The Pentacon Six System
by TRA

Hartblei Equipment for using Pentacon Six & Mamiya RZ67 lenses
on Fujifilm GFX Cameras




Using a Pentacon Six lens on the Fujifilm GFX camera, via a Hartblei adapter on Pentacon Six bellows
[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_03.jpg]


As we show here, Hartblei makes various adapters for using Pentacon Six lenses on Fujifilm GFX cameras and on some other cameras.  We show initial results of tests with various lenses for the Pentacon Six system and some lenses for M42 mount 35mm cameras here.  On stitching images together, see here.

On this page we give more information on two different types of Hartblei adapters for using Mamiya RB/RZ67 lenses on Fujifilm GFX medium format digital cameras:

  • Hartblei tubes for use with Pentacon Six bellows to provide focus for Mamiya RZ67 lenses on the Fujifilm GFX camera;
  • using the most versatile of the Hartblei adapters for mounting Mamiya RZ67 lenses on the Fujifilm GFX camera.

We then look at storage options for a sophisticated Hartblei/Mamiya RZ67 outfit.

Using Pentacon Six Bellows for Focussing with Hartblei adapter tubes

Most of Mamiya’s lenses for their RB67 and RZ67 cameras do not have a focussing mount, as focussing bellows are built into the Mamiya 67 camera bodies.  This does create a problem for those who may wish to use these excellent medium format lenses on other cameras: they must find a way of focussing the lenses.

Hartblei offers a set of two adapter tubes that can be used to mount Mamiya RZ67 lenses onto Fuji GFX medium format digital cameras, using Pentacon Six bellows to provide the focussing mechanism.

On the left we see the tube that goes into the front of the Pentacon Six bellows.  At its front it has a mount to receive Mamiya RB/RZ67 lenses.  On the right we see the tube that goes onto the back of the Pentacon Six bellows.  At its back it has a Fujifilm GFX camera mount.



[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_01.jpg]



Here we can see these two tubes mounted onto the Pentacon Six bellows.
We note the tab that protrudes from the front of the bellows unit.  This is swung to the right to lock the lens – or in this case the Hartblei RZ67 lens mount – into place.  On some occasions, this detail of the bellows design can cause problems, as we see below.
[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_02.jpg]

Using Pentacon Six lenses

If one wishes to do so, i is of course possible to use only the back one of these adapters.  Thus, the Hartblei Pentacon Six to Fuji GFX adapter can be mounted onto the back of the Pentacon Six, enabling the bellows to be mounted onto a GFX camera.  One can then add to the front of the bellows some lenses with the Pentacon Six mount.  At the top of this page we see a Carl Zeiss Jena 80mm Biometar lens mounted onto a GFX camera via Pentacon Six bellows and the rear section of the Hartblei P6 – Fuji GFX adapter.  In that picture we have set the lens at infinity and the bellows at the right extension for infinity focus with Pentacon Six lenses (approximately a 5.5mm bellows extension).

There are of course much easier ways to mount Pentacon Six lenses on GFX cameras:

  • a simple adapter (with or without a tripod foot)
  • a shift adapter
  • or a tilt adapter.

Details of all these items and pictures of them can be seen here.

However, if we do not have any of these adapters but do already have Pentacon Six bellows, buying the Hartblei two-part adapter set shown above is one way to go.  It does not provide shift or tilt possibilities, but it does make macro photography with the Fuji GFX possible, using any suitable Pentacon Six lens that can be mounted onto the Pentacon Six bellows.

This test picture was taken on a Fujifilm GFX 50S using the 80mm Biometar on the Pentacon Six bellows, connected to the GFX via the rear section of the above Hartblei adapter.  With the bellows at maximum extension and the lens also at maximum extension (i.e., minimum focussing distance), we see that the width of the subject is 44mm.  The width of the GFX sensor is 43.8mm, so we here have a virtually 1:1 (life-size) macro capability.

For this photograph the aperture of the Biometar was set at f/11, without which the clock face behind the ruler would have been very out of focus, so shallow is the depth of field in macro photography.  The outstanding quality of both the Biometar lens and the GFX 51 megapixel sensor can be appreciated in the larger version of this image.

We can see other pictures of this clock here.

Click on the image to the right in order to see it larger (but not at the original size, which is too big to host on this website!).

