This year I shifted gears after buying the Hasselblad 500CM and really focused on film. I sold my Fuji XT1 and went full analog. It was more of a personal choice rather than client driven. I love the 500CM but in all honesty I did miss shooting in other aspect ratios, and besides, who can resist buying another fun camera. I searched for a few weeks and landed on a pristine Mamiya 645 Pro from Japan. It got here and it was flawless. Popped in some batteries and film and I was off to shooting. I was initially interested in the 645 AF but for the price difference I don't mind manual focus, especially since this is mainly a stills and portrait camera. Plus I still like the challenge and connection I have with the camera when manually focusing.
The one accessory that does make this camera great and a touch modern is the auto winder. It winds the film and advances the film to the next frame after a shot. As it does add weight, it does provide a nice grip for the hand when shooting and the camera feels nice and balanced. It also allows for easier vertical shots, where as before it was a bit awkward. The second feature why I got this camera is it's auto metering viewfinder. This makes a world of difference and gives me a great balance between digital and analog. It has three metering modes and I must say they all work very well. They speed up my set up time which is a huge benefit over the Hasselblad. Saves me a lot of time especially when I'm just walking around and want a portrait of a random person or object. With the Hasselblad I need to tell them to hold on, take a meter reading then adjust camera then confirm and take the shot. So far with this auto metering I haven't yet had an under or over exposed image.
The current lens on the camera is the 80mm F4 Macro and when I thought at first it wouldn't be ideal for most situations it was surprisingly versatile. I can get super close to subjects and it produces wonderful depth. It's razor sharp, although it does take a little getting used to with it's split screen focusing screen. However, I tend to just find a hard edge and line that up and I'm good to go. For wider subjects like street and landscape it is actually not terrible, although I will probably look for a wider lens in the future. Remember even though it's an 80mm it's almost cut into half to a 45-50mm considering the medium format film size. All in all this a great camera and can be had for a reasonable price if you hunt on Ebay. Most come from Japan and are flawless in their condition. I would definitely recommend anyone who wants a budget friendly medium format film camera to take a look at the 645 Pro.
Here are some recent shots I've taken and developed with the camera. Enjoy!