Yashica Mat V's 124G

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by shadesofgrey, Oct 22, 2007.

  1. shadesofgrey

    shadesofgrey Member

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    Evening all. I just bought a mint, in box with manual and hood Yashica 124G for £25.00 (the gods smile down on me for once) at a boot sale too! Haven't had a chance to run a film through it yet but will do one day this week. Anyway: I was reading up on my new 'GAS' toy when I came across a snip that said the Mat had the better lens and as I've never owned either before I was wondering how much better and in what way? I also read that the meter on the 124G is not too hot but then as it's not a TTL it's more down to user interpretation than the meter don't you think? Any of you have/use a Mat/124G I'd really like to hear what you think of it and any tips you might have.

    All the best.
    B
     
  2. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    There are two classes of Yashica TLR: those with Yashinon lenses (Mat, 12, 24, 124, 124G) and the other ones.

    Your 124G has the same lens as the 'Mat, and should theoretically be part of the best lot. I say theoretically, because I own a Yashica D with the Yashikor triplet, and I've had nothing but fantastic images with it.

    Meter? Who needs a stinkin' meter! :wink:

    So let go of that GAS (but please, not in public!) and go shoot with your new camera!
     
  3. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    The 124 G came with a Yashion taking lens which is good lens, not up to Rollie but a very good. I have used a D and 124 for years, made a lot of money shooting book covers with them. The light meter is only fair, I dont use the meter on my 124, I am not even sure that the battery is still available. But in the distant past I did use the meter, as good as most inexpensive hand helds of the day. If you have the lens hood see if you can round up some banynet filters. I glued a series VI adaptor on mine.
     
  4. dxphoto

    dxphoto Member

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    I would spend 50 pounds more to get a rolleiflex. No way that yashica lens can beat the zeiss. try the rollei and you won't go back.
     
  5. Doug Smith

    Doug Smith Member

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    The meter on my 124G still works and is quite accurate for a wide field reflective meter. In practice I've found the Yashinon lens to be just as good as the lens on my Rolleicord Va although its color rendition is quite different. Since I almost always use it for B&W it's not a issue.
     
  6. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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  7. Doug Smith

    Doug Smith Member

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    Fortunately, it's worked off the original battery for many years so I've never had to replace it. I got it used. I'll look at it tonight if you want (I'm at work now waiting for a render) and post the number.
     
  8. JHannon

    JHannon Member

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  9. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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  10. DBP

    DBP Member

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    The Wein cells work, but the meter's size makes it so hard to read that I don't bother. As for the lens quality, both of the square shots in my gallery were taken with a 124G. The one on the beach is a little soft, not because of the lens, but because it had been blowing at about force 5 or 6 all day and there was a fair amount of salt spray accumulation on the lens by that point.
     
  11. loman

    loman Subscriber

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    Just to clarify a little bit, there are actually three classes of yashica tlrs:
    Yashinons (tessar type), yahiscor (triplet type), and lumaxar (another tessar type). The lumaxar lenses came on the earliset yashica mats from 1957-58 and are supposedly the best of them all (according to Mark Hama, THE yashica repair guy), some think these lenses originated from germany, but frankly I haven't seen any evidence that can support this. Also the earliest yashica mats had 75mm lenses and not 80mm as was later commen. I happen to own a Yashica mat with lumaxar 75mm lenses, and I can testify that it is indeed very capable, that is, it's good enough. It's at it's sharpest at f8-f11 (at these apertures the difference between it and my zeiss planar on my hasselblad are minuscule). At wider apertures it shows the caracteristic tessar behavior of being sharp in the center, and less sharp in the corners (I happen to like that). As for built quality the original yashica mat is much better built than the later 124g, at least all the samples I've seen.
    Just my two cents...

    Best Regards
    Mads

    P.S. You've got a fine camera, don't think so much about if it's good enough (it is), and go take some pictures with it and concentrate on getting them good! Thinking about gear will never make you a better photographer (sorry, I don't want to preach, and you probably already know this, I just felt I needed to say that).
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 22, 2007
  12. shadesofgrey

    shadesofgrey Member

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    Well; thanks guys for some real interesting info.