  

[80Bm_Bell_GFX_01_s.jpg]

This photograph of the setup shows a cable release running from the front of the bellows.  It was necessary to depress the plunger on this and lock it, in order to stop down the diaphragm to the aperture set on the lens, as the bellows otherwise ensure maximum aperture for focussing and composition.   

[80Bm_bell_GFX_setup.jpg]

If we turn to other lenses, we immediately discover that the locking tab on the front of the Pentacon Six bellows prevents some lenses from being mounted directly onto the bellows.  One of the lenses that cannot be mounted onto the bellows is the Carl Zeiss Jena 180mm Sonnar lens, which is too thick at the back of the barrel.  However, we here show an example of use of this lens used with the Panagor 2× converter on a GFX 50S camera.

We note that in spite of the weight of the lens, we cannot use the tripod socket that it has, because of the location of the focussing rail of the Pentacon Six bellows.  It was clearly never intended or expected that these two items would be used in combination.

Click on the image to see it larger.
  

[180x2_bell_gfx_s.jpg]

Using Mamiya RZ 67 lenses

However, it was clearly the intention of Hartblei that both parts of their Mamiya RZ67 lens to Fujifilm GFX body should be used on the Pentacon Six bellows, and if we use both parts of the Hartblei adapter, we can of course use Mamiya RB/RZ67 lenses, using the Pentacon Six bellows to provide focus.

Here we see the results when using the Mamiya RZ67 140mm macro lens, again with the bellows at maximum extension.  This lens is of course much heavier than the 80mm Biometar, which has changed the centre of gravity for the outfit, so we have again places our Arca Swiss-compatible mount on the front standard of the bellows.

Click on the image to see it larger.

  

[140_macro_bell_s.jpg]

With this setup the width of the subject is a tiny fraction over 80mm, so we are talking of approximately half the magnification obtained with the 80mm Biometer.  Of course, extension tubes, whether for Mamiya 67 cameras or for the Pentacon Six, could be combined to obtain a 1:1 ratio.  For this lens, too, we set the aperture at f/11 and adjusted the floating elements of the lens to correspond to that which would have been obtained if we had used the two macro tubes produced for the RZ67 by Mamiya.

To maintain the Mamiya lens diaphragm at the selected aperture, we used a Hartblei Depth of Field bracket, which in this instance had blue locking screws, one of which can be seen in this set-up photograph.  These brackets are described in more detail below.
  

[140_macr_bell_setup.jpg]
Let us look at a different subject photographed with the Mamiya RZ67 140mm macro lens on the Fujifilm GFX camera via the Hartblei adapter tubes and the Pentacon Six bellows.  This is not the first time that Obélix has starred on this website (see here).  With his arms down as in this picture he is just 45mm tall.

From a composition point of view, this image should be cropped to at least square, and possibly vertical.  However, for the purpose of these tests, we show the full frame.

Click on the image to see it larger.

We can see that at f/11 the depth of field has not fully reached Obélix’s feet.  This is where using a tilt lens in Pentacon Six mount or a Hartblei tilt adapter with a Pentacon Six lens would have been helpful.  For information on the Hartblei tilt adapter for using Pentacon Six lenses on Fujifilm GFX cameras, see here.  For information on shift lenses in the Pentacon Six mount, links can be found here.
  

[obelix_s.jpg]

The setup photograph to the right here helps us to appreciate just how tiny this figure of Obélix is.

Infinity focus is of course also possible with this Mamiya RZ67 macro lens (as with all other RZ67 lenses) when it is mounted on the Pentacon Six bellows via the Hartblei adapters.  The bellows extension is then approximately 3mm, as indicated elsewhere.  For that with this lens we do of course have to remember to move the floating elements to the infinity position.  For this test shot we have again set the lens aperture at f/11.  The picture was taken hand-held, with 400 ISO set on the camera.   

[140_macro_bell_infin.jpg

  

[140_macro_oblx_setup.jpg]

Using a Pentacon Six Extension Tube with a Hartblei adapter

For the Mamiya RZ67, the manufacturers produced one lens that did have a built-in focussing mechanism.  It was the 100mm-200mm f/5.2 Mamiya zoom lens.  So with this lens we don’t need to use the Pentacon Six bellows in order to obtain focus.  Is there another, less-cumbersome, method, especially for hand-held shots?  The answer is “Yes!”  We know (from here) that the minimum extension of the Pentacon Six bellows is reportedly 19mm.  We extended them by approximately 3mm to obtain infinity focus, obtaining an extension which must be 22mm, if the minimum extension is indeed 19mm, as claimed.

