Mamiya RZ67 Pro II with Sinarback 54M?

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by henrik_holben, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. I'm just curious if anyone have tried a Sinarback 54M on a Mamiya RZ Pro II and what is your experience and opinion about this Digital Back solution in 2018? Did you use it with the required Adapter Kit 552.45.041 for Sinarback 54M on Mamiya RZ67 Pro II, with specific Adapter Plate 552.45.241, or did you use a Mamiya HX-701 instead? How did it work? What about CaptureShop any issues running tethered into Mac? What was the Tonal/Colors Qualities and Dynamic Range of the Sinarback 54M? Its own Pros and Cons, what's Good and Bad of this setup? I'm comparing it against a Mamiya Leaf Aptus II/ Mamiya DM 22MP/33MP. What's your take with the Sinarback 54M comparing it to what's available today in 2018? Still a viable solution for a Mamiya RZ67 Pro II?
  2. I own the same camera and wonder about digital backs too. I use a D750 for color, and the Mamiya for B&W which I process, and print in my darkroom. There's a photographer on youtube that has some good videos. He uses digital backs on his RZ. He's worth checking out. 龍﨑フリオ Ryuuzaki Julio (@ryuuzakijulio) | Twitter
    henrik_holben likes this.
  3. Yes I agree with you! He's experimented with Aptus II/7 setup. Julio is awesome indeed!! :p
    Stephen_Prunier likes this.
  4. Sorry, I'm very late to this discussion--I can't believe I missed it!

    For a period of about two years, from 2014 to 2016, I used this combination. I don't remember exactly which adapter I used, but it was the standard Sinar adapter for the RZ67--I purchased the digital back and adapter together from a seller in South London who had updated to a more recent Sinar digital back. He had been using it in his product photography studio.

    I loved the combination! In fact, I liked the back so much--particularly given its current price (when you can find one)--that I'm currently using a second one on a Hasselblad 553ELX in my portrait studio in Orlando, Florida. What I mean is, when I had to move back from London to the US, I had to sell quite a bit of stuff to fund the move. I had to choose between keeping my RZ67 kit with the digital back, or my Hasselblad gear--I'd have to sell the other to generate some cash. I decided finally (and painfully) to sell the RZ67, as I could use the Hasselblad both in the studio and out and about, and I didn't know precisely what my future held when I returned to the US.

    When I got back to the US, within a few months I decided I really needed to get another digital back. So I found another 54M on eBay, and the Hasselblad V adapter from a different seller. I've been using them ever since late 2016. I also own a Nikon D810 and several highly regarded Nikkor lenses. But for studio portraiture, I vastly prefer the images I get from the Sinarback 54M and either the RZ67 or my Hasselblad.

    It is a bit of an awkward combination, as you know if you've researched it--which it sounds like you did. For those reading this for future reference, the 54M is ancient (2004 vintage) and so has no battery, no screen and no memory card slot--you have to shoot it tethered (via FireWire), and the software (CaptureShop) will only work on a Mac. And you'd have to use an older MacOS, it's 32-bit only. (Up to High Sierra, it worked perfectly fine. After I moved to Mojave, the software still works to control the camera, but I can't see preview images of the files in CaptureShop--I have to import them into a folder where I use Adobe Bridge to view them.)

    At one time about a year and a half ago, I speculated in a Facebook forum about "upgrading" from this back, only to have several photographers tell me they'd used this same Kodak sensor (it was found in a variety of backs of the time) and that they had been disappointed by this change, despite having more megapixels in their new backs. They recommended I stick to this back/sensor combination, which I have done.

    Using this combination is even better with the RZ67 than with my Hasselblad, simply because of the rotating back. Makes life much, much more convenient, definitely!

    If you'd like to see a full-size example of what the 180 W-N lens can do with this back, here's a portrait I made with the combination. It's had a bit of sharpening applied for print, so it'll look a bit over sharpened when viewed at full resolution. But you'll definitely be able to see what it can produce.
    q.g._de_bakker likes this.
  5. Did you use an umbrella for some of the lighting ? Peter
  6. Since this thread goes back a way I’ll go off a bit and ask if there was ever a digital back for the RB67? I don’t have anything from the RZ series but I have quite a bit of RB and it works well. I use it only for b&w that I process and print at home but it would be fun to have digital back just to use this format for color now and then.

    Rick H.
  7. Phase One offered an adapter to mount their backs on RB 67s. Don't know if they still do, but the old adapters still works, if course.
  8. Apparently they still do offer the adapters but then I priced the current digital backs and just had to sit down for a minute! I know, medium format digital is expensive. I’m hoping to find an older back that I can use on the RB for less than the price of a good used car. It’s just for fun, not for any serious commercial work. I find that the Nikon full frame bodies cover those needs quite well for me.

    Rick H.

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