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View Full Version : Favorite 8x10 Field Camera and why?



Joseph Kayne
23-Mar-2015, 09:30
I am considering buying a used 8 x 10 field camera... Would love to hear your thoughts! Thanks. Joe.

Thom Bennett
23-Mar-2015, 09:44
Kodak Master 8x10 (popularly known as the KMV; Kodak Master View) The metal Deardorff. Clamshell design, enough movements for most field work, quick rough focusing via the front slide assembly (which is why I sold my Deardorff and got the KMV), fine focus from the rear, easily handles short lenses, fine adjustment for front rise/fall.

131318

Mine with a 159mm Wollensak.

Hope this helps.

Mark Sawyer
23-Mar-2015, 10:05
Another vote for the KMV. In addition to Thom's points, it's fairly light, very robust, and less wobbly than a lot of other field cameras. And it's a beautiful combination with Kodak's Commercial and Wide Field Ektar lenses.

Jim Becia
23-Mar-2015, 11:46
Joe,

My two cents. I hope I am not being too presumptuous thinking my shooting style and subject matter can be similar to yours - landscape, intimate subject matter, etc. I currently use an Ebony RW8x10. It is simple and stable. My only regret is that I did not buy the triple draw extension version. I can use a 600 at infinity and just a bit closer. The back extension/focus would be very handy sometimes, but I make due. Plus the price was a bit beyond my reach. I recently purchased a Chamonix 5x8 and am trying to gauge how it compares in terms of ease of use. I have only used it for about a week, and there are some things I clearly like about it and some things that I need to explore further. It's stability surpasses anything I have used so far, although granted it is a 5x8, not an 8x10. But the camera has nice potential and those that have used the Chamonix line generally have very high praise for them. Prior to the Ebony, I used a two Canham 8x10s and a Tachihara. I obviously prefer the Ebony. If you ever make it up towards Madison, let me know and you can see if the Ebony or Chamonix is something you might consider. Jim

Joseph Kayne
23-Mar-2015, 13:39
Thanks Jim....will do...

angusparker
23-Mar-2015, 13:45
Ritter 8x10 - very portable field camera

John Kasaian
23-Mar-2015, 13:57
Deardorff V8.
Yeah there are more modern cameras but the 'dorff is the one I prefer.
I also like the Century Universal.

tgtaylor
23-Mar-2015, 14:16
Toyo MII. Here's why: http://toyoview.com/Products/810MII/810MII.html

Thomas

ghostcount
23-Mar-2015, 14:24
I am considering buying a used 8 x 10 field camera... Would love to hear your thoughts! Thanks. Joe.

http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?105580-List-of-8x10-Field-Cameras
(http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?105580-List-of-8x10-Field-Cameras)

Jim Becia
23-Mar-2015, 17:30
Thanks Jim....will do...

Joe,

One thing I failed to mention and that is important to me is the fact I can pull the Ebony out of my pack and have set and squared in about 15 seconds. That was one of my reasons for switching to it.

William Whitaker
23-Mar-2015, 17:46
I'll add my 2¢ and cast a vote for the Kodak Master. Little to say bad about it except that the lens boards are proprietary and hard to find. Aftermarket boards tend to be expensive. I converted mine to use Sinar boards. Also a metal camera in cold weather will suck the life out of your soul (or vice versa). But what a great design! I've had two; sold both; miss both.

http://wfwhitaker.com/tech/KMV_before_sm.jpg

Another capable camera is the Agfa (or Ansco). Mine is an Ansco, which is the earlier of the two, but virtually identical cameras. Large lens boards (7 1/2 inches) which give you the option of using some larger portrait lenses (or a larger Packard shutter. Not a field camera per se, but that didn't keep Morley Baer from using one in the field. Non-folding (tailboard) design sets up quickly with a captive rear extension that won't get lost. Great camera and often available for much less than clamshell varieties.
http://wfwhitaker.com/tech/ansco_graf_1.jpg

Randy Moe
23-Mar-2015, 18:17
I seldom field shoot 8x10, usually 5X7, but when I do I use the Green Monster Calumet C1 made in Chicago for years, actually a modern design for studio use, but it does fold, is made of magnesium, very strong with full movements.

They are affordable, between $400 and $800 and reliable. Lot's of folks say they are too heavy, but the magnesium one is only 2 lbs more than a Deardorff, which was also made in Chicago and very popular.

But the real answer is, the camera you have is always the best, because it's yours.

Begin the dance and don't buy an expensive camera if you are new to this. Buy a solid used one with light-tight bellows.

Then use it and maybe buy something different after you know what you really want.

Many people miss their first cheap camera years later, when they wake up and have an expensive camera they don't use.

Joseph Kayne
23-Mar-2015, 18:42
I have a Wista DXII 4x5 and a Zone vi 4x5....anyone use the Wista 810. 8x10?

Kimberly Anderson
23-Mar-2015, 19:53
Canham 8x10. I have all 4 reducing backs for it. No regrets.

dsphotog
23-Mar-2015, 20:33
I use the same model Ansco as Will.
It'll make a picture as good as a fancier camera.

StoneNYC
23-Mar-2015, 20:52
Chamonix 8x10 ;)

Vaughn
23-Mar-2015, 21:37
I used a borrowed Deardorff for a little while then bought a Zone VI. I like both equally well, but the Deardorff seems to have been a little better machine. Those are the only ones I have used enough to comment on -- except I agree with using an all-metal camera in sub-freezing temperatures is challenging.

Some day I might need to get something a bit lighter -- I'd like a non-folding 8x10 with rear base-tilt, good front movements and enough bellows for landscapes with a 300mm. They just need to add base tilt to this baby! It is so close! http://www.shen-hao.com/PRODUCTSabout.aspx?i=988&id=n3

AlexGard
23-Mar-2015, 21:43
I don't have any experience with 8x10 except for my Tachihara triple extension.
If you're looking for something light, it's probably not a good option. I also find that the 'clips' that hold it closed whilst carrying by the leather handle aren't very reliable. I've been meaning to engineer something to overcome this.
It's very heavy, too. If I were given the chance at the beginning I probably would have opted for a different brand of 8x10, but the price was right for me, and actually using the camera is joyful.

Bruce Barlow
24-Mar-2015, 04:45
Ritter 8x10 - very portable field camera

+1, enthusiastically.

