Looking for a 4x5 portable camera.

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by makanakijones, Mar 6, 2009.

  1. makanakijones

    makanakijones Member

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    May be I am looking for something that doesn´t exists but I would try.

    - 4x5 camera accepting roll backs (6x7, 6x9 and 6x12).
    - Portable, light, all around camera, documental, landscape, architecture.
    - Accepting wide angle lenses and a portrait lens. Not only accepting wide angle but also having movements with them.

    I am in love with ebony's sw45 but I want to know about other possibilities.

    thanks.
     
  2. domaz

    domaz Member

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    Gowland 4x5 Pocket View. Lightest weight bar none and can do just about anything a regular 4x5 can do.
     
  3. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    or a Toho or a Chamonix
     
  4. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    or a Wista
     
  5. Stewart Skelt

    Stewart Skelt Member

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    Horseman 45FA is small and relatively light if you can find one.
     
  6. Uhner

    Uhner Member

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  7. makanakijones

    makanakijones Member

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    Thank you pals
     
  8. HerrBremerhaven

    HerrBremerhaven Member

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  9. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    And a very healthy bank account :D

    Ian
     
  10. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

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    Just about the most portable 4x5 camera would be a Crown Graphic or Super Graphic. They can do all you ask, except use extremely long lenses, but there is a work-a-round for that, by using one of the many excellent "telephoto" lenses made by Schneider, Nikon, Fuji, Komura, etc. which would work fine for portraiture, and allow you to focus with the bellows you have on the camera. All the late-model Graphic cameras have Graflok backs and can take a variety of roll-film backs. The Graphics have dropping beds, which allow for clearance for wide angle lenses. You have a reasonable amount of front movements (rise, shift, tilt) with a 90mm Super Angulon type of lens. They also work well with the current Fuji 4x5 Instant film and Instant film backs.

    Of course, I am talking about used gear, as these cameras have been discontinued for many years, yet there are plenty of them around.
     
  11. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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  12. mealers

    mealers Member

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    If you want something similar to the Ebony SW then the Walker Titan XL is a very good choice, I've ordered one any I'm awaiting its arrival.:D
     
  13. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

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    I have to agree with Phototone. Only don't get a Crown Graphic, get a Speed Graphic. It is a little bigger, and a little heavier, but it also give you more creativity because the Speed Graphic has a Focal Plane shutter, thus giving you many more lens options. All of the graphics were (and are) still very rugged. If you want to get cool effects with movements, prepare to get a some big lens like a f1.4 movie theater lens, because you need something big to really get dramatic effects if you are going for the "toyland" look. And of course, you can put a roll film back on.
     
  14. Bruce Osgood

    Bruce Osgood Membership Council Council

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    For lightweight portability you should consider the Tachahara. It doesn't shift but it tilts, swings and has rise and fall like the most expensive, which it ain't.
     
  15. makanakijones

    makanakijones Member

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    After reviewing all the web information I have found I think that the camera I am looking for is ebony's sv45u2. May be I can buy it after a life saving money.
     
  16. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Really, there are lots of cameras in a wide range of prices that will do what you want.

    How portable is "portable" to you, and by portable do you mean lightweight, packs easily, not too bulky, suitable for backpacking, just usable outside a studio, or what exactly?

    How wide is "wide"? Just about any 4x5" camera that isn't a specialized wideangle camera will let you easily use lenses in the range of 90-210mm at least. A 90mm lens feels like a 28mm lens on a 35mm camera to me, or at least I would use it in similar situations, and 210mm is a good portrait and tabletop focal length for 4x5". Wider than 75mm narrows your choices a bit, but not by much, as many cameras can accept recessed lensboards or a bag bellows for use with wide lenses, if they can't handle them natively.

    Almost any camera made in the last fifty years with a Graflok/International style back will take all the rollfilm formats you mention, and even a camera with a spring back will, but you are more limited to rollfilm backs that slip under the groundglass.

    Ebony cameras are nice, but don't become fixated on one camera and let it get in the way of the kind of work you want to do. It's ultimately just a light tight box with a lens on one end and film on the other.