Home Camera Reviews Mamiya 645 Pro TL – Medium Format Camera Review

Mamiya 645 Pro TL – Medium Format Camera Review

Mamiya 645 Pro TL – Medium Format Camera Review

hello there I’m making this video to show off my Mamiya 645 film camera I’ve had it for about a year now and I’ve always wanted to make a short review and just show off some of the features and basically give my opinion on what I like and don’t like there’s a lot to love about this camera it’s not going to be a crazy in-depth video but hopefully it’ll be helpful so yeah let’s get into it so if you’re watching this video you’re probably new to maybe film photography or at least medium medium format film photography you might be thinking about buying one of these cameras and you’re doing some research so yeah there’s a few things I wanted to tell you about this camera a being that this is a system camera so you don’t just I mean you can but usually you would buy different parts and assemble this camera to how you like to shoot for example I purchased this viewfinder that has a meter in it as opposed to a waist level finder that doesn’t have a meter in it I like to be able to meter my shots and not rely on another light meter and for me it’s just easier and quicker for me to shoot that way but before we get into that let’s just go over and look around the camera so right here we have a hot shoe so you can mount a flash there or a trigger and it’s on the side and I’ve mounted a flasher before and it looks pretty goofy with the gigantic flash hanging off the side but it works so yeah it’s better if maybe you’re vertical but I mean it’ll hang on there um you also have a mirror up option if you do shoot with the mirror up you’re not going to be able to use your viewfinder because the mirror isn’t bouncing the image into the viewfinder so it helps to use the mirror up if you want to reduce vibration but you need to dial in all your settings your shutter speed your aperture and focus and then flip the mirror up and then fire here we have our dark slide and in order to use the camera you have to take this out and store it back here that way the lights going to be able to travel through the lens and hit the film back here there’s a nice safety feature so if you do have your dark slide still here in the back you’re not going to be able to fire the camera so you can’t be taking pictures think you’re getting it getting a shot and realize that you have the film back in and you have all these blank exposures so the camera won’t let you fire and once you have this pulled out pretty handy feature ok so here on the back of the film back there’s a little insert here where you can cut out you know a piece of the box of you buy your film in and you know it’ll say whatever portrait 400 or try X 400 or you know whatever it is you’re shooting and you slide it in there and it’s just supposed to be a helpful reminder working our way around we have our film speed dial so you know if you’re going to shoot portrait 400 you can set it to 400 and the film back will directly communicate to this metered prism here and when you look through the prism it’ll tell you if you’re under or overexposed so that’s really handy that I don’t need to carry around an external light meter of course there’s always going to be reasons to use an external light meter but it’s great to have the option if you you know just want to shoot quickly and not carry extra gear around moving right along we have our shutter speed dial right here and it goes from bulb to one thousandth of a second I guess the slowest shutter besides bulb it says for I am assuming that a fourth of a second I could be wrong I’m pretty sure that’s right though I don’t think it’s four seconds should we find out let’s find out okay okay maybe that is four seconds yeah four seconds that’s what for a second sounds like your flash sync speed is sixtieth of a second so that’s pretty slow it’s really hard to use a strobe or flash outdoors during the daylight and use such a slow shutter speed you can probably use a leaf shutter lens or you’re going to have to use an ND filter on your lens I’ve really wanted to fool around with some outdoor strobe lighting with this camera but I haven’t gotten around to that usually if I’m outdoors I’m just going to shoot with natural light and if I’m inside I’ll pop a flash or a trigger on here and just bounce some flashes around the room oh maybe I’ll show some pictures of what I’ve taken using some flash with this camera let’s see here right here on the side we have a multi exposure setting and our single exposure setting if you do end up buying this camera I wanted to test it out and make sure everything was working and so you’re able to fire this camera without any film in it if you turn it to the multi exposure setting so if you just want to test things out and make sure your camera’s working without any film in it you can turn it to the multi setting and that’ll work otherwise if you have it set to single exposure it’s not going to do anything for you alright let’s see here here we have our power button all the way to I guess the right here if you’re looking at it that’s off in the middle we have our regular tower mode and all the way to your left is the self-timer so let’s see should light up and that should start blinking pretty soon here there it goes and it should fire boom um let’s take this thing apart and I’ll show you what it looks like disassembled take the film back off here that’s the shutter curtain it’s all cloth so be very careful with it you don’t want to tear it it’s pretty flimsy if you end up buying one of these make sure that after you wind it up and take a few pictures with it that this shutter curtain is nice and tight and taut yeah I’ve heard you know you can have problems with it being loose and it’s yeah not ideal here are the the connections that talk to the film back here these gold little connections and so sometimes if you’re having a problem you just want to make sure that these are nice and clean and ripped on backs communicating with the body here and here so I can get this off oh I think I got to take this lens off first here’s the lens release right here this little switch right there just pull that back and that’ll come off now I can take off the there we go so after struggling with that I thought it pulled out back but I guess it just pulls straight up I hardly ever take this thing off there’s no real neat – so you can see in there I need to buy some focusing screens there’s different focusing screens you can put in there and it’s gonna you know help you with focusing so yeah also you see these gold connectors you want to make sure all these connectors are nice and clean and everything’s talking with each other okay so let’s talk about lenses for a second when I first got the camera the first ones I bought was this 18 millimeter F 2.

