Mamiya 7ii or Canon 5D Mark iii

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by john_boyd|9, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. I'm a second year photography student. I started photography with a Rebel XT 5 years ago but eventually i became very interested in film and medium format. I started shooting with a Mamiya C330 and went on purchasing more medium format bodies. I currently have my Mamiya C330 along with Hasselblad 503CW, Mamiya RZ67. For school projects that require a digital camera or for events (making money on the side) i use a Canon 7D.
    What I'm eventually interested is printing my work and selling to to galleries. I'm not a fan of doing wedding or events. If galleries don't work out I'm more interested in doing portraits and studio work and trying to make money that way. But i'm keeping my hopes up and aiming for gallery type of work and going into that direction.
    I have recently become interested in Mamiya 7ii due to its size and the fact that i can carry it around everyday without much of a hassle. This would probably allow me to do more street type of photography and candids. The weight allows me to be able to take images without the use of tripod. On the other hand my digital camera is not the best out there. Its lacking megapixles i need for large prints but at the same going from 18 to 22 megapixles is not that big of a difference.
    I already have two great medium format cameras, do you think adding a third one (mamiya 7ii) would have any benefit over the other two? Should i just upgrade my digital camera.
    I should also mention i will have access to Imacon scanner in our school from next year. As of now i scan with the Epson scanners.
    Thanks in advance
  2. If you really want to see an improvement use a wet darkroom.........this will blow you away.
    Analog to analog..
    You will not be held back by scan quality.

    Once you try that first, you will know your answer as to whether you want to go analog or digital.

