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Thread: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

  1. #21
    8x10, 4x5, ..., Tessina Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Hi Jay,

    Hmmm... I find this quite odd.

    It turns out there are two versions of the MB, plus one version of the non-MB, for the 4x5 F2.

    One MB type (which I do not have) has a large feature running the full length of the wide side of the frame,
    on the outside, with a silverish lever associated. This sticks out about 1/2"? on the left when in portrait mode.

    The other version (which I have) has a similar feature but only about an inch and a half long, at the
    upper left of the frame in portrait mode. It has a similar lever that pulls out to the left.

    They both look quite different from the non-MB (which I also have).

    Download a copy of Sinar Code from Butkus or wherever. Look in the right-hand column of page 11.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  2. #22

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Thanks, Leigh.

    I'm 99.9% sure mine is not a metering back:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Sinar 4x5 back.jpg 
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  3. #23
    8x10, 4x5, ..., Tessina Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Wow, Jay. You've got me on that one.

    My only direct experience is with the F2. That does not look like any F2 back I've ever seen.

    Maybe Frank will chime in. He has a lot more Sinar experience than I do. Or you could email him.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  4. #24

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    It is not, I think that is from a later F, earlier than an F2. It's black and yet it still has the notch so you can add a Crown/Speed Graphic folding focusing hood (the notch is for the opening lever). You're lucky, the metering back is wasted space and another thing to catch. I think this is the best of all their 4x5 backs myself. (That folding focusing hood is an awesome metal ground glass protector as well.)

    I've had a bunch of 4x5 Sinars over the years but only two 8x10s so I am no authority. What happens quite often is that people will assemble a camera from a hodgepodge of different era parts - not that it usually matters if everything is working - but busy studios with multiple cameras and revolving assistants probably swapped parts all around.

  5. #25

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    I'm by no means any kind of expert, but that looks a lot like the back on my older (black/silver) F or F+ (whatever it is)......
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  6. #26

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Thanks, guys. I've notified the seller, who has agreed to a partial refund.

    Frank, Why don't you like the metering backs? Seems nifty to me, never having used one.

  7. #27

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    Hmm... Anti-Swiss prejudice!

  8. #28

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Well, I have mixed feelings, to be honest. On the one hand, it seems like it would eliminate a lot of calculating/compensating. On the other hand, it might be too fiddly and disrupt the work flow/ break the rapport. I don't like fiddling with the camera or other gear when I'm making portraits, any more than is absolutely necessary. But fiddling isn't such a big deal for non-portraits, and kind of part of the fun of using a view camera. It's mostly academic anyway, since I don't have a metering back, but I was curious to know if you reasoned similarly, with the benefit of experience.

  9. #29

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    I've never tried it to be honest, assembling the proper components (wands, cables) would take time and it seems like it would be distracting for portraiture using color negative or B&W where you rarely would need to shoot through a lot of filters or use much bellows compensation. Back in the day, the metering back was intended to speed up production catalog shooting with chrome film where exposures and color control were much more critical and the time spent per shot was a major consideration. In the 80s and 90s Sinar made a big deal about producing "measured" photography, sort of a Zone System approach to color studio product photography, and the metering wand making spot measurements helped the photographer know how to shoot a chrome within a reproducible five-stop range.

    In reality, if you did a catalog, you'd gang like sizes and textures to shoot together in sequence so you wouldn't have to change the camera or lights very much in between shots, and with a lick of common sense, you could accomplish the same production level. But... it was a slick system that looks great to clients, even if they hadn't the foggiest notion what you were doing waving your magic Sinar wand (and sprinkling fairy dust over your set).

    It is funny but many commercial photographers had no idea of what the Zone System or spot metering was, especially with flash exposures and color chromes, and this was a backdoor branded way to get them to think in those terms.

  10. #30

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    Re: 4x5 Sinar f2 to 8x10, what is needed?

    Thanks for the history lesson, Frank. It all makes sense to me. I'm a little relieved I didn't get the metering back I thought I bought, so now I don't have to worry about collecting all the accessory bits, and I can keep my Gossen Luna Pro F.

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