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Thread: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

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    Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    I am semi retired from shooting weddings and Portraits. Now, I just shoot once in awhile for myself( close friends and family) Is there any MF system I can buy for less than 4,000? I was thinking about the H1 and a Digital back( NOT tethered) or an old Hassy 503CW or?? with a Digital back. Is it possible?
    Thank you rollsman

  2. #2
    yossarians22
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    p25+ would give you the most bang for your buck, especially if you have 6x6 Hasselblad gear. should go for cfe lenses if you're looking at 6x6 w/ digital

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    totally not an expert...but you might consider a mamiya RB and a leaf aptus 17.

    or if you can find one of the leaf valeo models with a digital magazine and the ipaq viewer. those can usually be had pretty reasonably.

    i got a great deal on my aptus 22, but even including an AFDIII with 55, 80, 150, and 210 lenses, i'm under $5000. so it can be done with a little work. if i'd decided to live without the 210 and stuck with the AFDI, i would be right around $4000.
    --David

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Everytime I see one of these threads (getting into medium format inexpensively), I'm reminded of the popular childrens' book, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie...



    It's a slippery slope....

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    Senior Member Graham Mitchell's Avatar
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    I'm selling my Sinar e54LV for 3K. That's probably the best bang for the buck back out there. Very similar to a P25 but with built-in memory, adapter system to use it on most cameras, live view, 22 megapixels, DNG workflow and 48x36mm sensor.

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    PM Shelby Lewis here on GetDpi ... he is doing something similar with a Mamiya RZ system, and is working on a budget.

    The RZ system is without a doubt the best MF system for the money out there right now. Since most digital backs are rectangles of varying sizes, the RZ is a good choice because the camera already has a rotating back built-in. So you can go from Landscape to Portrait orientation in seconds without removing the back or turning the big camera on its side. Something you cannot do with a 503CW.

    The drawback of using a 6X7 camera with the more inexpensive digital backs is that there is a pretty big multiplication factor for the various focal lengths available for the RZ. However, for portraits and such, it is actually an advantage because a standard 110mm become a decent portrait lens.

    The H1 is also a nice choice, but the backs for it can get more pricey ... and the H lenses are definitely more pricey than the RZ lenses.

    Whether you can get a digital back with the money left over after getting an RZ and a couple of lenses is questionable. Patience is a virtue when looking for any digital back. Trust me on this!

    -Marc

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Thank you for the info. I will look into the RZ and The H1 and see what the Sinar is about. Appreciate it.

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Quote Originally Posted by rollsman44 View Post
    Thank you for the info. I will look into the RZ and The H1 and see what the Sinar is about. Appreciate it.
    Good luck with Pentax, even Fuji will be on par over Contax, but i swear that Phase one will make LEAF to be winner and Rollei will keep watching around along with Bronica.
    Tareq

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Under 4K is really hard .....

    Mamiya ZD camera with an 80mm

    or a ZD back with an AFD an you just might make it.

    If you want to tether, H20 or 25 is well within reach.


    Seriously, it's a way slippery slope, and once I dipped my toe, the budget went out the window.

    Dave

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Where can I buy a used ZD and AFD ? Thank you

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Quote Originally Posted by rollsman44 View Post
    Where can I buy a used ZD and AFD ? Thank you
    I bought a Mamiya 645 AFD with 80mm lens and a film back for $750 on ebay and I picked up a Mamiya ZD Back from someone on these forums for $3100...

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Quote Originally Posted by homeiss View Post
    I bought a Mamiya 645 AFD with 80mm lens and a film back for $750 on ebay and I picked up a Mamiya ZD Back from someone on these forums for $3100...
    Because you have a very tight budget, you must be willing to be patient. The key places to look are here, Luminous-Landscape, and e-bay.

    Those kind of kits do show up every so often. Do a search on this forum, there are many threads about the ZD. No need to turn this into one, short story is, the price to quality ratio is exceptional, but there are compromises that will be made.

    Dave

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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Quote Originally Posted by djonesii View Post
    Those kind of kits do show up every so often. Do a search on this forum, there are many threads about the ZD. No need to turn this into one, short story is, the price to quality ratio is exceptional, but there are compromises that will be made.
    My short story version of all the ZDs is: don't buy a ZD unless you can try it - in length - before committing to it. Look up the numerous threads on the ZD for further details.

    As a rule of thumb when you see two used cameras with similar theoretical performance/specs and the free market prices one significantly lower than the other there is usually an underlying reason.

    (note I'm inherently biased - though genuine - in these comments as my company sells several brands of medium format gear, but not the ZD)

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    Senior Member Thierry's Avatar
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    That's a very good deal, for somebody interested. I know Graham since many years and he can be trusted.

    Thierry

    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Mitchell View Post
    I'm selling my Sinar e54LV for 3K. That's probably the best bang for the buck back out there. Very similar to a P25 but with built-in memory, adapter system to use it on most cameras, live view, 22 megapixels, DNG workflow and 48x36mm sensor.
    Thierry Hagenauer
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  15. #15
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    Quote Originally Posted by djonesii View Post
    Because you have a very tight budget, you must be willing to be patient.....
    YES!

    I found a newish condition RZ Pro IID (yes the "D" model) from a reputable online merchant on ebay with a 110/2.8 and film back for $1200... but I had to wait close to 6 months for that deal (and I bet I'll never see a similar price again). The last one at close to that price was $1400, and I just missed buying it to someone else.

    I looked EVERY day, multiple times daily, for the best deal to come around. When it surfaced, I didn't hesitate for a second to buy it.

    If you're going to take your chances on the used market... something I wouldn't suggest unless your like me and in school with kids and have almost no money, lol... do so with thorough patience, research, and what not.

    That said... I'm not going to come in at under $4k, because I chose a newer Aptus II back.

    Be ready for cry when you see how little of those beautiful giant viewfinders you actually get to use once the d-back applies it's crop. Especially if you go with a smaller crop sensor. Still better than 35mm, but it's a bit like owning a Ferrari and pulling one of the plug wires out when you get to drive it.

    Patience, Grasshopper... patience.

    Good luck!
    Shelby

  16. #16
    Shelby Lewis
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    Re: Least Expensive Digital MF To Buy

    I spoke too soon... GREAT buy on an RZ67 Pro IID body in the b/s forum right now. I think you could find the lenses cheaper though if you had to.

    http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/showth...266#post359266

    I just bought this seller's AFD Back to RZ67 adapter... transaction went off without a hitch.

    (I'll remind, though... no after sale service when you don't go through a dealer... which is a pretty big deal)

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