    Just my 2cents.......mileage may vary.
  3. david_henderson


    A few points
    • If you want to get gallery representation in places where you stand half a chance of getting your print prices up high enough to actually make some money, what you need is ideas for photography portfolios rather then camera equipment. If you're different and you're quality, you stand half a chance of at least getting your pictures in front of people willing and able to pay reasonable sums for photographs. What none of these gallery owners and managers are likely to ask you is what cameras you've got, and if you tell them they might well not know enough to be impressed. So, first point- think photographs not cameras.
    • Its quite likely that you have all the cameras you need to create the sort of images that will make people want to buy your work. Where do you find your current range restricts you? Given what you've got already I think there's more chance that you find you've got the wrong system in your bag than you don't own what you need to get a particular shot or series. If you can't identify a clear and important weakness in your current array, then I'd contend that you may not need another system.
    • I used a Mamiya 7ii for ten years alongside a 6x6 slr. I used it for maybe 15% of the frames I shot. I bought it because sometimes I wanted a rectangular framing and didn't want to get there by cropping 6x6. Equally there were times when I absolutely could not use a tripod , and times when the weight really was an issue. So I did sometimes get shots I could not have got with a slr. However its not all upside. Its rangefinder focus-which suits some people more than others, you can't see dof through the lens at all, and in essence you can't get a lens longer than 150mm. Further the M7ii meter covers the same area on the ground no matter what lens you have fitted. So with a very wide lens its virtually a spotmeter. But with the 150mm the meter is taking some of its reading from things outside the frame altogether. I used a handheld spotmeter with the Mamiya . So in some ways you get more flexibility, but in others you lose it, and for me at least it was the 6x6 slr bag I picked up most of the time . The point here is I knew why I needed it before I got it.
    • Interestingly looking at Russ Britt's suggestion that you should try conventional printing rather than digital- I started by having analogue prints made by top-end labs. Using enlargers I struggled with sharpness at much over 16" sq- though this was from slides. Adopting a scan and digital print regime fairly early, I found the quality, repeatability and ability to get the print that I envisaged to all be much better with scan and print, to the point that I was getting 36" sq prints that did not depend on viewing distance to look sharp. Admittedly I was getting drum scans but an Imacon witll get you most of the way there. Takes all sorts.
    • I cannot imagine what markets you would crack armed with a 22MP dslr as against 18MP. For most things either would do. For extremely large top quality prints neither will do - but you already have access to a fine system that would- Mamiya RZ .
  4. If galleries don't work out I'm more interested in doing portraits and studio work and trying to make money that way.​
    For this type of work you are better off shooting with DSLR. Customers love instant feedback from digital. Having two camera bodies is a must for serious work in a way of back up and ability to use different lens without time consuming change. Personally, all my paying work is done digitally, I shoot film for myself and never made, nor attempted to make, a penny out of it. My investments go into DSLR system first.
  5. Agree with both above. Most likely you need a different finder for the RZ (vs waist type) and you'd be good to go.
  6. Personally I'm not comofrtable with the RZ due to its weight and the fact that it feels really bulky when I'm holding it. I have small arms and my hands get shakey when i use a camera handheld for long. The 503cw is not as heavy and allows me to take some photos without the use of tripod but its still not close to a camera i would carry around with myself everyday. I want to have a camera that i can carry around all day. The 7ii on the other hand is closer to a DSLR or even a 35mm that you can carry around. It doesn't look/feel bulky. I have the option to get a Mamiya 7ii or the Fuji GF670. Or i can just upgrade my digital camera but i really don't see what improvement i can get in my digital work (weddings,events and etc) by upgrading from a 7d to a 5d (other than the frame size)
    On the other hand I'm worried I will never make it to the galleries. I'm not sure if my work has the unique quality to make it to the galleries. (My professors think it does), But in the back of my head i'm worried about how i will actually make a living. I'm 24 years old and I think its time for me to find out what i want to do with my photography and the fact that i still don't know and can't figure out makes me worried about the future. Anyways this last paragraph has nothing to do with thread but i thought i should just mention it.
  7. John: When I was 33, I started my business (non-photo). I was very afraid; I had a new born child having just married the year before and a regular job that I had to quit that was paying the bills. And I usually played it safe. But I just had to do it. The business lasted 20 years before it failed leaving me broke although it did pay the expenses over that time. Nothing spectacular. So after the business failed I got a job using the experience I gained in business to help secure that position. Today I'm just retired getting a pension and social security and my daughter's doing fine herself getting married last year. And I even saved up a small nest egg for retirement.
    If I never tried it, I would be kicking myself today for not giving it a shot.
    So, give it a shot. Just play it honest and straight and you'll be OK no matter what. I promise.
  8. From what you've listed you already have plenty of cameras, you really don't need more, and a fancier body won't improve your photographic vision. Your only real justification for a FF body is if you really want to do wedding or other low light work that requires a very clean high iso.
    As the others have pointed out, focusing on your photography is a far better way to build a career than worrying about minor improvements in equipment. Instead why not make up a portfolio of your best images and take it around to galleries now just to see what comments you get. This may give you some direction as to where to go.
