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Discussion in 'Panoramic Cameras and Accessories' started by mitspooner, Jul 2, 2006.

  1. mitspooner

    mitspooner Member

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    Hey Guys and Gals,

    I have been looking for a Panoramic camera for a bit now and don't have a tonne of dough to drop right now and was looking for some help to see what is out there in a nice price range. I have looked at the X-Pan and have drooled and that is about the extent I know about the format (besides that I want to shoot it). What are some of the pitfalls for the format and what type of film format should I look at? Any and all help would rock.
     
  2. roteague

    roteague Member

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    Panoramic cameras are expensive, you just aren't going to get around that. I'm a 4x5 shooter, and I have a 6x12 back for it, which isn't an expensive option, although the 4x5 can be.
     
  3. David H. Bebbington

    David H. Bebbington Inactive

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    Cheapest "panoramic" option is of course to shoot on a regular camera and crop the image. This works in principle with any format, a 4x5" camera gives a usefully-sized image (even with a 3:1 panorama, the image is still 4x12 cm). A few (or a lot of) $$$ more will not necessarily give any better quality, just a handier or more portable package (X-Pan, Noblex, etc.). No known pitfalls, you will probably find that you like either 2:1 or 3:1 format better (I like 2:1, I find 3:1 too long and thin). What format to buy? Probably the bigger the better.

    Regards,

    David
     
  4. DBP

    DBP Member

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    Do you want a camera with a wide angle lens and cropped film area like the X-Pan, or would you consider something with a rotating lens like a Noblex? What size prints are you going to consider? Do you have limitations in the size of negative your enlarger will carry?
     
  5. mitspooner

    mitspooner Member

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    Well the only other camera I have looked at is the russian one's (even the LOMO) I don't have a full darkroom right now (we rent and my wife won't give up her office) so it's a part digital in the final stages. I have just started to shoot 4x5 and need to learn that also.
     
  6. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    What kind of 4x5" camera do you have? The Chinese 6x17cm backs are a great value, if you have a camera that works with them (Graflok back, good with wide lenses). Do a search here on "6x17" and "DaYi" and you'll turn up a few threads with more info.
     
  7. mitspooner

    mitspooner Member

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    Well right now I have a Crown with a spring back so no rolls on it. But I have just bought a Graphic View with a 135mm lens and traded for Kodak View Master with a 210 lens. What is the best wide for 6x17 (Is that 3 shots per roll?) like a 75 or a 90mm?
     
  8. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Mitch, here's an option for you -- get hold of a 105 mm Agnar from somewhere (cheap -- comes on Agfa Billy or Ansco Viking cameras, most of which have bad bellows by this point), and mount it on your Crown -- this part shouldn't cost as much as $25 plus shipping. Then, either convert to a Graflok back (might run to $100 or so) and use the Shen Hao 6x12 roll holder, or mask down regular 4x5 film to the 6x12 format.

    Set the Agnar's built-in focus to infinity and stop it down to f/22 or smaller, and it'll easily cover the 6x12 format; if you set infinity focus carefully on the ground glass and then lock the bed, you can focus with the front element just as you would have on the original Billy, or you can leave the lens set at infinity and focus on the ground glass as you normally would with an odd length lens on your Crown. The masked 4x5 is going to be the *cheapest* way to get semi-pano without spending a mint -- a 105 mm on 6x12 will give about 100 degrees corner to corner, and you could spend as little as $25 (plus sacrifice of a dark slide to make a mask). In fact, I might have to try this with my Speed...
     
  9. mitspooner

    mitspooner Member

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    Donald have you been reading my mail :wink: I have a Voigtlander Anastigmat Skopar 10.5cm in a shutter that I have had no clue what to do with and just won 8 dark slides. creepy. Now off to find a 6x17 or 6x12 rollback and the graflok back.
     
  10. Andy K

    Andy K Member

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    The Horizon cameras are a relatively cheap way into panoramic photography. They can be found even cheaper on Ebay.
     
  11. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    Mitch, you might find that the Skopar won't cover (even at f/22 or f/32) where the triplet Agnar does (I've read that the Tessar type lenses have less coverage than some triplet designs -- but I'm not sure if the Agnar is a Cooke triplet or the type with PCX front and rear glass and reverse middle element compare to the Cooke, and I'm certain a Cooke has less coverage than a Tessar type) -- but since you already have it, it's certainly cheap to find out. My Agnar just covers 4x5 at those openings, slight corner loss when focused to infinity, almost undetectable corner loss when set hyperfocal. I've got a couple 5x7 film holders, one of which has broken wood -- I think I'll cut one of those dark slides to fit the 4x5 and leave a 56 mm slot, mark the ground glass, and have some fun with my Speed. :smile:

    I'd certainly test the lens on sheet film before getting a roll back -- and for my methods, I don't know that I'd care about a roll back at all, as long as I can get some more film holders. Might have to post a trade deal...