This camera has become my main workhorse. I’ve been using it for everything. Portraits, street work, events, landscapes and so much more.
It is one of my all time favourite pieces from my collection, which is a good thing considering how much effort is required to use it.
The Mamiya RB67 is a professional level medium format SLR camera that was produced between 1974 and 1990. It has some really interesting features such as its leaf lens and interchangeable film back options. In my opinion this camera is set apart from its competition by it frame size, at 6×7 it enables the photographer to take 10 landscape or portrait images. What makes this even more awesome is that you don’t even need to tilt the camera body to do it as the whole film magazine is on a rotating frame system!
The camera came with a 90mm f3.8 lens, lens hood, waist level finder, penta-prism and the shop threw in a nice bag too. The lens creates beautiful bokeh while maintaining the total sharpness of your subject. The camera has full manual exposure and is completely mechanical with no electronics of any kind. I’ve found that makes it a little more reliable in the long run in comparison to the RZ67 and cameras such as the Bronica ETRS as many of these kinds of camera were dependent on some kind of internal battery to operate.
Having had this camera for years by this point, I can’t imagine being without it. It has become one of my primary cameras for almost all kinds of photographic work. This camera is always the first to put in my bag if I’m out shooting. As with the rest of my collection, I’m trying to focus on expanding my lenses and accessories in order to have a complete Mamiya RB67 system.
Its an incredibly modular camera system. The full suite consists of 13 lenses and a whole bunch of other accessories including prism viewfinders, different ground glass focusing screens, and even a polaroid back for use with the polaroid type 100 instant packfilm, making it a true workhorse of a camera!
In short, this camera has allowed me to make work I can really enjoy. In the forests of Brecon, the beaches of the Vale of Glamorgan, the streets of Cardiff. Although there’s a definite sense of this camera being meant for primary use in the studio, I’ve never found it too difficult to wrangle and its weight although heavy has never been a problem for me regardless of where or what I’m shooting at the time.
This camera is worth its weight in gold as far as I’m concerned, so if you get a chance to try it out, don’t blame me when you want to keep it forever!