There is a 22.5mm extension tube as part of the set of four automatic tubes for the Pentacon Six.  So we tried this between the above two components of the Hartblei RZ67 – Fujifilm GFX adapter.  With the Mamiya RZ 67 zoom lens mounted, we did in fact have to extend the focus on the lens by about 1mm to obtain infinity focus, which suggests that the minimum extension of the Pentacon Six bellows is probably about 20.5mm.  Adding a 3mm extension to this gives us 23.5mm, the same as using the 22.5mm tube + 1mm extension on the lens.

  

From left to right: Hartblei Mamiya RZ67 lens mount to Pentacon Six body mount (for mounting onto a Pentacon Six body or the front of the Pentacon Six bellows), Pentacon Six 22.5mm auto extension tube, Hartblei Pentacon Six lens mount (for mounting onto the back of the Pentacon Six bellows) to Fujifilm GFX camera body mount for mounting onto a GFX camera
[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_04.jpg]
  

The three compoents illustrated to the left here, assembled for use between the Mamiya RZ67 100-200mm zoom lens and a Fujifilm GFX camera body
[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_05.jpg]
  



Here we see the Mamiya zoom lens fractionally extended by the lens focussing ring to give infinity focus on the Fujifilm GFX camera.
Click on this image to see it larger.
[hart_RZ67-GFX_tubes_06_s.jpg]


Using the most versatile of the Hartblei adapters for Mamiya RB/RZ67 lenses

This adapter adds 12mm shift in any direction with any Mamiya RZ67 lens, and has rotation points in three different places to enable easy change of camera orientation, for instance, from horizontal to vertical, and easy and independent change of shift direction for the adapter and for any shift lens mounted on it.  Pictures obtained with it are shown here.



The Hartblei shift and rotation adapter at minimum extension, which provides infinity focus with all Mamiya RZ67 lenses on Fujifilm GFX cameras.
[hart_RZ67-GFX_12_s.jpg]
  

The Hartblei shift and rotation adapter at maximum extension, which provides quite close focus, the exact distance varying, depending on the lens used.
[hart_RZ67-GFX_13_s.jpg]


A small component of the PRO focussing bracket was left in situ when both of these pictures were taken.
On the barrel, sockets for further locking screws can be seen, and plenty of locking screws are included with the equipment.
Click on the images to see them larger.

Focussing Options

It is course possible to turn by hand the focussing ring (the cogged wheel) on the Hartblei adapter, but a more sophisticated approach is to use a Fotga Follow Focus adapter.  This uses geared wheels to increase speed and precision of focus.  The Fotga DP500 II or III is apparently normally supplied with this Hartblei adapter.


A Fotga DP500 III mounted on the Hartblei adapter via the PRO mount
In operation the middle wheel is usually positioned lower.
Its height is easily adjustable.
Click on the image to see it larger.
[hart_Fotga_PRO_s.jpg]

Hartblei makes two mounts to connect the Fotga to the Hartblei adapter



The Hartblei Fotga Standard Mount
[Hartblei_Std_Fotga_mnt_s.jpg]
  

The Hartblei Fotga PRO mount
[Hartblei_PRO_Fotga_mnt_s.jpg]


It is probably easier to see the difference between the two Hartblei Fotga mounts by looking at the back of the camera, so here we show a rear view of both mounts.
For normal operation of the PRO mount, the vertical component that carries the black intermediate toothed wheel is usually put much lower than in the picture on the right here.
I have here raised it, to reduce the overall height for storage in a case (see below).
To understand these mounts better and other components of the system, I would recommend viewing the Hartblei YouTube video “Hartblei RBZ-S Adapter for Mamiya RB/RZ 67 lenses: How to use it with Fujifilm GFX Camera”, here. (last accessed by me on 12th April 2022)

Depth of Field Bracket

When looking at the setup to use the Mamiya RZ67 140mm macro lens, above, we mentioned the Hartblei Depth of Field bracket.  Here we take a close look at one of these brackets in use with the Mamiya RZ67 50mm ULD lens.  (We can see some sample pictures taken with this lens here.) 

