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  1. #11

    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Multi Format
    Quote Originally Posted by pstake View Post
    After years of shooting with SLRs, I got bit by the rangefinder bug. Started with a Contax IIa with the F2 Sonnar and ended with that plus a Retina IIIc, F2 Xenon; Walz Envoy 35; Karat 36, F2 Heligon; and a Kiev IIa with what could be its original Jupiter-8 (both 1956.)

    They all have their charms but the Contax and Kiev are the most fun.

    The problem is: I have yet to master framing on a rangefinder after all those years of seeing exactly what the film sees. Some of these cameras seem to be closer to correct than others, in particular the IIa and the Walz. Not sure why ... but the Walz does have a frame line.

    I'm thinking that has something to do with this so-called "parallax correction."

    I've googled that term a few times and still don't have a solid understanding of what it is.

    Here are two recent prints from negatives made with the Kiev IIa and Jupiter-8 ... they clearly show my folly in framing.

    Any info about parallax correction, or tips / rules-of-thumb about adjusting the frame to correct for the difference between the viewfinder and the lens, is appreciated!


    ps. you should all go buy the SLRs i have listed in the classifieds. I'll make you a deal on both! After my rangefinder binge, I need to thin the SLR herd.

    Attachment 67274

    As you can see, I cut off their hands. My original framing included their hand and moved their faces farther right.

    Attachment 67275
    This is a pretty good article on parallax http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallax

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Parallax is the issue caused by using optics in slightly different positions for viewing and taking a photo.

    With an SLR (or other 'through the lens' system) you use the same optics (ie the lens) for both composing and taking the picture, so the image recorded on the film is exactly the same as the image seen in the viewfinder.

    With a rangefinder (and also with cameras like a twin lens reflex) you use separate lenses for each job - so one lens mounted on front of the film for recording the image, and a viewfinder for composing it. Because these two lenses are slightly offset from each other they will see slightly different images. At long shooting distances this makes little difference, as the offset is essentially negated by the subjects being further away. At closer distances though the viewfinder being slightly offset means you are going to end up looking over the shoulder of your subject in the viewfinder.

    Some cameras will correct for this and move the frame lines as you focus closer, some won't and will just require you to mentally adjust. After you have shot a few rolls of film and see the results you should find yourself being able to tell when parallax will be an issue, and adjust appropriately.

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