Ari
24-Mar-2015, 04:57
I had a Toyo 810G for a while, but it was much too difficult to transport in the field. Great camera otherwise, solid, with every movement you could need.

Then a B&J Commercial 8x10, that was the sloppiest camera I had ever used; to its credit, it did have a lot of movements.

Then a Kodak Commercial View, light, and made of magnesium; the main drawback was lack of front movements and having to carry the extra rail and tripod block as separate pieces sometimes.

I really enjoyed having a Kodak Master for a while, but the utter lack of fine focusing proved to be a deal-breaker.
It is a good camera, but it has its downsides, Will mentioned a couple of them. One I will add is that the metal is soft enough to be bent easily by hand, that includes the back assembly.

I finally settled on the Toyo 810M and couldn't be more pleased; sure it's heavy, but it's also incredibly stable and very precise in operation. It has all the movements one would need in an 8x10 and there are no extra bits to carry around (or forget).
It's relatively inexpensive, cheaper than the 810MII, and with a few simple modifications, it can focus lenses up to ~930mm at infinity

jnantz
24-Mar-2015, 05:16
a szabad .. originally made for victor hasselblad for sale
in his shop before going off on his own ...
portable and built very well
but only a handful of 8x10s exist
lots of 18x24s though .. and worth every penny
you might pay for it ..

Greg Y
24-Mar-2015, 05:36
My favorite field cameras by far are the Deardorff. Considering they were first produced in the 20s, and continued production without major changes until the 1980s, they just sit nicely in front of you with the controls in intuitive places. I've used Canhams & Ebonys & Toyos & the Masterview, but the Deardorff showed itself to clearly be the one. If I weren't carrying it for miles,...... like Ari, I really like the Toyo....but my back doesn't.

Jac@stafford.net
24-Mar-2015, 07:08
The truth is, my favorite field camera depends upon who is carrying it. The Deardorff V8 is great but it gets heavier every year. The Green Monster 8x10 is my dearest favorite 8x10 of all, but it is difficult to carry. A Century 1 8x10 (formerly a display piece) is the lightest I have, but it blows in the wind like a sail.

So the winner until gravity wins is the V8, and the Century 1 is for the nursing home years - soon enough, perhaps.

Bob Mann
24-Mar-2015, 07:48
I currently use a Canham Wood -

John Kasaian
24-Mar-2015, 08:27
Forgive my impertinence, but this question is a little like asking us who your should marry.
So scout out out at as many 8x10s as possible.
Take them out and get to know them and how compatible you two can be.
Are they made from good materials? Does everything work like it is supposed to?
No camera is perfect, but neither are photographers.
And then make the leap of faith.
But chances are you won't get to take all, if any of the cameras mentioned here out for a "date."
So basically, you're picking your future 8x10 bride out of a catalog.
Good grief! That is scary!

Michael Cienfuegos
24-Mar-2015, 09:17
Forgive my impertinence, but this question is a little like asking us who your should marry.
So scout out out at as many 8x10s as possible.
Take them out and get to know them and how compatible you two can be.
Are they made from good materials? Does everything work like it is supposed to?
No camera is perfect, but neither are photographers.
And then make the leap of faith.
But chances are you won't get to take all, if any of the cameras mentioned here out for a "date."
So basically, you're picking your future 8x10 bride out of a catalog.
Good grief! That is scary!

+1!

m

Andrew O'Neill
24-Mar-2015, 09:19
If you can find one used.... Canham Light Weight. It's light. Lots of movements. Very long bellows draw. Can handle very short lenses. It's my main camera for 8x10 and 4x5 (reducing back) for 15 years. I'm taking it with me when I leave this planet. :)

Alan Gales
24-Mar-2015, 10:18
Before I bought my Wehman I did a lot of research on my computer. I originally wanted to spend $1000 or less. At that price point I couldn't find anything that interested me. I did like the Wehman, Deardorff, and Kodak Master but they were more money for nice examples. When a used Wehman came up for $1500 I stepped up to the plate and bought it.

I have been very happy with the Wehman. It's the only 8x10 I have ever used but it does what I want and it was affordable to me (after selling some of my other camera gear).

http://www.wehmancamera.com/features%20gallery/index.htm



Now ask me about medium format cameras where I have a little more experience with different brands. I have owned Bronica ETRsi, S2a, EC, Pentax 645, 645N, 645Nll, Mamiya RZ67 and Hasselblad 500/cm. Which one was my favorite? Well the RZ was best for portraits, the Hasselblad was best over all, the Pentax 645N and Nll were the best to carry around and shoot fast with all the automation. The ETRsi was dirt cheap. Oh did I mention that I really liked the look of the Nikkor and Bronica lenses of the early Bronica cameras?

How can anyone have just one favorite? ;)

Vaughn
24-Mar-2015, 10:34
Forgive my impertinence, but this question is a little like asking us who your should marry.
...

Nah, he is just asking the madam to trot out the gals so he knows who to try... :cool:

Thom Bennett
24-Mar-2015, 11:25
Nah, he is just asking the madam to trot out the gals so he knows who to try... :cool:

+1

Jim Galli
24-Mar-2015, 11:58
I dated several 8X10's and finally narrowed to 2 and then 1. Not a polygamist, but the Deardorff hung around for several years until I ultimately decided it too had to go.

The old gal I decided on is pretty frugal and plain. She doesn't turn heads when we enter the room. Kodak 2D.

The reasons the ubiquitous 2D was the camera best suited to my style are; It has a strong front standard that can hold up ridiculously heavy antique lenses. Things like a 16" Pinkham & Smith, or a Dallmeyer 3A. There's plentious room inside for a large Packard shutter to live behind the giant lenses. A 6 1/2" Packard stays trapped behind the front standard, ready. And last but not least, I'm a lens fanatic. So something like the metal Kodak would limit me to only the number of lenses I had expensive boards for. I have hundreds of lenses. Silly me. The 2D boards are large enough, 6X6" for the big lenses, and you can bang them out of plywood in minutes. Then, there's the weight consideration. The old 2D only weighs 8 1/2 pounds. Pretty light for the torture I put it through.

Mine is looking like a worn out pair of shoes these days. Old and comfy.

Regular Rod
24-Mar-2015, 12:24
Favourite 8x10? My Shen Hao FCL810-A. Why? I have never had any other so know nothing better or worse.