8 lens and I really love this lens it’s small it’s not very heavy the focusing ring is really smooth there’s a little bit of a vignette all the way open to F 2.8 but it looks really nice to me I love it a lot it’s nice and sharp and yeah it’s a great general-purpose lens and if you’ve never shot medium-format before an 80 millimeter is going to look more like a 50 millimeter that’s just because there’s a reverse crop factor if you’re comparing it to 35 millimeter terms so same thing goes for this 55 millimeter lens that I picked up not too long ago this 55 millimeter is going to look more similar to a 35 millimeter lens if you’re used to shooting you know full-frame 35 millimeter camera all right so now I want to show you basically how to load some film in the camera in case you’re not sure how to do that I pop open the back here take out the film insert this is a 120 film insert and so you can buy a 120 or 220 they’re both the same type of film it’s just a 220 is a longer roll of film so you can shoot more shots with a 220 roll I just have this 120 answer and so that’s what I shoot and I get 15 shots per roll so maybe I’ll go in for a close-up here so you have these little guys that flip out this is the from the role that I previously shot and so I’m going to put it back here on the bottom put it on the bottom the empty one on the bottom grab some film here let’s load up some try X and there’s this little tab at the end of the roll of film and we’re going to put it on there’s this little white thing and it lines up with this little opening on the roll of film there you go roll it over and there’s a little slot in here for this to go pull that through send it over tighten it up make sure it’s nice and tight and we’ll start to roll this back and you’ll see right here this arrow should line up to where it says start right here so that says start and this arrow on top needs to match up with that well now we’re ready to rock and roll throw that in here till it clicks shut the film back and wind this up and you’ll see the film count film counter right here it was on start and now I’m going to roll it and it will click when it gets to shut number one boom yeah shot number one so then I’ll fire my camera mm-hmm I can’t fire it because that’s in there boom now I’m ready to take the next shot okay just a few more things in this review one I wanted to talk about mounting the lens and especially with this viewfinder here let’s see here so you should see this little pin right here and that pin is hooked on a chain let’s connect it to the viewfinder and if you see here on the lens there is this little it’s called it it’s called a coupling ring and the pin right here fits in this groove on the coupling ring and a couples the aperture ring of the lens to the camera body here so when you mount your lens you need to make sure that this coupling ring falls into place with this pin so when you mount the lens it should pretty easily fall right in place sometimes it doesn’t though and you need to fiddle with it for a second but if that coupling ring isn’t in law in alignment with the pin your your metered prism isn’t going to know what f-stop you’re at so when you turn your aperture ring you should see that pin sliding back and forth and so now I’m at 2.

8 and it’s all the way off to the side it knows it’s wide open if I stop down all the way to f-22 it’s on the opposite side and my viewfinder knows I’m stopped all the way down so it’s going to know how to meter correctly from my scene I also wanted to show you what the negatives look like so got some film back here here you can see just how big a medium-format 6×4 five- is compared to a 35 millimeter negative there’s just so much more resolution here and it’s always very satisfying to get back negative with all this resolution on it alright well I hope you learned something from this short review short review of the Mamiya 645 protea let me know if you have any questions or feedback so yeah I want to make more videos about maybe this camera or other cameras let me know if you’re interested in seeing more videos I wanted to do a video on this Yashica electro this Yashica TL electro x SE 35 millimeter film camera and I really enjoy this camera this particular copy is having some problems right now but I’m definitely going to get another one of these because I do love it very much it’s a real fun camera to use might do a video on this Voigtlander jubal are this is a medium format camera and it shoots 6 by 7 negatives it’s a really old camera with this we’ve shutter lens in here but it’s an interesting camera to use so let me know if you’re interested in seeing more videos like that so I will see you next time you


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