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Plaubel Makina 67 experiences?

John Painter , Jun 04, 2005; 04:39 p.m.

I already know that the optical quality is excellent with this camera. I am wondering about the ease of use/ergonomics aspects...

I know it weighs about 2.5 pounds. I don't know how 'compact' it really is when Folded (never seen one in person). I would likely be selling a Rolleiflex and some misc lenses to justify the purchase. It SEEMS that the Makina would be much more portable than the Rollei and I can shoot Hasselblad if I want to shoot Square format.

I like Rangefinder shooting already so no problem there. I know you have to get one in good condition because of the 'scissors' that go bad.

Any personal experiences?


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Thomas Sullivan , Jun 04, 2005; 04:54 p.m.

no personal experiences of my own, but this guy that I know thru the internet has a personal review of it.

ben conover , Jun 04, 2005; 05:57 p.m.

Response To Plaubel Makina 67 experiences?

Hi, I use a Fuji g690bl, but having looked the Plaubel over I am having secong thoughts. Perhaps the film plane issues with Plaubel are not critical, certainly looks like a great camera though. The Plaubel 69W ProShift looks really great, although the 67 has a faster lens. At half the weight of my brass Fuji I am feeling tempted. My only consolation is the Fuji has interchangable lenses and it is a non-folder, so therefore has no film plane alignment issues, as yet.

I seem to remember that the plaubel (and my Fuji) is very difficult to maintain if parts are worn, better find a good 'un!



Andrew Michael , Jun 04, 2005; 08:36 p.m.

Although a great camera, I believe I read the this camera was a bit quirkly and tends to have repair issues. Has anyone had this experience?

Robert Nancarrow , Jun 04, 2005; 09:35 p.m.

You can avoid all the repair and film plane alignment issues if you choose the readily available Mamiya 7 with an 80 or 65mm lens, Lots of advantages to this newer camera, a little bit better price, built better, interchangeable lenses, 120 or 220 film, etc. Leave the Plaubel to the collectors who are bidding the price ever higher. Bob.

John Painter , Jun 04, 2005; 09:56 p.m.

I have shot the Mamiya 7 before and of course it is a nice rig. I am only interested in the Plaubel because it folds and is a 2.8

The key apparently is not abusing the bellows/scissors. From what I have read it is built quite well and was intended for photo-journalists.

I personally don't like the Mamiya 7 as a multi-lens system because it isn't good for Headshots or Telephoto....requires an external finder for wides. All those things are also true about Leica, but the Leica is much more portable and has faster lenses that Focus closer.

S. Linke , Jun 05, 2005; 01:01 a.m.

I recently handled one in a camera store. Indeed it is well built and has a good viewfinder. I'd thoroughly check out the bellows if I were you. If possible, ask to take it into a dark room or closet with a flashlight or narrow-beam penlight. Shine the light inward all around the extended bellows and look in the open back. Check carefully since pinholes are hard to see without using this technique especially along folds or at corners. You'll easily see light if it has holes of any size. I had a Fuji GS645 folder, and its bellows eventually developed lots of teeny pinholes that cummulatively caused flare spots on film. I sold it under this acknowledged condition with the buyer paying less and having the bellows replaced.

John Painter , Jun 05, 2005; 02:07 a.m.

S. Linke,

I have found one from a really reputable dealer. I almost bought the Fuji Folder once...good camera, but the lens is slightly slower than the Makina and the 6x7 neg makes it a much more drastic jump up from 35mm.

When I carried the Fuji, I found myself wishing that had just brought a Leica.


Andrew Michael , Jun 05, 2005; 06:52 a.m.

John, I thought the Plaubel had a rangefinder base similar to the Mamiya 7, as I don't think it focuses much closer than the Mamiya. You're right however about the Mamiya, it's not good for head shots, but the lenses are superb.

Andrew C , Jun 05, 2005; 10:01 a.m.


I just got a Makina 67 a few weeks ago. It handles really well-- I just use a wrist strap with it. The bellows, I had read, are much less prone to pinholes than the Fuji ones.

From what little I've gleaned through the Net, the key is to always focus to infinity (least stress on bellows) when folding up, and to not have the shutter wound when folding up. The photos are fantastic.

If you get a Makina in good condition, it should work fine as long as it's not abused. I had asked one seller of a repaired 67 about his experiences with Nippon Photo Clinic, and he said that they give a quoted price-- it cost a lot less than $400 to have his shutter block repaired and CLA'd. I guess it depends upon the job.

Finally, I chose the 67 over the Mamiya 7 because mine was a lot cheaper, and the 7 is bulkier to carry when not in use. The 2.8 is helpful, but a monopod with the 7's f/4 would handle just as well.

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