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Thread: Contax 645 Prices

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    Contax 645 Prices

    Used prices of Contax 645 gear are getting out of hand. I recently saw a Really Right Stuff RRS L bracket sell for $610 at the auction site! I have this myself, but there are much cheaper alternatives that work well.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    I have a SUNWAYFOTO Universal L Plate ($87) from eBay. There are two models and they work well on my 35mm equipment as well.
    Other universal L-brackets include:
    Kirk (two models, $150 and $160)
    Acratech ($230)

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by engel001 View Post
    Used prices of Contax 645 gear are getting out of hand. I recently saw a Really Right Stuff RRS L bracket sell for $610 at the auction site! I have this myself, but there are much cheaper alternatives that work well.
    IIRC, the one on eBay previous to this went for ~$165, which seems much more reasonable. For $610, it shouldn't be too difficult to have one custom-made by some firm such as S.K. Grimes and I expect even then that it still wouldn't cost nearly that much!

    As for prices of gen-u-ine Contax gear (versus third-party products), it does appear the price for basic kits (body, finder, back, 80mm lens) has started climbing again, although the prices for lenses continue to fall. As ever, though, condition is definitely a factor (although, that said, I rarely ever see any Contax gear in "beater" condition ... why is that?) and sometimes a temporary supply shortage can cause prices of certain items to spike if somebody decides they really must have a particular item there and then rather than wait for one at a good price...

    Fortunately, except for a good 45-90 zoom (the first two used ones I bought were good but not great performers, so I sold them on, but I gather that really good ones do exist), my needs are pretty well satisified for now...

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Is A Contax 645 still a viable solution for MFD?
    How many years now has it been since they have been out of production?

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Workshop Member lance_schad's Avatar
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Production of the Contax 645 stopped in 2005 .

    It is still a solid camera platform , the AF was a little slow, but great lenses. It has a great feel as well in hand.

    There are still many loyalists out there. PhaseOne is still producing new backs in the Contax mount, even the new IQ series is available in the Contax mount.

    I am sure Victor will chime in on this thread.

    L
    LANCE SCHAD - Digital Transitions - Phase One,Mamiya | Leaf,Arca-Swiss,Cambo, Profoto
    direct/cell:610-496-5586 office:877-367-8537x224
    http://www.digitaltransitions.com email:[email protected]

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    I believe these are some of the factors driving the prices in the segment I am most comfortable in, i.e. Brand New unused, Like New in Box:

    1. Dwindling supply of equipment in those categories.
    2. Zeiss. The only medium format autofocus system with Zeiss lenses. The 120mm Makro (easily found new for over $1000 less than the comparable Hasselblad H lens). Some have bought into Contax 645 for that reason alone. Or for the 45-90mm zoom. Or for the 55mm Distagon, a fast 80mm f2.0, the character of the 45mm and 140mm lenses...
    3. Waist level finder available.
    4. Ability to use all Hasselblad V lenses, some of which are fantastic bargains (i.e. CB 60mm Distagon).
    5. Built in flash metering.
    6. 1/4000 top shutter speed.
    7. Intuitive user interface.
    8. Demand from current users stocking up with backups or completing their systems
    9. New users finding entry to MFD. Last time I checked, Hasselblad H and Mamiya AF lens prices have mostly reached levels higher than new old stock Contax 645 cameras and lenses.

    I personally view this as my system for life and am currently using a P65+ back. It is actually nice not to have new lenses tempt me to "upgrade" constantly. Another five years of Kyocera OEM support is reassuring.

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    engel001,
    Have you shot with there 35mm lens and your P65+ back? If so how were the results?
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Steven, how could I forget my favorite landscape lens. Three web images do not do this lens justice. - Christopher

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    Workshop Member kuau's Avatar
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Christopher
    Were they all'shot with the p65 back
    How does the phase back intergrate with the contax?
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    All of these with P65+. I had a P25 before that. The large pixels of the P25 and Zeiss lenses were a great match, they had a magic crispness, but now I'm addicted to the additional detail. Just clip on and shoot. It's easier than film!