:D
RR

William Whitaker
24-Mar-2015, 12:53
And last but not least, I'm a lens fanatic.

No!... You?... Really???
:cool:

mat4226
24-Mar-2015, 13:00
While I don't own one, I'd have to say my favorite 8x10 field camera would be a KB Canham Wood Field (light or standard). Keith still makes them new, parts are available, and as a camera store worker, I can say his customer service is great! Older cameras may come at a better price, but parts and service may be hard to come by. And like others have mentioned about the Canham cameras, they have great movements, lots of bellows draw, and making adjustments is quick and easy.

lesliekris
24-Mar-2015, 14:08
I am considering buying a used 8 x 10 field camera... Would love to hear your thoughts! Thanks. Joe.

I sold my Deardorff and got the KMV), fine focus from the rear, easily handles short lenses, fine adjustment for front rise/fall
http://rockbullet.tk/90/o.png

Emil Schildt
24-Mar-2015, 14:39
I have only seen and handled a Deardorf once in my life (in Europe they are not that common).... But I must say I was VERY pleased I own my Gandolfi - would never shift.

However as light as the Gandolfi 5x7 is, as heavy the 10x8 is.... (But it is very sturdy, and can easily handle all Jims lenses....) :)

John Kasaian
24-Mar-2015, 15:23
Nah, he is just asking the madam to trot out the gals so he knows who to try... :cool:
If the gals he's in the market for are 8x10, he must be--
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PCkvCPvDXk
8x10 got all the right junk in all the right places!
:o

William Whitaker
24-Mar-2015, 15:34
Wow. This thread could go on forever. As I, apparently, am helping it to do now.

Jac@stafford.net
24-Mar-2015, 15:38
It might be interesting to data harvesters that some replies here about favorites are from people who have never used the camera they would recommend. I call it the Ken Rockwell effect.
.

8x10 user
24-Mar-2015, 15:43
Not a Sinar 8x10 P2.... I remember trying to shoot in the field with 3 giant cases of gear (lenses, accessories, camera, film holders, ect). You guys ever seen the size of the Sinar expert case? Ahh silly me.

Sinars are great for the studio use (only), IMO.

DavidBon
24-Mar-2015, 15:44
Chamonix 8x10

Daniel Stone
24-Mar-2015, 16:45
I'll bite, and yes, I've been lucky enough to "have a go" with the following:

1. Kodak Master (aka "KMV"). 3 "go rounds" with this camera :p. Great field camera, long(ish) bellows extension, but takes b@$+ard lensboards, so you're either relegated to a DIY solution, or having a lensboard adapter made. Not super light, but light enough to pack around if you want to take 2-3 lenses and some holders in a backpack. If you buy one and it has original/older bellows, I'd recommend changing them out for new ones.

2. Arca 8x10 F-line
Great if you want a VERY refined system, lightweight, and sturdy. Despite being a "rail system" camera, it packs very small if you use the 15cm(6") base rail, and unscrew the extension rails when packing things away. She'll cost you though. Even used, these are sought after, and for good reason! I'd be looking for another one of these if I were to jump back into using 8x10.

mike rosenlof
24-Mar-2015, 16:56
I've only used one 8x10, but what a nice one it is. Arca Swiss 8x10 F-line. Read no. 2 above.

I think the camera on the 15 cm rail with no lens is about 9.5 pounds. Arca says 4.1 Kg with a 50 cm rail and telescoping base. sounds like they pumped the bellows full of Hydrogen, but ok.

You need to remember that with 8x10, the film holder add up weight really quickly if you're going to cary many. "Many" might mean > 2 .

Your lens choice can also make a big difference. I like shooting the big film, but mostly if I'm going very far from a car, it will be 5x7.

I only have a 4x5 enlarger, so if I want to make bigger prints, I need to use smaller film.

nonuniform
13-Apr-2015, 10:22
Forgive my impertinence, but this question is a little like asking us who your should marry.
So scout out out at as many 8x10s as possible.
Take them out and get to know them and how compatible you two can be.
Are they made from good materials? Does everything work like it is supposed to?
No camera is perfect, but neither are photographers.
And then make the leap of faith.
But chances are you won't get to take all, if any of the cameras mentioned here out for a "date."
So basically, you're picking your future 8x10 bride out of a catalog.
Good grief! That is scary!

Actually, I disagree. What I find helpful is to understand other people's experiences while using a particular camera. Like any tool, a camera will do somethings well, others, not as well. It's extremely helpful to have the collective experience of the community to be able to compare the pros/cons of a given piece of equipment. I'm sorry you felt it necessary to make someone feel bad for asking a question, I for one, find it useful. If you don't, you can ignore this thread and move along.

Drew Wiley
13-Apr-2015, 10:46
Depends what you mean by a "field" camera, what your priorities are. My own priorities were something light enough to carry significant mileage, but still rigid
and reliable in wind and weather, and fast to operate without a lot of redundant features. The original Phillips 8x10 happened to fit that description perfectly, and
was even a bargain to buy. But they're no longer made and have shot to the moon in terms of used pricing. But the Chamonix is similar and reasonably priced.

DrTang
13-Apr-2015, 11:34
Whelp.

owned a KMV years ago..sold it before using it..seemed like a sturdy camera platform

used a Kodak 2D and a Kodak Commercial - hated them both..too flimsy, but now I'm thinking it wasprobably just those examples

used a deardorf - loved it ...sad to have had to sell it (getting married)

owned a beautiful..mint..unused even Agfa ..forget the model..but it was pretty trick.. it was too nice for me to knock around so I sold it

now have a B&J commercial...bought it in parts from someone who sanded it all down, refinished it clearcoat, chromed the metal pieces, etc...really like it
- maybe I'll even get around to using it one day

Bill_1856
13-Apr-2015, 11:48
I've never owned an 8x10. They're too big, too clumsy, too expensive, the lenses are too long (and too big and heavy), and I don't like the format. Not to mention having to use/carry a tripod that weighs a ton.
You're limited to contact prints unless you buy an 800 pound enlarger, (or scan in which case, why not just start with a high-MP digital camera?).
I even tried Whole Plate, at great expense and frustration, which eliminated most of the above objections -- and discovered to my extreme disappointment that I didn't like that format, either.
5x7 is a better answer.

