This is what I do, but because I can develop six sheets at a go. Of course I could do that by shuffling in a tray, but I prefer to work in the daylight. When I used to tray develop all the time I started feeling like a bat.
Originally Posted by iandavid
That's just, like, my opinion, man...
I know what you mean about bats, although they at least have echo-location! I mostly use a Combi-Plan tank, but I prefer to load it in the darkroom because I don't enjoy fiddling around inside the changing tent too much (it makes me start to feel like a gynaecologist!)
I'm also Sydney based and manage to shoot & develop 4x5 for about $10 per shot. As has been mentioned above, you tend not to shoot that many 4x5 frames in a day, compared with an slr (digital or analogue). One option you may want to consider is a MF attachment for your LF camera. My Toyo also has a 6x9 roll film attachment, which I found really useful at the beginning as I could take a number of bracket shots to get myself more acquainted with the equipment.
As for who to use, there are still quite a few pro-labs around town, personally I use Vision Lab in Waterloo and have had no problems. They'll also do quality drum scans for you too.
For the record, I shoot all formats, including digital so I believe I'm giving a fairly unbiased opinion here.
As I live out in the boondocks I shoot 8x10 transparency film as cheaply as I can. That means developing the sheets myself with Tetenal's 3 bath E6 developer. The 1L kit does 40 8x10 sheets!! So that's an $1. per 8x10 sheet processing cost. MWAHAHAHAHA! Need hi-res scans? No problem: with 8x10 film you can scan it with a dirt cheap scanner (I use an Epson 2450), and stitch 4 4x5 frames together which enlarges to 32x40" for printing easy.
I'm Melbourne based and shoot 5x4 color neg., develop myself using solutions I compound from chemicals imported from Canada. I buy film in bulk from Badger Graphics in the USA and scan at 2400 DPI using an Artixscan M1 scanner resulting in 100Megapixel images which I print on a 980mm wide HP ink-jet printer. The development costs me AU$0.47 per sheet and the film costs around AU$2.50 per sheet depending on exchange rate.
If 100 Mp images aren't enough justification, for those who shoot architecture or (like me) landscapes, the movements available on LF field cameras to broaden the effective depth-of-field are ample justification.
If, as predicted, 100Mp digital cameras become available in the next 10 years, I will still work with my field camera becuse of the movements - or I may move up to 10x8 to get 400Mp!!
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It is a pain in the ass. Sometimes a huge pain in the ass. And colour is very expensive. But at least the volume is low. If you think you can handle low volume, high hassle / expense, then LF will suit you just fine
Originally Posted by l2oBiN
I shot 20 sheets of colour this last year. The total cost was $130 canadian or more, including processing & film costs. I like two or three of those images enough to bother with. The rest are kind of crappy. Big outlay for 17 shitty images and a couple that I don't mind and one that I actually quite like. But that's just the nature of this type of photography. The learning process is slower, the shooting is more careful and more error-prone, and it may piss you off at times. But it's got its benefits as well.
I use my digital much more than my large format because of the cost - especially for colour. The last year especially as I've had a lot of big life events which have interfered with my focus on LF photography. But there are times that I get into the LF mood and nothing else will fulfill. It's worth experimenting with for awhile at the very least. Don't over-invest in it until you're certain you want to stick with it. Get a decent used camera and lens and work with it for awhile. If it ends up being not worth the effort you can resell your gear, and if you like it - well, keep doing it!
The universe is a haunted house. -Coil
Do you print portrait or horizontal on the HP, ie Height or width =980mm? How good is the visual quality of your print in terms of resolution? Could you post a 100% crop at vs a scaled down version?
A 100Mp file would give which lenght and height in a print at 300ppi?
Rory, that sounds great, and I wonder if the reslution should actually be better because for a 32X40 print, there is only a 4X enlargement is a 8X10 negative is used while for a 4X5 negative this would equate to a 8X enlargement. Just how much better would a 8X10 print look? Did you ever do a comparrison?
Please take the scanning banter to Hybridphoto.com. It is outside the charter of APUG. Thanks guys.
That's just, like, my opinion, man...