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  1. #11
    ambaker's Avatar
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    Speed flashbulb system, versus electronic flash...

    I don't know that I can say that I can tell at a glance, the difference in lighting from either.

    However, I did acquire a stock of bulbs over the last couple of years. I like using them with my press cameras. Somehow a modern strobe just does not seem fitting.

    I've also found that when shooting people, they get quite a kick out of it.

    For me, I enjoy it as part of the process. It makes me think more about the image I want to make.

    But, is it "better"? I can't say that I can see it in the results.


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  2. #12
    MattKing's Avatar
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    Flashbulbs were/are often used in large reflectors. And they put out a deliciously large amount of light.

    Electronic flashes are often designed to be as small as possible. That means smaller amounts of light pumped into smallish reflectors.

    The size and the shape of the reflectors and the quantity of light emitted by the source makes a big difference on how the photos appear.

    Flashbulbs in a large reflector
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  3. #13

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    As far as I know, Congress has not passed any laws prohibiting the use of flashbulbs. I have two or three thousand squirreled away. A few years ago, on eBay there was a guy selling cases of Press 40 bulbs and I got seven cases of 120 bulbs for fairly cheap. There are still lots of M-2 and M-3 bulbs available. Press 25's and #5's are common but run about $1 per bulb. If you want something specialized, like the bigger focal plane bulbs or infrared bulbs, they can be quite expensive.
    Dave

    "She's always out making pictures, She's always out making scenes.
    She's always out the window, When it comes to making Dreams.

    It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up."

    From It's All Mixed Up by The Cars

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by desertratt View Post
    I used flash bulbs and electronic flash with Speed Graphics in the 1950s and early 1960s . I don't know of any resaon to use flash bulbs but this is just one person's humbug opinion.
    I am confused again. I've had a reply from an APUGer( Henry Finley) telling me why you can't electronic flash with Speeds other than on the B setting and yet you have managed it.

    Were there Speeds that were usable with electronic flash. There must be a difference between what Henry Finley is referring to and what you are referring to.

    Is there a simple explanation that reconciles what seem to be irreconcilable statements? The only one I can think of is that you did it on the B setting but this would seem to pose great if not impossible difficulties unless the scene was pitch black and the only illumination was the flash so opening to B and shutting it again resulted in no other light reaching the film

    Thanks

    pentaxuser

  5. #15
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ambaker View Post
    However, I did acquire a stock of bulbs over the last couple of years. I like using them with my press cameras. Somehow a modern strobe just does not seem fitting.

    I've also found that when shooting people, they get quite a kick out of it.

    For me, I enjoy it as part of the process.
    There is nothing like peoples' reaction to a press camera using flashbulbs.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  6. #16
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxuser View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by henry finley View Post

    The Speed shutter was only fully open at B. Every other speed was another slit size that traveled across the film. On a 35 there is only the opening and closing shutter that followed behind it. On a Speed, the shutter was a very long piece of fabric with several slit openings in it, in relation to how far you turned the winding key. Only on B was the both open at the same time.
    I am confused again. I've had a reply from an APUGer( Henry Finley) telling me why you can't electronic flash with Speeds other than on the B setting and yet you have managed it.

    Were there Speeds that were usable with electronic flash. There must be a difference between what Henry Finley is referring to and what you are referring to.

    Is there a simple explanation that reconciles what seem to be irreconcilable statements? The only one I can think of is that you did it on the B setting but this would seem to pose great if not impossible difficulties unless the scene was pitch black and the only illumination was the flash so opening to B and shutting it again resulted in no other light reaching the film

    Thanks

    pentaxuser
    Henry is correct that electronic flashes cannot be used on a Speed Graphic with a focal plane shutter except with the B setting for both the focal plane shutter and the lens shutter. However an electronic flashes can be used on a Speed Graphic with a lens shutter and the focal plane shutter on O.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  7. #17
    Bill Burk's Avatar
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    Interesting, I didn't know the Speed Graphic didn't have an equivalent to the 35mm world's SLR flash sync speed, like 60, where the first curtain opens, syncs and then second curtain closes...

    Lens shutters would solve that problem, certainly.

    I sometimes use flash bulbs with 4x5 rangefinder, because I am shooting a Grafmatic with 6 shots. Maybe I am prepared to shoot 24 shots max if I am ambitious, for any one excursion.

    A small flashgun with a handful of bulbs is reasonably lightweight and fairly convenient for the purpose. I'm not taking that many pictures, so the fact that I only have a few total flashes is not as significant when shooting 4x5.

  8. #18
    Jim Noel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdSawyer View Post
    Flashbulbs are the only way to do flash in combination with the focal-plane shutter. The FP shutter will not sync with an electronic flash.

    There are flashbulbs available which are more powerful than electronic flash, also. (in case you need extreme amounts of light).
    The most powerful handheld electronic flash does not produce as much light as the tiniest "Peanut" bulbs.
    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Films NOT Dead - Just getting fixed![/FONT]

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Burk View Post
    Interesting, I didn't know the Speed Graphic didn't have an equivalent to the 35mm world's SLR flash sync speed, like 60, where the first curtain opens, syncs and then second curtain closes...

    Lens shutters would solve that problem, certainly.
    Graflex used a moving slit curtain. The slit was fixed sizes. It is one moving curtain, not two independent curtains.

    Lens shutter solves the problem only if that shutter supports X-synch. Many, if not most, do but there were some shutters that did not have synch except that improvised using a solenoid... and that can't fake a X-synch.

    EDIT: what Serius refers to as "O" setting on the Graflex focal plane shutter is FULLY OPEN - meaning the opening is 4 inches on a 4x5 camera. That is not a shutter speed setting, per se, but a way to keep the focal plan shutter curtain out of the way when using a lens shutter.

  10. #20
    fotch's Avatar
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    Flash bulbs meant for focal plane shutters had a longer burn time to accommodate the moving slit. Electronic flash cannot do this, AFAIK. I think the bulbs were labeled FP or something similar.
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