Drew Wiley
13-Apr-2015, 12:00
Well Bill, scanning backs aren't exactly practical in the field and are damn expensive anyway, and the other digital options aren't anywhere near the league of
8x10 film clout. And most people can't afford their own observatory, so 8x10 film still has a lot going for it is someone needs a lot of content. You've got something big enough to contract print, but small enough to conveniently enlarge. Best of both worlds. 5x7 is nice too, but there's never seems to be a good selection of film around for that. I personally love shooting 8x10. Carrying it around sure beats running like a rat on a treadmill in a stinky gym.

Drew Wiley
13-Apr-2015, 12:11
... Oh, the lenses for 8x10 don't need to be big and heavy either. The ones I use weigh less apiece than typical 35mm lenses. Most of them double for use in 4x5
(or hypothetically 5x7).

Alan Gales
13-Apr-2015, 13:01
I've never owned an 8x10. They're too big, too clumsy, too expensive, the lenses are too long (and too big and heavy), and I don't like the format. Not to mention having to use/carry a tripod that weighs a ton.
You're limited to contact prints unless you buy an 800 pound enlarger, (or scan in which case, why not just start with a high-MP digital camera?).
I even tried Whole Plate, at great expense and frustration, which eliminated most of the above objections -- and discovered to my extreme disappointment that I didn't like that format, either.
5x7 is a better answer.

Yeah, but with 5x7 you get that too long format. You might as well shoot 35mm or digital. I was so happy when I shot my first medium format camera and got away from the too long format of 35mm. Why would I want to corrupt my large format with 5x7? Oh, the square format is fine too. It' s hip to be square! Just no too long format. What are you shooting, panoramas? ;)

All joking aside, to each their own.

Drew Wiley
13-Apr-2015, 13:10
I love the proportion of 5x7. It's just that when that kind of decision confronted me, especially as a color photographer, I realized that 5x7 was going to be inconvenient due to poor film availability. I'd have to buy 8x10 film and cut it down. And working with actual 8x10 is more precise when it comes to things like
mask registration, sheer degree of print size etc. Then there's 4x5 - just drive down the street to the store and grab a box of film anytime. Sooo... when I'm really
in a 5x7 mood, I must confess that I grab a 6x9 back, which also is forgiving to the wallet. But once I'm in the darkroom, I sure wish it had been sheet film to begin with, instead. Learning to make 6x9 film pretend it's 5x7 is basically an investment in old age, when I might be forced to carry lighter equipment.

Bill_1856
13-Apr-2015, 14:08
Well Bill, ...5x7 is nice too, but there's never seems to be a good selection of film around for that. I.
B&H lists 8 different B&W films from ISO=100-400, including HP4, FP5, and Tri-X. Why would anyone want anything else?
(For color,with CIBA and Dye Transfer materials no longer on the market, digital is the only way to go.)

Alan Gales
13-Apr-2015, 15:20
I love the proportion of 5x7. It's just that when that kind of decision confronted me, especially as a color photographer, I realized that 5x7 was going to be inconvenient due to poor film availability. I'd have to buy 8x10 film and cut it down. And working with actual 8x10 is more precise when it comes to things like
mask registration, sheer degree of print size etc. Then there's 4x5 - just drive down the street to the store and grab a box of film anytime. Sooo... when I'm really
in a 5x7 mood, I must confess that I grab a 6x9 back, which also is forgiving to the wallet. But once I'm in the darkroom, I sure wish it had been sheet film to begin with, instead. Learning to make 6x9 film pretend it's 5x7 is basically an investment in old age, when I might be forced to carry lighter equipment.

I enjoy other people's 5x7's. I enjoy 4x10 panoramas too. I just find it a lot easier for me to visualize with the squarer formats.

Drew Wiley
13-Apr-2015, 15:37
Bill, why on earth would I want to take a huge step backward and want to do color digitally? I can print directly from film right in house, right onto color paper,
better than ever. Color film is still made, color paper is still made, even in big sizes. 8x10 film really rings true in a large print that digital capture generally cannot. It took me awhile to get my color neg printing up to the same level as I did for years with Cibachrome, but with Fuji Supergloss even the same look can
be achieved. This stuff has come a long ways in recent years. Hopefully it will still be around awhile. RA4 paper certainly doesn't appear in any danger soon.
But yeah, I do have a freezer full of dye transfer supplies just in case I need another challenge, and lots and lots of old 8x10 chromes to work with.

Corran
13-Apr-2015, 16:33
For color,with CIBA and Dye Transfer materials no longer on the market, digital is the only way to go.

Hmm, I must've missed the magical digital camera that renders colors the same as film, with the same highlight rendition and saturation. Oh and 50-80mp, but not the cost of a house.

Luis-F-S
13-Apr-2015, 16:42
My favorite field cameras by far are the Deardorff. Considering they were first produced in the 20s, and continued production without major changes until the 1980s, they just sit nicely in front of you with the controls in intuitive places. I've used Canhams & Ebonys & Toyos & the Masterview, but the Deardorff showed itself to clearly be the one. If I weren't carrying it for miles,...... like Ari, I really like the Toyo....but my back doesn't.

+1!!!!!, +1 !!!!!!! There's nothing like a V8!!!!!!

chris jordan
13-Apr-2015, 17:20
I went through several wood 8x10s, none of which had a single 90-degree angle anywhere, before finding my 8x10 soulmate: a Toyo 8x10M field camera. LOVED that rig-- rock solid, smooth, reliable, took a beating in my backpack and in various suitcases as I traveled to places like post-Katrina New Orleans. Fell off the tripod two different times and landed on the tarmac, once when I had it slung over my shoulder with the tripod extended at least 7 feet off the ground, took some chips off the paint but otherwise good as new. Got some grit stuck in the focus gears one time and had to send it to Toyo for a recondition; came back a couple of weeks later BETTER than new. I badly regret selling it when I made the shift to digital MF, would love to have it sitting on a tripod here in my studio with my gorgeous Rodenstock 360mm mounted in front, even if I never took another photo with it. It made every image in this series without ever a single complaint: http://www.chrisjordan.com/gallery/katrina/#reddoor

Corran
13-Apr-2015, 18:01
http://www.chrisjordan.com/gallery/katrina/#reddoor

I was in NO this past Christmas and they had an exhibit on Katrina in the Presbytère, but this is much more interesting and gripping.
Much of my family lives near Biloxi and I was actually there a week after Katrina and witnessed the devastation along the coast, especially the casinos. I only wish I could have documented it back then but I hadn't really gotten back into photography.