All Mamiya RZ67 lenses that I have seen have an automatic diaphragm mechanism in which the action of firing the built-in shutter stops down the aperture to the previously-selected value.  But when these lenses are used on other cameras, the built-in shutter is not used, so the aperture will not stop down.  However, all the lenses have a “Depth of Field Preview” tab located on the side of the lens, and this can be slid to the aperture stop-down position at any time, for instance, in order to check depth of field.  When the Depth of Field preview tab is released, it springs back to its rest position and the diaphragm opens to maximum aperture.  It would of course not be difficult for the user to hold this tab in the stop-down position while taking a photograph.  However, there can be two problems with this:

  • the user can forget to press and hold the stop-down tab when taking a photograph;
  • more importantly, holding this tab during a long exposure can cause camera movement, resulting in images that are less sharp.

Hartblei has come up with a solution to this, by designing and manufacturing an aperture “Depth of Field Bracket”, which can be mounted on the lens.  The following three pictures show how this works.





In this picture, the Depth of Field tab on the lens is labelled “A” and the Depth of Field bracket is labelled “B”.  It is just possible to see the long, thin slot in which the Depth of Field tab travels in order to stop down the lens aperture to the selected value.
[Hartblei_DoF_brkt_01.jpg]


The rectangular hole in the bracket is hooked onto the Depth of Field tab and the bracket is moved round the lens, pulling with it the tab to its stop-down position.  The screw farthest from us as seen in this image is then attached to the cable-release socket on the lens.  The screw that is nearer to us in this picture enables fine adjustment of the total length of the bracket, to ensure that the lens will be stopped down to its minimum aperture, if that aperture has been selected.
[Hartblei_DoF_brkt_02.jpg]


The same lens and bracket seen from a different angle.  On all Mamiya RZ67 lenses so far checked, the barrel diameter at the point where the depth of field tab is located is the same and the distance between the depth of field tab end of travel point and the cable release socket is the same.  This means that the Hartblei Depth of Field bracket can be used on any of the lenses.
[Hartblei_DoF_brkt_03.jpg]

I am aware of one Mamiya RZ67 lens that does not require the Depth of Field bracket: the 180mm SOFT lens has a stop-down lock position for its Depth of Field tab.

The other occasion when the Hartblei Depth of Field bracket may not be needed is when using a Hartblei Parallax-free mount (described here), as it incorporates its own Depth of Field tab holding mechanism.  However, with the Mamiya RZ67 100-200mm zoom lens, the Depth of Field tab is so far forward on the lens that it will be possible to balance the camera – Hartblei adapter – lens combination better by mounting the Parallax-free mount further back on the lens and adding to the lens a Hartblei Depth of Field bracket to hold the lens aperture stop-down tab.

Storing and Transporting a Hartblei outfit

The Hartblei adapter for using Mamiya RZ67 lenses on Fujifilm GFX cameras is well designed and easy to use, mounted on a tripod.  Using the Fotga DP500 Fast Focus attachment increases speed and accuracy of operation.  But it has an unwieldy shape that is not easy to carry and not easy to store or to protect in transit.  In fact, the one that I bought came with a hard plastic case, but I found that case too small for storing the outfit when it is fully assembled, and I don’t want to have to take it apart each time that I need to put it away.  The small case is not a problem; it will be used for other Mamiya RZ67 lenses and accessories.

I wanted to store mine with the Fotga on the side of the Hartblei unit and the Mamiya RZ67 75mm Shift lens mounted on the front, so I needed a larger case.  By my measurements, the dimensions when using the Hartblei Standard Fotga mount are:

  • 26cm long (from front of lens to cover on the back of the Hartblei unit)
  • 23cm wide including the Fotga control wheel
  • 20cm high.

If the Hartblei Fotga PRO mount is used, the width increases to 24.2 cm.  The other dimensions are not affected.

So to ensure some protection for the unit I needed a hard case that was at least 21cm high.  The one that I found on eBay had the following external dimensions:

  • 46cm wide
  • 34cm deep (front to back of case)
  • 21cm high.

I wrote to two vendors asking them for the internal dimensions and neither of them was able to give me this information.  However, I bought a case and it has proved to be a good size for the Hartblei RZ67-GFX outfit, with space for some accessories or other lenses.

