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View Full Version : NEW 8x10 Field Cameras under $2000 USD?



ic-racer
28-Aug-2009, 10:52
From what I can tell there are just 3 but thats why I am positng. Please add any that you know.

I'm in the market and am deciding between the Tachihara (Deardorff style) double extension for about $1500 USD and the Shen Hao 8x10 (Phillips style) for about $1900.

For my purposes I'm not looking at the Gowland Pocket 8x10 ($1200-1500) any more because I decided I want a sturdier camera rather than a lighter one. (I'm currently using a restored Century that is only about 6 to 7 lbs).

Unless the selling price is one-half or less of new, I have no interest in someone elses camera they didn't like. (Therefore the interest in NEW cameras).

I have no interest in any film camera of any format that cost over $2000. Especially when I won't be able to tell the difference from my $5 Century. (Looking to upgrade for reasons of smoother operation, more movement and increased stability).

So, what am I missing (if any)?

**NEW 8x10 FIELD cameras available in the USA for under $2000 USD**

1) Gowland 8x10 $1200-1500
2) Tachihara 8x10 double extension in chrome or brass $1400-1500
3) Shen Hao FCL 810A $1900

ic-racer
28-Aug-2009, 10:56
Here is the five dollar camera from which I will be upgrading:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v670/ic-racer/DSCF4700.jpg

Daniel_Buck
28-Aug-2009, 11:01
the Tachihara should be a nice camera! The Shen Hao should be nice too, with the phillips/chamonix design style. I enjoyed my Tachihara, but it was a little to heavy for what I wanted.

MenacingTourist
28-Aug-2009, 11:55
Sounds like you're right on track.

BetterSense
28-Aug-2009, 11:59
Let me know when you want to get rid of your $5 camera. I will give you quite a profit on it.

Archphoto
28-Aug-2009, 12:00
A great, restored, 8x10 Century you have !!!

A new camera: I have a Shen Hao HZX45-IIA 4x5 and a PTB54 to be build by my self, so I am inclined to say Shen Hao.

I would look at the movements both the Shen and the T have, together with the weight and base your decision on that.

Peter

Dan Schmidt
28-Aug-2009, 12:52
If your pricing is strict, then it rules out a wehman but at 2200 with 2 lensboards (drilled to your spec) it is pretty close, so i thought I would mention it.

ic-racer
28-Aug-2009, 14:08
Let me know when you want to get rid of your $5 camera. I will give you quite a profit on it.


Here is the history on that camera:
http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=29267&highlight=century

resummerfield
28-Aug-2009, 14:16
Thanks for posting info on the Wehman camera, Dan. Interesting concept.

ic-racer
28-Aug-2009, 14:20
the Tachihara should be a nice camera! The Shen Hao should be nice too, with the phillips/chamonix design style. I enjoyed my Tachihara, but it was a little to heavy for what I wanted.

I was getting geared up to do the "ADD ITEM TO CART" for the Tachihara and really love the pictures of the camera that I found posted on the internet. The I got an e-mail about the Shen Hao.

I think it comes down to DEARDORFF STYLE vs PHILLIPS STYLE.

If anyone can comment on how easy it is to fold these things up that would be great.
I'm spoiled because the Century folds up in about 25 seconds and the lens and shutter release stay on.

BradS
28-Aug-2009, 14:46
is there a "Shen-Hao HZX 4X5-IIA"?

All I see at Badger is the other style...with no rear focus.

David A. Goldfarb
28-Aug-2009, 14:53
The Gowland cameras have always been in a state of evolution, and they're easily modified, so it's hard to say anything generally about their sturdiness, but I've had an early version (purchased used) of the 8x10" PocketView for at least ten years now, and I had a 4x5" for a few years as well, and if you can adjust your working habits to the camera a bit, it can do what you need it to do. For instance, I found it didn't lock down as tightly as I would have liked, so I added larger washers and more comfortable knobs that all together probably add an ounce or two to the weight, but are worth it for the extra stability. A new 8x10" Gowland may be sturdier out of the box. The camera I have is definitely more solid than most old wooden flatbeds.

My 8x10" doesn't have a reversible back, so switching between horizontal and vertical is inconvenient, but after you do it a number of times, you can get the hang of it and do it quickly.

It has no detentes, so I've inscribed marks on the camera to indicate zero positions where possible, and I use a Suunto Tandem clinometer-compass to check that it's level and square when I set up. The Suunto Tandem or a similar tool can turn any floppy camera into a much more precise instrument and allow you to do Sinar-like things like finding tilt and swing angles on the rear standard, and transferring them to the front standard.

