Now is the time to get some top-of-the-notch analogue camera equipment, as pros still switch to digital and you can get their used equipment at bargain prices! For example is this Mamiya 645 AFD.
image from teamworkphoto
For us film lovers these are lucky times we live in. Never before has used professional medium format camera equipment been available that cheap! I got this Mamiya 645 AFD from a pro, who had the problem, his newest digital backs would only work with the Mamiya 645 AFD II.
This Mamiya is an autofocus SLR-camera with interchangeable film backs. Available lenses range from 28mm to 300mm. I got only the 80mm lens and some extension rings which let me focus very close. The body is made from a combination of magnesium alloy and is built like a tank. It features 4 exposure modes (P, A, S, M), You can choose between spot-metering, center-weighted-metering and a combination of both, which provides perfect exposure all the time. (Even tricky subjects like a pale baby with a black background, like in my example pictures, can’t fool the light meter.)
The autofocus is still kind of simple, especially compared to 35mm SLRs like a Nikon F5. There’s only one autofocus field, it’s rather slow and very often the autofocus searches forth and back without locking in. Nevertheless it’s a great help when photographing moving subjects like a lively baby.
Film format is 6×4.5cm and interchangeable backs give you the ability to swap films mid-roll, choose between 120 or 220 films or even attach a digital back to the camera. (Oh no, we do NOT want to do THAT, eh?!?) As a cool little gadget you can imprint exposure data (f-stop, exposure time, exposure mode, frame counter,…) on the film frame. (See my example shots.)
The camera is kind of heavy, so I use a tripod often. It incorporates a mirror lock-up function, which eliminates camera shake due to the mirror slap and this feature is essential for careful landscape- or nightshots with slow film. (Nothing beats my Velvia 50!!)
Conclusion: I love digital! All those stupid people getting rid of their analogue equipment to switch to digital let me buy used camera gear in brand-new condition for less than one-fifth the original price. I paid about the price of 3 Lomo LC-As for the Mamiya and that’s next to nothing! So head out and get yourself a premium medium format camera before all the others do the same and prices go up again!!!
Thanks for reading,