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  1. #1

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    Thinking of a Widelux

    I estimated my tax refund and it looks like I should be getting about $1600 back! (Time to revise the W-4... but yay for house ownership! ) So I am thinking of getting a widelux and I was wondering if anyone had any tips about what to look for, questions to ask, etc, as I don't know much about them, except they sound really cool and take very interesting pics, so I want to try it. But I have never spent that much on a piece of equipment before, so the thought is a little scary, so I thought I would start my research with you fine people.

  2. #2
    eric's Avatar
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    I've used them before. There are about 5 if I recall, shutter speeds. The 35mm ones, tend to break so make sure you get one from a dealer and that you can replace them. Enlarging is a pain cause you have to modify a neg carrier.
    What I remeber when I used it, was you get very strange effects when you use them indoors with flourecent lighting. Has something to do with wavelengths and the way the front swings. I really like Sylvia Plachy's work on the widelux (just found out that she is the mother to Adrien Brody).

  3. #3

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    Matt Needham (kmattfish) uses one to make some wonderful portraits with cityscape backgrounds. He has a large old-camera collection and must have some good tips on what to look for.

  4. #4

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    Have no experience with a widelux but am now using a Horizon 202. If you like some information, pm me and will be glad to provide you.

  5. #5

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    They are excellent cameras, but delicate. The noblex is similar but with an electric motor rather than clockwork drive mechanism.
    If you're buying used, test the camera. Clear sky & look for "banding" that's uneven exposure caused by hesitation in rotation of the lens. It's a very difficult fault to correct. Even by a skilled technician.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by cwheeler
    Matt Needham (kmattfish) uses one to make some wonderful portraits with cityscape backgrounds. He has a large old-camera collection and must have some good tips on what to look for.
    Yes, I know Matt from another forum and he is one of my inspirations for wanting one! I will ask him over there, but I wanted to ask here since I think he's the only one there who would know anything and I thought there might be more here...

    I haven't heard of a noblex, I will look into that one. I did look briefly at the Horizon but there was something I didn't like about it at first. But it seems to be a big price difference, so I may look again and pm you about it, thanks maxby. And everyone

  7. #7
    ksmattfish's Avatar
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    Hey, Orie. I would have to agree that you would probably want to get one from some sort of dealer that would allow a return or a testing period to make sure you don't get one with problems. If you could find one at KEH that would be good. As far as I can tell there isn't a whole lot of difference as far as features go between the F6, F7, and F8; supposedly the more recent models have sturdier innards. If you look at an F6 make sure it has the modern style shutter speeds like 1/15, 1/125, and 1/250th rather than the older 1/10, 1/100, and 1/200, or something like that.

    Mine is a F6 that I got used. It worked well for the first 100 rolls or so, and then got all crunchy on a cold winter day. I sent it to a repair place that advertised widelux repair, and they said it would be about $350, but got it back unrepaired about a year later; they said they couldn't get parts because the Panon factory in Japan burned down. Then I sent it to www.camerarepair.com and they fixed it in about 2 weeks for a little more than $200. It works great again.

    They have f/2.8 through f/11, and the 3 above mentioned shutter speeds. I've never tried a Noblex, there are several models, but I'd look into them before you buy a Widelux; they probably have more features, and they are still in production which hopefully means any repairs shouldn't be a problem.

    I'm trying out a friend's Horizon 202 right now, but I haven't developed any film yet. I'll let you know how it turns out. Just from using it I can say I like the extra shutter speeds (1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250). The aperture goes up to f/16 on the Horizon 202, but at f/11 on the Widelux everything from about 3' to infinity is in focus anyway. Of course the Widelux looks and feels very nice as it's an all metal camera. The Horizon is covered in plastic, and seems a bit clunkier.

    I think the Noblex has focus adjustment; both the Horizon and the Widelux are fixed focus. I think I've read that there is a second of delay between hitting the shutter button and the actual exposure on the Noblex, while it gets it's electric motor up to speed. The Widelux and the Horizon happen pretty much instantly.

    A swing lens pano camera is a lot of fun to use.

  8. #8

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    Thank you, Matt!!!

  9. #9
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksmattfish
    I'm trying out a friend's Horizon 202 right now, but I haven't developed any film yet. I'll let you know how it turns out.
    I would be very interested to hear your experiences (or anyone else's) with the Horizon.

    I have been thinking about one myself. I have a 19mm lens that I use for 35mm, and I often crop so that I get a "panoramic" look. This essentially uses a neg area of 12-16 x 36 mm. The Horizon would give me a neg of 24 x 56. It seems that that should be about the same as going from 35mm to MF. And, without doing serious calculations, a 28mm lens, as on the Horizon, would give me a similar field of view as the 19mm on my 35mm SLR.

    I know the perspective is different because of the lens swing, but otherwise, am I too far off?

    Also would be interested in anyone's thoughts on these cameras. Is the 303 that much better than the 202? Should I buy one new from a certain dealer to insure I get one that works?

    I know I "should" buy a Fuji 617, but I'm just playing here, and a couple of hundred bucks is all the play money I have for this.

    Cheers

    David

  10. #10

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    Well, for starters you can check out this first impression of the Horizon 202....http://www.photomalaysia.com/forum/i...showtopic=1084

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