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John Koehrer
03-05-2007, 10:15 PM
You could mount an enlarging lens in something like a polaroid press shutter & not need the FP shutter. You would have much fewer vibration concerns. Or a Packard?

25asa
03-05-2007, 10:20 PM
Has the ideal medium format macro camera been made?

The answer is, "No".

paul ewins
03-06-2007, 12:03 AM
There is a bellows available for both the Pentax 67 system and Pentax 645 system, but like all specialist equipment it is expensive:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=5450&A=details&Q=&sku=40839&is=REG&addedTroughType=categoryNavigation

A better way to go might be to get a cheap 4x5 Monorail (like a Cambo\Calumet) and then replace the ground glass screen with an adapter to mount your camera (basically a 4x5 sheet of 1/8" aluminium with a short extension tube screwed to it). This gives you very long extensions (depending on the camera) as well as all the movements you might want.

Here are a couple of shots of one I made for my 35mm Pentax gear using a Calumet 401CC. It's something any machine shop should be able to knock up in a spare hour (if that).

vanspaendonck
03-06-2007, 02:36 AM
I second David Goldfarb's recommendation of the Bronica, though I would prefer the EC or ECTL. With acccessories, they have everything on your list. And, for some reason the bodies have become dirt cheap. I thought of selling one of my EC of ECTLs on eBay, but decided not to: at today's prices, it's just not worth the trouble.

Dan Fromm
03-06-2007, 05:41 AM
I'm curious to know what those reasons are. Think you could post a quick article sometime explaining that and how you arrive at a good setup?PMFJI. I don't agree fully with the reasons that Anupam gave you. I see several problems with using auto-TTL flash closeup.

It seems that some camera/flash combinations are badly, um, flustered by specular highlights.

The camera can't be counted on to recognize the main subject and illuminate for it. This is exacerbated by falloff of illumination when the background is far behind the main subject.

Intelligent use of a lens-specific flash rig that is calibrated for magnification avoids these problems. I have a flash rig for my wife's 55/3.5 MicroNikkor, another for my 105/2.8 MicroNikkor AIS. And I have two for use with my Graphics, one that attaches to the lens (conceptually very similar to the rigs I use on 35 mm) and is calibrated for a 105/5.6 El Nikkor and another that attaches to the camera body and is calibrated for a 100/6.3 Neupolar.

Using a pre-calibrated flash rig is equivalent to metering incident. For unusually reflective subjects, stopping down a bit below the aperture indicated in the calibration table is helpful. Similarly, for unusually dark subjects opening up a little is helpful. If it isn't obvious, the problems with auto-TTL flash that I gave above are due to metering reflected light.

I also sometimes use a single hand held variable-power flash (Vivitar 283 with VP-1) with my Graphics and do the GN arithmetic, including adjustment for magnification, in my head. No big deal.

I don't understand why people make such a big fuss over using flash closeup. I made my first closeup flash rig in 1971, used part of a roll of film to calibrate it, and since then have had very few poorly exposed closeup shots. Ain't much to it.

Anupam made the point, but not strongly enough, that on-camera flash makes underexposed backgrounds possible. Ponder my patented (yeah, sure) idea of "depth of illumination" and you'll see why. The only way to guarantee that the background will be illuminated as desired (as many, including no, stops down from the main subject) is to position a flash off camera to get the desired result. A pain, but doable.

Struan Gray
03-06-2007, 06:52 AM
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/5x4-Crime-Scene-Fingerprinter-for-Graflex_W0QQitemZ300087047195QQihZ020QQcategoryZ62 7QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

TheFlyingCamera
03-06-2007, 08:54 AM
Nobody has mentioned the Hasselblad system. You could use a Hasselblad 500C/M body and get the older bellows (non-auto) which would be fairly inexpensive. It requires a double cable release system, but this is the advantage. You can set the double cable so that the first cable triggers the body, and then just screw the second cable into a generic leaf shutter where you've mounted your enlarger lens. This kit won't give you swings/ tilts, but it would be pretty easy to make an adapter flange to mount your shuttered enlarger lens. You can also get a Hasselblad->Contax mount adapter that would let you put a Contax SLR on the back of the bellows. There may be an adapter out there to put other systems behind it also, but I don't know.

Anupam Basu
03-06-2007, 06:08 PM
Found a Bronica bellows in this completed EBay auction (http://cgi.ebay.com/Bronica-Tilt-Shift-Bellows-for-S2-and-S2A-cameras_W0QQitemZ220085992489QQihZ012QQcategoryZ33 50QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem). This indeed looks a thing of beauty. Elegantly simple. Thanks for pointing me to it. I won't be able to buy it just yet but it gives me a lot of ideas.

-Anupam

John Koehrer
03-06-2007, 10:55 PM
Nobody has mentioned the Hasselblad system. You could use a Hasselblad 500C/M body and get the older bellows (non-auto) which would be fairly inexpensive. It requires a double cable release system, but this is the advantage. You can set the double cable so that the first cable triggers the body, and then just screw the second cable into a generic leaf shutter where you've mounted your enlarger lens. This kit won't give you swings/ tilts, but it would be pretty easy to make an adapter flange to mount your shuttered enlarger lens. You can also get a Hasselblad->Contax mount adapter that would let you put a Contax SLR on the back of the bellows. There may be an adapter out there to put other systems behind it also, but I don't know.

