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Thread: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

  1. #11

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Eads View Post
    The camera in your photo is a Horseman. There were two flavors of 8x10 that I know of but they shared the same basic idea: solid monorail and axis tilt & swing. [...]
    Doesn't it look more like a Linhof Kardan Master TL (or similar Linhof model) rather than a Horseman? If so, that would be on the heavy side compared to many other monorail cameras.

  2. #12

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    Several people have suggested the intrepid, I disagree, the bellows will probably be two short for what you have described. While cheap initially you will lose money when you go to sell the intrepid in order to upgrade. I suggest an older used camera, Agfa/Ansco , Calumet C-1 or similar with more bellows and full movements in good usable condition. You should be able to recoup your money or even profit if you decide to upgrade. Also, you will need a large lens board and sturdy front standard to accommodate the larger aperture lenses.
    As for weight, the problem really is not the camera but the lenses, tripod, holders, etc..etc. Four to six pounds difference in camera weight is irrelevant in the total package.
    Good luck and do your research, you'll be glad you did.

  3. #13

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    The Ansco Universal(like Ansel's) and Calumet(the green monster) has always seemed to me to be undervalued. Kodak 2D is also an option for a budget friendly entry into the 8x10 realm. There are plenty of other old woodies but they tend to be either pri$tine museum piece$ or restoration projects---if you can find something somewhere in-between, you're lucky---especially on ebay!
    Deardorfs are excellent but seldom budget friendly.
    Modern wooden cameras like Tachiharas and Shen Hao are fine but they tend to hold their value too well. I wouldn't expect much of a price break for a used over a new new example.

    What I find expensive are film holders and a strong enough tripod, both being crucial to success.
    You can probably save a bit of your budget $$ if your camera comes with any of these accouterments.

    There are plenty of lenses to consider, just click on the LF Home Page on the blue banner ^^^up there^^^ for links to reviews and performance tables.

    Good luck and let us know what you end up with.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
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  4. #14
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kasaian View Post
    The Ansco Universal(like Ansel's) and Calumet(the green monster) has always seemed to me to be undervalued. [...]
    Totally agree! Let me add that the more expensive Green model is not necessary. I am so happy with my aluminum and steel model that I'm selling the Deardorff and Century 1 this year. It is a great, super rigid camera. Not so field-friendly, but I don't hike anymore.

  5. #15
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    A budget priced field camera is a Burke & James. It will weigh less than an old metal camera. It's not as compact or pretty as a Deardorff. Most are gray, mind is clear poly'd. As these are 4x the size of a 4x5 setup, be prepared to pay more for camera, lens, film holders. $1000 is a little on the low side unless you pick up a dead photographers bundle on Clist from a widow and took your chances. Realistic rates are more like $400-500 for a decent 300/5.6 lens, $120 for two film holders, $150 for film, and the B&J is probably <$1000. Budget for some tripod too if you don't have something big for a tripod. I think $2k is more realistic if you need a complete budget outfit.

    0321151714 by Jason Philbrook, on Flickr

  6. #16

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    I'll throw in here with the rest. I have long experience if nothing else to offer. Been there, done that. Began with a Cambo. Moved up to a Deardorff. And have owned and tried most of the usual other suspects that have been owned and used by west coast school photographers. Ansco's. Green Monster Calumet's. Old Gundlach wobbly's. A Burke and James or two. So don't discount experience offered for free by myself and others.

    Ultimately I landed at an odd place for an odd reason which probably won't cross over to what you want to do. But listen just the same. My keeper camera and the one that has made the bulk of the images on the pages of my web site is the venerable Kodak 2D. Here's why. It just so happens that there is room inside that camera for a Packard Shutter to live. A 6 1/2" Packard goes inside just at the first bellows fold and attached to the inner bulk head. That then gives me the freedom to use any and every possible old brass barrel lens that crosses my path.

    I just finished restoring a lovely old Cooke Portrait lens Series VI last evening which will go on the venerable 2D as soon as today and we'll enjoy investigating it's unique signature along with all the rest. Take a look at the web pages when you're bored and have some time.

    The camera is neither sexy or sought after. But it's a solid old workhorse and has provided me with half a lifetime of pictures. The camera is non-descript, but it has enjoyed a who's who of lenses over it's long life of service to me. It's one of the few things I own that's absolutely not for sale.

    FWIW here's one on the you know where place. A great camera with a great lens. I'm not affiliated with the seller. Buyer beware as always. But a Kodak 2D with a Goerz Dagor is a force to be reckoned with.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

  7. #17

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    I’m with Jim on this: if I were looking for a first (and perhaps only) 8x10 camera I would jump on that 2D/Dagor listing

  8. #18
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Galli View Post
    [...] Began with a Cambo. Moved up to a Deardorff. [...]

    My keeper camera and the one that has made the bulk of the images on the pages of my web site is the venerable Kodak 2D.
    Pardon the gratuitous snips.

    Deardorff is the overweight, disengeered (to create a word) camera akin to a full-dresser Harley-Davidson compared to any same year BMW, and I've had several of each.

    The choice of a Kodak 2D surprises me. Don't you have any wind where you work? The 2D is not much different than the Century 1 which I suspect has some kind of ghostly sense of the wind and starts waving like a flag when the wind is miles away.
    .

  9. #19
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    I'm going to disagree, a little at least, with some of the above. Old field cameras can often have issues, such as misaligned ground glass, warped wood, leaky bellows, movements that don't tighten..... If you can find one that you like in great shape for a good price, by all means go for it, but if you're not careful, getting into into good working order can be pricey, and a bit of a challenge, unless you're pretty handy. On the other hand, there seem to be a bunch of decent 8x10 monorails out there, often used in a studio. Their condition might be better, they're more solid, flexible, ....., and they can work better with longer lenses. Sure, they're heavier and bulkier, generally, to carry around, but it's not that big of a deal unless you want to go backpacking. Cambo, Toyo, Horseman, Sinar....are all good brands. Shop wisely and you'll have a great camera. Down the road you can always add, say, a lighter Chamonix for hiking.

    Something like a Wisner or Zone VI 8x10 would be kinda in the middle, more likely to be immediately usable than a 70 year old camera, but not as bulky as a monorail.
    "Why can't we all just get along?" President Dale, Mars Attacks

  10. #20

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    Re: Looking for my first 8x10, suggestions?

    My pictures speak for themselves. That old Kodak holds still for long seconds at a time. And I am allergic to wind, so we are well matched. My argument, compelling as it may seem, is only one in a thousand just like it I suppose. Still, the pictures produced speak volumes at this point.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

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