Luis-F-S
13-Apr-2015, 18:03
Too depressing to document back then, and too busy trying to eat by working out of town. You missed the pictures of the trucks in the trees in Port Sulphur. I did the structural inspection of the Buras High School with the dead cows in the lobby. Lovely. L

Juergen Sattler
13-Apr-2015, 18:34
I use a Wehmann. It is built like a tank, closes in on its own metal shell and is still light weight. The standard bellows accommodates almost any lens (wide or long) and the movements and controls are intuitive. It is not the prettiest camera around but she is perfect in the field.

jbenedict
13-Apr-2015, 19:11
I have had a B&J Commercial 8x10 for almost 20 years now.

All of the B&J cameras were built to a price that an independent professional could afford. Department stores had rooms full of them to take photos of sofas, dressers and dining room tables to put in the Sunday Paper. I have had more than one size of B&J flatbed and monorail cameras and it is amazing how many parts are in common with all of the cameras. They have a tendency to be used very hard and the design is not a rugged as the battleship gray design suggests so, 40+ years on, they can be kind of sloppy. I've tightened all of mine up and got them to work. They are a compromise in many ways but I can deal with the shortcomings and have made images I have really liked. I'm not really a gear guy and have used the same 375/6.8 Caltar the whole time I've had the camera. I had a 240 for awhile (but sold it) and am considering upgrading the lens but I've pondered that for about 15 years and I'll probably stay with the Caltar. I have lots of holders. I bought 'em as I ran across them so I think I have about 20 of the modern plastic style holders. I bought and froze some EPN and sometime I'll expose it. I'm pretty sure that the 30 color shots I'll make with it will be the only 8x10 shots I'll ever make for the rest of my life. I have a big Bogen model somthin' somthin' and a Gitzo head I bought used somewhere for I forget how much but they hold the camera nicely. I bought a Pentax DigiSpot which cost more than what I paid for the camera but it has been worth the price. I bought an 8x10 back for my Rittreck a couple of months ago but can't use the Caltar because the #5 shutter is too big. So, not sure what I'll do there.

For me, it's the experience of 8x10 that I like. I have a strong distain for the term "workflow". It sounds so....hipster. Hipsters just rhapsodizing over the "art" they make with their stupid little Holgas have a 'workflow'. I'm starting to sound like an old guy yelling at kids to get off my lawn and maybe I am. Continuing, hipster types would probably correct me by describing what attracts me to the 8x10 as "workflow". From the choice of equipment to take, the loading of film the night before, the driving to the picture place and then walking around looking at stuff and deciding where I'm going to set this whole mess up. And I'll spare you the rest of it... I do have 4x5, 5x7 and a Hasselblad kit. But, when I want to indulge myself in the photographic process at its most raw nature, it's the 8x10 that gets the call. I like to keep the gear simple. Kind of like a sketch artist who goes out into the field with a drawing pad and a couple of pencils. A Kodak Master looks divine and, if I ran across one, I'd probably look at it and then decide the B&J was fine. I just get something out of 8x10 that I don't get with any other format and I don't get all caught up in the equipment game. I'm glad you guys like the stuff you use. A lot of those cameras are beautiful and easy to use and make images you like. It can and was done in other ways and I find the simpler approach rewarding.

Old-N-Feeble
14-Apr-2015, 09:43
Chris, those images are beautiful in a sad and disturbing way. They certainly convey a sense of 'loss'. Sorry I'm not adding to the thread but I had to comment on these images.


I went through several wood 8x10s, none of which had a single 90-degree angle anywhere, before finding my 8x10 soulmate: a Toyo 8x10M field camera. LOVED that rig-- rock solid, smooth, reliable, took a beating in my backpack and in various suitcases as I traveled to places like post-Katrina New Orleans. Fell off the tripod two different times and landed on the tarmac, once when I had it slung over my shoulder with the tripod extended at least 7 feet off the ground, took some chips off the paint but otherwise good as new. Got some grit stuck in the focus gears one time and had to send it to Toyo for a recondition; came back a couple of weeks later BETTER than new. I badly regret selling it when I made the shift to digital MF, would love to have it sitting on a tripod here in my studio with my gorgeous Rodenstock 360mm mounted in front, even if I never took another photo with it. It made every image in this series without ever a single complaint: http://www.chrisjordan.com/gallery/katrina/#reddoor

Drew Bedo
16-Apr-2015, 05:11
TFor me, the BEST 8x10 camera to use is the one that I actually HAVE: Its a late model Kodak 2D. The front has only rise/Fall movement, the reae has swing and tilt but no reie/fall or shift. this is limiting , but it has made some really nice images for me.

I would love to have another 8x10 camera with full moveents: Burk & James, Ansco, Deardorff, or any of the modern (current production) cameras . . .but I do not.

Alan Butcher
16-Apr-2015, 15:48
Deardorff V8, works well. It would be nice if it weighed less.

-
Alan

Mike Boden
13-Mar-2017, 19:37
Hey Chris,

I know this thread is a bit old, but I thought you might like to know that the Toyo 810M you're talking about (and the same one you sold me many years ago) is still going strong. I don't use it all the time, but it serves me well whenever I get the urge to use it.

Cheers!

Mike


I went through several wood 8x10s, none of which had a single 90-degree angle anywhere, before finding my 8x10 soulmate: a Toyo 8x10M field camera. LOVED that rig-- rock solid, smooth, reliable, took a beating in my backpack and in various suitcases as I traveled to places like post-Katrina New Orleans. Fell off the tripod two different times and landed on the tarmac, once when I had it slung over my shoulder with the tripod extended at least 7 feet off the ground, took some chips off the paint but otherwise good as new. Got some grit stuck in the focus gears one time and had to send it to Toyo for a recondition; came back a couple of weeks later BETTER than new. I badly regret selling it when I made the shift to digital MF, would love to have it sitting on a tripod here in my studio with my gorgeous Rodenstock 360mm mounted in front, even if I never took another photo with it. It made every image in this series without ever a single complaint: http://www.chrisjordan.com/gallery/katrina/#reddoor

pjd
14-Mar-2017, 02:58
TFor me, the BEST 8x10 camera to use is the one that I actually HAVE: Its a late model Kodak 2D. The front has only rise/Fall movement, the reae has swing and tilt but no reie/fall or shift. this is limiting , but it has made some really nice images for me.

