new to Medium Format

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by randy_94, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    I am new to medium format, i need info about the camera.
    which is the good camera.

    1. Mamiya RZ67 pro II.
    2. contax 645
    3. Mamiya 645 AFD II kit
    4. Mamiya 645 AFD III kit

    thanks
    randy_94
     
  2. mikebarger

    mikebarger Subscriber

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    Each of them is a great camera, with different features.

    Depending on your specific needs, you can pick the features that best suit your shooting style.

    Mike
     
  3. kodachrome64

    kodachrome64 Member

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    Wirelessly posted (BlackBerry 8300: BlackBerry9000/4.6.0.167 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/102)

    You also have to decide which format you want; 67 is significantly larger than 645. Personally I love 67, even though the camera will be larger too.
     
  4. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    thanks for all reply,
    I like small camera for easy to handhold in outdoor .
    which one is better contax 645 or mamiya 645 AFD II !

    thaNKS,
    randy
     
  5. cowanw

    cowanw Member

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    I think the Contax 645 is the perfect camera. I use it with the wide to normal zoom and a portrait telephoto and the Hartblei tilt shift. BUT I fear the fact it is discontinued. Today I would go Mamiya
     
  6. MikeSeb

    MikeSeb Member

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    I love my Contax. Use it handheld 90% of the time. There are plenty of bodies on the used market in great shape, and Kyocera will support it with parts until 2016 or so, so I wouldn't let its being discontinued deter you.
     
  7. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    thanks for all the info, i think i would go with Contax 645 for their great lens.
     
  8. michael9793

    michael9793 Member

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    You want to go to Medium Format, but you are looking at the smallest size medium format available. You have 6x4.5, 6x6, 6x7, 6x9, 6x12, 6x17. I think 6x7 or 6x9 would be the best direction to go. same film but you get a larger image and better quality when you enlarge. 645 to me is like using a half frame camera on a 35mm. just stay 35 if you are going that small.

    Michael Andersen
    PS: I have a hassey and a Pentax67 II. I find the PEntax 67II to be a easier format to work with and it is a SLR with metering.
     
  9. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    i need the Auto Focus camera as they more easy to use, and maybe someday i can use with DB.
    thanks for your info.

    regards,
    randy_94
     
  10. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Forget AF. Decent AF has only just now come to med format in the form of the new mamiya 645 afd3 ($3k!). Pretty much all prior med format cameras have rather primitive AF (center focus only and quite slow and noisy). So skip AF and come back to it when the prices have come down. If you absolutely must have af in an mf camera, then get a fuji rangefinder. Those are the only med format AF systems that didn't disappoint me. Med format lesnes are not nearly as fast as 35mm, so it's hard to design contrast detection af with the kind of flexibility you find in 35mm. So skip it!

    Now, assuming that you buy my argument about giving up auto focus:

    (1) the rz can take the rb lenses, which are very inexpensive and excellent (I have several).

    (2) the afd can take the m645 manual focus lenses, also inexpensive and excellent (I have several).

    Those two advantages put the mamiyas well ahead of the contax IMHO. The contax is a very nice body but good luck finding lenses and peripherals. The mamiya rz and afd lines are steadily growing and there is a huge market of inexpensive used lenses that are superb. They are also *much* more likely to be useful to you when you get a DB due to the lens-body-back electronic coupling.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 24, 2008
  11. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Ah I see you have the afd3 on your list. Well if you can afford that then go for it!

    P.S. Then there are the hassies....
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 24, 2008
  12. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    AFD III still expensive today, so i will wait for next cpl years. how about the auto focus on AFD II !

    regards,
    randy_94
     
  13. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    'Tsokay. I mean, AF on these cameras is not exactly going to thrill you, if you are used to a recent 35mm slr.
     
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  15. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    which is good and easy to use for 6x7 format ! Pentax 67II or mamiya 7II
     
  16. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    The m7ii rules, if a med. format RF is suited to your task(s). It is also extremely easy to use.

    The pentax is also a fine piece with some versatility advantage vs. the mamiya. But overall the mamiya is hands-down one of the finest cameras on the market... in any format. I am serious. The only drawbacks of the mamiya rf systems, as far as I am concerned, are the lack of a fast lens and the inability to focus closer than a meter or so without a contraption. This and the generally edgy bokeh make the 6/6mf/7/7ii much less suitable than an rb or rz... or perhaps the pentax... for general portraiture. Too bad there is no creamy 80/2.8 for the 7ii. The 7ii lenses are brutally sharp at all apertures.
     
  17. randy_94

    randy_94 Member

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    thanks for your info....

    you have beautiful pics on your website...

    regards,
    randy_94
     
  18. ktwyford75

    ktwyford75 Member

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    Hi Randy,
    I love my RB67. It's probably not what you are looking for in terms of size (it's NOT small), and even though it's 100% manual (steep learning curve), it can be had for very cheap, and the Mamiya glass is outstanding. It is such a joy to use, and it forces me to "think" about my exposures.

    ~Kevin
     
  19. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    <blush> Thanks. I will take this opportunity to credit Mamiya-san, Nikon-san, and Fuji-san. Thanks to them, all I do is push a button and somehow I get nice results from time to time.

