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Modern rangefinder 4x5s?
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2001 12:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm thinking of purchasing a Wista RF 4x5 around the first of the year. It's one of only two or three rangefinder coupled 4x5s in the big B&H pro sourcebook, along with the Linhofs, which are just way too expensive for me.

I think Horseman used to make a rangefinder 4x5, and if it's still manufactured, does anyone know anything about the Wista or the Horseman (if it exists)? I'm just now starting on the research about this purchase, but I want a pretty good store of information before I drop three or four grand on a camera.



[ This Message was edited by: LelandRay on 2001-09-07 05:25 ]
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1439
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2001 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Leland!

Check out the Horseman website at http://www.horsemanusa.com/ (click on "Products") for a nice on-line catalog of their current stuff. Possibly Wista has a site, I don't know offhand. Have you looked at Toyo and Calumet?

Nice picture! What camera/lens/film?

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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2001 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks like it's either the Linhof or the Wista RF, but I don't have to make any decisions right now. If I do go with one, it'll be the Wista.

"What camera/lens/film?"
(Thanks for the compliment, Henry.)

Pentax 67II with either the 165 f2.8 or the 105 f2.4. Film was probably Kodak E100S or E100SW. (Those are the only two color films I shoot for scenic work.)


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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1439
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2001 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right you are. I neglected to notice that the current Horseman field (technical) cameras are not equipped with rangefinders!

Funny thing about that photo. It came up all by itself on my screen only once! All other times I get an icon with a broken key symbol and I can't open it. Any suggestions?

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[ This Message was edited by: Henry on 2001-09-08 18:16 ]
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2001 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Funny thing about that photo. It came up all by itself on my screen only once! All other times I get an icon with a broken key symbol and I can't open it. Any suggestions?


It could be that your ISP is having trouble talking to my website host. The images load just fine here and on my other machine.

So tell me: what negative scanners are people using for 4x5 (and larger)? I have an Agfa Duoscan T1200 which will scan to 8x10, but there are other scanners on the market. The Agfa is one of the cheapest that will scan sheet film without dealing with some sort of adapter.
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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1439
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2001 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, my ISP is having trouble with a lot of things---mainly sheer survival! I think it's time for a change....

I've been very happy with the Epson Expression 1600 scanner with 120 film. I've only ever scanned one 4x5 on it but it came out fine. You can lay the negs right on the platen or use the holders that come with the TPU version. The 1600 has been replaced recently by the 1680; see the review in June 2001 Shutterbug.

I just went over to MS Explorer (from Netscape) and the images load fine. When I try to load them on Netscape I get a message "Netscape is unable to locate the server (no name specified). Please check the server name and try again." So it isn't my ISP after all. That second image looks an awful lot like the Pearl River, where my Dad and I used to fish back in the '50s (well, he used to fish, while I read comic books).

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[ This Message was edited by: Henry on 2001-09-09 04:29 ]
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2001 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
That second image looks an awful lot like the Pearl River, where my Dad and I used to fish back in the '50s


Close, but no cigar, Henry. The Pearl is about 35 miles west of here; the photo is of the Bouie River at Glendale, Mississippi. Here's another shot of the Bouie--in the color photo the rapids are at the extreme background, concealed by shadow and foliage. And I shot this one with a "real" camera, namely a Graphic View II loaded with Plus X.

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Henry



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 1439
Location: Allentown, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2001 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leland,
That Plus-X is great stuff. I've shot an awful lot of it in 35mm, fact I have a long roll in the bulk loader right now which may take me forever to use up since I'm doing all b/w work with the Century (using chromogenic film).

How do you find using the Graphic View II as a field camera, in terms of bulk, etc.? (Maybe this is why you're looking at the Wista!?) I know it's great in the studio; still wish I had bought the one at the now-defunct camera store for $250.

Once again I had to go to MS Explorer to bring up the images in your posts. Netscape is letting me down....

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[ This Message was edited by: Henry on 2001-09-10 03:37 ]
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2001 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Once again I had to go to MS Explorer to bring up the images in your posts. Netscape is letting me down....


I'm beginning to think maybe Netscape doesn't like the forum script, or maybe Netscape on your computer doesn't like the forum script, or heck, maybe the planets aren't properly aligned.

