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  1. #1

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    ULF vs LF Where does it begin

    Have seen a few post referring to what I consider LF, as ULF and was wonder what is the consensus of where ULF begins? In my mind ULF would include the following common formats - 7x17 and 8x20 in the pano formats, 11x14, 14x17, 12x20, 16x20 and 20x24 as the most common UL Formats in use today. The formats of 5x12, 5x14, 7x11 are more like a pano version of 8x10, this based the fact that all are < 80 sq. in. = 8x10. The only more obscure formats of 8x12, 8x14 and 10x12 being somewhere in between LF and ULF.

    Just curious what others consider ULF to be, or if there is a historic or more recent guide to describe ULF.

    TIA
    Mike C

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  2. #2
    Dave Wooten's Avatar
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    The answer is 14 x 17 and up is ULF. 4 x 5 and 5 x 7 compact LF. 8 x 10 - 11 x 14 LF.
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  3. #3

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    I'd say it begins at 10x12 and goes up from there. 10x12 =120 sq. in. 7x17 119 sq. in.

  4. #4

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    My thoughts follow yours but I think for convenience a lot of formats fall under the umbrella of ULF. Film orders, odd sized trays, miscellaneous techinques; I shoot 5x12 and have never considered it ULF but I post questions in the ULF forum simply because it shares some of the foibles of the larger banquet formats.

  5. #5
    Sanjay Sen's Avatar
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    I always thought that it's the image diagonal that is considered. I am not sure, but if that is the case, then 5x12 (for instance) will be ULF as it has an image diagonal that is larger than 8x10, if you consider anything larger than 8x10 as ULF.

    I guess you will get as many opinions as there are LF/ULF photographers!

  6. #6

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    For me ULF is anything that has a diagonal dimension longer than 8X10. By that standard 5X12 and 7X11 qualify, though just barely.

    If I were forced to adopt a less liberal standard, ULF would be 11X14, and anything with a longer diagonal than 11X14. That would include the common (and uncommon) formats of 10X12, 7X17, 8X20, 12X20, 14X17, 12X16, 18X22, and 20X24.

    Sandy King

  7. #7
    RobertP's Avatar
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    Sandy, You forgot 16x20. I always thought the rule-of- thumb was anything larger than 11x14. 11x14 included
    Last edited by RobertP; 12-10-2007 at 09:34 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #8
    JBrunner's Avatar
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    I have always considered anything that exceeds 81 sq. inches as ULF.

  9. #9

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    Back a few years ago, I used anything > 80 in. sq. as my qualification for ULF status for an article I wrote on currently available ULF cameras or View Camera. In other words, anything with an film area greater than 8x10 met my definitions of ULF. That, admittedly arbitrary, definition excludes 5x12 and 7x11. My reasoning for this is that, logistically speaking, those two formats aren't significantly different to manage in the field in terms of weight and bulk (considering cameras, holders, lenses, tripods, etc.). In fact, in terms of bulk (and possibly weight), a 5x12 system (camera and holders) would take up less space in a pack/bag than a comparable 8x10 system. For 7x11, the weight/bulk issue is pretty much a wash compared to 8x10.

    Anyway, that's the definition I've been using, but it's not meant to be exclusionary in any way. It's just where things, in my mind, start to go from big to REALLY big. Of course, shooters of 5x12 and 7x11 encounter similar product availability issues o those shooting the > 80 i. sq. formats. So, again it's a bit arbitrary.

    Kerry

  10. #10

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    Anything from 4x5 to 8x10 is LF (and the 6xX panoramic backs when used on a view camera can be considered LF as well). Anything larger is ULF. That's the absolute truth, the words and definitions are 100% unambiguous, and there is no element of interpretation possible.
    The universe is a haunted house. -Coil
    .

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