Bellows, Taper or not?

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Bruce Osgood, Jul 20, 2005.

  1. Bruce Osgood

    Bruce Osgood Membership Council Council

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    What are the pro's and con's of a tapered bellows versus the straight bellows? In what way is one better than the other?

    TIA
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    A tapered bellows is lighter and usually more flexible and folds smaller.

    I suppose a straight bellows is less of a source of bellows flare. With a modular camera like the Sinar, a square bellows makes it possible to make more things interchangeable, so you can do things like add more rail, add an extra standard, and add an extra bellows, or use a bellows as a lens shade, or use a bellows as a viewing hood.
     
  3. smieglitz

    smieglitz Member

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    One drawback of the tapered bellows relates to the size of the front standard and lensboards. Some large lenses such as big portrait lenses require large boards and thus work better with bellows having a larger front opening which minimizes the taper (e.g., square or nontapering bellows). Also, if you wish to mount a Packard Shutter internally, a larger bellows gives you more flexibility in that regard. So, a nontapering bellows maximizes flexibility when it comes to lens choice although camera movements and maximum compression are compromised with such a design as David has stated.

    Joe
     
  4. Frank Petronio

    Frank Petronio Inactive

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    Some photographers actually use 4x5 with 5x7 cameras because the larger bellows reduces flare. However, considering the vast number of excellent and contrasty photos produced by tapered bellows Technikas, Wistas, Ebonies and the like, it probably doesn't matter very much.