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Thread: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

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    Question Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    Hello,

    Long-time reader and very occasional poster here. Just thought I'd say Hi and ask the community if there's any conciousness on the topic.

    I'm looking at getting my first MF digital back, the Phase One P40+, and was wondering if there's any optical advantage between either the 645 lenses (any of them, including the new LS one) or the RZ lenses?

    I'm familiar with the features of the new 645DF+, but I don't like the fact that it doesn't have a ground-glass or rotating back, like the RZ does. And also, the RZ lenses can be found very inexpensively today, which is a plus.

    I'd like to use it (either the RZ or M645) for my close-up work and use a technical camera (don't know which one yet) for the rest. I generally shoot fashion and am looking to get into a particular style of shooting that would really benefit from lens movements, but still need to be able to do critical focus work with moving models (hence the reflex body).

    I've considered the Fuji GX680 as an alternative to both the 645 or RZ and technical camera, but its 1/400s top shutter speed along with its sheer size concern me....and again, it's lenses were designed for big 6x8cm film, not a digital back.

    Enough rambling....in short, which lenses are better for the P40+ back, the RZ lenses or the 645 lenses?

    I appreciate any help! Thanks! J R

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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    Hey, since you sent me a friend request....if you're up in the London area, feel free to let me know and come try out the DF with a number of LS lenses. Also have an Rm3di, so may answer some of your tech cam questions as well.

    Cannot comment on whether the SKLS are better than RZ, but I can say that the ones I do have are fantastic. I wish the DF offered more, but it is what it is

    Also, if you are in Toronto, pop into B3K and see Walter. He has most of the Phase stuff in rental so you can try them out. He also deals with Arca and Cambo, so you can cover 2 of the 3 major brands with him.

    I think any system you touch at this level has its unique quirks, and what worked best for me was balancing the opinions of users, dealers, and trying things out for myself.

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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    Quote Originally Posted by jagsiva View Post
    Hey, since you sent me a friend request....if you're up in the London area, feel free to let me know and come try out the DF with a number of LS lenses. Also have an Rm3di, so may answer some of your tech cam questions as well.

    Cannot comment on whether the SKLS are better than RZ, but I can say that the ones I do have are fantastic. I wish the DF offered more, but it is what it is

    Also, if you are in Toronto, pop into B3K and see Walter. He has most of the Phase stuff in rental so you can try them out. He also deals with Arca and Cambo, so you can cover 2 of the 3 major brands with him.

    I think any system you touch at this level has its unique quirks, and what worked best for me was balancing the opinions of users, dealers, and trying things out for myself.
    Ah...I saw in one of your other posts that you visited your "local dealer in Toronto" so I figured you must be near by, so I thought I'd send you a FR. Yes, I know Walter and have known Jim for years. I definitely plan on making my purchase through B3K. Heading down there again on Friday...hopefully can clear up a few questions.

    Thanks for the offer. I haven't been up in the London area in many years now. Furthest I've gone by car in that direction is Kitchener.

    Re. the RZ lenses, I remember when they were new, they were considered by many to be the top end lenses of the day, but I'm really not sure how they stand up to today's newest SK 645 lenses. And then again, maybe any difference is only visible on the IQ180?

    The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know!

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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    The RZ also goes to 1/400th, but the lenses are fantastic. I used the 80mm SK on a DF and it too was pretty good. You'll get faster sync with the DF. The RB feature on the RZ is handy because of it's size, but the DF handles much like a 35mm dslr, so shouldn't be too much if an issue for portrait/landscape. AF will probably be the deciding factor if shooting fashion.

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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    Johnny, thanks for the info.

    I happen to be one of those few users who doesn't think handling like a 35mm dSLR is a good thing! I've never *really* been happy with them for my needs.

    I also shoot nearly exclusively with manual-focus Zeiss lenses on my current Nikon...so the thought of smooth rack and pinion bellows focusing with ground-glass is actually a real plus for me! I find AF gets in the way more often than not. But I'm not sure it's worth the trade off if the RZ lenses aren't up to par compared to modern ones.

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    Senior Member johnnygoesdigital's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    The rack/pinion bellows is really quite intuitive on the RZ. There have been a few posts here on RZ lenses/digital backs perhaps a search will link you. I find the RZ is perfect in hand and its weight is a bonus for low speed hand held!

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    Re: Phase One 645 Lenses vs. Mamiya RZ Lenses for digital

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    The RZ also goes to 1/400th
    Hmmm...which is still better than the 645DF+'s non-LS ($$$$) lenses slow 1/125s FPS sync.

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