view camera?

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by marko_trebusak, Oct 29, 2004.

  1. marko_trebusak

    marko_trebusak Member

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    Hi LF photographers, I'm looking for my first large format camera, and I have a question for you:

    There is a lot of talking about field cameras of all sorts, but what about monorails for field use? I took a look at designs of Arca-Swiss, Sinar and Toho, and something is not going together. There is always a talk, that monorails have all the movements, but it seems to me that all of this tree only have base tilts on both standards??? Of course I only see those cameras on net. Can someone send some light in, please?

    Marko
     
  2. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

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    The largest issue(s) for field use is portability/weight. Field cameras, by their design allow for quick setup and tear down. While monorails can and are used in the field, they take longer to put together on site.

    For most field use, only some movements are usually used. Front tilt, Front rise etc... The flexibility that a monorail can provide usually isn't taken advantage of... Where monorails really shine is in the studio commercially.

    I guess it really depends on what you shoot, and what you feel comfortable with... What subject matter do you want to shoot with this equipment?

    joe :smile:
     
  3. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    There are monorails designed to be compact and relatively lightweight for field use--Gowland PocketView, Toho, Arca-Swiss F-line, Technikardan. It's really a matter of personal preference and priorities. I use both.

    I find that I like using my folding Technika when I'm shooting in the city, because I can set up quickly, use a folding hood instead of a darkcloth, and move on before attracting a crowd or the tripod police.

    I like the Gowland PocketView (I have an 8x10" and a 4x5") when I'm out shooting landscapes, and I'm usually waiting for the light, the wind to slow down, etc. And with practice, setup becomes quicker and easier.

    The three cameras you mention, I believe, all have rise/shift/tilt/swing on both standards with options regarding features like base tilts vs. axial tilts, Orbix, etc. Maybe you're missing something in the descriptions.
     
  4. marko_trebusak

    marko_trebusak Member

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    Perhaps I didn't make myself clear: I wonder if those monorails have axis tilts or just base tilts. The standards are only supported from below, so I guess that they only have base tilts. So how important are axis tilts for a field use compared with additional bulk of axis tilts?

    Marko
     
  5. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

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    Axis and base tilt both accomplish the same thing in the end. By tilting off the base, you will likely have to also refocus the camera.

    joe :smile:
     
  6. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    You might also have to recompose with base tilts, but base tilts are yaw-free, so they prevent tail-chasing situations where the camera never seems to get square. You can get used to either method.

    The Gowland PocketView and Technikardan have axis tilts. The Arca and Sinar have different options, so it depends on which model and accessories you're looking at.
     
  7. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

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    This is kind of OT.

    The tripod police is the main reason I haven't been to our local botanical garden in a while. You can't take your tripod into any of the buildings and you must have a tripod permit. There's no charge for it, but I feel weird with this big yellow tag on my tripod. Heaven forbid I look like a professional (bigger camera must mean professional to them) or else I'd probably have to pay to take shots at all. :sad:

    Rant over.
     
  8. steve simmons

    steve simmons Inactive

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    Here is a link to some reading that might be helpful

    http://www.viewcamera.com/archives.html

    These are on the View Camera web site and this link will take you to several articles that will help you decide what features you need in a camera.

    Here are some additinal resources

    User's Guide to the View Camera by Jim Stone
    Using the View Cmera that I wrote forAmphoto
    Large Format Nature Photography by Jack Dyking

    If you have any additional questions I willbe happy to answer them

    steve simmons
     
  9. steve simmons

    steve simmons Inactive

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    but base tilts are yaw-free,


    This is not necessarily true.Axis tilts can also be yaw free. Yaw occurs when the platform upon which th swing occur is tilted up or down. If you leave the camera level then all cameras are yaw free.

    steve simmons
     
  10. mark

    mark Member

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    Thanks steve. I have been looking for a description of what yaw meant.
     
