I’ve been curious for a long time about the big Pentax medium-format SLRs, the 6×7 and the 645. High prices have kept me from satisfying my curiosity. Earlier this year, a reader emailed me to say he’d like to lend me his 645 so I could see how I liked it. He wants it back, but he’s in no hurry. “Heck yeah!” I said.
When it arrived, a 75mm f/2.8 SMC Pentax-A 645 lens was mounted to it. There was a partially-shot roll of film in it, plus two more in the bag. I finished the roll in the camera, which turned out to be a Fujifilm ISO 400 color film. Then I loaded the roll of Tri-X he sent.
I’ll write a proper review of this camera later this year, after I’ve shot with it enough to know it better. But for now, here are some photos from that roll of Tri-X, which I developed in HC-110 B.
It was still winter and quite cold, so I shot this entire roll inside.
The 645 is a manual-focus camera, but winds and exposes automatically. I shot this entire roll in program mode, although aperture- and shutter-priority modes are available, as well as a manual exposure mode.
Things didn’t always go well shooting indoors. Six or seven shots were faint or nonexistent. Who knows what happened. I have barely begun to learn this camera and get a feel for it.
In mixed light I got a nice chiaroscuro effect.
I liked making 16 photos on a single roll of 120! That sure seems like an efficient use of film. Funny, I like half-frame medium format, but I have never been wild about half-frame 35mm. Those rolls of film take so long to finish!
More from this camera to come.
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