Pentax 6x7 + 105/2.4 - OR - COntax 645 + 80/2 - what would be your choice ?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Matus Kalisky, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. weasel

    weasel Member

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    I have never owned/shot the contax, but it would be my pic. A number of years ago I had some extra money, bought both a p67 and pentax 645 with a couple lenses for each. I did detailed side by side shots, same film same spot, tripod, etc, and found that with as big an enlargement I could make on my d2, the 645 outperformed the p67. I had assumed that the bigger negative would be better, but turns out it wasnt the case. Kept the 645, ditched the 67. Negative size is just one part of the equation.
     
  2. FujiLove

    FujiLove Member

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    Interesting. In what way was the 6x7 negative outperformed? Do you mean the 645 captured more detail/resolved a higher resolution?

    Which lenses did you compare side by side?
     
  3. weasel

    weasel Member

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    Fuij Love, I dont remember now which p67 lens, but for the 645 i have a 55 and 150. The images from the 645 were sharper, better resolution, and with the film and paper I used, ( acros 100, ilford mg) there was no difference of note in tonality. There is an old thread here somewhere about it. Keep in mind that using old cameras and lenses, individual variations likely play a big roll. My take away was that film size is only one part of the eqaution, and may not be the limiting factor to image quality, despite my long held belief that bigger is always better.
     
  4. Tobes71

    Tobes71 Member

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    I have the Pentax 6x7 and the 105 2.4. These are more repairable than the Contax 645 and later Pentax 67II. The risk you run with those cameras is that something fatal goes wrong a few months into your ownership and you have a very expensive doorsop. A few years ago I managed to get a spare 6x7 body for £100, prices have gone up now but I am sure you could get a Pentax 6x7 kit plus a spare body for less than the Contax 645.
     
  5. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    This is a resurrected 2011 thread.

    My favorite aspect ratio is 6x6cm.

    My second favorite is 6x7cm

    I have never tried 6x8cm or 6x4.5
     
  6. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Something sounds nutty. There are people who put P67 lenses on P645 bodies because they prefer the optical quality of certain 67 lenses.
     
  7. Monday317

    Monday317 Member

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    Jeff, I have personally owned both the Mamiya 645 1000s and the Pentax 6 x 7. The Mamiya had the 80mm, the Pentax usually wore the 165mm.

    Both are superb cameras, both have superb glass. With either camera, you just can’t go wrong—so long as you get one in decent condition of course.

    Ergonomics and handling for both are easy, and you can do anything you can think of with them. In the darkroom with an enlarger, the 645 images had enough grain to focus on, but wet prints under 8 x 10” could easily be mistaken for 4 x 5, with careful technique.

    The Pentax was even better: if I shot Pan-X or Verichrome Pan and developed in D-23 or Morris Germain’s Fine Grain developer, you couldn’t focus on the grain in the enlarger out to 11 X 14”! You just went to a few edges in the image to find your best focus. 8 X 10 prints could pass for LF contact prints.

    I regret selling both cameras long ago. With an Epson V550 today, one could be making masterpieces. With Acros or Provia, the results would be jaw-dropping!

    If I could choose any MF camera right this second, it would be an RB, due to the glass, racking the entire lens unit for focus, and ergonomics. The Pentax
    would be a close second, tied with the Mamiya Super 23, both because of superb lenses, the 23 getting an edge for the massive negative.

    IMHO, you can’t beat Mamiya glass in MF, and I include the European products as well. The Mamiya 645 has excellent ergonomics & lenses and a great system for any phographic purpose.

    The larger Pentax negative is rather better, and the camera’s ergonomics are easy to master.

    An RB (or RZ if you want some automation [ugh]) will provide the finest MF negatives in 6 x 7 format possible, short of using a view camera with lens/film plane adjustments only needed for specialized commercial work. Of these choices, they have the worst handling characteristics, given their sheer size and bulk.

    One final thought is the Fuji GX680, an RB on steroids, or what the child of an RB and a Graflex would look like. It makes a 6 x 8 negative and very RB-like, also with great lenses. But you could injure yourself trying to use it handheld with a neck strap...
     
  8. cooltouch

    cooltouch Member

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    I've always loved and had a craving for the GX680, despite its size, especially the III. Not sure what I'd do with it if I had one, since I'm primarily an outdoors photographer. Maybe I'd use it for selfies or something . . .
     
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