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Crown Graphic vs Mamiya C220

 
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scottkathe



Joined: 07 Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Location: Vermont, USA

PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

About a year ago I built a Bender 4x5 because I felt limited by my 35mm Nikon SLRs. I loved building the camera and was very impressed with the 4x5 inches of film in b&w but especially with color transparencies. After using it for a while with a 150mm Nikkor I wanted something wider so I got a 90mm Schneider Angulon. The camera takes great pictures but takes too long to set up and the 90mm lens requires a lot of camera modification to use. So I gave 6x6 a shot with a TLR and have settled on a Mamiya C220 system and like it a lot as well. But I like to shoot the same thing in b&w and color so I'd have to get another body for that. The weight of two C220s is more than a Crown.

I may be able to get a Crown Graphic with a Graflok back and a Kalart rangefinder and a 135 Schneider Xenar that just had a CLA. All for $250. So does anyone know if the 150mm Nikkor will fit in the Crown closed up? I know my 90mm Angulon will. Anyone used both a C220 and a Crown. I shoot mostly nature/landscape, sometimes miles in and 1,000s of feet up from my car. Am I going to get enough lens tilt for landscape with the Crown? The Bender 4x5 has an insane about of movements but it takes so much time to set up I don't use it much. Sorry the post is so long but this looks like the best place to ask my questions!

Thanks,

Scott
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C. Henry



Joined: 13 Dec 2005
Posts: 358
Location: North East Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scott;

For what its worth I have a Mamiya C330 as well as a 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 Speed Graphic and would certainly use the Speed rather than the 330 if I was doing your type of photography. The drop position of the front panel on the Speed does give a reasonable amount of down tilt which is not avasilable at all on the 330, not to mention the ease of taking two consecutive shots on different films with the Speed.
Perhaps someone else will have some info that comes closer to answering your questions.

C. Henry
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RichS



Joined: 18 Oct 2001
Posts: 1467
Location: South of Rochester, NY

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 4:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also use a C330 and various Speeds/Crowns.

I see them as two completely different systems and styles. To me, the C330 is more of a large 35mm but abit slower to operate. The Graphics are, well, larger and slower To be honest, I usually shoot the one that fits my mood more than fits the photo...

The Crown should be an excellent camera for what you have in mind. Since it folds up, it travels easy and the weight isn't that bad.

I can't say for sure if the 150 will fit closed? I do have a 135 Nikkor and that's no problem.

In case you haven't already looked into this, I'll mention the movement limitaion. You get tilts and NO swings. This probably won't affect lanscape photos unless you want to shoot vertical! You have to turn the entire camera on it's side and that now gives you swings but NO tilts! This could be a minor problem if you wanted to shoot a tall tree and have the foreground in focus for example.

Other than this limitation, the Crown should be great and deffinitely better than 2 C220's. I know, I've carried 2 C330's more than once and it's not fun. On the other hand, I do carry my Super around my neck with Grafmatics and thouroughly enjoy it...
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Top



Joined: 06 Apr 2002
Posts: 198
Location: Northern New England USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Long ago I shot a lot with various Rollei TLRs, a C330, and a Century with 2x3 rollfilm backs. I found that unless I needed the extra lenses of the C330 or the light weight of the Rollies I did most everything with the Century. The MUCH bigger neg made any little invonvenience worth while.
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scottkathe



Joined: 07 Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Location: Vermont, USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

C.Henrey, RichS and Top,

Thanks for your replies to my post. They have been very helpful. Just a note to anyone else who may reply: The 150mm Nikkor I have is a f5.6-W and it would be good to find out if it would fit in the closed Crown Graphic. Thanks again!

Sincerely,

Scott
http://www.scottkathe.com
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troublemaker



Joined: 24 Nov 2003
Posts: 715
Location: So Cal

PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do not have a Nikkor W model 150 5.6 lens in front of me, but based on its ussually being mounted on the Copal #0 shutter I would think it should fit with the camera closing without problem. The lens is listed at two inches overall length, and width would not be a problem unles mounting on a 2x3 Pacmaker which requires that the cocking lever be alligned properly so the smaller camera will close. On the 4x5 there is more room.

