Monday, September 14, 2015

Mamiya 28mm D and Lee SW150 filters




Years ago I used a Mamiya 28mm lens with a Mamiya AFD body and Phase One P30+ digital back.  I used it so much it was almost like it was welded to the body.  As much as I used it, it was very much a love hate relationship.  I loved the wide angle field of view, likewise the sharp images.  I hated the fact that there was no real way of attaching/using any filter.  The lack of filters was due mainly to the front element and fixed lens hood; there just wasn’t any way to attach a filter to the lens.  I ended up selling the lens shortly after upgrading my system to a technical camera and hadn’t thought much of it since then.

 
This year I’ve begun using my Phase 645 camera body much more than the Cambo WRS technical camera.  The new improved Phase One XF body is light years beyond the older Mamiya AFD or the Phase One DF body I had been using; couple this with the advancement of lenses being offered by Phase One.  I recently began using a Phase One/Schneider 40-80 leaf shutter lens which got me thinking about the 28mm again. 

As much as I liked the 28mm focal length (equivalent to 17mm in full frame 35mm terms) I hated the fact that there were no filters for it.  Or so I thought.  Seems that Phase One partnered with Lee Filters and their SW150 filter system (150mm filters) to make a system that would work on the Phase One 28mm lens.  Sit a Mamiya 28mm D lens side-by-side to a Phase One 28mm LS lens and you cannot see any outward difference.  They are both the same size. 
 
 

I normally don’t shoot blank walls however I did with the above to get a feel for any issues. Each sample shows the end result of the test and while the third test shows a darker area, that area on the top is the result of the .6ND filter.

Based on my lens comparison and the fact I got a smoking hot deal on a Mamiya 28mm D lens I decided to go for it.  I now have the 28D and have successfully mounted the Lee SW150 filter system to it. 
 
f/11 1/250 ISO 100 Handheld at 4:18 PM using the .6 ND Grad filter. Processed in Capture One Pro using Mamiya 28mm D lens profile and setting of 7 on clarity and structure.
 
I do have to point out something here.  Following the instructions and watching a great video on the installation I ran into a problem.  At this point I’m uncertain if it was user error on my part or it just didn’t fit as it should.  In either case the adaptor ring is a three part system that consists of a ring that fits on the front of the lens and sits in the lens hood.  The second part is a compression ring that fits from the rear and a third ring that fits from the rear and attaches to the front ring compressing everything together to make a tight bond.  I’ve actually seen how this works on another lens.  What I encountered is not having as tight a fit as I felt necessary.  I kept installing and removing the three-rings until I got to the point I couldn’t unscrew then.  Talk about a tight fit! The only problem was the compression ring was wobbly.

f/11 1/250 ISO 100 Handheld at 4:18 PM using the .6 ND Grad filter. Processed in Capture One Pro using Mamiya 28mm D lens profile and setting of 7 on clarity and structure.
 
All’s not lost.  Figuring I’d keep the adaptor ring on the lens as a near permanent filter solution I went and made it permanent by using super glue.  Not to laugh because it works great.  I now have a perfect filter solution on a Mamiya 28mm D lens using a Lee SW150 filter kit.

 
f/11 1/250 ISO 100 Handheld at 4:18 PM using the .6 ND Grad filter. Processed in Capture One Pro using Mamiya 28mm D lens profile and setting of 7 on clarity and structure.
 
So the question to be asked is just how well does it work.  I’m very pleased to say it works great.  I have tested the lens using just the ring attachment and had no problems.  I’ve tested the lens using the filter attachment and likewise no problems and finally using the SW150 .6ND soft grad filter with no problems or concerns.  Simply put, if you have a Mamiya 28mm lens that you longed to put filters on; and you don’t mind thinking outside the box for installation then I can recommend the SW150 kit for the Phase One 28mm lens.
 
 
The retail cost on these is around $490 and while they are listed on B&H’s website they are always listed as “More Coming Soon”.  I got mine from Capture Integration and am told they have them in stock.
 
 
Don
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

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