in with the new

So the big thing that happened for me this week was that I received my new (used) medium format film camera: The Mamiya RZ67 Pro IID. This thing is a behemoth, but there are so many things about it which I’ve wanted in a medium format camera for quite a long time.

Let’s start with one of the majors. It’s an SLR, not a TLR – this means that I see exactly what the film sees at the same angle and distance. No more worrying about parallax screwing with my close focusing. Additionally the RZ, like a Hasselblad, has interchangeable film backs. I got two backs with mine, so now I can switch between color and B&W without having to finish up the rolls of either. I just swap backs if I decide a shoot would benefit from some color, for example. The RZ also has a rotating back, which is nice since it shoots 6×7 cm negatives. That means I can switch from portrait to landscape without having to adjust my tripod. Finally, this particular body is digital-back ready. Now I’m not going to be in the market for a digital medium format back until the stop costing as much as a Honda Civic. But seeing as this camera is now my main medium format kit, I’m happy that my system won’t be useless if 120/220 film ever ceases production.

So yeah, I’m planning to shoot a whole mess of film in the coming weeks. And I’m planning on bringing this monster with me to San Francisco in early August. I know that good tools don’t automatically make good work, but I’m pretty psyched to have some more capable tools none-the-less.

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