    But the main thing I've learned is that in order to produce unique photographs you must shoot what you have a passion for or your images are just going to look like everyone else's. If that's weddings, then shoot weddings, if street photography, then shoot that, if landscape then that, etc. Mine's flowers and macro with a little landscape thrown in for fun, and after 6 years of shooting around 100,000 shots (digital of course, if film I'd be broke) over that time I finally feel that my work is good enough to try selling it. Which is another point for digital, you can learn much faster given its low cost and instant feedback than you ever could using film alone.
    And BTW, a modern 24mp sensor is so close to 6x7 film in resolution that it's difficult justifying shooting film just for the resolution alone. Here's a comparison I made between the Fuji 69 90mm vs. the Sigma SD1:
    Personally I prefer the Sigma because of less noise, though admittedly the resolution of the Fuji could be improved by drum scanning, but that's too expensive for me and I wanted a realistic test.
    Anyway, good luck.
  9. I`d say for selling photos, you now need a good project&ideas, rather than another camera. Yes, the Mamiya 7 is different to the cameras you already have, but I believe this issue will not give any additional benefit to the creative possibilities of the C330, the RZ, the Hasselblad or even the 7D.
    And I agree with Russ, the traditional printing is really interesting, but it`s also way more difficult and wearisome to learn and control.
    To make money, I`d invest in digital. Some people work with film, but I find it not so practical. Do you really need more than 18Mp? Actually?
    I`d work first on the ideas. One of my favorite photographers work (and also sell a lot) with a Nikon F3 and a 55 micro (traditional printing). Now she uses digital, but her style is exactly the same... maybe a bit more commercial (sadly).
    Chema Madoz is really creative, and have never worked with fancy cameras. I think most of the pics (of an impeccable quality) I know from him have been taken with a "basic" model of Hasselblad, more than enough for his endless ideas... it`s worth a look.
  10. Thank you everyone for the tips.
    Is it okay if i share my portfolio here just to get some opinions?
    I would say my style is landscape and vintage portraits on medium format. Some of my pictures have the pictorial feel to it almost like a painting. At least this is what i think my style is.
  11. Sure post them.
  12. Please ignore the fact that my name here is not the same on my website. This is because i first had an account under my name but couldn't get access to it so i had to create another account.
  13. You've already developed your own unique look, and from the style of your images unless you're wanting to print really large (greater then 16x20) I don't see you needing more resolution than your present 18mp 7D. And your portfolio seems to indicate a preference for environmental portraiture. You could possible make some money doing just that, with a little band and wedding photography thrown in.
    But if you are wanting to print larger then I'd recommend either the 36mp D800 or the new Sony A7r, as that kind of mp jump would be far more noticeable than just moving up to the 5DIII.
  14. Mike thanks for the response
    None of the photos on my website are shot with the 7D. Almost everyone of those photos is shot with the Mamiya C330. I have made a 40x40 print with the Mamiya C330 scanned at 4000+ dpi using the Imacon scanners and it turned out great. Personally thats not the size i want to sell my work at. Probably 20x20 would be the size i want to go with. I was thinking of getting the 5D so i can do a bit of wedding if i don't make my other goals. On the other hand I want a medium format that i can take with me without the need of tripod. Something that allows me to do some documentary photography as well (planning on heading to middle east and africa this summer).
    I'm still not sure if i should just upgrade my digital or go with either one of these cameras.
    Mamiya 7ii, Mamiya 7, Plaubel Makina w67, and the Fuji GF670.
    I can even get a 5D body with any of the above cameras (used). I was looking to purchase the Mamiya 7ii brand new from B&H for 3400$ but there are some good condition Mamiyas on ebay for 1000-2000$. That allows me to get a 5D body and use the lenses i already have.
    The reason i want to upgrade my medium format is mostly the weight and portability. I'm not sure which of the above has the best lens but somehow i'm in love with the photos I'm seeing from the w67. I'm not sure if any of the camera above have options that makes them better than what i already have other than weight and size. I know you guys have more experience and can help me out. I have already got great tips from everyone. Just trying to make my mind.
  15. Fair to say if you have gallery representation as a goal then its fair to think about what system will give you large prints. Yes, the work is more important obviously. However, if you cannot print large its going to be difficult to convince a gallery owner to look at work no matter how unique your vision is. Simply too much competition.
    If I were young and starting out like you are there is no doubt I would stick with Digital. Your ONLY option for good prints with any medium format camera is Drum Scanning or Nikon 9000/8000 or an Imacon. Flatbed scanners simply are only good proof prints and very small ones at that. NEVER present your work using a Flatbed if you are shooting medium format. No point. Regardless of all the people who post on here raving about how sharp their Epsons are. If u shoot a Mamiya 7, do not waste your time with cheap scanning.
    What about the d800e? this camera will crush 6x7 medium format with the proper glass. Bite the bullet now. The d800e should hold its value fairly well. U could sell it in a few years with little depreciation in my view. The market for the Mamiya 7 rangefinders has already softened considerably in the past year if ebay is any indication.
  16. Nice work Amir. So much more interesting that all of the rather boring "velvia" look photography I see on
    Nice use of the square format.
  17. Why do you want 20x20 over 40x40? I agree with John Photos that bigger is better.
  18. It's difficult for me to offer any more suggestions without first understanding what you see in film that you don't see in digital.
    And as for MF film cameras, the Mamiya 7 has the reputation of having the highest resolution lenses ever made. But that said, each lens company has their own design philosophy which in turn causes their lens to render tones a little differently from the others. For instant both Leica and Zeiss produce excellent lenses but if you take the same shot with each they will look different.
