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Fine camera over priced?.
by Bob Hutchinson
In the last couple of months I have been doing a lot of search and research stuff at bigcamera.com using the my ebay research tools there. I have studied Graflex XL, XLS and XLSW as I could with the small volume for these items. I have researched Koni Omega and Rapid Omega bodies, lenses and accessories, Mamiya Standard, Super and Universal and all accessories. I have received a fair education on Graflex and Graphic backs Vs Mamiya backs and roll film holders, Mamiya Graflok back frames for Universal and Graflex roll film holders for Graflok backs and which roll film holders will fit up to the Graflok or RB or Horseman and . . . . . . . Well, I do do know more than I did a couple of months ago.
I have researched Pentax 645, 645N 6X7, 67, 67II. There is lots-a traffic and lots of sales in all these items. What a surprise when I researched the fine Mamiya 7 equipment. Lots of auctions, very few sales. The big majority are failed auctions. After two months of Mamiya 7 auctions only 4 or 5 sales indicated at ebay. About 95% failed auction because of "Reserve not yet met" or worse, "Zero Bids".
As an ebay watcher and user, 95% in medium and large format photography, I can say that this surprised me. After a few days to think about it I can only come a couple of focused conclusion. This camera system is overpriced - the value is sagging and the owners wont accept it.
This may just be a temporary market condition. Perhaps the ebay market is saturated with 7s. Perhaps the camera is overpriced. Could be, competition is great from all of the medium format companies. I suppose the 67 Pentax is formidable competition at prices much lower the the M7. If Mamiya 7 values continue to sag at ebay, they may sag everywhere.
Plus 25 to minus 50
An ebay sleeper is not an ebay employee sleeping on the job. It's the ebay seller with zero ebay skills putting up for auction fine equipment with no pictures and a description of, "Camera in good shape. Takes great pictures." I love to find these items and buy-em at "Value less 50%". Sometimes I send an email about a week after the auction is over without a sale. This is the period of "seller's failed auction remorse" and when I make my offer.