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Mamiya Press (23 Standard/Super 23)


The Mamiya "Press" is a line of medium-format rangefinder cameras produced by Mamiya in Japan from 1960 to the early 70s, and targeted at the professional press photography market,

The camera went through several model iterations in its relatively brief lifetime, beginning with the Mamiya Press, then the Press G, the Press S, the 23 Standard, the Super 23, and finally the Universal. Differences in the models were typically related to the type of film back it supported. The Press G, for example, is identical to its predecessor with the exception of the G-type film back system compatible with Graflex Graphic cameras. On some models there was a rear bellows, and on others there was not.

All Mamiya Press cameras possess a grip connector whereby an optional pistol grip can be connected to the left side of the camera. The shutter can then be released using the grip, or manually using a shutter release level of the right side of the lens. Without a grip, the camera is a bit awkward to manage, and the shutter release on the lens requires practice to quickly get to it. Most of these cameras you see will have the grip.


The "23" designation, which appeared on the Standard and Super models, represented the ability to use 2x3" cut film with a special film holder. The Super 23 was the first major update of the camera body, and included a brighter viewfinder/rangefinder.

The Mamiya press cameras will create an image up to 6x9cm. The most popular interchangeable film backs used with these cameras were the 6x7 and 6x9 roll film backs, which use standard 120 film. As mentioned with the 23 Standard and the Super 23, there is a cut film back that allows single 2x3" film to be used.


The camera line came with a wide array of accessories, including lenses of nine different focal lengths, from 50mm to 250mm. All lenses have leaf shutters rather than a focal plan shutter in the body of the camera.