I would love to have another 8x10 camera with full moveents: Burk & James, Ansco, Deardorff, or any of the modern (current production) cameras . . .but I do not.

Hmm. This is my situation - with the exception of "late model". I kind of like my 2D, even though it's taken a beating and been dropped and repaired long ago, and has a replacement bellows I'm not happy with...it has a bit of character. And as it's so beaten up I don't worry about squeezing it in a backpack and getting out and about with it.

Luis-F-S
14-Mar-2017, 10:43
Deardorff V8, works well. It would be nice if it weighed less.

-
Alan

My V-8 feels like it weighs nothing compared to my V 11 which weighs 27 pounds!

Drew Bedo
14-Mar-2017, 15:04
My favorite 8x10 field camera?

Well tghat would be my Kodak Eastman View No. 2D . . .because it is what I have.

NCWetPlates
15-Mar-2017, 11:24
I've had a B&J, a Calumet C1 Green Monster, and now a Kodak View Master (KVM).

My favorite to shoot my big lenses on was the C1...but it really is a monster to haul around..abut I did. My favorite for transporting, quick setup and ability to use just about all my lenses without being too big or too small is the KVM.

Vaughn
15-Mar-2017, 12:00
Just got back from carrying my Zone VI 8x10 through Death Valley and the like for a couple weeks. I have a 2D, but I only use it (rarely) these days for the longer bellows if I need more than the Zone VI can give me.

The Zone VI is getting to be a battered old beast -- gaining character I suppose. It is hard to be gentle on equipment when you are hiking several hours in the desert sun, no trails, climbing in and out of washes and such. This trip: the camera, the Fuji Ws (250, 300, 360mm), 4 to 6 holders, meter, darkcloth and a modified darkslide to get two 4x10s on a sheet of 8x10 film...and a quart of water and some snack bars. I usually drank a couple quarts of water before starting a hike away from the van so that a quart would do me for the hike. Maybe 60 pounds with the tripod...maybe a little more -- that (new-to-me) Fuji W 360mm makes the 300W a middle-weight!

But when I see what I want, the pod gets set-up, the pack hits the ground, the pod leveled, and the camera comes out and up on the pod. The bottom of the camera is all scrapped up from rotating it on the head. Snapped off a latch a while back, and the other does work worth a damn anymore. Wood is chipped here or there, and scrapped from setting up in tight rocky places. Even in the mellow redwoods, the camera takes a beating. I broke a record taking it down one time when an elk herd surrounded me during a 5 minute exposure -- the bull elk started to make ugly sounds. In Yosemite, I had Bridalvail Falls shift in the wind and come straight down on me and the camera. A lovely February day.

Alas, I bought the camera used and it was in such fine beautiful condition when I got it 20 years ago...and the folks at Ries would shake their heads at the mis-treatment my A100 and head have gotten. After 20 years of hard use, even a wood-handled ice axe would not look as rough as my pod! Cameras that go from the car to the pod, then right back into the car must be pretty things...:cool:

Greg
15-Mar-2017, 14:20
Over the years have owned and used a B&J wooden flatbed, Dearforff, Sinar Norma and a P, and a Calumet. Finally settled on a Chamonix 8x10, it's just a pleasure to use. Added a fresnel lens to it. Kept the Sinar Norma for inside work or when I needed it's precise controls and settings.

John Kasaian
15-Mar-2017, 16:05
What's this? Twelve years later and I'm still with my 'dorff and it just keeps on getting better!
I wish you all such a relationship with your own 8x10 cameras.

Greg
15-Mar-2017, 16:15
What's this? Twelve years later and I'm still with my 'dorff and it just keeps on getting better!
I wish you all such a relationship with your own 8x10 cameras.

Going on 45 years with my 8x10 Sinar Norma. Had to just finally get a replacement bellows and also had to replace one of the spirit levels... but that's it. Totally agree with "it just keeps on getting better".

Dale_Skinner
19-Mar-2017, 20:06
I love and hate these blogs. You guys are like a bunch of heavy equipment operators, Friday night at the bar arguing over who has the best Truck fleet, biggest tractor and most skill. Everyone gets drunk and does it again next Friday.

Saint Adam's (as I have heard Ansel Adam's referred to here in the past) said he takes the heaviest camera he can carry. And there is benefits to that as long as you have the tripod to match.

I own five 8x10s and each has its benefits and depends what I'm shooting.

The Dragonlady, 75mm Goerz Hypergon with custom dedicated body. Light weight, easy to compose and when I get everything right great wide angle photos. I shot El Capitan from the El Capitan Bridge with the camera sitting level and have never seen another tho to like it.

The Deardorff, great all around camera and about the lightest one I have. Although this one is hard to zero in all the movements. I keep a small level with this camera for reference purposes.

That Ansco, nice camera and kind of bulky for the field and doesn't offer anymore than the Deardorff.

Big Bel, my Plaubel Universal III. I love this camera, so easy to use but heavy as a Panzer Tank. It has 4 standards and extends to 10 feet long if needed. It also has bag bellows and can handle my 115mm Grandagon. It travels in two super trekker backpacks and weighs 70+ pounds not including the two Tripods. My long lens is a 42 inch Red Dot Artar. I would love to find a 70 Inch but they don't come around often. Everything about this camera is easy to use but don't plan to do a fast setup. P.s. I have used this in the snow with no problems.

The Toyo 8x10 folding field camera (don't remember exactly model). Nice heavy camera, when we replace the bellows this may become my go to field camera over the Deardorff, easy to use like the Plaubel without all the movements and much lighter than the plaubel.

If you ask me, the question really is what camera has the strongest standards. Nothing torks me more than one of the settings move when I put the film holder in or cocktail the lens

Dale

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Corran
19-Mar-2017, 22:42
The Dragonlady, 75mm Goerz Hypergon with custom dedicated body. Light weight, easy to compose and when I get everything right great wide angle photos. I shot El Capitan from the El Capitan Bridge with the camera sitting level and have never seen another tho to like it.