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by engel001 View Post
    2. Zeiss. The only medium format autofocus system with Zeiss lenses.
    Just a fact check here.

    The Contax 645 was the first autofocus system with Zeiss lenses, but it is not the only one. The Sinar M system is also a 645 system with autofocus Zeiss lenses. There are four Digital AF Zeiss lenses (40, 80, 120, 180) plus a Rodenstock Digaron 28mm HR lens adapted to support the Sinar live view system. And, it also accepts any Hasselblad V lens.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    enel001, how does the SUNWAYFOTO L bracket fits the Contax 645 body (with or without grip)? Thanks.

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    Senior Member yaya's Avatar
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by David Klepacki View Post
    Just a fact check here.

    The Contax 645 was the first autofocus system with Zeiss lenses, but it is not the only one. The Sinar M system is also a 645 system with autofocus Zeiss lenses. There are four Digital AF Zeiss lenses (40, 80, 120, 180) plus a Rodenstock Digaron 28mm HR lens adapted to support the Sinar live view system. And, it also accepts any Hasselblad V lens.
    David I think it would be fair to say that most of these were sold and serve as a rear standard/ shutter on a P3 and that very few bodies have ever seen a Zeiss lens...

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by yaya View Post
    David I think it would be fair to say that most of these were sold and serve as a rear standard/ shutter on a P3 and that very few bodies have ever seen a Zeiss lens...
    Well, I owned the whole system, including all the Zeiss AF lenses, and used it as an SLR almost exclusively. I also owned a compete Contax 645 kit at the same time so I could compare them side by side. After only a few weeks, I sold off my entire Contax 645 system, since the Sinar M was that much better. The autofocus was still the fastest I have ever seen on any medium format camera and the images were every bit as brilliant as the best Zeiss glass for Hasselblad. And, none of the AF Zeiss lenses for the Sinar M showed any CA.

    I think there are many more users of this system as SLR than you think, although admittedly not a large number. Yes, many p3 owners bought the camera as a shutter, but they also bought the new Zeiss AF lenses. I personally know at least six other photographers who also shoot the Sinar M as a SLR, but only three of them are members of this forum.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Wyan, back to the Sunway bracket. I have both models and they are very versatile and strong. The fit is secure when mounted, but the battery grip contour is slightly oblique. The bracket's lip (the side imprinted with the manufacturer's web address) aligns itself with this contour which is not parallel to the film plane in the case of the MP-1 battery grip, but that doesn't really matter. Best would be of course if there were anti-twist pins on the bracket as there are two sockets in the undersurface of the camera or grip. By the way, plates for Mamiya 645 manual focus fit the Contax 645 perfectly and have properly spaced pins. - Christopher
    Last edited by engel001; 5th April 2011 at 17:48.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by engel001 View Post
    Wyan, back to the Sunway bracket. I have both models and they are very versatile and strong. The fit is secure when mounted, but the battery grip contour is slightly oblique. The bracket's lip (the side imprinted with the manufacturer's web address) aligns itself with this contour which is not parallel to the film plane in the case of the MP-1 battery grip, but that doesn't really matter. Best would be of course if there were anti-twist pins on the bracket as there are two sockets in the undersurface of the camera or grip. By the way, plates for Mamiya 645 manual focus fit the Contax 645 perfectly and have properly spaced pins. - Christopher
    Thanks.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Wyan:

    Another option that works fairly well is the Really Right Stuff Universal L bracket, Part No. MC-L, $105 plus shipping: http://reallyrightstuff.com/ProductD...versal-L-Plate

    It similarly has a rear lip that doesn't fit the battery grip especially well, but it will work. Likewise, the rear lip interferes a bit with the regular grip installed, but a pair of nickel coins positioned on each side of the screw are the perfect thickness shims to level the plate and it tightens down very securely, with the rear lip preventing it from twisting.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Well, here we go again ... will lightning strike twice? (And as if the starting bid and buy-it-now prices aren't bad enough, look at the shipping cost ... this seller certainly doesn't intend to leave any money on the table!)

