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Author Topic: Current Hy6 / Afi situation  (Read 22028 times)
Mr. Rib
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« on: July 18, 2012, 04:19:16 AM »
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I've been wondering if anything changed- what's the current Rollei / Sinar / Leaf (or should I say Phase One) policy on Hy6 system? Is it only supported in terms od warranty / repairs, is any of the aforementioned  companies still manufacturing them? Is there any future for the system? Also any suggestions why one shouldn't invest in it? I'll appreciate your thoughts on the matter.
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design_freak
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« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2012, 04:37:25 AM »
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You should know that...
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JV
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2012, 06:29:04 AM »
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The Hy6 is still being manufactured by DHW in Germany.  I bought my body in January 2012 and my serial number actually also indicates that the camera was made in 2012

Their main source of income are the TLRs that they still sell.  Most of their (limited) investments go into the Hy6 however.

The Leaf Aptus-II 10R and 12R backs are available in the AFi mount.  The Credo is not.  The Sinar backs should through an adapter also work.

As far as versatility is concerned the camera is unmatched I believe: 6x6 film back, 645 film back, 645 and square through Leaf backs, WLF, 45 prism, 90 prism, etc.

I personally see no reason to not invest in the Hy6.  DHW might not exist forever, but who knows what the future holds for Hasselblad and Phase/Leaf?
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Mr. Rib
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« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2012, 06:45:15 AM »
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As I understand, Afi and Hy6 share the same digital back mount?
Leaf/Phase One don't offer their newer backs in Afi mount.. I understand it as that there will be no further digiback options in future releases for Hy6 camera by Leaf/Phase One. That's a bummer. However it's true that the market is so small nowadays, that predicting anything / planning few years ahead is impossible.
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Gigi
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« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2012, 06:48:14 AM »
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People buy into systems for different reasons. If you want the latest, secure and largest network around, the Hy6 and DHW won't fit the bill. They are a very small company making a very fine product, mostly in continuation of a design that was superb when introduced and is still one of the most flexible and finest pieces of gear out there.

There is disagreement as to how active a manufacturer DHW is, with opinions varying from "assembling old stock" to actively making new Hy6s. Its not clear who owns the intellectual property rights to the Hy6, and whether anyone will pick up the system moving forward as a platform.

DHW is responsive (in an old world way) to providing rapid service. They provide both limited international distribution and direct sales. I've dealt with them for years and have only good results.

Neither the Phase IQ or Leaf Credo backs currently mount to the Hy6, but the Leaf AFI II 10 and 12 do and are still made. Older Leaf backs that were made for the Hy6 (or AFI) are another option, but hard to find. Sinar backs can still come with an adapter to fit the Hy6.

The sizes of the AFI 12 is comparable to the IQ180, but the newer backs are more up to date in software and processing speed. That said, the AFI backs have a rotating sensor, which is just a delight to use. I have an AFI II 7 back with this proviso and can't imagine working without it.

The Hy6 has an extremely broad base of accessories, and can easily use the older PQ lenses, both manual and AF. Focus confirmation is very good, making use of the less expensive manual glass a real option, one which many of us have heavily supported. Schneider glass from 1990 on (if not earlier) is all usable and very fine. Edge to edge sharpness at 100% on all the lenses is typical. Some think the Schneider lineup for the Rollei (and the Hy6) is one of the best examples of a lens lineup. There are many special and lovely lenses available.

The Hy6 is one of the first "intelligent" MFD cameras, with adjustable focus offset (you can set for each lens as needed, very useful for sharp tuning), histogram on the handle for easy reading, changeable finders, backs, etc. Newer cameras are even better; however the Hy6 is quite usable and has excellent characteristics, both electronically and in the hand. Distribution and availability isn't ideal; the users are supportive of each other and very fond of their gear.      
« Last Edit: July 18, 2012, 06:54:19 AM by Geoffreyg » Logged

Geoff
Mr. Rib
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« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2012, 07:10:32 AM »
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Thanks for your insight guys! It encourages me to make the next step and get some hands-on experience with the system.
If only the situation was a bit more clear regarding the system future..
« Last Edit: July 18, 2012, 07:13:29 AM by Mr. Rib » Logged
EricWHiss
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« Reply #6 on: July 18, 2012, 01:29:23 PM »
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These days its hard to feel really secure about any of the MF camera and back makers.   As a 6008AF and Hy6/AFi shooter I can only echo the other posters sentiments.  New cameras, lenses, and parts are being made by the factory and available both directly and through some stores and dealers.  DHW has continued to develop new items for the platform - new lenses, chimney style finder, 6x6 back etc so I don't see it as stagnant. More and more camera bodies are being sold and  Leaf and Sinar both still offer new backs for the platform.    I love my AFi and its great to also be able to shoot film for personal projects with it.
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henrikfoto
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« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2012, 04:05:55 PM »
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Yair!

Can you confirm that new cameras of these types are still being made?

Henrik
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yaya
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« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2012, 05:14:30 PM »
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Yair!

Can you confirm that new cameras of these types are still being made?

Henrik

The only thing I can say is that we (Mamiya Leaf) still make the AFi-II 10 and AFi-II 12 backs
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henrikfoto
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« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2012, 05:18:37 PM »
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But isn't Leaf one of the patent owners?
Why so much secrets around the Hy6?