Didn't Hasselblad also have a couple of specialty bodies a while back Arc & somethin' else? One was basically a bellows with magazine & lens mount.

epatsellis
03-07-2007, 07:25 AM
John,
try finding one that mere mortals can afford, for me, I'll stick with my RB67 back and lensboard on my Toyo 45E, all the benefits of an RB, and all the movements of a view camera, for too cheap to even consider anything else.

erie

TheFlyingCamera
03-09-2007, 06:51 AM
Didn't Hasselblad also have a couple of specialty bodies a while back Arc & somethin' else? One was basically a bellows with magazine & lens mount.

Yes they did- but those cameras are extremely limited in their bellows draw - basically they're dedicated wideangle to normal bodies. They're also highly sought-after, and very expensive.

Peter Williams
03-09-2007, 11:47 AM
I think that you should also look at the Fuji GX680 cameras. I believe that they meet all of the requirements that you gave and they have become extermely affordable over the past year or so. The GX680 II is my favorite camera and I have had some good success with macro shots with it. You can get extension rails and extended bellows to really rack the lens out and still have lens movements. AFAIK, this is the only MF camera that has all of the features you are looking for. It's also a fantastic camera for portraits if that mood ever strikes.

Struan Gray
03-09-2007, 02:01 PM
The Novoflex tilt-shift bellows is compatible with MF cameras up to 6x7:

http://www.novoflex.de/english/html/fr_ema5.htm

Jim Jones
03-12-2007, 11:10 AM
Long ago, when photographers spent more time improvising accessories than money buying them, simple wire frames were sometimes used for very fast focusing and framing. I've also used the Pentax Copy Pod (http://www.bdimitrov.de/kmp/macro/copy_pod.jpg) and a somewhat similar device for Leica rangefinder cameras. You can't see the subject in relation to the background, but you can capture it easier and faster than by framing and focusing through the lens.

A flash with the correct fixed output at about the same distance as the camera from the subject provides correct exposure over a fair range of macro photography when using a bellows. The light fall-of as the flash to subject distance increases compensates for the bellows factor. It's been 40 years since I've done this math and photography, and can't be more specific now.

Dan Fromm
03-12-2007, 05:29 PM
Jim, you've just described either the Spiratone Macrodapter, of which I have a couple, or the old Kalt macro bracket that held two little flashes and attached to the camera's tripod socket. I gave my Kalt away to a friend who would, I thought, have a harder time finding one -- he was in Costa Rica -- than I would. Boy, was I wrong about their availability here, but its easy to make an ugly equivalent that's just as good from scrap lumber or sheet plexiglas or lexan. The Macrodapter is functionally equivalent to a bracket made by Jones of Hollywood -- I have a pair of them too -- and I'm not sure which came first.

I've done the math too, and it turns out that "at about the same distance as the camera from the subject," as with the Kalt adapter, gives more-or-less the right exposure over a much narrower range, and biased towards lowish magnifications, than "at about the same distance from the subject as the lens' front node." The second arrangement is more-or-less the Macrodapter and it gives more nearly correct exposure at the same aperture set over a broader range, but biased towards magnifications as high as 2:1.

I have all this nonsense spelled out cleanly in a really cute (I say) spreadsheet and gave Anupam a copy of it some time ago. He doesn't seem to believe it enough to test its implications. But all it is is the Pythagorean theorem, GN arithmetic, and exposure adjustment for magnification.

Thinking of Anupam, he started this thread with the news that he's an impoverished grad student who wants to shoot closeup with a format larger than 35 mm. Perhaps we should stop touting gear that's out of his price range.

Cheers,

Dan

Greg_E
03-23-2007, 12:00 PM
As Jim brings up, have you thought about making your own bellows? Then you could use any FP shutter camera body, and get some of the movements you might want. Movements will be limited because of the mirror box with the SLR cameras.

There are two very good books about making (folding) bellows in the camera building and modification forum. One by Barry Young, and another that is free on the web. I bought Barry's first, and it gives a nice simple, well explained method to making a bellows. The second free book gives a few other insites that I may not have understood without Barry's book. My next camera will be a self made bellows camera of some sorts, just so I can learn one more thing (even if it is only a pinhole bellows camera).

Also remember that a bellows does not have to be a nicely folded work of art, it could be a simple light proof bag with a mount for the camera body, and a mount for your prefered lenses. That would be about the cheapest way to get going and see if it helped you get the results you want. You might also be able to experiment with this on your 35mm camera without having to buy anything but a few parts.

The Mamiya 645 from the first model up to the ProTL are all happy without a lens attached, so it might be an option if you can find one of those cheap.

bjorke
03-23-2007, 02:46 PM
In answer to the original question:

Yes but now they are waiting for the Ideal Woman to use it

Antje
03-23-2007, 04:59 PM
In answer to the original question:

Yes but now they are waiting for the Ideal Woman to use it

Well, here I am! Where's my camera?

SCNR

Antje (I think a Canon dSLR with an MP-E 65/2.8 is the perfect macro camera - if it only were MF)

bjorke
03-23-2007, 08:31 PM
http://www.io.tudelft.nl/public/vdm/fca/canon/col101.jpg

Here you go! The Canon HyPro Medium Format camera.

Eric Rose
03-23-2007, 10:38 PM
I use my Linhof Tek IV with a roll film back.