    Actually, my favorite MF camera/lens designed was Bronica. Their lenses produced an open airy 3D look more reminiscent of Schneider than Zeiss. In contrast both Fuji and Mamiya lenses produce a look that is basically non-descript, i.e. competent but ordinary. The same can be said of both Canon and Nikon, high quality but no distinguishing look to them (most Japanese glass in general). But a trained eye can easily pick out a Leica or Zeiss lens, especially when shooting slide film. But it really depends on the look you're wanting. And since you do seem to have the money to experiment you might pick up a cheap Bronica body (they come in all formats) as they're very cheap now, about 1/10 of new, and see if you like it. It will be very different from the Zeiss look from your Hasselblad.
  19. Thanks Mike & John. @John, im glad you like my photos. The main reason i stick with MF is personal interest. I love shooting film, I love the fact that I don't know how my pictures look until i develop and scan it. I love the smell of dark room, i don't know its just i love shooting film. I also prefer square format over any other formats out there. I do have access to Imacon scanners in my school for next 3 years and I think this is a great chance for me to make some amazing prints for the galleries while i can. Then i will get to save up some money and get my own scanner. Another reason that i prefer film over digital is the print quality. I can't make a 40x40 print with my 7d or 5d unless i do stitching. There is also more tonal range with film compared to digital.
    I think a better question for me to ask you guys is this.
    What do these cameras have and offer (Mamiya 7ii, Mamiya 7, Plaubel Makina w67, and the Fuji GF670) that my current cameras (Mamiya RZ, Hasselblad 503cw, Mamiya C330) don't offer? Which camera has the sharpest lens? Which camera gives out the best negative if scanned with the same scanner? Which camera is better for close ups and close portraits?
    I think you guys are way more knowledgable about MF cameras and I think you could best answer the above. I was looking at the pictures taken by Plaubel Makina w67. Is this better than the cameras i already have quality wise? I was amazed by the pictures that were captured with that camera. It might be the film or the photographer but i was surprised that every single photo i saw from that camera had this amazing quality and sharpness to it.
  20. I agree that if you are scanning the negatives and printing digitally you are not getting the whole beauty of film, just some of it. Wet printing from negatives is far superior but is time consuming and can be costly.
    Forget megapixels, honestly. I have seen professional gallery prints 6 feet high that were made from a 10 megapixel 40D next to the same size prints made from a 22 megapixel 5D MkIII and the difference was miniscule. I usually have a good eye for that sort of thing but I couldn't tell the difference until I looked at the data. A full frame DSLR does give a cleaner look at higher ISOs though.
    For me, the advantage of full frame is the shallower depth of field. For your portrait work I think you would find it a big benefit.
    As for having a Mamiya 7ii or a 5D MkIII I think the DSLR makes much more sense from a practicality point of view and I honestly doubt it will make much difference to your large gallery prints compared to the Mamiya. But I know what you're saying about the love of using film and if that's a major part of it then the Mamiya it will have to be.
  21. I've used the Makina 670 but not the W67, but agree that the Nikkor optic of the former is really excellent. Most of the optics of the Mamiya (original or II, it doesn't matter) are also excellent. That of my also former Fujifilm GW690III is a bit less so, but not a major concern for most prints (under 16 x 24). Important thing to remember I think is that sharpness is not the only parameter of lens performance (consider also contrast, microcontrast, rendition of fine details, susceptibility to flaring, etc.) and some qualities seem to escape measurement (like bokeh) and show up mainly in photos. Unless you push the print enlargements to the outer limits you may not see much difference in any of these optics, and in that case you are probably better to seek large format equipment, with the advantages and inconveniences of that medium. For street shooting that you seem to enjoy, the Makina (if itr is like my former 670) noisy and the mechanism a bit fragile, while the Mamiya I or II are user friendly. I prefer the smaller Mamiya 6 and its lenses. It is more compact and also very silent and quick.
  22. To specifically answer some of your MF camera questions:
    1. the Mamiya 7 (ii) has the sharpest, highest resolutions lenses even made for any MF camera (the C330 has the lowest quality lenses of the cameras you mention with about half the resolution of the Mamiya 7), but being a rangefinder it's poor for portrait work due to its inability to focus close coupled with parallex errors. You really need an SLR for good portrait work, though if money were no object and I loved the square format I'd choose the Tele-Rollei with the glass back and insert (which holds the film perfectly flat) for the ultimate in quality:
    2. the best camera for studio work is the RZ, either for portrait, commercial, or macro due to its bellows, though to be honest many, if not most, MF camera portrait photographers at that time (mid 80s) preferred to use the Pentax 67 because it is easier to hand hold.
    3. can't comment on the Plaubel because I haven't used it, nor have I used the Fuji GF670, but the Fuji 69 cameras have excellent lenses.
    4. general comment: no rangefinder makes a good portrait camera because you just can't focus close enough for a tight headshot nor can you see exactly what you're getting because of parallax error. If I wanted to do the kind of shots in your portfolio and wanted a high quality camera lens in a compact light weight body I'd be shooting a Rollei F3 12/24 with the f2.8 lens and glass back. They come with both Schneider or Zeiss lenses, though which one is best is a matter of taste--both are good.
  23. Also wanted to comment on digital vs. darkroom printing:
    I had my own color darkroom for 10 years and the inkjet prints I'm making now are much better than anything I could ever hope to do in the darkroom. A lot of this is due to the inevitable fine detail loss of printing through an enlarger lens (which is why contact prints look so much better) whereas a good scan will preserve everything. Also the color accuracy and DR of color paper is poorer than inkjet. The only color darkroom process that looks better than digital is Cibachrome, which is no longer made.
    Now the same cannot be said for B&W printing. A good darkroom print is still superior to inkjet, but you have to really be a good printer for that to happen, but it can take you many years to "develop" that level of skill. Now if you're wanting the ultimate in quality shoot 11x14 and contact print it, but that takes a lot of work and can be a bit expensive. :)
    So I hope this helps some. Mike
  24. I second what others say that you need to be thinking about photos, not cameras.