Firstly, welcome to the forum...secondly, I'd love to see some images from your setup there. The number of Hypergon images on the web is quite small, and especially the 75mm on 8x10. At the price they generally sell for these days I won't be getting one anytime soon, but I do have good luck when it comes to finding things at estate sales and the like so you never know.

Dale_Skinner
20-Mar-2017, 06:04
This was a test shot from when I purchased the camera. It had a light leak that I thought I had fixed. I also found the focus to be a bit off and have since rebuilt the camera. I printed the attached photo 16x20. It's called the Dragonlady because sometimes not everything works like the star didn't spin in two shots, once the shutter didn't close and on occation I forget to stop down. The exposure runs 6 seconds so even a slight wind has an effect. But, when the exposure is correct it looks great. I'm taking it out next month for the first time since it's rebuild and hope to get some great shots.162809

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Corran
20-Mar-2017, 13:01
Very cool. I look forward to seeing more shots from your 75mm. And I'll keep looking at estate sales... :)

asf
20-Mar-2017, 14:46
I love and hate these blogs. You guys are like a bunch of heavy equipment operators, Friday night at the bar arguing over who has the best Truck fleet, biggest tractor and most skill. Everyone gets drunk and does it again next Friday.

Saint Adam's (as I have heard Ansel Adam's referred to here in the past) said he takes the heaviest camera he can carry. And there is benefits to that as long as you have the tripod to match.

I own five 8x10s and each has its benefits and depends what I'm shooting.

The Dragonlady, 75mm Goerz Hypergon with custom dedicated body. Light weight, easy to compose and when I get everything right great wide angle photos. I shot El Capitan from the El Capitan Bridge with the camera sitting level and have never seen another tho to like it.

The Deardorff, great all around camera and about the lightest one I have. Although this one is hard to zero in all the movements. I keep a small level with this camera for reference purposes.

That Ansco, nice camera and kind of bulky for the field and doesn't offer anymore than the Deardorff.

Big Bel, my Plaubel Universal III. I love this camera, so easy to use but heavy as a Panzer Tank. It has 4 standards and extends to 10 feet long if needed. It also has bag bellows and can handle my 115mm Grandagon. It travels in two super trekker backpacks and weighs 70+ pounds not including the two Tripods. My long lens is a 42 inch Red Dot Artar. I would love to find a 70 Inch but they don't come around often. Everything about this camera is easy to use but don't plan to do a fast setup. P.s. I have used this in the snow with no problems.

The Toyo 8x10 folding field camera (don't remember exactly model). Nice heavy camera, when we replace the bellows this may become my go to field camera over the Deardorff, easy to use like the Plaubel without all the movements and much lighter than the plaubel.

If you ask me, the question really is what camera has the strongest standards. Nothing torks me more than one of the settings move when I put the film holder in or cocktail the lens

Dale

Sent from my SM-T817V using Tapatalk

Wow, would love to see pics of the Dragonlady and the Plaubel setup

Dale_Skinner
21-Mar-2017, 16:39
Wow, would love to see pics of the Dragonlady and the Plaubel setup
Here you go.

162888

162887

162886

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asf
21-Mar-2017, 16:46
That's an interesting Plaubel setup

810-810-57-45 standards?

did you modify that rear bipod yourself?

Luis-F-S
21-Mar-2017, 17:26
I am considering buying a used 8 x 10 field camera... Would love to hear your thoughts! Thanks. Joe.

You buy one, and if you don't like it you sell it and get a different one. Just don't pay stupid money for whatever you get. L

Dale_Skinner
21-Mar-2017, 21:13
That's an interesting Plaubel setup

810-810-57-45 standards?

did you modify that rear bipod yourself?
I have another 4x5 standard for the front if needed but doesn't look like I need to worry about it till I can afford the 70" lens.

I made the bipod using matching gitzo monopods, an offset Gitzo head and 2 pieces of angle iron.

The next upgrade may be the tri-lug rail if the correct parts ever come up again.

I also have bag bellows and the single bellows adapter for shorter lens'.

This camera once set up is a dream to use, I just wish I had two sherpah's to carry it for me.

http://cloud.tapatalk.com/s/58d1f9166ea6b/20130714_234955.jpg?


162892

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Jac@stafford.net
13-May-2017, 14:55
My favorite is very light, but its problem is that is is very light and moves in a breeze.
Century 1 8x10.

The best for focus accuracy and holding movements is my green (or black) Monster.
http://www.largeformatphotography.info/calumet/calumetc8x10.html

It is worth the pain in the butt to carry, but not too far. :)

jerudi
27-Jun-2017, 12:19
I love my Sinar F1 4x5, but recently fell in love with 8x10 and purchased a Deardorff V8. Just love this camera. Not the lightest camera and there are for sure more modern 8x10 cameras out there like the Ritter or VDS, but the Deardorff V8 just feels right! It is a real pleasure to work with it. Simply a great piece of American art ;)

dannirr
28-Jun-2017, 02:54
I have several 4x5's - my two favorite being my Wisner Technical Field and my Carbon Infinity. Just ordered my first 8x10 - a Canham Wood.

Luis-F-S
28-Jun-2017, 09:36
I love my Sinar F1 4x5, but recently fell in love with 8x10 and purchased a Deardorff V8. Just love this camera. Not the lightest camera and there are for sure more modern 8x10 cameras out there like the Ritter or VDS, but the Deardorff V8 just feels right! It is a real pleasure to work with it. Simply a great piece of American art ;)

Why they hold their value. I should know, I have 5!

carylee2002
30-Jun-2017, 18:10
I dated several 8X10's and finally narrowed to 2 and then 1. Not a polygamist, but the Deardorff hung around for several years until I ultimately decided it too had to go.

The old gal I decided on is pretty frugal and plain. She doesn't turn heads when we enter the room. Kodak 2D.

The reasons the ubiquitous 2D was the camera best suited to my style are; It has a strong front standard that can hold up ridiculously heavy antique lenses. Things like a 16" Pinkham & Smith, or a Dallmeyer 3A. There's plentious room inside for a large Packard shutter to live behind the giant lenses. A 6 1/2" Packard stays trapped behind the front standard, ready. And last but not least, I'm a lens fanatic. So something like the metal Kodak would limit me to only the number of lenses I had expensive boards for. I have hundreds of lenses. Silly me. The 2D boards are large enough, 6X6" for the big lenses, and you can bang them out of plywood in minutes. Then, there's the weight consideration. The old 2D only weighs 8 1/2 pounds. Pretty light for the torture I put it through.

