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Thread: Mamiya 23

  1. #1
    ronlamarsh's Avatar
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    Mamiya 23

    Am considering getting one of these. I have the opportunity to pickup one in mint condition with polaroid back and 100m lens for $350 and another $100 gets me a 55mm lens to boot. Any thoughts out there? Pitfalls? I would be getting a 6x9 rollfilm back to use with it.
    No escaping it!
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    to take this path

  2. #2

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    I have a Mamiya Universal with the 100, 55, and 150 lens, very sharp lens, the camera is rugged, my only complaint over the years is having to cock the shutter. Does the 23 have a roll film back, if not you will need one.

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    I'm not familiar with the camera, but "6x9 rollback" I assume you just mean basic 120? (120/220 dont define the size, the camera does, as 120 can be put into 6x4.5, 6x6, 6x7, 6x9, 6x12 format cameras).

    But if you want a mamiya medium format SLR, you can get a Mamiya 645 outfit for under 400$, heck you can get a Mamiya RB67 outfit for under 300$

    Hopefully someone more familiar with the camera will pop on.
    -Karl Blessing
    Karl Blessing.com
    The Bokeh
    Color Film always existed. It's just the world was always black and white till recently.

  4. #4
    jimgalli's Avatar
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    I still have a complete Mamiya universal camera system. It's so good I've never had the heart to sell it, especially at today's prices. They never made a 55 for it, that's likely a '65mm'. Excellent little lens but press the guy for the 'finder'. They used a seperate finder for the wide angles that clipped on top of the camera. I have 20X30's on permanent display done with that camera and Velvia 50. Check prices for similar cameras sold recently on Ebay. The lever wind backs are better than the roll wind ones.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

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    Jim, it unlikely that the OP was thinking of a 50, but if he can snag one of themfor $100, WOW!
    Last edited by Dan Fromm; 06-30-2006 at 06:48 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo

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    jimgalli's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm
    Jim, it unlikely that the OP was thinking of a 50, but if he can snag one of themfor $100, WOW!
    My thoughts exactly. 65 is a nice lens. 50 is spectacular. Prices reflect same.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

    http://tonopahpictures.0catch.com

  7. #7

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    Jim,
    If the time comes when you decide to let go of the 50, drop me a line. Considering how much you've described its performance in different fora over these years, I am truly intrigued. If I recall one of your posts elsewhere, you describe the 50 as a Biogon design. I'll trade you a bucketful of vintage brass lenses for it (various lineages), and maybe even some cash!

  8. #8
    ann
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    i have a universal 23 plus a variety of lens including the 50, it is built like a sherman tank and i really love using it. Haven't done so, in a while but it is a classic from the 60's.

    350 may be a bit high for today's prices, but in mint condition who knows.

    A variety of backs are available ; 6x6, 6x7, and 6x9 and are still available.

    Very sharp lens
    http://www.aclancyphotography.com

  9. #9

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    Have a Universal and Super 23 , use the Universal more.

    Just a bit confused tho, are you sure it's a 23 you're looking at because the Universals were the only ones to accept Polaroid backs afaik. Unless someone did a mod on it...

    Agree with everyone else though, really great images from it and if you can find them, try and get a Horseman 6x9 or Grafmatic rh8 or rh10 holder for it. These backs are much smaller than the Mamiya roll film backs for the press cameras.

    As for the 55 (or 50 or 65), definitely get it ! But as Jim, said, GET the finder if they have it.

  10. #10

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    Oh yeah, your left arm wil look like Popeye's after a couple of weeks use of this camera lol

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