    Hi Paul. I use a PX625A as a replacement for the merc battery in my Minolta AFL and Fuji Auto S and they work fine (B&W film) I just did a quick swap out and put the PX in the 124G it seems to read about one stop over though I can't say how good the battery I took out is and it may even be original as it has no markings on it at all? What was the holder you glued on to your Yashica A V1? I'm going to scout ebay for a yellow filter to go on the 124 but if there is an alternative route I'll be happy.

    Hi Doug. "In practice I've found the Yashinon lens to be just as good as the lens on my Rolleicord Va although its color rendition is quite different." Explain please as never owning/using a Rolle it would be interesting to know.

    Hi mhv. Yep going out in public today capturing streetlife with a MF TL should be fun!

    Hi loman. Really enjoyed you 2 cents! And no, you're not preaching as I'm not really a 'GAS' person, well, unless carrying a Cosmic Symbol everywhere counts:wink: Such a tech camera to use:tongue: Just like to read up on stuff and as soon as I bought the 124G I was on the net learning all over again. Yeah, I think it's a fine camera too and it'll do all that I'll ever ask:smile:

    Anyone out there use the 635? Just wondered what it's like?

    All the best.
    B.
     
  13. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    What was the holder you glued on to your Yashica A V1? I'm going to scout ebay for a yellow filter to go on the 124 but if there is an alternative route I'll be happy.

    A Kodak series VI slip on. I had to bend the flanges to fit then used silicon adhesive so I can easily peel it off if needed. I found a set of filters in a leather case and lends hood at a local shop. The same filter set also fits my Maymia 150 for my universal.
     
  14. Doug Smith

    Doug Smith Member

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    Hi Shadesofgrey,

    My 124G Yashinon is quite a bit contrastier than the Rollei. There is also a slight green tinge that shows up occasionally. Since I shoot mostly chrome when I use color I prefer the look of the lower contrast Rollei glass. It is 'rounder' with color, to use an unscientific term. The Yashica worked fine on the few rolls of color neg I put through it, however. My favorite B&W film to use with this camera is either FP4 or HP5- they complement the lens very well.
     
  15. possum

    possum Member

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    Congrats on your purchase. I really love my 124G, and I find that mine underexposes a bit. I use a Vivitar light meter instead of the on camera meter. It's a lovely camera, have fun!
     
  16. Fotohuis

    Fotohuis Member

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  17. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    I just recently got a Yashica 124G with the Yashinon lens from a colleague at work who told me he bought it new. He says it got him in trouble with his wife because he got it to take pictures of his son at some school function and the pictures came out "doubled" as he described it. Come to find out thte shutter sped was quite slow and the kid moved during the exposure.
    So he put it back in the box and shelved it, only using it one time. He asked me about the camera because they were getting ready to clean out the garage where it was kept. I offered to buy it from him, paid $60 which I think is a bargain for a "brand new" medium format camera.
    Does anybody have an idea of what the actual market value is for one of these in pristine condition? The Ebay prices seem to be all over the place.
     
  18. Jeff L

    Jeff L Subscriber

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    I have a 124G and find the lens very good. It produces images that are very close to my Rollei with Planar. A friend has a 124G aswell and the lens on his is STUNNING!
    Jeff
     
  19. magic823

    magic823 Member

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    Ahhhh. The camera I learned photography on. I used one for several years as the photographer for my high school yearbook staff (early 70's). I couple of years ago I pointed one out to my wife on ebay that the lister had misspelled Yashica and put it in an odd category. The listing ended without a bid ($75 start). My wife contacted the seller and offered $50 including shipping and the lister agreed. Waiting for me on a xmas morning was a new Yashica MAT-124G. And I mean new. I don't think it was ever really used. There wasn't a scratch, even on the case, and the manual was pristine.

    I had Mark Hama give it a CLA. The shutter oil eventual vaporizes and coats the inside lens elements.

    Its a lot of fun too shoot!