Mine is looking like a worn out pair of shoes these days. Old and comfy.

Me too...I own two kodak 2d's after watching your youtube videos and impressed how they seem rock solid. And at the inexpensive prices ...I can make one for vintage lenses with the packard shutter and the other for both 8x10 and 5x7 with up to date lenses and also be able to use my Apo-mag pinhole shutter with multiple pinhole apertures for long exposure shots. It's a no nonsense camera but I'm glad I got them both. No need to pay for a eye candy camera that will just get ruined when your shooting landscapes in bad or windy dusty weather.

Jim Jones
30-Jun-2017, 19:18
I dated several 8X10's and finally narrowed to 2 and then 1. Not a polygamist, but the Deardorff hung around for several years until I ultimately decided it too had to go.

The old gal I decided on is pretty frugal and plain. She doesn't turn heads when we enter the room. Kodak 2D. . . .

Me too. I've bought mine many decades ago, when they were sometimes dumped like mine with the case and extension for $20. An old friend like the 2D beats glamorous young cameras with all the frills that sometimes get in the way of making photographs.

Willie
30-Jun-2017, 19:50
Deardorff, mainly due to the influence of my Uncle who has more than one. I have been able to try a few others and they are nice. Staying with what is comfortable and what I can easily borrow a lens already in a Deardorff board if I need to.

Bruce Barlow
1-Jul-2017, 05:57
I had a long-term relationship with my dear Norma, until an age-inappropriate Ritter 8x10 danced into my life.

I dumped Norma. She cried.

Michael Kadillak
5-Jul-2017, 19:32
I have a close personal relationship with my Canham 8x10 woodie. Long bellows, movements to die for and on the ligher side to carry. BUT....

When pressed into service at regular intervals unfortunately I find a willingness I did not understand for increased camera weight that comes along with an exponential decrease in time it takes to set up my tan Toyo 810M. I figure with a quick release plate for my Manfrotto 3059 tripod head once I have the tripod secured, I can be up and ready to focus on the GG in under 30 seconds. On the Toyo both standards go to square and can be locked down in no time and I can be focused and be ready to insert a film holder quick as quickly as I could hope for. Where this really comes into play is in the fact that most of the time in challenging terrain I need a free tripod setting up for the next image so being able to fold down the Toyo as quickly as it was set up to get the legs independently secured before putting the camera on top is a Godsend for me. There is no way I can do that with the Canham 810. Folding the Canham down takes at least three or four times the time and effort simply because there are that many more knobs, levers and controls to deal with. Don't get me wrong. When I need longer lenses, light pack weight or the use of a rear shift, I accept the extra time and effort of the Canham particularly if I am in easy terrain and I can carry the camera on the tripod head to the next shot. The Toyo 810M is like an addiction to me in the ease it is ready to make a photograph, I am willing to deal with the increased weight any day of the week. I am limited out at a 600mm lens on the Toyo, but so far in the last six months of making photographs, that has not been an issue. Going to Montana and Canada in August the Canham will earn top billing because of the distances that will be hiked and as a result I will gladly deal with the increased set up time. Life is full of compromises and each time we go to the field I am appreciative of the options I have to consider. My first LF camera was an 8x10 Kodak Master and the Toyo is identical to the Kodak Master engineered to the next level and with parts and service to call upon when needed.

CassJohnson
15-Jul-2017, 17:58
I'm curious. I'm also looking at buying a new or used 8x10 but one of the things I'm most interested in is the camera's ability for rear forward and backward tilt. This seems to limit my choices. Rear swing is also important to me as these options give me more choices when it comes to creative composition. That being said, I would like to be able to buy an Ebony but I think its going to be almost impossible to find one. What other cameras have these rear movements ?

CassJohnson
15-Jul-2017, 18:33
B&H lists 8 different B&W films from ISO=100-400, including HP4, FP5, and Tri-X. Why would anyone want anything else?
(For color,with CIBA and Dye Transfer materials no longer on the market, digital is the only way to go.)

Actually there is a company in California that prints Cibachrome. I'm guessing they got the formula and make their own.

http://www.weldoncolorlab.com/index.php

Michael Kadillak
15-Jul-2017, 19:25
I'm curious. I'm also looking at buying a new or used 8x10 but one of the things I'm most interested in is the camera's ability for rear forward and backward tilt. This seems to limit my choices. Rear swing is also important to me as these options give me more choices when it comes to creative composition. That being said, I would like to be able to buy an Ebony but I think its going to be almost impossible to find one. What other cameras have these rear movements ?

Rear forward and backward movement is fairly standard with 8x10 field cameras because the forward movement is necessary to close the camera. Rear movement just means adding some length to the side support bars. I have never seen one without this feature so I do not sure what you are saying about limited choices?

The effect of a swing from my experience is indifferent as to whether it is deployed in the rear or front standard. Swings on the front standard are more intuitive since you go with the scene and move the front standard in the same direction. I have an Deardorff 11x14 that has a fixed front standard and while the rear swing is reversed, it works fine. You will find a wide range of options for a camera. Get the best you can afford.

Vaughn
15-Jul-2017, 19:40
... What other cameras have these rear movements ?

The Chamonix 8x10 has those rear movements (no shift). Well made, well thought out camera. 10 pounds. My Zone VI has them also at about 14 pounds. Neither have rear rise/fall.

Michael Kadillak
15-Jul-2017, 19:54
The Chamonix 8x10 has those rear movements (no shift). Well made, well thought out camera. 10 pounds. My Zone VI has them also at about 14 pounds. Neither have rear rise/fall.

Rear rear rise/fall in an 8x10 field camera is extremely rare. The request for cameras with these rear movements in the above text as I read this post is only rear forward and backward tilt.

Vaughn
15-Jul-2017, 20:11
Cass was interested in swing, also. Which can be nice to have.

Shen-Hao has an 8x10 with rear tilt, swing and rise. It is more of the Deardorf-style at a little over 13 lbs. Not too bad. They have another style (like the Chamonix) w/o rear rise at about 10 pounds. Movements cost in increased weight.