[ This Message was edited by: troublemaker on 2006-04-08 22:30 ]
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scottkathe



Joined: 07 Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Location: Vermont, USA

PostPosted: Tue Apr 11, 2006 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I should have the camera by the end of the week! I'm really looking forward to it Thanks for all the comments and please feel free to make more.

Scott
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RichS



Joined: 18 Oct 2001
Posts: 1467
Location: South of Rochester, NY

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 5:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, how is the camera??


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scottkathe



Joined: 07 Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Location: Vermont, USA

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To quote Tony the tiger, "the camera is GRRREAT!". I've played around with it quite a bit but only taken two pictures with it so far. I haven't posted because I have not developed the negatives yet. I am trying to build a slosher and that is a nightmare! I think I'll do regular tray development.

The lens it came with sure looks good, it's the 135mm f4.7 (I think) Xenar and the shutter speeds sound right. The rangefinder seems to be accurate and in agreement with the distance scale on the body. I also have a 90mm angulon from before that came mounted in the correct lens board for the Crown.

The strap, a set of infinity stops and another lens board are on the way from Midwest Photo-they sure are a class act! I have a 150mm f5.6 Nikkor-W that I'm going to put in the new lens board. Since the camera is already set up with the 135 I don't know how much I will use the 150 but it sure has more room for movement. Maybe I'll use the 150 as the default lens and readjust the rangefinder, but then I get into new distance scales and all that.

I'm sure at some point I'll be in the market for a 210mm or longer lens. Any advise would be greatly appreciated as far as that goes.

The Crown Graphic seems to fit my needs right now. It sets up incredibly fast, works well and looks great for a 50 year old camera!

Scott
http://www.scottkathe.com
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RichS



Joined: 18 Oct 2001
Posts: 1467
Location: South of Rochester, NY

PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2006 4:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess you like it

The 150 would be afantastic lens on it but you're right about the readjustments and scales. Try both and see which one oyu like the best as a 'normal' lens. I always prefered a 135 myself, but things do change...

Yes, I like midwest too, but only when dealing with Jim. I've had a lot of bad luck with them this past year or so dealing with anyone else or just from their website...

A 210 is also a nice fl for the Speed. Originally, I went for a 240/270/380 to get a longer range. Then when I got a Super, a 210 seemed a nice lens for it (and there happened to be one at a reasonable price). I do like it. It happened to be the 210 Symmar convertable. Maybe there also something to the fact that I have a thing for convertible lenses? There's plenty of 210's around to choose from though so it should be fairly ewasy to pick one up...

Good luck with it...


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paulownian



Joined: 07 May 2006
Posts: 16
Location: South Central Pa.

PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess that I will echo what others have already said - I have the C330, C220 and several other Mamiya TLR models; I also have the Graflex 4x5, the 2x3 with a roll film back for hiking, and believe it, or not, I have even carried a Calumet view camera into the field! I still shoot with my digital, a Canon 10D, I even shoot with my old Nikon 35mm's once in a while. In the studio, I use my Calumet, but when I want mobility and quality, I use the 4X5,unless I am hiking,and then I shoot with the 2x3. I have roll film backs for both the 4x5 and the 2x3, so I have all of the bases covered. Sorry to be so long winded, but I really love me LF cameras!
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BobF



Joined: 20 Jul 2003
Posts: 41
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2006 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wish I'd seen this sooner. I too had a C220 and still do have a Crown. Don't have a roll film back for the Crown though. Had the 50, 80 and 180 Super black lenses for the 220.

I loved the C220 and regret somewhat getting rid of it. I "upgraded" to an RZ. Might have to buy me another one some day.

Since you like to take both colour and b&w of the same shot at times, I'm guessing you're going to carry the 4x5 and two roll film backs? One loaded with colour, the other with b&w? This would be the ideal way to use the 4x5 with roll film I would think. Basically the same way people use medium format cameras and swap backs on them. Something like the Calumet C2 (or a copy of it) that slides right into a standard Graflok back would work, wouldn't it?

My recommendation would be to bag the rangefinder too. It takes up space, adds weight and you need to change cams if you change lenses. Use the ground glass to focus. If you want to make sure of fine focus, use a loupe on the ground glass.

[ This Message was edited by: BobF on 2006-11-20 10:50 ]
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