    As far as galleries, unless you are extraordinarily lucky, it will not work out, so you had better be thinking about other routes if you want to make a living from photography. Very, very few photographers make more than a part time income, if that, from gallery sales. Even Ansel Adams did commercial work and portraits to pay the bills. Of those who do manage to sell prints in galleries, I have seen everything from Ansel Adams prints where you can see the veins in an individual leaf on a tree halfway across a valley to out-of-focus, crooked, over or underexposed snapshots shot with a Holga. So the technical quality of your camera is irrelevant to selling prints in a gallery.

    If you are a college student and therefore have maybe the next 60 years ahead of you for a career in photography, concentrate on digital. Keep the film cameras you can, buy some more if you like, and use them for your personal projects to your heart's content. If you can sell the images you make with them so much the better. But most of the world of professional photography -- photography where you can count on a respectable annual income, pay the bills, support a family, etc. -- has already gone digital. During your lifetime -- which will extend long after many of us old film fans are long gone -- knowing film might be nice, but knowing digital will be required.
  25. I have seen everything from Ansel Adams prints where you can see the veins in an individual leaf on a tree halfway across a valley to out-of-focus, crooked, over or underexposed snapshots shot with a Holga. So the technical quality of your camera is irrelevant to selling prints in a gallery.​
    I entirely agree. The work of Richard Billingham is a prime example. He used a cheap 35mm compact with the cheapest film he could find.
  26. Some great tips, Thank you guys
    One last question, which of these three have the best optics? W67, 7ii, Rolleiflex?
    And does Mamiya 7ii and Mamiya 6 have the same lenses? If the lenses are the same quality, I don't see any advantage to pay that much money for the 7ii when i can get a Mamiya 6 for half the price.
    And am i crazy for wanting to buy something like this?
    I have saved up $4000 and being young and inexperienced I don't think my choices will be helping my photography. It seems like I'm mostly trying to go after my interests. But really am i crazy for for wanting this?
  27. As far as I know, the lenses of the 6 are as excellent as those of the 7 (or very small differences). They are not interchangeable with those of the 7.
    The Canon RF has a damaged cloth curtain (see photo) which may not bode well for the condition of the rest of it (an old RF camera). The price reflects mainly the market value of the 0.95 lens (not sure this lens was very favourably reviewed when it came out, or nowadays. Someone mentioned to me that the true transmission at full aperture is not equivalent to an f number of 0.95, probably just over f1 and it likely has huge light fall-off in a design and with glasses of that era). It is also sort of apples and oranges to what you are referring to in MF cameras, no? The W67 lens does not have a wide aperture (OK for landscapes and often tripod use and closed down a bit), whereas the Mamiya 6 standard lens is f3.5 (also true for the Fuji GW670 and GW690 (same f3.5 lens on both) which is good for street shooting with relatively fast films (The 6 can experience winder problems mainly if it is roughly handled (also scarcity of those parts), whereas the 7 is probably more easily serviced and has optics nearly as fast, although overall a bit bulkier in handling.
  28. Technically speaking the Mamiya 7 has the best lenses, about 10% higher resolution than the Mamiya 6, possibly because they were designed later. But if you're just printing square then you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference. But if you're shooting 6x6 in order to crop to a 645 rectangle, then the 6x7 format, with 2x the area of 645 will produce much nicer prints.
    Also not much difference between the Mamiya 6 lenses and the Rollei except the Mamiya 6 lenses are multicoated and so have a little higher contrast. But remember what I said about lens design philosophy, the Rollei lenses will render tones differently than the Mamiya.
    Also, one advantage of the Rollei is that in using a TLR for street photography you can compose and shoot from waist level, with most people (who are unfamiliar with TLRs) not realizing you are actually taking a picture. I've even heard of photographers attaching a long cable release to it and having their hands in their pockets when they shoot, after prefocusing of course.
    But since you have some money saved you might consider buying both the Mamiya 6 and any decent Rollei, testing them, and then selling the one you don't want. Even an old Tessar or Xenar will produce excellent results in the center (being a 4 element design the extreme corners are never very sharp). These 1950s Rolleis can be bought in the $300-$500 range depending on condition, such as these:
    The main consideration, though, is are you printing square or rectangular? If square the you can easily go with the Mamiya 6 or Rollei, but if rectangular then the Mamiya 7 will produce the best results (you just can't focus very close, but then you have the RZ for that).
  29. I have read the film tonal range thing thousands of times... it could be technically true, but in the real life things are not that easy, more likely, it`s the opposite.

