I spent awhile at the rental dept. at Keeble &Schuchat (sp?) in Palo Alto looking at their Mamiya II with 80mm lens. I really just cannot see how one can do quick focusing for street work. I've heard great things about the lenses for these, but what good is that going to be when you can never be sure if what's going on the film is what you really want (like with an slr) and if it's going to be focused correctly.
I think Mamiya 7ii is a wonderful camera if you can accept its limitations. You can get some great deals on the used market. As a street shooter it is not as fast as a Leica. Although, a Leica camera can be slow to operate in the wrong hands. I have missed shots with my Leica which I thought were in focus or the wrong part of the scene was in focus. I believe most of the time this comes down to camera technique. Pre-empting the situation before it unfolds in front you. Seeing the 6x7 negs developed for the first time was the deal clincher for me. It maybe worth renting the Mamiya 7ii or take a roll or two 120 film with you to the camera store. Get the film developed and decide from there. Good luck!!
Well, for my limited experience in street photography, everything is pre-set.
I really just cannot see how one can do quick focusing for street work. - marcmarc
I focus by moving closer.
With the Rolleiflex, I meter my hand, to get facial tones, then prefocus to 10-15ft,
and set the speed [at least 1/30th] and aperture [f/11 or higher]. With the 7ii/43mm,
I set the focus to 10ft -> infinity, f/11 [using the DOF markings on the lens - easy with
the 43mm], and let the camera set the shutter speed. Out of ten rolls I lost about 5-6
shots to camera shake and bad focusing. I lost 0 shots to under/over exposure problems.
I lost shots by being too far away to make an effective composition, and I lost shots
to timing. I couldn't blame the camera. Note, about half the time, I didn't raise the
the camera to my eye [with Rollei, it's even less].
Whatever works, do it. This camera is awesome, a joy to work with and produced
great results. I, or others, could say the same about, 15 other cameras.
It's no Magic Bullet, and neither is a 'blad, a leica, a rollei, a bessa, etc.
Last edited by dasBlute; 08-25-2010 at 08:21 PM. Click to view previous post history.