Simple and clear medium format

After mirrorless fever it's time for the medium format.

Creativity from banksy

Creativity from banksy

Sometimes the digital medium format for some users is something scary and incomprehensible. I suspect that the main difficulty lies in the modular structure of some medium-format cameras, which consist of several separate nodes, such as a digital back, viewfinder, chassis / body and various specialized peripherals. Usually, these cameras look like a monster-like look and inspire young neophytes with fear and horror, not only in appearance, but also at their cost.

But nowadays, 'simple' non-modular digital medium format cameras have already begun to appear, which very, very much resemble conventional system cameras. They are easy to understand and operate, and also have an almost classic look, typical of conventional CPC and UPC.

Mommy now

There is only one digital medium format reflex camera Mamiya ZD (not a camera with a back, but a monolithic camera).

  • Mamiya ZD, 2004, 22 MP CCD

Sensor size 48 X 36 mm (exactly 2 times larger than the area of ​​the classic full frame 36 X 24 mm). The physical sensor is larger than the FUJIFILM GFX series, Hasselblad X series, PENTAX 645D/645Z and Leica S series. Under the Mamiya ZD, there are a lot of autofocus optics and a lot of manual optics.

All mirrorless medium format cameras FUJIFILM GFX with sensors 43.8 X 32.9 mm (crop factor Kf=0.79X)

  1. FUJIFILM GFX 50R [September 2018, BHphotovideo]
  2. FUJIFILM GFX 50S [September 2016, BHphotovideo]
  3. FUJIFILM GFX 50S II [September 2021, BHphotovideo]
  4. FUJIFILM GFX 100 [May 2019 + IR modification, BHphotovideo]
  5. FUJIFILM GFX 100 II [September 2023, BHphotovideo]
  6. FUJIFILM GFX 100S [January 2021, BHphotovideo]
  7. FUJIFILM GFX 100S II [May 2024, BHphotovideo]


Third party lenses with GFX mount

  1. MITAKON: 28/5.6 | 65/1.4 | 80/1.6 | 85/1.2 | 135/2.5 | 135/1.4 | 200/4 Macro
  2. laowa: 15/4.5 Shift | 17/4 | 19/2.8 | 20/4 Shift | NA0.5 Supermicro | 100/2.8 T/S 1X
  3. AstrHori: 12/2.8 Fisheye | 40/5.6 | 55/5.6 | 75/4
  4. TTArtisan: 11/2.8 Fisheye | 90/1.25 | 100/2.8 Macro 2x
  5. Kipon: 75/2.4
  6. Irix: 45/1.4

Autofocus adapters and manual converters


Pentax 645

Digital slr Pentax 645 with sensors 43.8 X 32.8 mm (often rounded to 44 X 33)

  1. Pentax 645Z
  2. Pentax 645D

Hasselblad x

Mirrorless Hasselblad x with sensors 43.8 X 32.9 mm

  1. Hasselblad X1D 50C [January 2016, BHphotovideo]
  2. Hasselblad X1D II 50C [June 2019, BHphotovideo]
  3. Hasselblad X2D100C [September 2022, BHphotovideo]

All Hasselblad XCD Lenses

  1. XCD 21 mm F / 4
  2. XCD 24 mm F / 2.5
  3. XCD 25 mm F / 2.5 V [BHphotovideo]
  4. XCD 28 mm F / 4 P [BHphotovideo]
  5. XCD 30 mm F/3.5 [BHphotovideo]
  6. XCD 38 mm F / 2.5 V [BHphotovideo]
  7. XCD 45 mm F/3.5 [BHphotovideo]
  8. XCD 45 mm F / 4 P [BHphotovideo]
  9. XCD 55 mm F / 2.5 V [BHphotovideo]
  10. XCD 65 mm F/2.8 [BHphotovideo]
  11. XCD 80 mm F/1.9 [BHphotovideo]
  12. XCD 90 mm F / 3.2
  13. XCD 90 mm F / 2.5 V [BHphotovideo]
  14. XCD 120 mm F/3.5 [BHphotovideo]
  15. XCD 135 mm F/2.8 [BHphotovideo]
  16. XCD 35-75 mm F/3.5-4.5 [BHphotovideo]

