View Full Version : Mamiya Press 50mm on Linhof Super Tech.III - will it work?

Yuri Saniko
8-Jan-2004, 13:17
I recently got linhof outfit, with 105mm and 180mm lenses, but without wide lens...
Is it possible to use 50mm lens from Mamiya Press camera on my 6x9 Linhof super technica III ?
Will this lens cover 6x9? Will some movements possible? Do i need a recessed lens board?
Thank you!

8-Jan-2004, 14:19
The Mamiya Press 50mm lens will definitely cover 6X9. I have a friend who uses one of these lenses on a home-built 5X7 camera for circular images. At infinity the lens throws a circle about 4.5" in diamter, and the image is sharp enough for enlarging all the way to the edges.

Jeffrey Goggin
8-Jan-2004, 14:43
I can't answer whether a Super Technica III body will accomodate this lens or if you'll need a recessed lens board, but I can tell you that it will barely cover 6x9 -- mine is good for ~ 6x10, with some darkening of the corners -- and unless you machine an adapter to mate the Mamiya bayonet to a Linhof lens board, you'll have to remount the lens elements into a Copal 0 shutter and mount that to the lens board instead.

Fortunately, this is a pretty easy procedure as they should screw right in and if you use the Copal Press shutter from a 105mm Tominon (probably the most common/affordable source for used Copal shutters these days), and don't mind doing a little "mental math", you can divide the indicated f/stops for the 105mm lens by two to get the equivalent f/stops for a 50mm lens (i.e., f/8 for the 105mm lens is approximately f/4 for a 50mm lens) and skip the cost/hassle of having a new aperture scale made. It worked for me, anyway.

On the other hand, if you can live with a smaller image -- 6x6 with a few mm of movements or 6x7 straight-on -- you can also adapt the 55mm/f4.5 lens from the Mamiya TLR family as a moderate wide-angle lens. You'll need to either trip the shutter by hand or swap the elements into a Copal 0 shutter, but for the money -- I bought mine for less than $100 and then sold the viewing lens and other leftover parts for $50, reducing my net investment in it to less than $50 -- it's a pretty decent lens.

And if you ever feel the need to fill the gap between 50mm and 105mm, the 75mm Mamiya Press (and Polaroid 600SE) lens is a great performer for a medium-format setup. It will take some work to remove the lens from the factory focus mount and mount it on a Linhof lens board (or in the alternative, you can remount the elements into yet another Copal 0 shutter!), but the results are more than worthwhile.

As you can tell, I have some experience using Mamiya Press lenses on view cameras. It's too bad that my recent infatuation with shooting 8x10 means that I'll likely be selling them (along with most of the rest of my 2x3 and 4x5 gear) shortly...

Yuri Saniko
8-Jan-2004, 16:19
I also find some images here, in case someone will need this info:
It is test roll of 6x12 frames with mamiya 50mm, 65, and 75 lenses

Jim Galli
8-Jan-2004, 16:32
As above but I would add this. Since the Mamiya 50 will ONLY cover 6X9 with no moves possible the best mount on earth for it is a Mamiya Universal camera. Now the 75mm Polaroid / Mamiya f5.6 wide field is a different story and would prove very useable on a view camera. BTW the Mamiya 50mm f6.3 is a Biogon design and is as sharp at f8 as it will ever be. They are VERY nice lenses.

8-Jan-2004, 22:48

I know for a fact that the Mamiya 50mm lens covers much more than 6X9. As noted earlier, I have a friend who uses this lens on a home-made 5X7 circular camera, and his images on this camera at infinity are about 4.5 inches, or slight less, in diameter. Quite a bit beyond 6X9 coverage, right? And the image, even on the corners, is quite sharp. I have seen prints 40" in diameter made from the entire image circle on 5X7 film, and they are very sharp all the way to the edges, except for some darkening of the extreme edges of the imge circle.

Let me also add that I also used a Mamiya 50mm lens for several years on a home-made 6X12 camera, and it covered the format very well, with just slight vignetting at the extreme corners of the format. But for sure the circle of good coverage was well in excess of 6X9.

Comments based on experience, not theory.

9-Jan-2004, 02:28
" his images on this camera at infinity are about 4.5 inches, or slight less, in diameter. Quite a bit beyond 6X9 coverage, right?"

Not really: some simple maths (our old mate, Pythagorus...) shows that the diagonal of a 6x9cm rectange is 10.8cm which is around 4.3 inches - only just within the 4.5 inch image circle you describe. So it may fit, but there may be softening and/or falloff at the corners and no shift movements available.

For a lens to cover 6x12cm you need to cover a diagonal of 5.3 inches (compared to 6.4 inches for 5x4")...

Pheww - it's way too early in the morning for calculators..... As always, try it and see; reality and threory do not always converge....


9-Jan-2004, 15:30
Hi Bob,

Thanks for the explanation. I see your point.

However, regarding the needed coverage for 6X12, bear in mind that nominal is not actual format. The actual exposure size of most 6X12cm holders is about 56mm X 116mm. But even at actual size the 50mm does vignette slightly on this format.

But irrespective it is one great lens, as I believe most people who have used it would agree.