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Thread: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

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    Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    Im quite eager to jump onto the MFD bandwagon.

    Would love to go Hassie but money is an issue....

    Contemplating Contax 645 with a Aptus 75 back - all in great shape - and I want to use it for landscapes, macro, portraiture and occasional travel photography.

    Keeping my M9 for holidays and such ( and to have a light light option ) but I just fell in love with the Contax 645 Zeiss lens. 120 Makro, 80 Plannar they seem drop dead gorgeous, images just POP, 3D separation everywhere, bokeh is gorgeous.

    My gripes are :

    - should I go for it ? Contax support is flimsy at best, brand is closed and that worries me.
    - Aptus is the same thing : support is scarce here in Portugal and its a discontinued product although the store does offer a 6 month warranty

    Not having pre-buyers remorse but its a hell lot of money if something goes wrong. Contax 645 complete + Aptus 75 is around 10.000 usd with warranty - good deal I reckon but...

    ps : I'm going to trade in my Nocti and couple of Leica old lens to reduce that 10k to nil pretty much so "hey theres a H3DII over there for sale" not an option. unless they take a Nocitlux 0.95 and few stuff as trade in

    pss : if anyone knows any European store that have MFD backs for sale and do trade ins, I'm all ears

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    Re: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    I have an Aptus 75. Today I think it is one of the best second hand backs you can get. Since it is a bit old the price for it is low, but still it has a good sensor of decent size and reasonably high resolution. Mine has failed though and costs ~€2500 to repair, there's always a risk that gear fails and its larger with older, so I think one should have a repair budget too. The back is still supported by Leaf though and they can repair it. I don't know for how many more years though, at some point they can't get any parts any longer. If they stay in business I'd expect 8-10 years which gives us to 2014 - 2016. In that time the back will probably be worth less than €1500 anyway and way too uneconomical to repair.

    I don't know much about Contax, only that it is a dead brand.

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    Re: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    Quote Originally Posted by torger View Post
    I have an Aptus 75. Today I think it is one of the best second hand backs you can get. Since it is a bit old the price for it is low, but still it has a good sensor of decent size and reasonably high resolution. Mine has failed though and costs ~2500 to repair, there's always a risk that gear fails and its larger with older, so I think one should have a repair budget too. The back is still supported by Leaf though and they can repair it. I don't know for how many more years though, at some point they can't get any parts any longer. If they stay in business I'd expect 8-10 years which gives us to 2014 - 2016. In that time the back will probably be worth less than 1500 anyway and way too uneconomical to repair.

    I don't know much about Contax, only that it is a dead brand.
    thank you for your reply.

    the back I'm buying comes with a 6 month warranty, so at least is better than nothing.

    I love the images I see with it - colors are great, clarity and sharpness are superb.

    what is the longest exposure you can do with it before lots of strange colours creep in ? at low isos ?

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    Re: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    Quote Originally Posted by proenca View Post
    what is the longest exposure you can do with it before lots of strange colours creep in ? at low isos ?
    Unlike some Phase One backs the Aptus (like many others) have locked down the maximum exposure time so you cannot extend it past 32 seconds. I think this is a bit sad, since if you are in cold weather (which I often am) you can probably extend that time quite much without problems. In warm and nice Portugal I'd expect that you rarely would want to extend the time though. The lack of long exposure capability is a Dalsa chip weakness, it is still the same with the current chips. P45+ is the way to go if long exposures is important, it has however not as accurate colors as the Aptus 75 (one may find the P45+ colors pleasing though, it is a matter of taste.).

    With those 32 seconds the exposures look good, after the raw converter has cleaned it from hot pixels (available in capture one and others). Without hot pixel cleaning the picture is sprinkled with dots, so it is a necessary step. You don't get any strange colors though, I guess you're referring to the green cast you can get with for example a P25 back with longer exposures. One should not expect that to happen though, since 32 seconds really is not that long time.

    The back makes a dark frame and you cannot turn off that feature (you probably would not want to, but again I think it is a bit sad that they strip away control from the user) which means that when you do a 30 second exposure you need to wait another 30 seconds before the next picture can be taken.

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    Re: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    Quote Originally Posted by proenca View Post
    what is the longest exposure you can do with it before lots of strange colours creep in ? at low isos ?
    if long exposure is important for you look for a P45 (about 30 min exposure) or P45+ (about 1h exposure).

    2 recent threads covering the Contx 645 in conjunction with a DB:

    http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/medium...e-dutties.html

    http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/medium...atibility.html

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    Re: Aptus 75 + Contax 645 : still a good choice ?

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    if long exposure is important for you look for a P45 (about 30 min exposure) or P45+ (about 1h exposure).

    2 recent threads covering the Contx 645 in conjunction with a DB:

    http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/medium...e-dutties.html

    http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/medium...atibility.html
    thomas : thanks for the links; trying to "absorb" as much information as I can and I already had read those threds up and down. trice

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