Mamiya RB67 Pro

1 RB67

This is the first model in Mamiya’s RB67 line, introduced in 1970 and replaced by the RB67 Pro S in 1974. It is a modular single-lens reflex, taking ten 6×7 negatives on 120 roll-film, or 20 on 220. The RB stands for Revolving Back, which enables shooting in landscape or portrait format without having to tilt the camera (relevant when using a waist level finder.

All parts are interchangeable. A complete camera comprises the body, lens, viewfinder, back adaptor and film back. The body and lens are mechanically linked, so that operating the lever on the right side will return the mirror and cock the shutter. The film back has a separate lever to advance the film; there is a mechanical connection to operate a red warning flag on the film back (and later models have a double-exposure lock). Another mechanical connection prevents the shutter firing with the dark-slide in place and prevents removing the back until the dark-slide is replaced.

The lenses have leaf shutters, with speeds of 1 to 1/400 second and “T”, with flash synch at all speeds. I have 65mm, 127mm and 180mm lenses (32mm, 63mm and 90mm equivalent on 35mm)

The mirror is large, and noisy when it moves. It stays up after taking a shot, until the body is re-cocked, which minimises the risk of mirror-slap. When using the camera on a tripod, the mirror can be locked up.

The RB67 tips the scales at over 3kg which some say makes it a studio camera, not suitable for hand-holding. Certainly, it is worth investing in a comfortable neck-strap.

My RB67 is called “Lula”. Fans of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum books will understand that she is big, black and beautiful. She was used for January in my 12 months, 12 cameras project.

Further information online at

http://rb67.helluin.org

http://camera-wiki.org/wiki/Mamiya_RB67

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