Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-28-2017, 02:30 PM   #1
Pentaxian
ripper2860's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Thinking about buying a Pentax 645 v1, but have questions...

Hello,

I'm looking at my first real foray into medium format film (outside of a couple of TLRs) and am thinking about an original Pentax 645 w/ 120 film-back. These seems to be a really good bargain to test the MF waters, but I have a few questions that I'm hoping to get answers to ...

1. Many seem to have issues with the battery holder (not the actual grip). This doesn't seem to be a big deal, but I cannot seem to readily find the battery holders. Any tips on where one can be had (OEM or 3rd party)?
2. My vision is lacking and I really hate shooting with glasses on, so I need a diopter adjustment capability similar to the K-3 or K50, etc. Does the 645 eye-piece viewer have a diopter adjustment capability to correct for lousy vision?
3. I've read that the VF is pretty dark on the original 645's (Ken Rockwell). How bad is it and would it really present an issue with morning and golden hour shooting at mid-aperture levels (f/4-f/16, etc)?
4. Any known gotchas or need-to-knows as I consider a 645?

I'm really excited about giving it a try. Thanks for any help you can provide!!

Richard


Last edited by ripper2860; 01-28-2017 at 02:40 PM.
01-28-2017, 02:37 PM - 1 Like   #2
Senior Member




Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 100
QuoteOriginally posted by ripper2860 Quote
2. My vision is lacking and I really hate shooting with glasses on, so I need a diopter adjustment capability similar to the K-3 or K50, etc. Does the 645 eye-piece viwer have a diopter adjustment capability to correct for lousy vision?
Yes, it does.
01-28-2017, 03:28 PM   #3
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
IgorZ's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Ottawa
Posts: 1,508
I wouldn't say it's dark, but it might depend on the type of screen you have. I certainly had difficulty focusing in the beginning. Most of my first roll was out of focus. Mine has that split screen type which I never used before. Took me a while to get used to it. I wouldn't say it's dark though
01-28-2017, 04:53 PM   #4
Dark Underlord
Loyal Site Supporter
AquaDome's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: New Carlisle, IN
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,475
I never noticed the 645 viewfinder screen to be dark. In fact, if the viewfinder screen had been interchangeable with the 645n, I would have swapped them to have the split-prism in the 645n.

I was able to use the adjustable diopter and never needed my glasses for shooting. My vision requires an adjustment of -3.

The battery holders get cracked. If you can get an entire battery holder, even if it is cracked, it can be made to work. Don't buy a camera with no battery holder. I don't think they are available as replacement parts at all.

01-28-2017, 06:51 PM   #5
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
geomez's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Preskitt Arizona
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,756
I think I know which one you wanna get
01-28-2017, 06:57 PM   #6
Pentaxian
ripper2860's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by geomez Quote
I think I know which one you wanna get
Enlighten me, please...
01-28-2017, 07:44 PM   #7
Veteran Member




Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Fowlmere, UK
Photos: Albums
Posts: 709
It's some time ago since I had one, but I never had issues with a dark viewfinder, although the 645N has a brighter one indeed. But the 645 is not bad.

The 645 felt more solid as a camera than the 645N too, but if the battery holder has issues, I would not risk it. Unless it is cleaning up, but I'd ask that to be done by the seller.

The 645 has diopter correction, but do check whether it works, I seem to remember that some copies would start to slide, i.e. it would not stay in one position even without really touching it. This can be repaired I think, but that adds cost.

The EV compensation is by full stops only (so you need to use ISO dialling instead sometimes).

Otherwise, great camera. I had one, then had a 645N for the AF, but then I fell in love with 6x6 and after leaving an entire system in the cupboard for several years, I sold it. But I still remember it fondly, and I still have a 35mm 645-A lens for the eschatological project of owning a digital 645. One day.
02-01-2017, 12:40 AM   #8
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
TDvN57's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Hong Kong
Photos: Albums
Posts: 119
QuoteOriginally posted by ripper2860 Quote
Hello,

I'm looking at my first real foray into medium format film (outside of a couple of TLRs) and am thinking about an original Pentax 645 w/ 120 film-back. These seems to be a really good bargain to test the MF waters, but I have a few questions that I'm hoping to get answers to ...