The Graphic View is a lousy field camera. It's just too freaking heavy and difficult to tote around. I have a Crown set up as a light field camera, and it does the job admirably, but of course I haven't nearly the ability to swing, tilt, rock and roll.

Seriously, a lightweight wooden camera would do a much better job; the monorail needs to be set up in the studio, or within ten feet of my pickup truck. The GV sets up fast and all that, but when shooting landscapes I don't really need all those movements, so why not save some weight and bulk? (Image below is from Polapan in the trusty Speed Graphic.)



[ This Message was edited by: LelandRay on 2001-09-10 15:00 ]
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hugo13



Joined: 06 Sep 2001
Posts: 14
Location: Georgia

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2001 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a quick plug. Either of you consider using a Linhof Technikardan? You get more movements then you could possibly use and it doesn't way any more than a Graphic. You can pick them up on e-bay or plenty of other sites used for a lot less than the rangefinder Linhof models. So, unless you're stuck on that rangefinder... which isn't going to be all that usefull if you're using the camera adjustments anyway. Just a thought.
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2001 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never look at the groundglass on my Speed, preferring to use it as it was meant to be used, sort of a big point and shoot. So if I buy another rangefinder camera, it'll be used offhand, not on a tripod.
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jpmose



Joined: 29 May 2001
Posts: 164
Location: Atlanta, GA

PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2001 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leland,

If you are interested in a hand held field camera...enjoy your Graphic! I bought a mint 1975 Super Technica V with original rare black leather (usually only seen on Master Technicas) and 5 fitted lenses. Lots of accessories. It is a dream outfit. I somehow thought my life (or maybe my pictures) would be better for this huge investment. IT WASN'T! First and foremost, my Super Speed Graphic is such a pleasure, due to its weight. The Linhof is no fun to walk around with unless your the size of an elephant and I'm not! For hand held purposes, the Linhof does not have any advantage other than it's awesome zoom viewfinder (75mm to 360mm). This is an accessory anyway. In fact, Toyo used it or something similar with it's version of the Super Graphic. You may be able to adapt it to your Graphic if you don't mind tampering with its originality. I also own a Graphic View II (like you) and believe me, it will do anything on a tripod that my Linhof Technica does. If I had to do it over again, I would simply have invested in used top quality multi coated lenses for my Super Speed and used the adaptor board for my Graphic View II. In fact I did take one of the Linhof lens and switch it to the Super Speed..the 150mm Symmar S. It takes the same outstanding photos as it did on the Linhof and my body doesn't ache from carrying it!

Please don't misunderstand me, I love my Linhof and it is a fantastic camera. But for what I invested into it, I would have been just as well off with my Graflex products! Good luck.

Best regards,

J. P. Mose

JP Mose

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Best regards,

JP Mose
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LelandRay



Joined: 24 May 2001
Posts: 115
Location: Mississippi

PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2001 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input, J.P. I tend to agree with you that a hotshot expensive rig isn't necessary; the owner of the printing lab I use commented just the other day how sharp my stuff was from that "old" rig I use. I think my primary concern was, what happens if / when the Speed dies and can't be fixed, or if it begins having problems that keep it down a lot of the time?

Okay, the truth is that I just like shooting offhand with the big camera. Yep, I simply like doing it.
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2001 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For what a new Wista costs, you could have two or three beautiful Speeds and Crowns in the closet as understudies waiting for the star tget wrinkles in her FP shutter

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"In order to invent, you need a good imagination and a lot of junk" Thomas Edison
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schmigrex



Joined: 22 Feb 2002
Posts: 5
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2002 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honestly, using my Crown has really brought me back to earth on a lot of these issues. I used to dream of a new Wisner or Sinar, but since I mainly shoot landscape and architectural, I find the limited movements on my Graphic pretty adequate. Plus, you can't beat the weight! When I do move up, I'll stick with an old beast and a newer lens, just for the multicoatings. Even with my old lens, I haven't been disappointed by sharpness issues, especially with small apertures -- f/32 is truly the great equalizer! I still look at the ground glass, but I've gotten to where I can be pretty sure what I'll get just with the rangefinder and the sports frame. These cameras rule -- the rest of the shooters don't know what they're missing!
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