Quote Originally Posted by Terry Christian View Post
I agree with E. The camera should be reasonably level/plumb with itself, and you should indeed use the levels on the camera and tripod to get yourself to a decent starting point, but it's what's on the ground glass that counts, as that's what the film will see. Obsess over that -- not over the preliminary set-up.
Actually I should have mentioned this before. My heavy tripod (for 8x10) has two tiny tubular levels at right angles, and I do use these to get the head of the tripod reasonably level when setting up - this can make a difference with a heavy camera on a ball bearing pan head meant for a newsreel camera. It's just about the only time I do use a level of any sort, for all I know the one on my 4x5 has dried up.