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  1. #1
    timlayton's Avatar
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    8x10 vs 4x5 Tips?

    I have been shooting 4x5 for a while now and I make good quality negatives and prints. I am borrowing an 8x10 from a friend for the holiday weekend and wanted to know from experienced 8x10 photographers about any differences that I need to look out for between the two formats Things like depth of field, exposure variances, etc. The obvious things like movements, weight, setup time, etc don't worry about. Unfortunately my friend isn't a photographer it was something he inherited.

    I appreciate your help and input.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Neanderman's Avatar
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    Well, depth of field is focal length dependent, so since a longer focal length lens is required, your depth of field at any given aperture will be less on the 8x10. So if you're used to shooting at f22 with a 4x5, plan on f32 or lower with the 8x10. And, given that, your exposures will be equivalently longer, too.

    You're going to love the bigger negative. Be prepared for not wanting to go back to a "little" 4x5.
    "I only wanted Uncle Vern standing by his new car (a Hudson) on a clear day. I got him and the car. I also got a bit of Aunt Mary's laundry, and Beau Jack, the dog, peeing on a fence, and a row of potted tuberous begonias on the porch and 78 trees and a million pebbles in the driveway and more. It's a generous medium, photography." -- Lee Friedlander

  3. #3
    timlayton's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reply. You confirmed what my gut was telling me so that is good. I am sitting here looking at the 8x10 film holders as compared to my 4x5 and I am just shaking my head... I am sure the ground glass on the 4x5 will feel like a 35mm viewfinder after shooting the 8x10 for 4 days straight. I have a bad feeling that a new expense will be in the near future. The good part is that my current 300mm and 210mm has enough image circle for 8x10 if I end up going that route so that will cut a lot of the expense. Also, my friend said he would give me 4 film holders if I end up buying a system. Everything else I have from doing 4x5.

  4. #4
    erikg's Avatar
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    Yes all your 4x5 stuff will look very small! One piece of advice I wish I was given is this: when you pull the dark slide cover the back with your dark cloth. You can get away with that on 4x5 but not generally on 8x10. This is when shooting outside. Also try not to be thinking of the cost constantly, sort of takes the fun out of it.

  5. #5
    timlayton's Avatar
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    Now that's a good tip about the dark slide and cloth. I would not have thought about that so thanks for the tip!

  6. #6
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    I didn't think of it either until I saw my first batch of film. I can't think of too much more that is different, really it is pretty much the same except for the size and weight of everything. Maybe it is slower working, but not really once you have been out a bit. Have fun, looking that GG is great, like a TV screen. Expect to interact with the public if you are on the street at all.

  7. #7

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    Assuming you're talking about b&w, you might want to tray-develop the film one sheet at a time for starters. And if shooting in dim situations, the longer (1 sec or more) shutter speeds needed may require some knowledge of the reciprocity effect for the chosen film. Years ago, Kodak provided a rough guide to use when film had not been actually tested:

    Indicated time = 1 sec
    Adjusted time = 2 sec
    Reduce dev time 10%

    Indicated time = 10 sec
    Adjusted time = 50 sec
    Reduce dev time 20%

    Indicated time = 100 sec
    Adjusted time = 1200 sec
    Reduce dev time 30%

    Interpolation can be done by plotting these values on log paper. It's better than guessing.

  8. #8
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    You need to tell him they don't make film for it anymore and offer to take it off his hands for $100.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
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    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  9. #9
    ROL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neanderman View Post
    You're going to love the bigger negative. Be prepared for not wanting to go back to a "little" 4x5.
    And remember if 8X10 becomes too much – weight, large, lack of DOF, expensive – there's always 5X7, a sweet spot for some.

    Have fun.

  10. #10
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    On 8x10 focusing, framing, adjusting is all easier. Moving the camera around can be more difficult. Film holders are heavier. You likely will carry less of them than 4x5. 8x10 film holders are easier to load.

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