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Thread: 4x5 Camera

  1. #21
    Dave Karp
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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Lost in all of the banter about the materials is the design. It looks pretty cool in black. Independent movements on the front are also very nice. The back with magnets is interesting. Having rise on the back is a great feature. Like Corran says, I have a camera or two (too many) already, so I am not in the market. However, some interesting thought went into the design of this camera.

  2. #22

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    Why are you folks trying to re-engineer this guys camera? In case it wasn't obvious, he's already done the design/prototyping/revisions and what you are suggesting is for him to cancel his successful Kickstarter and completely redesign this camera to your specifications or preferences!

    Obviously here at the LFPF we all probably have a LF camera or two. We probably aren't a large segment of his intended sales demographic. That's fine of course, and like I mentioned earlier I applaud any effort in this space, even though I am not a customer.

    I will say that the only issue I see here is perhaps the potential of eroding the market for new cameras. If there is a constant stream of new LF cameras being put into the market via homegrown manufacturers that are basically one-offs, it could crowd out established manufacturers who have constantly updated and improved their cameras to serve the LF community. Consider Intrepid, which of course started as a Kickstarter but is now on what, ver. 3 of their 4x5, and also have their new 8x10? How many other KS camera manufacturers are still out there working on their designs and servicing their cameras? Of course the foil here is Wanderlust and the Travelwide cameras which are now developing issues and they have disappeared off the face of the earth. In my personal opinion, building your own camera is great, but building a company around it is something completely different. I am not sure what your long-term plan is here, and I am not criticizing you, just commenting on the KS economy in general.
    Thanks a lot for your positivity Corran. As I’ve said, I never set out to replace a more ‘traditional’ camera from the likes of a Chamonix/Ebony/Wista. They are clearly aimed a different market and have a different price level. I’ve built numerous custom cameras before as one off custom builds but always wanted to build my own camera completely and that’s what Chroma is. I realise there are lighter large format cameras, those with a more traditional appeal, and some that will always be ‘classics’ but my campaign shows that there is real interest in something completely different.

    I’ve spent 18 months developing the current design and have built 7 different versions before getting to here, hence my experience of the good and bad sides to using acrylic!

    I’ve always been open with my design and the reasons for it and have also made modifications to parts after other, often more experienced, photographers have given their input. Whilst I value all input, I’d like to think the advice comes from an open mind. My intention for Chroma is to focus on delivering the Kickstarter rewards first then look to build on the entire system by adding my own 612 rollfilm back and 4x5 wet plate holders.

  3. #23

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by David Karp View Post
    Lost in all of the banter about the materials is the design. It looks pretty cool in black. Independent movements on the front are also very nice. The back with magnets is interesting. Having rise on the back is a great feature. Like Corran says, I have a camera or two (too many) already, so I am not in the market. However, some interesting thought went into the design of this camera.
    Thanks David. My camera shelf also suggests I don’t need any more but if I build it myself I don’t think it counts ;0)

    I wanted to design a camera that I want to pick up and use. I’ve had cameras with traditional front standards before and found them frustrating as changing rise can impact tilt (etc) so independent movements was a must. The rear standard movements were added to the final design, again, to offer more flexibility. As it is, I can put my Chroma, a Quickload holder and a few sheets of Quickload Velvia into a small messenger bag, along with the compact tripod, and take a 30 minute walk at lunchtime, shoot a few images then go back to work. Having this kind of portability and simplicity was critical for my design so I’m really happy with it.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  4. #24
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    I apologize for not having read through the entire KS campaign. I just saw down near the bottom about your intention to create an "ecosystem" for your camera. I think this is certainly an important distinction, as opposed to if you wanted to "cash-in" on your design, sell a few, and then abandon the camera to the users who may have issues down the road. I broke my 8x10 camera when I slipped in mud and took a bad fall the first time I used it. Despite having bought it used and it being my fault, the guy who made it gladly sent me a replacement part for it. That's the kind of service that really makes a brand, IMO.