Henrik
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Gigi
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« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2012, 05:47:51 PM »
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It's not so much secret as confusing and complex. It was developed by a small group of companies, and then thru agreement other companies joined the party. These have (in many cases) changed hands since.

"Who got what intellectual property rights?" at the end of the day is not public information; nor is it typically.

Bottom line: DHW is still selling the bodies new.
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Geoff
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« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2012, 06:26:10 PM »
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But isn't Leaf one of the patent owners?
Why so much secrets around the Hy6?

Henrik

http://www.dhw-fototechnik.de/

Not much on the site, but you can email them.
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JV
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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2012, 09:12:41 PM »
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But isn't Leaf one of the patent owners?
Why so much secrets around the Hy6?

My understanding is that Leaf and DHW worked out a deal.
DHW services the existing Leaf AFi bodies and in exchange for that DHW is allowed to freely produce the Hy6 camera.
Why the secrecy?  I have no idea...

If you feel uncomfortable buying directly from DHW you should still be able to buy Leaf AFi bodies from Leaf.
Same camera body, same firmware, only labeled Leaf instead of Rolleiflex...
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yaya
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« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2012, 01:10:19 AM »
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My understanding is that Leaf and DHW worked out a deal.
DHW services the existing Leaf AFi bodies and in exchange for that DHW is allowed to freely produce the Hy6 camera.
Why the secrecy?  I have no idea...

If you feel uncomfortable buying directly from DHW you should still be able to buy Leaf AFi bodies from Leaf.
Same camera body, same firmware, only labeled Leaf instead of Rolleiflex...


Leaf AFi body and accessories repairs are done by Sinar

We no longer have any AFi in stock. Neither bodies nor accessories

Yair
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Lacunapratum
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« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2012, 11:57:30 AM »
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DHW will be at Photokina.  They are still working on their web site.  Their service is excellent and they seem to be in full control of the Hy6.  I guess this means that the Hy6 will continue to exist as long as there is demand.   

I always felt that the availability of a wide angle lens in the 20mm range of 35mm film days was paramount for a successful medium format system as such lenses would benefit the landscape photographers who can readily take advantage of the high sensor resolution.  Both Hasselblad and Mamiya have invested in such a lens and more recently, Pentax' expensive DA 25mm has become available.  Unfortunately, the  35mm S-Flektogon remained vaporware, and DHW has acknowledged recently that this lens will not be manufactured.  Of course, there are alternative back/lens combinations using an Alpa or a Horseman body, but these lack the convenience of a dedicated wide angle.

Thus, in response to your question, the Hy6 system is wonderful and there are outstanding lenses available.  It will continue to exist, with some limitations.  It is especially great for macro, portrait, and documentary photography. 

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JV
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« Reply #15 on: July 19, 2012, 01:14:36 PM »
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Unfortunately, the  35mm S-Flektogon remained vaporware, and DHW has acknowledged recently that this lens will not be manufactured. 

I hadn't heard this before.  Did you speak with somebody from DHW?
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2012, 03:15:42 PM »
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I've been e-mailing with Reiner at DHW about the 35mm over the last month and he's saying that it won't be available until next year, not that it won't be available at all.  

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JV
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« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2012, 03:31:21 PM »
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I've been e-mailing with Reiner at DHW about the 35mm over the last month and he's saying that it won't be available until next year, not that it won't be available at all.  

That is also the information that I consistently have received through Bernd.

He clearly said that it would not be announced at Photokina this year but most likely sometime next year.

Wait and see I guess.
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2012, 04:22:52 PM »
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Yes, Lacunapratum can you clarify when you heard that?  I think at one point just before or just after the transition from Franke and Heikdecke to DHW they did say something like that, but everything I have heard this year is that the 35mm is still in the works.  I think I got an e-mail or read a post from someone else that it might help speed things up for people who are interested to let DHW know so they can gage the interest.

Getting back to the question of wide lens availability - I think the 40 with the AFi-ii 12 sensor provides very good coverage (the AFi-ii 10 at 56mm sensor width even a bit more) and the schneider 40mm S/A is a great optic.   Just doing a bit of math - the angle of view using the diagonal for a 25mm lens in 35mm format is 81.6 degs while the angle of view of the 40mm on the Hy6 with AFi-ii 12 is about 80.1 degrees.   Not to far apart now!

I guess if DHW comes out with the 35mm flektagon and it is paired with the AFi-ii 12 then the angle of view would be 87.6 degs or about 22.5mm in 35mm format.   Of course the angle of view of the new 25mm pentax lens on the 645D would be the equivalent of a 20mm lens in 35mm format so a tiny bit wider but is that enough to make a difference?

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Gigi
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« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2012, 05:10:34 PM »
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Maybe I'm missing the boat here, but if DHW only had a wee bit of funds for development, I'd rather they put it elsewhere than chase down one wide lens like that. Not sure that 35 mm is that much more than 40, and it seems to be rather complicated. I worry that their users would have a tech camera backup and not really pick up this (expensive) new lens.

So what would one dream for? Perhaps a few  "robustness" improvements on the body - or perhaps a removable handle (for travel)? Firmware seems pretty good, battery cover a bit more solid? Give the new 120 AF? Just some thoughts.

Or even spend a bit on promotional material - like a leaflet? Wow, now there's a radical thought. 
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Geoff
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