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Thread: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide open

  1. #11

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    If you really prefer the look of 35mm camera with a 50 mm lens, whichequatesto a 300mm on 8x10, then you would want a 150mm on 4x5. These are shorter than most people prefer. My personal preference is: 35mm> 100mm lens, 4x5> 300 mm lens, 8x10>600mm lens because they produce less distortion.

  2. #12

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    I find long lenses compress perspective too much... People's ears and necks get bigger, and past about 450mm in 8x10 it starts to look unflattering. 300mm is a very flattering portrait FL in 8x10

  3. #13

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Serge,

    I think you're the only person who can answer your question. Since I never make huge prints, I never really need 8x10, and rarely 4x5. I shoot both formats occasionally for reasons that have nothing to do with necessity, or even artistic choices, but more likely because I have a film in one of those formats I want to test, or just for the fun of using the big cameras. Currently I'm shooting about 80% medium format, and making enlarged negatives for carbon printing. The added complexity of making enlarged negatives is more than compensated for by the efficiencies of shooting MF vs LF. This might not be true for others, but it is for me, and the way I work.

    All the above being said, I shot 4x5 last night, and just finished processing the film, and it looks pretty great. I also shot a roll of MF, which coincidentally gives me the same number of exposures as the ten sheets of 4x5 I shot. I'm about to process the MF roll, and it will be interesting to compare results. It won't be a scientific comparison, since there were several differences between formats, but it might be interesting, all the same.

    There's no comparison in the shooting of LF vs MF -- MF is fluid and effortless by comparison.

  4. #14

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Syverson View Post
    I find long lenses compress perspective too much... People's ears and necks get bigger, and past about 450mm in 8x10 it starts to look unflattering. 300mm is a very flattering portrait FL in 8x10
    That's an interesting observation. I like 85mm on full frame DSLR or 35mm film, but I also like 50mm, 35mm and even 28mm for environmental. I once used to shoot 135mm, but it feels too distant to me now. I have never yet noticed the ears and neck issue, but what I have noticed is a distinct flattening of the noise and cheek bones and a pie-faced tendency at 135mm on full frame DSLR/film.

    On 8x10, I've only so far shot portraits at 360mm (about 50mm equivalent), and I think it is just perfect for that, although I think 300mm would be great as well.

  5. #15

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    FWIW, the 8x10 lenses I'll reach for when it comes to portraits are either a 10" WF Ektar, 12" Dagor or a 14" Commercial Ektar. On a 4x5, the 162mm Wollensak Velostigmat and 5x7 a 13" Cooke Velostigmat series someing or other portrait lens.
    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.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  6. #16

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Quote Originally Posted by Serge S View Post
    I'm wondering if I can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide open with a 300 5.6? What lens would I need to use in 4x5?
    That would be a 150mm f/2.8. The closest you can get to that on a budget would be with a 175mm f/2.5 Aero Ektar:

    http://www.flickriver.com/groups/aer...l/interesting/


    Quote Originally Posted by Serge S View Post
    It prob would not be the same as the tonality will differ, etc., but can I get close enough?
    I wouldn't worry about that as experts can tell the difference between two 300/5.6 designs on 8x10 too. Also the tonality and "glow" and what not will make a difference depending on the size of the final reproduction. And 8x10 is not the end of it all... next to 20x24" it's lesser than 4x5 is to 8x10.

  7. #17

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Quote Originally Posted by John NYC View Post
    I once used to shoot 135mm, but it feels too distant to me now. I have never yet noticed the ears and neck issue, but what I have noticed is a distinct flattening of the noise and cheek bones and a pie-faced tendency at 135mm on full frame DSLR/film.
    Yeah, to me 135mm feels "off." You can't stand that far away from someone and see them that clearly and closely, so it just looks unnatural. No one looks good through binoculars.

    85mm is what it's like to look at someone a few seats from you at a dinner party. Closer, at conversational distance (Broadbent's term), 50mm gives a headshot, 35mm gives you chest-up, and 28mm is waist-up. They all can look very natural and intimate, but I think there's a real sweet spot at 50mm.

  8. #18

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Quote Originally Posted by genotypewriter View Post
    That would be a 150mm f/2.8. The closest you can get to that on a budget would be with a 175mm f/2.5 Aero Ektar:

    http://www.flickriver.com/groups/aer...l/interesting/
    Why use odd heavy chunk, when you can use 150mm 2.8 Xenotar, which is lighter and can go into compur shutter, beyound me, but ok...

  9. #19

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Good luck finding that Xenotar...

  10. #20

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    Re: 4x5 or 8x10 not sure wich way to go/can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide o

    Welcome to the forum, Serge. Everything is a compromise, and it sounds like you've thought quite a bit about your decision. I think the answer to your first question--whether you can replicate the look of an 8x10 shot wide open with a 300/5.6--is clearly yes, but at what cost. I think Jim Galli (who has an extensive collection of vintage lenses) sums it up well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Galli View Post
    Why 8X10?

    Tonality and unique lens characteristics.

    Tonality is simply brute force. More real estate of film to spread what the lens is doing around.

    Lens characteristic. If you like shallow depth of field and lovely bokeh (look at my web pages and it will be obvious, I do) even the base line 300mm f5.6 that people sell all day long for less than the value of the shutter if they threw the lens elements away gives a depth and bokeh that you can only begin to approach by paying $2500 for an f2.8 Xenotar in 4X5. That threshold is just the jumping off spot. Beyond that there are antique soft focus lenses and old petzval's etc. that can just blow away anything you can do with a 4X5. D3, 5DII, Photoshop, don't make me laugh.

    So, to sum up, tonality and style, and an endless quest of more pretty old glass and seeing what it can do.
    I'm not well versed on vintage glass, but many lenses, regardless of the format they cover, aren't in shutters. This isn't necessarily an obstacle but can be a real plus--they're lighter and less expensive than their shuttered counterparts. Just use a combination of lighting, film choice and filtration that gives exposures longer than ~1/4 sec and use a hat, spare dark slide, etc for a shutter. Or you can use shutters that mount behind the lens like a Packard shutter or Sinar Copal shutter. If you have particular lenses that you'd like to acquire, make sure they'll fit the lens board of the camera you're considering.

    As for cost limiting your learning, I don't think I learned less shooting medium format instead of 35mm, and I don't think it has to be the case that you will learn less shooting 8x10 over 4x5. You can cut your 8x10 film costs by buying Arista.edu film, out of date film or even X-ray film (which is dirt cheap compared to panchromatic 4x5 film).

    The flip side is that most things in 8x10 are considerably heavier--cameras, film holders, tripods, lenses, etc. Your travel needs will obviously dictate how important that is to you. And if you're considering making digital negatives from 4x5 (or smaller), larger formats aren't necessary for contact printing/alternate processes.

    I personally enjoy using 8x10 for still life, landscape and portraits because I find it easier to use than 4x5 (in most circumstances), and I like the results I get for reasons Jim Galli described. It's easy to compose and focus on a big ground glass, I'm not into digital negatives for making contact prints (yet), and I don't think I'll travel with it anymore. Whatever format you decide to use, buy good, inexpensive used gear. If you don't like it, you'll probably be able to sell it for what you paid. Remember that imperfect glass often has no effect on image quality, only on how light your wallet will become. Save your money for film and chemicals. Have fun!

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