Sell My Hasselblad for a Mamiya 6 or 7???

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by reverend jay, Jan 18, 2009.

  1. reverend jay

    reverend jay Member

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    I was considering selling my Hasselblad 500c/m so that I could get a (preferably) Mamiya 6 or possibly a 7. I am looking for something more portable and although i love my Rolleiflexes for this I feel the Mamiya would give me the ease of faster shooting for street shots.
    I don't feel the Hasselblad always has to be on the tripod, but it is more cumbersome then a Mamiya.
    I was just concerned about the build quality and the rangefinder adjustments of the Mamiya.
    Any thoughts on this?
     
  2. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    I would try to find someone who will loan you a Mamiya 6 or 7 for a short while. It isn't for everyone. On the other hand if you buy used you should be able to sell and get your money back if it doesn't work out. My personal experience is that i get impressed with the sharpness of a friends work and I have asked to use his camera awhile and it takes about 10 minutes to decide I just could never use that camera. There are issues with range finders and the close focus and the slowness of the lenses that bother some and not others.
     
  3. MikeSeb

    MikeSeb Member

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    Rev, I second dpurdy's suggestion. I love my Mamiya 7---it was my first rangefinder, coming from a succession of 35mm and MF SLR's---but it took some getting used to. I think you will find that it complements the Hasselblad, more than it would replace it. I have a Contax 645, and I wouldn't dream of replacing it with the Mamiya 7. The Contax is the more versatile of the two systems; but for shooting on the go---street, architectural, environmental portraiture, urban landscapes---the Mamiya is a joy to use

    Biggest drawbacks with the M7 are the lack of close-focusing capability; the inaccurate framing compared to the lowliest SLR; the relative difficulty of focusing (compared with, say, a SLR with a split microprism); the cumbersome film loading.

    To the good, the M7 lenses are simply superb. With the possible exception of the Contax, none of my other systems' lenses come close to them in sharpness and contrast.
     
  4. reverend jay

    reverend jay Member

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    Yeah this is a tough decision because I think I would regret getting rid of the Hassy but I am not sure if it suits my shooting style anymore. It is a pure work of art though in it's design.
     
  5. TerencePatrick

    TerencePatrick Member

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    I rented the Mamiya 7 once to try it before I committed to buying one and it wasn't everything I hoped it would've been in terms of ease and speed. Admittedly, I was a novice with rangefinders and found focusing vertical shots very challenging, primarily because it was awkward finding a comfortable position for my hands (right hand above or below?), getting used to the viewfinder in the left corner, and trying to see the rangefinder spot. The camera also felt about the same height/width as a Canon 1-series, albeit lighter and not as deep, so it wasn't that much more compact than a Hassleblad, just different shape.
     
  6. arealitystudios

    arealitystudios Member

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    I was in your exact same position about a year ago. I love my Hasselblad, but it just wasn't a great camera for random street shooting and the Mamiya 7 seemed like the way to go.

    Luckily the local pro shop had one I could rent for a weekend and I was really glad I did. I found the camera was not really what I had hoped it would be. It was still relatively big and heavy and though it had a decent enough grip I still found myself staring at it on the shelf when I was going out for a day trip and thinking, "do I really want to lug THAT around all day?"

    I ended up buying an old classic Agfa folder for about $200 refurbished and cleaned and I'm happy to say it fit the bill perfectly. I was able to keep my Hasselblad (a 500 C/M also) for the important studio and planned out stuff, and the folder hangs out in the side pocket of my messanger bag on a day to day basis for street shooting.
     
  7. Robert Budding

    Robert Budding Member

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    I really like my Mamiya 7; it's easy to carry about for the entire day and the results are stunning. Yes, rangefinders do have limitations. But I've had no problem living with the limits. But I prefer environmental portraits to tight head shots anyway.
     
  8. Nicole

    Nicole Member

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    I'd recommend keeping the Hasselblad and adding to it, if you can. There will always be situations where one will be a better choice than the other for whatever reason. I'd also highly recommend you hire/rent the Mamiya 6 or 7 for a week or two before you decide to buy or switch. Good luck!
     
  9. herb

    herb Member

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    Hasselblad or Mamiya 6 or 7

    I bought a Mamiya II and three lenses. Shot a lot of slides in India (for a month). It is a nice camera, but I kept my Blad and sold the Mamiya, primarily because I don't care for the 6x7 format. I shoot 6x9 for landscapes, keep the Blad for closeups, macro and portraits.
     