The case came with several layers of foam and it is not difficult to remove sections to match the shape of the equipment to be stored.  The bottom layer of foam provides a base that should not be cut.  One then removes sections from one layer at a time, bearing in mind that the space may need to be bigger higher up and that for some additional items that are not as tall, it is not necessary to make the hole the full depth of the case, in all the layers of the foam.



Part way through the preparation of the case.
The top of the equipment that is above the top layer of foam should be protected by the “convoluted foam” in the lid.  For more on this product, see here.

[hartblei_case_01.jpg]

What else might we wish to store in this case?

It is clearly desirable to store some other items in the case, for instance, the hexagonal Allen keys that are provided with the equipment, the special screwdriver, additional locking screws, etc.  It would also be good to include a few key Mamiya RZ67 accessories or lenses that one may wish to have to hand when using the equipment.

I do not intend to buy all the lenses that Mamiya made available for the RB67 and the RZ67, and for my type of shift photography of architecture, landscapes and cityscapes, the longer lenses (250mm, 350mm, 500mm) are not of interest.  However, here is a selection of Mamiya RZ67 lenses that may be of interest:

In this image we can see (from Left to Right) the following Mamiya-Sekor RZ67 lenses:
  • 75mm SHIFT lens
  • 50mm ULD (ultra-low dispersion) lens
  • 140mm Macro lens
  • 180mm SOFT lens
  • 100-200mm Zoom lens.
Front lens caps and lens hoods (shades), where supplied, are not included in this picture.

Click on the image to see it larger.
  

[RZ67_lenses_s.jpg]

We have already seen that to achieve 1:1 macro photographs with the Mamiya RZ67 140mm macro lens, some macro tubes would be needed.  To the right here we show the two RZ67 macro tubes as well as a compendium lens shade that can be adjusted to the angles of view of lenses of different focal lengths.

Click on the image to see it larger.
  

[RZ67_hood_tubes_s.jpg]

The Mamiya RZ67 180mm SOFT focus lens is designed for portraits and other subjects where the aim is to have an image that is fully in focus, but not hard.  This is achieved by producing soft highlights throughout the image.  The manufacturers say that it is difficult to focus, and they recommend that it be stopped down to f/8 for focussing.  From this aperture down to the smallest aperture, Mamiya states that the lens is as sharp as its regular 180mm lens.  It can be opened up if the soft-focus effect is desired.

Here we see the deep rubber lens hood (shade), which can be depressed to approximately half the height for storage.

There is also a container with three diffusion disks (see below).

Here is a closer view of the three diffusion disks.  They are clearly inspired by the Rodenstock Imagon lenses.  See here.
  

[RZ180SOFT_02.jpg]
  

[RZ180SOFT_01_s.jpg]

Click on this image to see it larger.

We naturally do not wish to store or carry all of these items in the same case, which would then be so big and so heavy that we might be reluctant to take it with us on a photographic trip.  So what items would it make sense to include in the case illustrated above, containing our Hartblei unit, the Fotga Fast Focus and the Mamiya RZ67 75mm Shift lens?

The next picture shows what we decided to include.

The locking screws are made of aluminium and do their job perfectly, but aluminium is not a strong metal and so I was concerned that the top locking screw, which in my setup is the blue one, could be bent when the case was closed.  I have therefore removed it for storage and added blue marking round the socket where it needs to be inserted for usage.  It is stored just above the Hartblei set, near to the back of the unit.

Bottom left is a plastic case with the Allen keys, spare locking screws and other small accessories.

To the right of this we can see the black and orange head of the screwdriver.

Below that is the crank handle for the Fotga Follow Focus unit.

To the right of the Fotga controls is the L-shaped Arca Swiss-compatible tripod bracket, which I use on the second parallax-free tab at the bottom of the unit when not using the parallax-free lens collar.

At the back of the case on the right is the RZ67 140mm macro lens.

Front right is the RZ67 50mm ULD lens.

The lens shade for the 50mm lens (not included in the photo to the right here) clips onto the back of the lens for storage.  See image below:


[hartblei_case_03.jpg]
  

[hartblei_case_02_s.jpg]
Click on this image to see it larger.

To go back to the introduction to Hartblei lens adapters, click here.

To go back to the initial tests of Pentacon Six & M42 lenses on the GFX, via Hartblei adapters, click here.

For stitching images see here.

To go back to the Lens Data page, click here.

You can contact me here:

Home

© TRA April 2022 Latest revision: May 2022