1. Many seem to have issues with the battery holder (not the actual grip). This doesn't seem to be a big deal, but I cannot seem to readily find the battery holders. Any tips on where one can be had (OEM or 3rd party)?
2. My vision is lacking and I really hate shooting with glasses on, so I need a diopter adjustment capability similar to the K-3 or K50, etc. Does the 645 eye-piece viewer have a diopter adjustment capability to correct for lousy vision?
3. I've read that the VF is pretty dark on the original 645's (Ken Rockwell). How bad is it and would it really present an issue with morning and golden hour shooting at mid-aperture levels (f/4-f/16, etc)?
4. Any known gotchas or need-to-knows as I consider a 645?

I'm really excited about giving it a try. Thanks for any help you can provide!!

Richard
I have a 645nII that is just taking up space in my dry box. If you want to buy, let me know, then I'll send you pictures and details. Have 120 and 220 film holders, and a couple of lenses that can go with it. Also have a box of film (expired by now) taking up space in my fridge, which I will throw in.


Last edited by TDvN57; 02-01-2017 at 12:42 AM. Reason: spelling
02-01-2017, 08:10 AM   #9
Pentaxian
ripper2860's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Original Poster
Sending you a PM.
02-01-2017, 12:26 PM - 1 Like   #10
Senior Member
sugus's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Zürich
Posts: 202
QuoteOriginally posted by ripper2860 Quote
3. I've read that the VF is pretty dark on the original 645's (Ken Rockwell). How bad is it and would it really present an issue with morning and golden hour shooting at mid-aperture levels (f/4-f/16, etc)?
If he say's it's dark, then it is NOT dark.....

Daniel
02-01-2017, 12:47 PM - 1 Like   #11
Pentaxian
ripper2860's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by sugus Quote
If he say's it's dark, then it is NOT dark.....

Daniel

I'll keep that in mind for this and other reviews by Ken. :-D
02-18-2017, 08:58 PM   #12
Pentaxian
ripper2860's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 890
Original Poster
Woohoo! Purchased a 645 gen 1 and a A150/3.5 lens. The 645 was from eBay and originally listed as 'no returns', but I did negotiate a 7-day testing period to ensure all seems good. It looks pretty good and the owner was very helpful in trying a few things on their end and updating via messages. Should be arriving on 2/21 and then the testing will begin. Not sure if it has a back body cover, but I have film if needed to test shutter speeds. Any recommendations on a testing process short of developing test film?

BTW -- the lens was via PF Marketplace, so I know it's good. ;-)

One more thing ...

Any recommendations on where to send Color and B&W negative 120 film for developing?

Thanks!!

Last edited by ripper2860; 02-18-2017 at 09:03 PM.
09-09-2017, 12:56 AM   #13
New Member




Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 15
Well I'm a little late to this thread as I also am a brand new 645 (original) owner. But if you're not developing your C-41 at home (Unicolor via eBay is a great choice), then I recommend Precision Camera in Austin or Apertures in Tulsa. For E-6 I recommend Denver Digital Imagining or The Darkroom in California. And ya Caffenol is a great choice for B&W.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
645d, 645z, adjustment, battery, camera, capability, diopter, medium format, pentax, vision
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Thinking about buying a DA 35mm f:2.4 AL Dewman Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 34 01-13-2016 12:37 PM
Got a Pentax ME, have a K-30. I'm thinking FA lenses for both but don't know Bootleg Pentax Film SLR Discussion 8 12-03-2013 05:22 PM
Thinking about buying the Pentax K-30 memo90061 Pentax K-30 & K-50 10 08-14-2012 09:34 AM
I have a Pentax k-x but am thinking of getting a k-7 but worried about ISO performanc crossover37 Pentax DSLR Discussion 19 09-10-2010 04:36 AM
thinking about buying the pentax k-x LosHollyBeach Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 4 01-28-2010 07:54 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:34 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top