To speed up setup, I often work with the rail attached to the tripod between shots and just slide the standards on and off the rail as needed.

Archphoto
28-Aug-2009, 14:54
I have the Shen Hao HZX45-IIA and yes you can move the back standard.
Look here (http://www.robertwhite.co.uk) or here (http://www.shen-hao.com),
but I live in Europe.

Peter

BradS
28-Aug-2009, 15:00
I have the Shen Hao HZX45-IIA and yes you can move the back standard.
Look here (http://www.robertwhite.co.uk) or here (http://www.shen-hao.com),
but I live in Europe.

Peter

The Shen Hoa site doesn't work for me at all...it wants some plug-in. Robert White seems to only have the FCL810....no HZA810....yes. I know about the 4x5 version but, we're kinda talking about 8x10 here...does an 8x10 version of the HZX exist?

ic-racer
28-Aug-2009, 16:32
The Shen Hoa site doesn't work for me at all...it wants some plug-in. Robert White seems to only have the FCL810....no HZA810....yes. I know about the 4x5 version but, we're kinda talking about 8x10 here...does an 8x10 version of the HZX exist?

Scroll down here and it shows the HZA810. It is in the Deardorff style. Don't know if that is the current model. I think the FCL is more recent.

http://www.adaflex.com/pages/chambres_grand_format/shen_hao/shen_hao.htm

Archphoto
28-Aug-2009, 16:39
What I can see on the Shen Hao site is the non-folding TFC810-A and the folding FCL810-A, so there are more camera's than the site shows.
You will have to contact them when you want to know more.

I just mentioned the 4x5 version to show that I am not entirely objective.....

Peter

Frank Petronio
28-Aug-2009, 17:28
So you're going from a 100-year old restored camera to wanting to buy a brand spanking new camera? Why not buy a gently used one? The classifieds seem to be brimming with deals.

BradS
28-Aug-2009, 20:04
Scroll down here and it shows the HZA810. It is in the Deardorff style. Don't know if that is the current model. I think the FCL is more recent.

http://www.adaflex.com/pages/chambres_grand_format/shen_hao/shen_hao.htm


2499 for the HZA810?!?!?!?

Wow! Seems like a lot.

Gene McCluney
29-Aug-2009, 10:51
Here is the five dollar camera from which I will be upgrading:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v670/ic-racer/DSCF4700.jpg

Your current camera is a great camera...but with limited movements. Any of your new choices will have fuller movements.

ic-racer
29-Aug-2009, 11:51
So you're going from a 100-year old restored camera to wanting to buy a brand spanking new camera? Why not buy a gently used one? The classifieds seem to be brimming with deals.

Maybe I have not been missing stuff. As a rule I wouldn't consider paying more than 1/2 retail for used film equipment. Otherwise I'd rather buy NEW from a dealer.

The only modern cameras I saw listed last month (that were not broken in some way) would be a Tachihara 8x10 for $150 more than new and a Chaminoix 8x10 for $550 more than new.

ic-racer
29-Aug-2009, 21:52
Fantastic 7 pages on the Shen Hao 810. I think I'm sold on that one.
http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=25073

BradS
29-Aug-2009, 22:57
Fantastic 7 pages on the Shen Hao 810. I think I'm sold on that one.
http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=25073


Sure...it is pretty but it looks like that one only focuses the front standard - or, am I missing something?

ic-racer
30-Aug-2009, 08:43
Sure...it is pretty but it looks like that one only focuses the front standard - or, am I missing something?

To me it looks like the Phillips, in that the rear slides back and forth and twists on those slotted 'fingers.' So, the back does 'focus' but not with a geared movement. The worm gear just focus the front.

Mike1234
30-Aug-2009, 09:14
Could someone post a pic of this 8x10 with the rear standard slid fully forward? I want to see how it will handle ultra-wide lenses.

timbo10ca
30-Aug-2009, 13:03
I have the Shen Hao HZX 57 and I love it- has huge amounts of movements. I was recently going down the same route as you and the FCL810 did not interest me for the same reason the FCL57 didn't- bellows draw and movements. So I emailed Zhang Fuming (owner?) of Shen Hao in China about the defunct HZX810. His response:

"Dear Sir,
The lastest model of HZX810 is HZX810-Classic, which was made of aluminium alloy and black walnut, and will cost 2290 USD."

