Mamiya Press System

The Mamiya Press System Cameras

The Mamiya Press System included three medium format rangefinder film cameras produced from the early 1960s to the 1980s: the original Mamiya Press, the Mamiya Super 23, and the Mamiya Universal Press.

These cameras were designed to be extremely flexible, with a wide variety of accessories and lenses available. They also had large, bright and very accurate rangefinders.

Today (2018) they are quite plentiful and reasonably priced on a certain auction site. You can get a fully functional camera and lens for around US$400. This is considerably less than other equivalent medium format systems.

The original Press and Super 23 cameras had bellows backs supporting some (tilt) movements, and supported the M-type backs. The Universal supports standard M-type (S-shaped) backs, Graflex (G-type) backs and also Polaroid peel-apart film backs. Sadly Fuji discontinued the peel-part film.

The cameras all support up to 6×9 format photography on 120 roll film.

I have collected a number of bodies and lenses to continue my journey into medium format photography. I currently have a Super 23 and a Universal, as well as the 3.5/100, 2.8/100, 5.6/75, 6.3/65, 6.3/50, 5/250 lenses.

Please see my Gallery for images produced with this system.

Mamiya Sekor Universal Press System Lenses

LensDesignTypeFilter mmCollapsible
50mm f/6.38/5Biogon72No
65mm f/6.34/4Topogon43*No
75mm f/5.67/4Super-Angulon72No
90mm f/3.54/3Tessar40.5*Yes
100mm f/3.54/3Tessar40.5*
55
Yes^
100mm f/2.86/4Planar (Biotar)72No
127mm f/4.74/3Tessar55No
150mm f/5.64/3Tessar40.5*
55
No
250mm f/86/455No
250mm f/56/4Ernostar105No
  • * Indicates silver version
  • ^ Except late “E” version
  • Biogon is the name for a non-retrofocus wide angle lens which requires an exit pupil very close to the film plane
  • Biotar is the East German Zeiss company’s name for the Planar (double gauss) lens in order to avoid trademark disputes during the cold war

Field of View Equivalence between 35mm and Medium Formats

1356456x66x76x86x94x5
/1.0/0.6/0.55/0.5/0.45/0.4/0.28
15242830323555
21323842484875
284550556065100
355565707880125
4570809095100160
508090100110120180
70105120140145150250
90145160180200210320
110175200220240250300
135220245270300320480
200320365400450465700

System Flowchart

References

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close