    About the rb system, it is The Bomb. I have a pro sd and an rz pro2. The rz lenses can be de-pinned to go on the rb. Why? Well, the rb system has numerous advantages. Foremost it is 100% mechanical, and extremely robust (= you won't need to pack an unjamming tool in your velvet box). The rb takes the 6x8 back and a number of other extremely low cost lenses and peripherals. If there is an rz lens you covet (e.g. the 50 uld; the 110/2.8) then just get 'em and de-pin em and slap 'em on the rb. You can also use the rz t&s adapter on the rb this way (I do).

    If you do go rb, my advice is to bypass the earlier versions and go for the newest pro sd that you can get your mits on. Why? Well, why not, it's going for a song. And the pro sd has the widest lens compatibility.

    As far as I know, all the rb lenses can be used on the rz system.

    So... buy a handful of rbs :wink:
     
  20. michael9793

    michael9793 Member

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    Rollie 6008 has a very good AF system and now you cane move up to digital if that is something you need for work some day.


    mike
     
  21. Robert Budding

    Robert Budding Member

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    How can folks give advice if the OP hasn't even stated what he wants to shoot and how large he intends to print?

    I personally prefer leaf shutter lenses because they flash sync at all speeds. Absolutely wonderful when you need fill flash outdoors. As for format - you'll find that 645 is a huge improvement over 35mm - the film area is about 2.7x larger. I've made excellent 11x14 B&W prints from 645, and very good 16x20 prints. I have no clue if any of this matters to the OP.
     
  22. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    Just as a matter of interest; I have recently been thinking of getting an MF camera also; for me that would be a faster addition to my beloved LF gear, and an affordable way to shoot colour.

    Are there other lenses to be had for an RB besides the Mamiya ones? I ask because what always retains my hand when going for an MF is the missing perspective correction. So, what about (affordable) pc lenses? I would like to have at least one such lens if I would go for this camera.

    (my website is currently not online because I am moving the contract, sorry)
     
  23. timing

    timing Member

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  24. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Lukas, indeed as timing pointed out, the rz t&s adapter can go on the rb, no problem. However, there are only two short-barrel lenses that will give you infinity focus with that rig: a 75mm and a 180. The 180 is inexpensive, the 75... pricey! Now, if you don;t need infinity focus, then all the usual rb lenses can be hooked up to the adapter. That's what I bought it for, for focus control for macro and close-focus.

    There are also some PC lenses for the rb and rz, that's another option.

    There is of course also the fuji gx680 system, which has built-in t&s. I am researching whether the fuji 680 wide angle can be adapted to the mamiya t&s adapter and still give infinity focus. Stay tuned!

    Now, if perspective correction is a recurring issue in your work, then you're best off sticking to a 4x5 monorail view camera, which will kick the snot out of any of these MF semi-solutions. But that's also massive overkill unless you do a lot of pretzel-bellows kinds of things. I mean, consider that you can do quite a lot of perspective correction at an enlarger or computer, and MF already gives you detail easily exceeding any needs for prints to 20" and beyond. The rb/rz systems can certainly challenge 4x5 at 20" when using slide film or ATP or such.
     
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  25. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    Keith and Timing, thank you for the answers.

    I am thinking about a MF camera above all because it is faster than LF. I have been using LF (8x10 often, really) and pinhole on sheet and roll film nearly exclusively in the recent years, but sometimes I just end up just missing this ray of light which has moved from that particular spot when I have finished setting up the camera, and I am thinking of some portraiture and colour film. LF/pinhole will certainly remain, I must admit, my first preference, but a solid, big MF might just prove a useful addition.
    I am personallly not overfond of using an enlarger or computer for perspective correction, as this always means some patching-up after composure, and does not allow to use the full frame of the image.
    And I want to focus on infinity. However, I think with an MF setup, two lenses would be enough for me, one not-too-modest wide-angle with pc, the other slightly long (100-150), pc not essential.
    So, one more question: are there such wide-angle pc lenses for the RB in the 50-60mm range, and how costly are they?
     
  26. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Lukas, I think the only standard Mamiya PC offerings are the 75 and the 180. If you want wider then I guess you could use a zoerk adapter or such. I doubt the mamiya 50 uld or 65 will have enough circle to do any meaningful tilts, but minor shifts would be doable; the problem is, you can't do those on the rz t&s adapter because it puts the lens out too far, so you lose infinity focus unless you have a short-barrel lens. Like I said, I am going to try to x-mount a fuji gx680 50 on the rz t&s gizmo but haven't tried it yet, so stay tuned. Anyway, about price, that is highly variable. Brand new mamiya stuff is now quite pricey, but there are a number of things that are ridiculously inexpensive.

    But I would step back and look at it this way. You expressed concerns about missing moments because you don't have fast enough gear. Those fleeting moments are not the moments when you would spend a lot of time doing meticulous PC correction with ground glass anyway. The med format option will give you those moments and handle a lot more like 35mm than LF, while giving 4x5-like levels of detail and tonality. What more can you ask? :wink: Let me ask you to take a serious second look at computer-based PC correction. It's come a very, very long way. There is a reason (or two or three) why people don't want to spend megabucks developing ultrawide lenses with PC that also cover 6x7. I guess that's all I can say here.

    The rapid-fire speed of med format can really open up some new directions. It certainly did so for me. As recent examples I would cite this(shot with an rb and a 127, I think) and this (rb and 37mm fisheye). These are quick ~1 minute setups- not things I could contemplate with LF.
     
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