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Contax-645-L-Bra...item19c49f51da

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by Audii-Dudii View Post
    Wyan:

    Another option that works fairly well is the Really Right Stuff Universal L bracket, Part No. MC-L, $105 plus shipping: http://reallyrightstuff.com/ProductD...versal-L-Plate

    It similarly has a rear lip that doesn't fit the battery grip especially well, but it will work. Likewise, the rear lip interferes a bit with the regular grip installed, but a pair of nickel coins positioned on each side of the screw are the perfect thickness shims to level the plate and it tightens down very securely, with the rear lip preventing it from twisting.
    Thank you very much. I actually like the camera without grip (for lighter weight).

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Anyone looking to blame someone for rising 645 prices should look squarely at Jonathan Canlas.

    Backs for the 645 are now in the 400-500 range (I couldn't get rid of them for $125 not long ago.) And don't ask about inserts...

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by Audii-Dudii View Post
    Well, here we go again ... will lightning strike twice? (And as if the starting bid and buy-it-now prices aren't bad enough, look at the shipping cost ... this seller certainly doesn't intend to leave any money on the table!)

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Contax-645-L-Bra...item19c49f51da
    Small world. That bracket was mine and I traded it to the seller for some other gear at a true valuation of $600 (after seeing one sell recently on the bay for $610). At the BIN price he's still losing the ebay and paypal fees. i will drop him a line about the shipping charges... they do seem out of proportion.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by David K View Post
    Small world. That bracket was mine and I traded it to the seller for some other gear at a true valuation of $600 (after seeing one sell recently on the bay for $610). At the BIN price he's still losing the ebay and paypal fees. i will drop him a line about the shipping charges... they do seem out of proportion.
    Well, if that's the going rate for them these days, then so be it. I know I certainly won't be buying one at that price, though.

    Oh, and the ad now says the shipping is free, which seems more appropriate.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by Audii-Dudii View Post
    Oh, and the ad now says the shipping is free, which seems more appropriate.
    I brought that to the seller's attention and it was an inadvertent error.... he used a prior template that had shipping charges computed for one of his large format cameras. I'm glad you pointed that out so it could be corrected.

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    It's official: $600 is the current market price for a Really Right Stuff Contax L-plate, as that is the most recent price one has sold for on eBay. On the positive side, I guess this means the market price has fallen slightly, as the previous one sold for $610...

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...%252FvekQ%253D

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Yeah, crazy price for the L-bracket.
    Had one, sold it. Great to know there are alternatives. Anyone used the Novoflex L-bracket?

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Short footnote to the sale of this bracket. Buyer wanted overnight, Saturday delivery so wound up paying $650 but...and here's the kicker... the buyer is a reseller to the Asian market, not an end user. Can't imagine what it will ultimately sell for. Wish all my camera gear appreciated like this did

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    ...and a brief note on fitting a generic L-bracket to Contax 645: You may add a Stroboframe 300-MAM (usually around $5-$10) anti-twist plate (for Mamiya) between the camera and the bracket. This works with the Sunwayphoto DPL-01 bracket. By mounting this combination, the bracket will lie perfectly aligned with and secured by the pins - and is not dependent on the slightly oblique contour of the grip as described above. I just may think of selling my RRS bracket for an easy profit...

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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    The madness continues! Unless there's gold or other contraband hidden inside the battery compartments, I can't imagine this 3-lens outfit being worth anywhere near the current bid, as I paid less than a third of this amount for an essentially identical NOS 3-lens outfit last summer (the only difference being that mine came with only one of three lens shades included here). And it's from a first-time seller, too! Something definitely strikes me as fishy here...

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Contax-645-Mediu...item20b88d88ba
    Last edited by Audii-Dudii; 18th April 2011 at 14:49.

  29. #29
    Super Duper
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    Re: Contax 645 Prices

    Yup. Doesn't pass the smell test.

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