  10. TimVermont

    TimVermont Subscriber

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    Rent one, make sure you try changing lenses, etc. I did. The results were excellent, but changing lenses is a PITA, and I thought the build quality of the body and feel of the winder lever were sub standard.
     
  11. Jose A Martinez

    Jose A Martinez Member

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    Totally agreed. I have both and don't think in sell none. Keep the Hasselblad for God's sake.
     
  12. canuhead

    canuhead Member

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    As another photographer who has both, I'd suggest keeping the 500c/m if you can afford and try out the M7II. The 6x7 size has grown on me although I would much prefer if it were 6x9.

    Also, don't discount the Hasselblad for street shooting either. Being able to shoot with your eyes away from the camera is a major plus for me. It's less intimidating and people are more amused at my head bent over peering into the waist level viewfinder than anything I'd think. I would usually have two film backs with me and often times just a 50.
     
  13. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    I absolutely adore my mamiya 6es. Superb lenses, a light and fairly compact body that has a rather low profile, handles very much like a 35mm camera but provides far more detail. The body collapses down to almost nothing- I can easily fit two bodies and all the lenses into one little shoulder bag... or just tuck one camera and lens into a jacket pocket.

    My usual caution to those interested in a the 6/7/7ii is that the lenses aren't fast, so you can't think of this camera as an available light weapon like you might think of some 35mm rangefinders. The VF, though, is big and bright and wonderful. And scale focusing is very simple and straightforward. Stability wise, I routinely handhold the 6es down to 1/15 and beyond, no problem. The MF RFs are not as versatile as a MF SLR, nor should they be; but they are weapons for scenic and landscape photography and such, and they are fabulous for travel. One mamiya 6 plus three lenses easily goes into a little bag. I am looking at the bag I just used now, it is 6" deep, 6" wide, and 4" deep. So... pretty small.

    Mind you, it's just not right to even compare a 6/7/7ii to a hassie or any slr for that matter, it's a totally different tool. You have to find out for yourself if it's right for you. Try it. Give it a real chance. Changing gear, in a fairly radical way, can be a great way to re-energize your photography and find new ways of looking at subjects. RFs in particular force you to imagine the DOF and imagine the 2D rendering whilst looking at the subject in 3D. Some people never become comfortable with that, for me it was way more natural than looking through an slr VF. Go figure! Everybody's different. I find the 6 extremely easy to focus, on all the lenses.

    Winder... I don't know about the fragility of the winder, I am pretty rough with my gear and so far no issues. I bought a "bgn" grade mamiya 6 from KEH as a backup and I use it routinely now.

    If you are in doubt, then consider picking up a fixed lens 645 Fuji RF. For $500 or less you can get something super portable and nice. I used to have two Fuji 645 RFs and loved them. I did trade them in when I bought into the Mamiya 6 line, and I don't regret that at all, but I am definitely not going to knock the Fujis.

    P.S. I find that changing film on the Mamiya RFs is simple and fast, as is changing lenses. I mean I am pretty sure I could comfortably do both in the dark in about 5-10 seconds. In fact, I know I can because I used to shoot lots of IR with the 6es and changed the film in a changing bag. Whatever you shoot, you need to become so familiar with it that it fits like a glove. Life's too short to fight your gear- if it's not comfortable for you then ditch it and move on.

    P.P.S. I suppose it's worthwhile to mention that of all my cameras, the 6es are the only ones with a resale value that has gone up rather than down. If you absolutely must, I'd not be afraid to trade in your other camera to try out a 6 or 7 or 7ii for a while... the prices aren't going anywhere. If you lose any money on the deal it won't be much. But as everyone is saying, hold on to what is already working for you... if it is already working for you.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009
  14. reverend jay

    reverend jay Member

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    I have a bid currently on a Mamiya 6MF which I would prefer over the 7II. If I don't get it then no big loss but if I do I will compare the 2 and then make my decision. Given the choice I prefer the 6x6 format. Right now I am concerned with portability so the hassy can at times be a little cumbersome. I do really like the Mamiya 6 though but until I test it for myself I guess I won't really know
     
  15. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Where do you live? KEH has a nice return policy....
     