You can purchase directly from Shen Hao (done it myself) and they have a Paypal account now (thanks to me :P) so transactions are smooth and easy. Email is zhangfmli@vip.sina.com. If I were buying a new 8x10 it's the one I'd get, having used my 5x7 and loving it. I can't imagine a $5000 camera being much better. I looked at all the ones you've been referred to here. That's just my inexperienced opinion though. I don't think you'll get more movements from a camera without going to monorail- Has everything but rear shifts.

Tim

Steve Barber
30-Aug-2009, 14:06
"If only we could pull out our brains and use only our eyes. P. Picasso"

I have always wondered about Picasso, I guess this explains him. He figured out how to do what he wished for.:eek:

Dave Langendonk
30-Aug-2009, 18:08
Another vote for the Shen-Hao. I bought the FCL-810 from Badger about a year ago and really like it. You can fold it in less than 30 seconds. Probably faster than that if you really needed to. It seems very well made.

venchka
31-Aug-2009, 06:17
There is a Deardorff with 2 backs for $1,200

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=49531&highlight=deardorff+8x10

and a Kodak Master View.

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=51043&highlight=kodak+8x10

ic-racer
31-Aug-2009, 17:35
There is a Deardorff with 2 backs for $1,200

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=49531&highlight=deardorff+8x10

and a Kodak Master View.

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=51043&highlight=kodak+8x10

I already have a fine old wood camera, so I'm looking for something I don't have to restore and something with a more modern design. (Not that those are not nice cameras).

ic-racer
31-Aug-2009, 17:37
Another vote for the Shen-Hao. I bought the FCL-810 from Badger about a year ago and really like it. You can fold it in less than 30 seconds. Probably faster than that if you really needed to. It seems very well made.

Its almost certain now. :) (FCL 810 from Badger, that is)

jeroldharter
31-Aug-2009, 18:37
ic-racer,

Why not buy my used Arca Swiss 8x10 listed in the classified which is a great camera and vastly less than 50% of retail. Check it out if you have not seen it.

But if you must buy new for about $2000 (which is exactly the scenario I just went through) check out the Wehman. I went to Bruce Wehman's house, met him, checked out the camera, etc. It is a great camera for lightweight, durability, bellows (150-600mm lenses), compactness (by memory it is ~13.5 x 14.5 x 3.6 inches). I really enjoy it so far.

I also picked up a used Sinar 4x5 back used and he built a reduction back for only ~$100. I have not used it yet but I am sure I will in the long run, especially if I pick up a 600mm lens in the future.

ic-racer
31-Aug-2009, 21:24
ic-racer,

Why not buy my used Arca Swiss 8x10 listed in the classified which is a great camera and vastly less than 50% of retail. Check it out if you have not seen it.


How much does the Arca Swiss weigh?

Frank Petronio
31-Aug-2009, 22:14
I don't have the weights but I had a similar 8x10 Arca, older style, and they are very light, strong, and compact. I doubt it could weigh more than the Shen while being more solid and having more movements. While the Shen is solid, the Arca will even stronger, and compared to a Tachi or Gowland it will surly be more sturdy. Jerold is also a good guy to buy from.

Nick_3536
1-Sep-2009, 02:13
I have the Shen Hao HZX 57 and I love it- has huge amounts of movements. I was recently going down the same route as you and the FCL810 did not interest me for the same reason the FCL57 didn't- bellows draw and movements. So I emailed Zhang Fuming (owner?) of Shen Hao in China about the defunct HZX810. His response:

"Dear Sir,
The lastest model of HZX810 is HZX810-Classic, which was made of aluminium alloy and black walnut, and will cost 2290 USD."



So they brought it back? Interesting they weren't making this when I got my FCL.

I guess it depends if you are a wide or a long person. The FCL design goes VERY wide. With a 5x7 back on it I doubt you'll find many 5x7 cameras that will go wider with a flat board. Hell if they sold a 4x5 back it would go wider then some 4x5s

jeroldharter
1-Sep-2009, 19:15
How much does the Arca Swiss weigh?

The Arca sold! Thanks Frank. The camera weighed 13.5 pounds on my kitchen scales. My Wehman (which is the regular model, not the lightweight) is about 8 pounds and much more compact. I don't know how much a Shen weighs but the Wehman folds into its own aluminum case with no exposed ground glass so it might need extra padding or protection that could add to the real life weight.

Nick_3536
2-Sep-2009, 00:47
The FCL from memory is less then 7lbs. I want to say just over 3kg.

Dan Schmidt
2-Sep-2009, 08:06
the Wehman folds into its own aluminum case with no exposed ground glass so it might need extra padding or protection that could add to the real life weight.