  11. roteague

    roteague Member

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    I have both a field camera (Toyo 45AII) and a monorail (Omega 45D), and have used both in the field. The Omega is fine, but way overkill for the field. The Toyo is much better; the 45AII is the best of the Toyo line IMO. It has most of the movements (including rear tilt) that you could need, and I really like the rotating back and folding hood.
     
  12. steve simmons

    steve simmons Inactive

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    Yaw occurs when the platform upon which the swing happens is tilted. This causes the standard (front or rear) to cock which interfers with a perfect Scheimpflug relationship. This is true with any camera. If you keep the platform/rail level all cameras are yaw free.

    steve simmons
     
  13. jovo

    jovo Membership Council Council

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    I too have the Omega 45D. Yes, it's a bit heavy, but carried for moderate distances, it's not that big a deal. Thing is...it's a lot less expensive than the 45AII and it's so complete that you will never want for anything other than printed or graven scales and such. One Weston or another said that anything further than 100 yards from the car is not photogenic anyway...so save the bucks on the camera and save up for some spectacular lenses.
     
  14. argentic

    argentic Member

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    Have you thought about a Calumet Cadet? It's an inexpensive, axis tilt, relatively lightweight monorail with all the movements you will ever need.

    G.
     
  15. mikeb_z5

    mikeb_z5 Member

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    The toyo 45cx is another lightweight monorail(8lbs or so). and relatively inexpensive. I got mine last year w 210mm lense, darkcloth and case for about 500.00 on ebay. No regrets. and I do take it in the field often.

    Mike
     
  16. papagene

    papagene Membership Council Council

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    Last night I processed some negs from my Calumet Cadet that I shot 2 weeks ago up at the Quabbin (I'll make that place famous - or infamous - one of these days!! :D ).
    Like Gilbert said, it is versatile, inexpensive and light weight.
    Good luck with your search. We'll soon have another adicted to large format! :wink:

    gene
     
  17. raucousimages

    raucousimages Member

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    I use a toyo 45 AII but my children take my 45D and 45E to the field. We just pull the rail and wrap the cameras in the darkcloth and put them in backpacks. I even take my 810G broken down in a paded suitcase up to one mile from the jeep on flat ground but I would love to replace it with an 810M.
     
  18. raucousimages

    raucousimages Member

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    P.S. Ditto on spending the money on great glass first.
     
  19. roteague

    roteague Member

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    Are you still using the stock ground glass that comes with the camera? I got a Nikkor-SW 90mm F8 lens that I like, but it is so dark that it is difficult to use. I'm wondering if a new ground glass would be money well spent, or wasted.
     
  20. hortense

    hortense Member

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    For a light weight field cammera with all needed movements, my recommendation is Tachinhara. Don't let the low price fool you.
     
  21. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i too have a toyo 45cx. i got it after using a red-bellows graphic view II for 12 years. it is a pretty good camera the toyo. it takes a bag bellows, so you can use really wide lenses ( like a 65mm ) and like all the toyos, it is part of the modular toyo family, so you can get extension bellows and a long rail ( for really long lenses ) as well as monocular and binocular viewers a rear 8x10 standard and new bellows, if you decide you want to do 8x10 down the road &C &C. the only drawback of the toyo 45cx is the focus / standard blocks. sometimes you might want to tighten the camera down and the block might crack. if you find one on the used market (ebay) be aware that some of the focus blocks have not been retrofitted with something to distribute the force throughout the block when it is overtightend so they don't crack &C.

    when this happened to mine, i called toyo, and bought a new focus block and was going to install it myself, but after a week of trying to find the time to do it, i called toyo again ... they had me mail the camera to them, they installed the new focus block, retrofitted the other ( non-broken one ) with the newer parts and mailed it back to me in a day or 2 days for very little money.

    their customer service there is really good :smile:
     
  22. marko_trebusak

    marko_trebusak Member

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    Thank you, folks!

    I decide to go either Linhof Technika or Arca Swiss Discovery before I asked the question. But you guys clear some things for me (yaw and stuff), so thank you very much again. So I'm off shopping. I hope to find some useful second hand stuff in Munich.

    Marko