  16. reverend jay

    reverend jay Member

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    I live in Md. and I guess if this bid doesn't work out I will look into Keh.
     
  17. Resoman

    Resoman Member

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    <<<I feel the Mamiya would give me the ease of faster shooting for street shots.>>>

    I agree and, like you, I've also got the Hasselblad and the Rollei twin lens. My Mamiya is the 6x6 w/50mm, and I can't imagine a better medium format street camera. A truly wonderful lens on a solid, fast handling camera with an excellent AE system. It's been a great camera for me.

    On the street and at fairs and such, I often hang the M6 around my neck and shoot without looking.

    Good luck,

    Gary,
    East Snook, TX
     
  18. Softie

    Softie Member

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    I rented a Mamyia 6 years ago and fell in love with it, and recently bought a 7. They're rather dissimilar in important ways: the 6 is a lot smaller to tote and easier to work with (no h/v decision). They both suck on a tripod, because some of the film loading controls are on the bottom.

    The speed of the lenses is no big deal compared to a Hassy, unless you use the 80 wide open a lot.

    The framing and closeup issues on the Mamiya 7 are pretty serious, and you have to review your work to see if you can live with the limitations.
     
  19. GM Bennett

    GM Bennett Member

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    Like Keith, I have a pair of Mamiya 6's as well and have all three lenses. The 50mm lens is stellar; I keep an occasional eye on ebay for a spare, but they don't go cheap. I picked up a second body (a 6MF) after reading about potential winder failure with no replacement parts available, but both bodies are going strong. I take them on motorcycle trips; they are a great travel camera. The profile of the camera with the 75mm lens collapsed into the body is probably narrower than most 35mm AF bodies with a normal lens attached. The RRS QL plate makes for fast on/off to a tripod or monopod.
     
  20. brian steinberger

    brian steinberger Subscriber

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    I would also say keep the Hassie and add to it if possible. My only concern for you would be, if you have never handled a rangefinder before you might not like it at first, or be turned off by it. And that's only because it is different. Renting is a great idea, but it may take you a month or more of using to get used to it (changing lenses, changing film, focusing) and fully appreciate it. That's the tough part about buying vs. renting.

    I love rangefinders. I have the Mamiya 6 and Bronica RF645 and am looking into a Mamiya 7II. For me it's the portability, ease of use, and most of all, the optics and results that I like.

    I certainly recommend you try one, whether you buy or rent just make sure you give yourself enough time to see if it works for you. The worst thing that could happen to you though would be to sell your Hassie, buy a M6, use it for a while and find it's not for you.

    So if you can, add the M6. If budget doesn't allow, rent for as long as you need to make your decision.

    Good luck!
     
  21. BOSS565

    BOSS565 Member

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    I agree with the posts that recommend you rent before you buy. You need to find if you are comfortable shooting with a rangefinder vs a slr and do you like working with the camera period.
     
  22. Daniel Larsen

    Daniel Larsen Member

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    Keep the Hasselblad and get a Mamiya 6 or 7, if you can afford it. I have a 503cx and a Mamiya 6. I love both. I use them differently. I did have to get used the rangefinder, after Bronica SQ-As and the Hasselblad. I can take the Mamiya 6 and all three lenses with me almost anywhere, in a small bag. Lenses, backs (120s and Polaroid), tripod, light meter - I could never get by with less than a messenger bag or Domke bag with the Hassy. Good luck with the decision.
     
  23. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    You might want to look at the new
    Voigtlaender Bessa III 6x6 and 6x7 folder that is expected out late spring-early summer.
    http://www.voigtlaender.de/cms/voigtlaender/voigtlaender_cms.nsf/id/pa_fdih7jzkae.html Lots has been written about it here, though mostly speculation.

    The price is unknown at this moment, but if estimates of $1500 are accurate, that is about the same or $100 more than a good used Mamiya 7 II with 80mm lens is selling for. You would have interchangeable formats with a fixed lens, the opposite of where you are now.

    John Powers
     
  24. reverend jay

    reverend jay Member

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    Well I decided to keep the Hassy for now because I just can't part with it.....I guess I have good reason to feel that way.
    I will say that I do love Voigtlaenders though and i am curious to see if this folder becomes a reality because I would love to have one of those probably more so than the mamiya...........we'll see