    I use to shoot Mamiya (RZ and 6), along with large format, 35mm and digital. I process and print in my own darkroom. In my experience, sharpness is more related to an exquisite technique, the way you use film film&developer, processing skills, and printing size, instead than one or another camera model and lens.

    I agree with Mike, with traditional printing you can get extremely nice results in B&W, but it`s way more difficult compared to digital. Difficult means that many times you cannot get what you`re looking for, or results are a botch. I abandoned traditional in color because I find digital much easier and better, in all ways.

    Just make a little mistake while developing film (quite common on me) and any extra advantage is lost. I don`t have a drum scanner, so film scanning also modify the charm of film, or directly send it to the trash, to my taste.

    IMHO, the RZ is one of the best cameras made for professional purposes ever. I don`t use Hasselblad, I once checked a 503CW and seem to me an equal if not better option (the Hasselblad have a much nicer build). Format wise, I don`t see a valuable difference when using 120 film... it`s just square or rectangular, to your taste. One of the sides will be always the same, so sharpness is the same.

    You already have them both. The only advantage of the 6 (or 7) is that is a really "handholdable" camera, and the BIG drawback is that are not reflex (focus, DoF, viewing). The 7 could be a 10% sharper, but I wonder if that difference is worth it for your kind of photography.

    On the charts, Mamiya 7 and some Hasselblad lenses use to win; most people think this because were C. Perez`testing results with a few lenses. In real life, I`m pretty sure you will not notice the difference unless in right testing conditions. I have some very good Planar 80 pics at home, and I made equally good RZ110 pics. Just make something wrong with film or technique, and the difference will be huge, whatever you use.

