equipment - that is simply called 'grey market' - meaning there is no US backed warranty - but this is different.

    Anyway, I may try to pick up a spare RZ body or another lens while the used market is still plentiful.

    Bob
     
  17. Richard Kelham

    Richard Kelham Member

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    The UK distributors www.johnsons-photopia.co.uk have announced the availablity of the new ZD camera (@ an eye-watering 7000 GBP – for the body only). No news yet about the digital back, though presumably it can't be too far behind?

    It would be handy if they didn't go bust just yet!

    Richard
     
  18. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    There was a recent post on this forum with a link to a news release that Pentax is getting out of medium format film cameras including the 645 and 67.
     
  19. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Mac always seemed to have sales. At least B&H would email the offers every three months or so. Add in the higher shipping from Europe and the price differences tended to be much smaller then they seem at first.

    I own a few Mamiya 35mm things. From before the last time they quit the camera market. That's when Mac got the US trademark.
     
  20. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Amazing and highly unusual, normally cameras, books, cd's, electrical equipment etc sell here in the UK in pounds - £ for almost the same numerical value in $ - dollars in the US, in other words 70% more.

    Ian
     
  21. Peter Black

    Peter Black Subscriber

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    There is new legislation in Europe called RoHS (or similar) which is reducing hazardous substances in electrical equipment, including lead in solder. Pentax have certainly said that this will affect their 6x7 and 645 cameras, plus Hasselblad have ceased production of the Xpan for the same reason. But hey, it's also a good reason to quit the market when sales are falling and blame someone else.

    Mamiya may well be in a similar position with some of their cameras, but the older manual monsters could still carry on. Their new ZD at £7000 (body only) would maybe equate to $11,500 for 22 Megapixels and I really can't see enough people paying this sort of money, so their digital days may be numbered as well. Sad to see a longterm camera company go under, but my Konica 35mm slrs have been "obsolete" for years and still work OK so no need for us to panic just yet.

    And thought for today is: there are now possibly more LF than MF camera manufacturers left in the world, and LF was supposed to die many, many years ago. Keep buying, keep shooting!
     
  22. jovo

    jovo Membership Council Council

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    In this regard I just bought the 135mm macro for my P67 for $225 from Keh. It was $100 to $125 less than it was a year ago for the same (exc) quality. I'm very sad that Pentax and Mamiya are abandoning film cameras, but, as other threads here have celebrated, it sure has made the used stuff affordable!

    BTW...My transaction with Keh was excellent! Their idea of merely 'exc' is, to my eye, not far from 'mint'. As long as there's film to be had, MF is finally becoming financially not so far out of reach.
     
  23. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    Jovo,

    It looks as if Mamiya is abandoning ALL cameras, not just film cameras, complete shift, such as Konica Minolta did.

    Dave
     
  24. wmmlynch

    wmmlynch Member

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    Here's an irony. I just purchased used Mamiya medium format gear last night & today, (645 1000s with metered prism and standard 80mm lens). I want to experiment with the format for landscapes, etc and the prices were very reasonable. I also joined this forum just today. Quick question: which wide angle lens would be best for shooting indian ruins at Mesa Verde National Park. I'm thinking the 45MM but there's also the 35mm and 55mm. Opinions appreciated.
     
  25. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    I love my 45mm lens, it seems to be a perfect angle of view lens for landscape work, I use it in Glacier, Yellowstone and Grand Teton all the time, I had the 35mm and I felt it introduced to much distortion because it is so wide.

    Have fun the 1000s is a great camera, I have had both of mine for almost 20 years now, with not problems.

    Dave
     
  26. snegron

    snegron Member

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    I think we are ignoring the bigger, sadder issue: how much longer will 120 film be available for purchase and process before it goes the way of Mamiya, Contax, Minolta, and Nikon Film cameras? Scanning 120 film produces great images on par with other 12 and 16 MP cameras, not to mention the incredible prints we get from negatives to paper in traditional developing.

    There are only three labs in my area that develop 120 film, and I have noticed that there digital business is increasing at a higher rate than their film processing is declining.

    I don't want to turn this into a film versus digital debate, I am happy using 120, 35, and digital at this time. My point is that it is sad that our medium format options are dwindelling. Nothing beats the feeling of using the tank like Mamiya cameras and later being fascinated by the outstanding images they produce. I hope Mamiya reconsiders before its September deadline to continue to produce its amazing cameras and lenses. Even if it means downsizing and producing smaller quantities for its loyal followers like us.