Third Party Lenses:

  1. laowa: 15/4.5 Shift, 19/2.8, 20/4 Shift
  2. Mitakon: 65/1.480/1.6, 200 / 4 Macro
  3. TTArtisan: 90/1.25
  4. autofocus adapter TechArt Canon EF->XCD
  5. manual adapters: Canon EF->XCD, Leica M ->XCD, Nikon F->XCD

Leica s

Digital slr Leica s with sensors 45 X 30

  1. Leica S (Type 006)
  2. Leica SE (Typ 006)
  3. Leica S (Type 007)
  4. Leica s2
  5. Leica s3

Do you know any other similar cameras?

The frame area of ​​the Leica S with 45 X 30 sensors is 1350 sq. mm and is almost the same as 43.8 X 32.8, which equals 1437 sq. mm. The only significant difference between 44 X 33 and 45 X 30 is the aspect ratio of the frame, in the first case 4 to 3, in the second - the classic 3 to 2.

Crop factor for 44 X 33 sensors, it is Kf = 0.79X, and the frame area in 1.67 times more than the frame 36 X 24. It is considered very simple: (43.8 * 32.9) / (36 * 24).

For example, when switching from cropped cameras with Kf = 1.6X for Canon cameras with an APS-C sensor (22.3 X 14.9 mm) to full-frame Canon cameras (with a 36 X 24 sensor), the sensor area increases 2.6 times. It is considered very simple: (36 * 24) / (22.3 * 14.9).

So the transition from a crop with an APS-C sensor to a full frame 36 X 24 should feel much more than going from a full frame to 'medium format' with a sensor size of 44 X 33 mm.

But in practice, the sensations from the medium format are much more than what the calculations show.

A lot of digital backs also use 44 X 33 mm sensors. But, of course, there are backs with a larger sensor size, for example 53 X 40 from Phase One or Mamiya.

Actually the 44 X 33 is not quite a medium format, but rather a crop from the 'smallest' medium format 56 X 42 mm (645 format). But in our time, everything that is larger than the classic 36 X 24 is already called the medium format.

I really like the idea of ​​a mirrorless medium format. Lack of giant medium format mirror boxes allows you to significantly reduce the size of the camera. Yes, and a short working distance allows you to get lenses with slightly smaller sizes. As a result, for example, FUJIFILM GFX 50r with pancake lens FUJINON GF LENS 50mm 1: 3.5 R LM WR (analogue 40/2.8) weighs just over 1 kg. And it is very important that such a kit will cost around $ 5.000, which is already comparable to some 'regular' full-frame cameras.

Medium digital format is a different world, a world of a different photography and a world of photographers of a different plan. But with the rise of modern technology, the medium format is getting closer and closer to the average photographer and amateur photographer. The question is, is it worth it for the amateur photographer to stare at the medium format, or is it better to leave it to the professionals?

Materials on the topic

  1. Full frame mirrorless systems... Discussion, choice, recommendations.
  2. Cropped mirrorless systems... Discussion, choice, recommendations.
  3. Cropped mirrorless systems that have stopped or are no longer developing
  4. Digital SLR systems that have stopped or are no longer developing
  5. JVI or EVI (an important article that answers the question 'DSLR or mirrorless')
  6. About mirrorless batteries
  7. Simple and clear medium format
  8. High-speed solutions from Chinese brands
  9. All fastest autofocus zoom lenses
  10. All fastest AF prime lenses
  11. Mirrored full frame on mirrorless medium format
  12. Autofocus Speed ​​Boosters
  13. One lens to rule the world
  14. The impact of smartphones on the photography market
  15. What's next (smartphone supremacy)?
  16. All announcements and novelties of lenses and cameras

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Material prepared Arkady Shapoval. Please, if this material was useful to you, help my project. And don't forget that everyone can write your review for one or another photographic equipment.

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Comments: 68, on the topic: Simple and clear medium format

  • Chris

    Here is a list of how many full frame, projector and exotic lenses cover GFX:

    • Andy From Far Away

      Thank you very much. This list can be very helpful for me at the moment because I'm thinking about buying a Fuji GFX 55 II.

  • Anton

    It would be interesting to hear your opinion about medium format books and review articles. Film.

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