    Excuse me, but I`m quite skeptical about this topic. I see you`re a bit lost, specially when you consider the Canon 7 with such high price (but very low value to my taste) lens for $4000!!
    I think you`re affected by any gear acquisition syndrome, so buying reasons are quite subjective. (BTW, my best antidote to the GAS is to go out and shoot! :)
    Well, I don`t know what to say. Maybe the RF Mamiyas could provide anything different to your bag.
  30. With the 75mm lens retracted the 6 is quite a small camera. Extended only adds two to three inches or so to the camera depth. It's not a perfect camera (which is?) and keeping it in service is aided by exercising it and using it regularly. For about 1000 to 1300$ US you can get a mint example.
  31. Thank you everyone
    After a lot of thinking I think i will upgrade my digital camera to a 5D mark iii. That way i have a full frame digital camera that i can use for weddings and later on in my carreer for my business.
    As for the MF, since I want something small I think i will go with either a Mamiya 6 or a Makina w67. The reason i keep including Makina w67 is because of the f/2.8 lens. That is if i find any mint bodies on ebay for around $1000.
    I can also get an Rolleiflex with the 2.8 lens as Mike suggested.
    So between these 3 which one would you go with?
    Rolleiflex with a 2.8 lens, Makina W67 with the nikkor 2.8 lens, or a Mamiya 6 with a 75 3.5 lens?
    Which gives the best image?
  32. All have high lens quality. But as I said earlier, are you printing square or rectangle? A 6x7 neg. will always produce a higher quality rectangular print than one from a 6x6. Also, which do you prefer, a wide angle lens (W67) or a "normal" one (Rollei and Mamiya 6)?
    But handling is also important. If possible try to actually get your hands on these bodies to see if you have a preference (maybe your school has some). But ultimately you really won't know until you actually use, and if possible, test them against each other.
  33. Another thing to consider is repairability. Rollei will always be repairable because of its huge popularity and user base, but I'm not sure about the other two.
  34. The 55mm lens of the W67 Makina has a maximum opening of f4.5. The 67 and slightly upgraded 670 have 80mm f2.8 optics.
    Which of the three cameras and lenses you mention gives the best image? Too close to call, so it is not important to compare their IQ but to consider the other features and qualities thart may be important to you.
    Did you read the comments of José? They are right on. The weakest link in your photos will not be due to which camera of the three you may choose, but more importantly it will depend upon your experience of processing to get a quality negative to print or scan and print, and the same in regard to your darkroom or lightroom processing. It doesn't get more complicated than that.
  35. @ Mike, Personally i prefer square format. I don't have access to any of those bodies except the Mamiya 7 which i don't think i will get.
    @Arthur, yes i did read his comments and it was very helpful. I don't do my own processing. Do different labs do the processing differently? How can i find a good lab where i live? Is there like any specific type of processing that i should look for? like any specific chemicals and stuff. And most of my photos are shot with a 80mm lens and i find that perfect for my use.
    I was able to do some great close ups (flowers, portraits) with the Mamiya C330, i can't do that with the Mamiya 6 or the W67, correct?
    And thank you both and everyone else who commented on this topic and helped me out.
  36. I shot a Mamiya 7 with the 50mm for a number of years. It required an external viewfinder and was a royal pain to use. However, optically perfect. No strange distortion typical of SLR retrofocus lenses. The 50mm on the Mamiya 6 sounds like a great wide angle lens. No external viewfinder. Just be careful purchasing the 6 used. Anything available now is likely to be very very used and the winding mechanism in particular is not a sourcable part should it fail.
  37. It looks like you would also be a candidate for a Holga 120N 6x6. They are cheap and a lot of fun and from your portfolio you would probably get some really cool shots.
  38. Since you have access to the 7 cut the center out and compare it to your Hasselblad to see if you'd like the 6.
    Personally, I've yet to find a more pleasurable and fun camera to use than a Rollei, though perhaps it's a combination of appreciating precision equipment, liking the "retro" look and feel of using it and its high quality optics (same reasons I love the Retina 3c). And you can also do close ups with them using the Rollinar attachments. It's also very light weight and quiet, but then so are the Mamiya rangefinders. Of course, I've owned six over the years and so it's possible I am a bit prejudiced. But I never stuck with them because I found a fixed lens too limiting. But if I was satisfied with just one focal length then I'd still probably be shooting it, at least in B&W (because you can easily process and print it yourself).
    But given your options, any decision you make won't be a bad one.
  39. I just checked my email and 4 of my photos have been selected to be exhibited in a gallery on January 30th. Couple students from my school will be represented and I'm one of the ones being chosen. The exhibition is taking place in one of the best galleries in Toronto. Its just amazing how I'm talking about wanting to make it to the galleries and i just get my first gallery experience. What a day and this for sure will be the best Christmas of my life. I still can't believe the fact that I was talking about it and now I'm there. Its like God was reading my posts all along!
  40. There's a close up attachment for the Mamiya 6 and 75mm lens. Works fine within its range (1/2 the distance of the otherwise close focus setting of the 75mm normal lens) and it has parallax correction.
  41. John. Congrats. You're on your way.
  42. After a lot of thinking I think i will upgrade my digital camera to a 5D mark iii. That way i have a full frame digital camera that i can use for weddings and later on in my carreer for my business.​
    I commend you for for deciding with your head instead of your heart. You have DEFINITELY made the right decision. The running costs will be much less, reliability will probably be higher and it will also save a lot of time.
    Whilst I love rangefinders I would never use one for work for a paying client because you can never truly be sure you've got the right shot until the film has been developed. With a rangefinder you can't see if you're getting lens flare and you can't be 100% sure of the framing, especially at close distances like portrait photography.
