Medium format film cameras are typically not the first to come to mind when we speak of travel cameras. However, Ohio-based photographer Matt Day may have just the camera for you to consider: the Mamiya 6. Known as a compact 6×6 medium format rangefinder camera due to its collapsible design, it also comes with other convenient features like the built-in light meter and aperture priority mode. If you’re looking for a medium format camera that will make a great travel companion, we suggest checking out Matt’s latest video.
In his quick review, Matt first gave a rundown of the noteworthy features of the Mamiya 6, including the averaging meter, the leaf shutter (and how flash sync works at all speeds), a maximum shutter speed of 1/500th sec, and exposure compensation. He also notes that, since it’s a leaf shutter camera (the shutter is in the lens and not the camera body) you need to place a dark slide when changing lenses so the film won’t get exposed. You can only change the lens when the dark slide is on. The camera also knows when the dark slide is on and won’t allow you to take a shot until it’s released. This way, you don’t have to worry about getting dark frames.
There are only three lenses available for the Mamiya 6: 50mm f4, 75mm f3.5, and 150mm f4.5. Matt shared some great examples taken from each lens in his review, many of them taken outdoors. He also described these lenses as compact, which, when paired with the camera’s collapsible design, made the Mamiya 6 the most travel-friendly medium format system for him. So, if you’re looking for a camera that will give your travel film snaps some extra resolution or Instagram-friendly 6×6 composition, looks like this would make a great choice.
Do you agree? Do you have other recommended medium format film cameras for your fellow travelers? Let us know in the comments below!