This trait lets me feel comfortable enough to strap my wehman to the outside of a pack. If it gets rainy or really dusty, I have a lightweight rain cover that goes over both the pack and camera.

This whole setup allows me to have a much smaller pack as the camera does not need to fit inside.

When traveling by air, I am able to carry this stuff on quite simply. Before the security checkpoint, I detach the camera from the pack. The pack is my one carry on and the camera which basically looks like a squarish briefcase is my personal item.

After security I reattach for easier travel in the airport and separate again before boarding. The pack goes in the overhead bin and the camera fits under the seat in front of me. My checked bag contains extra film holders, tripod, and some clothes.

BradS
2-Sep-2009, 09:14
This trait lets me feel comfortable enough to strap my wehman to the outside of a pack. If it gets rainy or really dusty, I have a lightweight rain cover that goes over both the pack and camera.

This whole setup allows me to have a much smaller pack as the camera does not need to fit inside.

When traveling by air, I am able to carry this stuff on quite simply. Before the security checkpoint, I detach the camera from the pack. The pack is my one carry on and the camera which basically looks like a squarish briefcase is my personal item.

After security I reattach for easier travel in the airport and separate again before boarding. The pack goes in the overhead bin and the camera fits under the seat in front of me. My checked bag contains extra film holders, tripod, and some clothes.

WOW! this is a strong endorsement for the Wehman! Thanks.

jeroldharter
2-Sep-2009, 14:10
Just to be clear, the Wehman is no Arca! I have an Arca F-Line 4x5 and I think it is a piece of art itself. But the Wehman is perfectly practical for field use and a great deal.

ic-racer
2-Sep-2009, 14:41
Just to get back to the thread's original topic, per the Wehman site it does not fit in:
Standard weight.....$2200.00 USD
Light weight...........$2550.00 USD

jeroldharter
2-Sep-2009, 19:55
True, $2200 is not < $2000.

But the Wehman includes 2 lens boards worth about $100 and it does not need any special padding or case ($55 for a Photobackpacker 8x10 camera case). Also the 4x5 reduction backs, if desired, are very reasonable. In my case, I wanted the front standard to accept my Canham lens boards so Bruce fabricated a custom front standard that is native to Canham boards for no extra cost which saved me the cost of an adapter board. Don't mean to sound like a salesman but it is a good product.

Even the "heavy" Wehman, which I have, weighs ~2 lbs less that the Tachihara and the same as a Shen Hao. The She Hao 4x5 reduction back is $300 (vs. the $175 total I paid for a used Sinar back converted to the Wehman). A nice feature of the Shen Hao is the inexpensive compendium, $145. In my case Bruce drilled the front standard to accept the post for my Arca compendium at no cost.

If you are really counting coins, the Wehman can store one lens on camera (I have not experimented with how large a lens, but approximately a G-Glaron 210-240 ballpark) saving the cost of a lens case or wrap.

As an aside, the aluminum shell has some "storage room" in it which I have not decided how to use. I will probably attach some velcro for a pen and maybe a small Palm Pilot.

ic-racer
2-Sep-2009, 20:35
Interesting coincidence. I was watching (not bidding) on a Canham 8x10 standard wood field camera on fleabay and it ended at exactly $1895, which is the exact same price that Badger Graphics quoted me for the Shan Hao 810. Also, this was about 1/2 the price of a new one ($3740).

ic-racer
2-Sep-2009, 20:43
True, $2200 is not < $2000.

.

True, its "only" $200 more, but my current 8x10 package cost me $200 for the whole camera, new bellows, new ground glass, 2 lensboards and a modern MC lens in a black ringed copal shutter and a new carrying case.

jeroldharter
2-Sep-2009, 21:28
True, its "only" $200 more, but my current 8x10 package cost me $200 for the whole camera, new bellows, new ground glass, 2 lensboards and a modern MC lens in a black ringed copal shutter and a new carrying case.

I have seen some of your handiwork though, and it is vastly superior to anything I could do myself. I suspect that you have a fair amount of sweat equity in that "$200 camera."

When I talked to Bruce Wehman, my impression was that he is a very handy retired person who wanted a versatile 8x10 that would not break the bank and he could not find one so he made one. From an aesthetic standpoint, I like the fact that it is American made by an individual who innovates. We only have a couple of dozen of those people left from my vantage point so I am happy to support the business.

ic-racer
9-Sep-2009, 09:27
Its almost certain now. :) (FCL 810 from Badger, that is)

Well, I ordered the FCL 810 and should have it soon. I'll post pictures and perhaps a side-by-side comparison to a real Phillips.