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  1. #1
    Ottrdaemmerung's Avatar
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    Polaroid pack film cameras for Fuji FP-100B/C

    I just recently got back into instant film by shooting Fuji FP-100B and FP-100C pack film in a Polaroid pack film holder for my medium-format Mamiya 645 Pro. Unfortunately, although the images are beautifully sharp thanks to the good optics, the image is only the size of a 6 cm x 4.5 cm negative.

    Now I'm starting to look around for a camera that will take the same Fuji pack film but will render an image at full or near-full size. The Film Photography Podcast has been advocating the Polaroid Colorpack series of cameras, but their images don't look too great, like the Colorpack cameras have cheap plastic lenses instead of glass.

    Can anyone recommend to me a camera that will take high-quality, sharp and large size images with this pack film? Thanks in advance for any info you guys could provide.

  2. #2

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    Polaroid Land cameras?

    Aside from the lack of manual control, my wife's Polaroid 450 seems like a decent camera. Cost us $30 for one in almost new condition.

    The sharpness may not meet your needs but I have a hard time telling if we're hitting the camera or the films limits.

    I like the idea of a manual one like the 180 or 195 but I'm not sure it would be worth the money to me.

  3. #3
    rjbuzzclick's Avatar
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    I use a 4x5 Speed Graphic with a Polaroid 405 back. The pack film is slightly smaller than 4x5, and offset a wee bit, but it works well.
    Reid

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/rjbuzzclick/

    "If I had a nickel for every time I had to replace a camera battery, I'd be able to get the #@%&$ battery cover off!" -Me

  4. #4
    Paul Sorensen's Avatar
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    Polaroid made tons of cameras for these things, some are now available very cheaply and some are kind of expensive. The cheap ones are really cheap and tend to not be the greatest, but some are definitely better than others.

    As for the older cameras, the cheaper ones with the 114mm f/8.8 2-element plastic and the better ones with the 114mm f/8.8 3-element glass lenses sell for very similar prices with the possible exception of the 250, 350, and 450 which have Zeiss rangefinders. I got a 240 for $10 plus shipping on eBay. It was in fantastic shape and included the case and user manual. All of the above use funky batteries, but they are still available. What I did was go through what was listed on eBay and then check on the Land List for specifications at http://www.rwhirled.com/landlist/landdcam-pack.htm. Many of the colorpack cameras have 3 element plastic lenses, so the glass lens versions above should be better.

    The newer ones tend to sell for too much, such as the ProPack. I actually sold mine for $150 on ebay and bought the afore mentioned 240. I did just check on eBay, and it appears prices have come down some, but I am still happier with the 240 I got than a ProPack for $50. They generally have plastic lenses and are, at a minimum, no better than the above.

    The better models sell for a lot. The 180 sells for $300 and up, it seems. For that, there are probably better options like the Mamiya Universal or the Speed Graphic with a Polaroid back. The Polaroid back for the Mamiya RB67 gives a roughly 8cm X 8cm square image that is a lot larger than the 645, but it still leaves a lot of area unexposed.

    One other thing, there is some fun Polaroid film available for sale at The Impossible Project at http://shop.the-impossible-project.c...p/film/type100. It is kind of pricy, but they do have some of the Chocolate Polaroid film that they made toward the end. It is expired, but not too badly. Plus, it supports the production of new integral instant films.

  5. #5

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    The 360 automatic is a good bet. I used 1 as a backup to my 195 and 180 pack cameras. The latter 2 are the all manual pack cameras and are excellent but, the price is about 10x for either compared to almost any of the automatics. I have about 20-25 of the automatics of various models and any can be very good if you learn to shoot with Polaroid film that is not like any other film. Even the plastic lens models can produce very good images. The corning glass lens is surprisingly as good as some of the really high priced name brands. The key to getting the best from the system is: 1) TRIPOD, 2) cable release or timer release, 3) understanding the film (find Ansel Adams book on the Polaroid, it is THE bible and a must read for anyone into Polaroid instant film) and, 4) TRIPOD. Hand holding the camera is like handholding a small lf and a challenge because of the layout and release. If using handheld, defintitely get eithe rthe cable release or timer release.

    Each automatic camera has an exposure compensation control and I've found that they range varies both between models and even the same model so some testing is needed. I usually find a good starting point is -1 for the control. Also, get a lens shade. You'll need to rig something but it makes a difference when shooting in the sunlight.

  6. #6
    xya
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    the mamiya universal with a polaroid back or the sister model polaroid 600se would be a good option. full size, nice lenses and a professional camera system, quite some years old but still reliable.

    reinhard



 

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