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Mamiya RB645

 

The technical stuff:

Type: Single Lens Reflex 6cm x 4.5cm on 120 film

Lens: 80mm f2.8 - f22 Linked focus to viewfinder

Shutter: Speed 4secs - 1/1000th + B

 

 

It's not often you get the opportunity to test drive a camera of this caliber, but I just got lucky. I have custody of this for a while pending sale so I have been out with it and fired off a couple of rolls. It does take quite a lot of getting used to, I have the same problem with TLR's, I find the waist level finder difficult to use. My problem stems from wearing spectacles for short range work only, so focusing on the full screen I need them, but using the critical focus magnifier I don't, nor do I need them for normal vision. Enough of my ailments, what about the camera. This is a basic model without TTL or motor drive, although these are available as extras. It is purely manual but with skill and knowledge this is not a major problem. One of the main issues with manual cameras doesn't arise and that is in the focusing, at this it excels. The viewfinder is large and bright and the critical focus enlarger is amazing and as this has the split image screen this is made even easier. Initially I found it clumsy to use handheld but soon got used to handling, with a tripod this, of course, is not an issue. There is one other thing I dislike and that is the ability to use it in a portrait format. On tripod this is awkward but possible, especially with remote release but using handheld this is impossible without a side handgrip. All together a true professional camera capable of producing incredible results and with a range of available extras to keep even the most fanatic enthusiast happy, including me. I might have to put in an offer because having used it I can't bear to part with it, after all I am a fanatic and a landscaper to boot and this is it's forte.

 

 

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