Mamiya Aptus leaf P65 V-mount user experiences 2022

My Mamiya RZ67 Professional received a digital back recently.

After a long search, I decided to get a V-mount digital back (originally for Hasselblad, old version cameras) version since an original Mamiya adapter plate to a Mamiya 645 mount is extremely expensive.

And an adapter for or a Hasselblad more poular H-mount is not very well supported, electrically.  I know that shutter release will work BUT the Phase One adapter plate that connects the Mamiya RZ67 Phase 1 Professional to the V-mount digital back is around 300 US Dollars and was available on eBay .

This is the adapter plate I bought between my RZ67Pro I and the V-mount digital back Aptus leaf P65

It took me some time to get everything working, since I did not have a P-P cable to connect the 2.5mm entry of the digital back to the shutter contact on the camera or lens.  This is required to get the digital back triggered at the moment that the shutter opens.

The setup looks like this:

The aptus65 works with standard samsung batteries of which I ordered a couple of the largest possible.

I also bought me a 64GB Compact Flash card, which works much better than the CF to SD adapter I used before.

Getting the pictures onto my PC works easy:  put the card in the CF reader , copy the files. Then the tricky part begins: You must transform the imported files with a decoding program that is fortunately downloadable on the mamiya leaf website, but it is a bit hard to find.

Then, import the required app for windows to edit the .MOS files in the regular image viewer, save a copy as jpg and you’re done.

It is also possible to use lightroom, or any other good imaging software package.

I also have a firewire cable setup that I used before for my digital8 camera’s.  This also works for the Aptus65, but I don’t expect to ever use this.

Firewire is btw the only way to power the Aptus65, if you don’t wanna use the batteries.  But you will need a very good power source on the USB-C connector to get this to work.

The images are very good, as to be expected.  the 28Mpix sensor is more tha adequate to get good results.  BUT it is a pity that the sensor is only 44×33 mm while the POV of theRZ67 is 7×6 cm.  This also means that you get only half the image (more or less) of what you see in the viewfinders’s image.

I printed a mask for the viewfinder at a crop of 1.3 vs. a 645’s normal view so the view resembles the taken pictures

That is exactly what is needed here, since the Aptus leaf65 has a crop of 1.3 when it would be used on a 645DF camera (which this V-mount version cannot, obviously do) with an (almost) 60x45mm medium format.

Which in fact is quite a bit less (53.7×40.2) in real image size, see the below table.

44×33 relates to 53.7×40.2 as a crop of 1.3, as the seller states in the folder of the Aptus 65.

Negatives:  Well, the rotating back does not work with the Phase One adapter plate, of course.  And I still have some cleaning to do on most of my lenses before I attempt to do any serious shooting outside.  And the entire setup gets quite heavy for outside use.

Positives:  It helps me a lot to work and learn with the RZ67, using the digital back.  I can shoot and shoot on, experimenting with light settings, flash, counterlights and so on without destroying any real film.

My intent is, though, to use the RZ67 with normal film and the full 7×6 capabilities.

And use it for architecture, mostly in Amsterdam.

I already have quite a lot of pictures, taken with my Sony A77RII &35 mm pro-lens and with my old Panasonic dual GX8 setup, but I am very much looking forward to get some great shots with the RX67 on large(r) format film in B&W!

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