Mamiya M645 hands on review

A friend lend me his Mamiya m645(top speed 1/500) with 80/2.8,two inserts,chimney finder,lots of filters and close up rings. He wants to sell it but doesnt have the time to check its operation.

I clicked away one film,will do another then develop – the camera handles well but is bulky and heavy to be used handheld for a long time. I like it.

2/2/06 UPDATE
I shot two films with the mamiya(both kodak pan-x 15 years expired developed for 15 minutes in tetenal ultrafin liquid 1+20 at 20 degrees centigrate) they are tack sharp and I want to print them by hand- not to ruin my impression by the overpriced minilab scans of shitty quality.

Things I like about the Camera:

1)Handholdable at 1/60 with no grip and normal lens,didnt try lower
2)very sharp and contrasty lens,gresat details
3)AE possible with prism
4)15 frames on film(not 12 as in 6×6 I am familiar with)
5)great image spacing-very constant(a problem with many older mf cameras)
6)Stop Down Via auto-manual lever on lens
7)80/1.9 is available as normal lens
8)losts long on 1 battery
9)very cheaply available today,lenses also
10)bright focusing screen
11)looks sturdy-I think it wont break easily if dropped

Things I don’t like about the camera:

1)no accessory shoe
2)practicly impossible to shoot vertical shots with the chimney finder
3)finder isn’t sealed- seems to attract dust
4)requires battery for shutter(6V)
5)for that sizeweight I would prefer 6×6 negs
6)needs changing bag to change inserts in mid roll-back is easier-but more expensive
7)no half stops on the normal lens
8)15 frames per film(not 16)

I want to test it with slides to see how the lens renders color.

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