    Also, people often think that the medium format cameras give a shallower depth of field for portraits but in reality they don't. You won't find a medium format lens with an f/1.2 aperture. Most are f/2.8 or slower. Couple that with the low ISO of film and you end up struggling for light in anything but the brightest of situations.
    Keep your current medium format gear for when you just want to have some fun with film.
  43. So i'm upgrading my 7d to a 5d but i also want to get a better MF with a greater lens and something that less heavy and more portable. I found some used Mamiya 7s and 6s on Ebay and also an Plaubel Makina with a 2.8 lens. I don't know why but the Makina seems to grab my interest more compared to the Mamiya's. The pictures i saw on flickr taken with this camera just look superb!
    Do you think any of these are a good deal?
  44. I fully enjoyed my Makina 670 (more recent than the 67 but very similar in performance, except additional 220 film capability, perhaps a mute point these days) but have the following to suggest as drawbacks in particular situations:
    • the shutter is very loud
    • the meter in mine didn't last very long
    • the frame to frame spacing was not consistent, differing interframe spaces and sometimes overlapping frames; real care has to be taken to be sure the film advances fully each time you wind on
    • folding and opening the bellows is OK but can sometimes be a bit finicky; that could have been improved by DOI, but they went out of business I think when their main business of photo processing for the millions went sour in Japan;
    • It is not too good in rain or cold weather, owing to the exposed bellows.
    Having said that (which is just one person's experience), I love the camera and have made some great shots with it mainly in B&W. It is a brilliant conception (developed in part at a German university) and I just wish its production would have been in the class of that of some majors. I sold it to buy the Mamiya 6 which has three great objectives. The Nikkor 80 mm f2.8 is probably as good as the Mamiya or Zeiss optics. At least my 16 x 20 and greater prints attest to that possibility.
    Re other eBay listings: Beware of anyone with less than a 100% confidence rating. The two Mamiyas are minimally excellent condition but you can do better at theses prices. I trust a Japanese seller who I think goes by the Bay name of Arrowsmith. Bought two Mamiya 6s from him over a period and they were both mint and fine performers. Sold one of them, but have also been a bit burnt by the condition of Mamiya optics from other sellers. Lots of Mamiyas and other MF equipment in Japan, but a lot of them I have seen in North America on the Bay are less than perfect.
  45. @ Arthur
    Thanks for the info
    What is a good price for a used Makina?
    And i tried searching for Arrowsmith on ebay and couldn't find his profile. Can you send me his information? And if anyone else know a seller i can trust on ebay please do let me know.
  46. It was a while ago (about 7 years) that I sold my Makina in excellent condition, at 1500$, so the value today is certainly between that and 2000$, but you are best to check finished sales on eBay if you are a member. Given that they are perhaps not so easily repairable these days I would personally not go over 2000$ (and if I really wanted one). I remember now the Japanese seller's name (Astrosmith). He and one or two others in Japan come up fairly regularly for Mamiyas, probably because there are many in Japan. He has one now at 999$ (scuffed and missing paint in one spot) and another at 1295$ which is clean except slight crimps in the internal bellows). I didn't look at the full listings. if you aren't in a hurry and can ask him questions you can probably make sure you get a good one.
  47. You're not missing anything with film. Today's digitals are way better. I own medium format cameras Nikon 9000 scanner and Epson 3880. I also have an older digital Dslr 12mp crop sensor. LOL. It can handle its own against my Mamiya 645. They have almost the same resolution....I can only imagine what a Nikon D800 can do. I plan on scanning all my film and selling the Nikon 9000 and upgrading to the D800 or Canon.
  48. Similar to my situation. May sell my Nikon 9000 too as I suspect the market for these will be declining soon. Digital is way better imho. My now sold Olympus E-30 at low iso and 12 megapixels definitely held its own with my 645 stuff (very big prints with 645 are better but that is via the drum scan/light jet route and its very expensive). Yes, 645 is still good with fine grained film if you are willing to take the steps necessary to achieve good results. Inkjet printing is inferior to lightjet/chromira printing at large sizes.
    6x7 is becoming marginalized very quickly though I still use it for long exposure work at night because i prefer the look of Kodak Portra scanned to digital. For all other types of photography, I imagine a d600 would probably surpass 6x7 and a D800 would thoroughly trounce it with the right glass ($$$$)
  49. Malcolm, using MF film is not just bout resolution. The lenses on the system will have a different look and rendering to
    them. And the digital, regardless of rez, will not loom like film. Saying that digital is better than film is like saying oil
    painting is better than watercolour. The statement doesn't make any sense.
  50. Hi John, I do not want to confuse you, but I have a slightly different opinion from the other people here.

    If your intention is doing something like Tillmans or Shore type non-commercial film photography, plus you have already established your own style and technic, I would not hesitate to recommend you to buy another serious film camera.

    I don't know why you want to have Mamiya-7, but if your choice is based on the final image taken with Mamiya-7, there is no other choice, buy Mamiya-7. The lens and the flatness of the film make Mamiya-7 the world's sharpest and the most brutally honest MF camera. On the contrary, if your choice is solely based on the camera size, and you can't really tell the subtle difference in the final images between various MF cameras, I would not recommend you any new MF camera, because I honestly think you may want to learn a bit more about photography before spending too much cash for not only the camera but also the expensive MF films.
    On the other hand, comparing to film images, digital files from 7D and 5D will look pretty much the same, unless your print is huge. The almost all the difference comes only from the lens attached and the crop rate. So unless you want to use some specific lenses with non crop sensor, 7d to 5d update would not be necessary for now, IMO.
    In short, you may want to confirm your final photographic goal precisely before buying another camera.
    I mainly use Mamiya 7ii and Contax T3 film cameras along with a small digital camera, (GM1 w/20-1.7 these days, but I own several), and I think I know what I'm doing.
  51. Hosui: Could you post some Mamiya 7's?

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