    We all shoot differently, and personally while I have a technical camera (Linhof) I always hike and shoot a lot more with my Chamonix, and besides a bit of tilt or swing have little use for such an extensive # of movements. However, when I started shooting LF almost 7 years ago an inexpensive technical camera would have certainly been nice. I was lucky enough to try a variety of 4x5 cameras before arriving on the Chamonix at a good price and have loved it ever since.

    Anyway, good luck with the campaign and in the future. BTW, I love the purple color .
    Bryan | Blog | YouTube | Instagram
    All comments and thoughtful critique welcome

  5. #25

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    I apologize for not having read through the entire KS campaign. I just saw down near the bottom about your intention to create an "ecosystem" for your camera. I think this is certainly an important distinction, as opposed to if you wanted to "cash-in" on your design, sell a few, and then abandon the camera to the users who may have issues down the road. I broke my 8x10 camera when I slipped in mud and took a bad fall the first time I used it. Despite having bought it used and it being my fault, the guy who made it gladly sent me a replacement part for it. That's the kind of service that really makes a brand, IMO.

    We all shoot differently, and personally while I have a technical camera (Linhof) I always hike and shoot a lot more with my Chamonix, and besides a bit of tilt or swing have little use for such an extensive # of movements. However, when I started shooting LF almost 7 years ago an inexpensive technical camera would have certainly been nice. I was lucky enough to try a variety of 4x5 cameras before arriving on the Chamonix at a good price and have loved it ever since.

    Anyway, good luck with the campaign and in the future. BTW, I love the purple color .
    I’m glad you like the purple, I do too

    Whilst I haven’t formally documented any kind of warranty, the Chroma is designed to use laminated parts bolted together rather than bonding with adhesive. As well as improving assembly time, this also means individual parts can be replaced easily in the event of any accidents (we all have them at some point!) so I will be happy to replace any parts that are damaged accidentally.

    Whilst the KS campaign obviously gives me a start in the business, I don’t intend to take the money and run. Max over at Intrepid has done a great job creating a brand through hard work and customer service. I intend to build something similar with a Chroma going forwards.

    Cheers
    Steve

  6. #26

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    "When I am an old camera, I shall be purple"

    I too am a fan of the purple camera. And further, I think you're doing good work here, and wish you the best of it. Much as I love the antique look, I don't have an issue with the use of more modern materials; your comment about a garden full of plastic parts for a year reminded me of the part of our yard at work where we do exactly the same thing with our exterior (and interior) plastic parts.

    Might I ask how you're organising your bellows?

    Neil

  7. #27

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by barnacle View Post
    "When I am an old camera, I shall be purple"

    I too am a fan of the purple camera. And further, I think you're doing good work here, and wish you the best of it. Much as I love the antique look, I don't have an issue with the use of more modern materials; your comment about a garden full of plastic parts for a year reminded me of the part of our yard at work where we do exactly the same thing with our exterior (and interior) plastic parts.

    Might I ask how you're organising your bellows?

    Neil
    Thanks a lot Neil. Purple is awesome ;0)

    I laser cut the ribs and outer material then assemble the bellows myself.

  8. #28
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Steve, like some others here, I'm not in the market, but I applaud your efforts and wish you well. You certainly seem to be on the right track in making an affordable and eminently usable view camera.
    The fact that you're already over-funded is cause for optimism in our ranks, since just a few short years ago, we weren't sure how long film would still be available.
    As you and Bryan have discussed, after-sale service is of utmost importance, in both near- and long-term, and I'd heartily encourage you to make that your priority once the KS ends.
    I'm sure you will, but just reminding you that these days, a company is made or lost on its service, less so on its products.
    Again, good luck, and splendid work!

  9. #29

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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Quote Originally Posted by stevelmx5 View Post
    Thanks a lot Neil. Purple is awesome ;0)

    I laser cut the ribs and outer material then assemble the bellows myself.
    Hmm... I don't suppose you'd be able to supply a kit of bits to make a bellows? (He said hopefully, fully aware that you're probably up to your ears in production...)

    Neil

  10. #30
    Angus Parker angusparker's Avatar
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    Re: 4x5 Camera

    Could not resist placing an order ... always good to have a back up I tell myself, especially in yellow!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

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