View Full Version : Intrepid 8x10"

Tim V
2-Nov-2017, 21:47
Hi all,
Has anyone reveived an Intripid 8x10" camera yet? Anyone care to post a simple review of sorts?

3-Nov-2017, 05:45
Hi Tim,
I did not order an 8x10 but I did just receive my 4x5 and I am more then pleased with it. When it came, it had a couple of quirks that were an easy fix; one of the posts for the front standard was slightly bent which was my biggest irritation (I fairly easily bent it back straight) Also inside the track of those posts there was an imperfection that made rise and fall difficult. I again was able to fix the problem by sanding it slightly. Other then those two issues I love my camera! Haven't put it down for the week that I've had it. The movements took me a while to get used to but now I seem to have them down to a T.
I have to imagine that the 8x10 is going to be a larger version of the 4x5 with a rear standard tilt. If you did order an 8x10 expect it to take a while. Last I heard nobody has received it yet and because of Intrepid's warehouse move expect delayed responses.
Hope this helps!

Tim V
3-Nov-2017, 13:19
Thanks for the reply! It's great you love your camera, despite the impoerfections it arrived with, and that there are many camera options for people who want to get into LF.

I guess your response has validated a few fears for me regarding build quality from the factory. On one hand for the price it doesn't pay to be too fussy–especially if some things are easily fixed with basic things like sandpaper–but on the other I want to buy something I can depend on, day in day out. I'll eagerly await user reports when the cameras finally stary shipping.

13-Apr-2018, 09:58
I'm #248 or so and mine came in the mail yesterday.

I'm already in hot-rodding mode, and have found the first thing to fix. Sinar metal boards are hard going in--there's not enough room at the bottom to ease them in. But they're aluminum, and aluminum planes just like wood, so I took a hand plane and planed a 45-degree bevel on the back edge at the bottom, just like one sees on old wooden boards. Problem solved, and it won't hurt the light-trapping.

I also jammed a little furniture wax down onto the short exposed length of focusing shaft just inside of the knob, and after a little running in, that fixed my focus squeak, if you have one.

The other thing I did in preparation was to buy an 8" long arca plate so that I could easily set the camera's balance point where I wanted it, and I can report that this was an excellent idea. :-)

People have complained about the flimsy construction, and I guess none of them have ever used an old wooden camera from 100 years ago. This one is equally stiff as my Agfa-Ansco view, at 1/3 the weight, and no worse than any of the other old wood cameras I have, so what's the problem here? The biggest weak point is the same as any old wood camera without a triangular metal support strut on the front, and that is that the base strip of the standard flexes a bit. I have a section of carbon fiber rod I was going to inlay here on my AA camera to stiffen the base strip, and the same fix would go a long way on the Intrepid, but I'm not sure that it's worth the bother.

G Benaim
13-Apr-2018, 10:37
Hi there,

Having considered one briefly only to see the back problems in the cat labs video, I'm curious if you've had any problem inserting holders of any type and whether the back now comes w a bevel to allow easy insertion? Also, have you tried it at full extension w a 24" lens? Thanks

13-Apr-2018, 12:53
I've got one, I've run a dozen or so sheets thru it so far,
no problems with the back or film holders fitting. It's a fun camera.


13-Apr-2018, 14:24
I've had mine for about a month and I'm very happy with it. I didn't have any of the issues that I've read about and the camera is perfectly suited for my intentions; a lightweight camera for backpacking. I don't understand all the negative comments I've read regarding finish, build quality, etc. Consider the price point! This ain't an Ebony. If you do find an issue, you can probably fix it yourself if you have even mediocre skills with hand tools. As Tim said, it's a fun camera.

13-Apr-2018, 15:03
My holders slide in very smoothly. No complaint there at all. I've been playing around fitting lenses to boards today, and the camera is impressing.

Full extension for the bellows is just a hair over 22"--about 560mm. A 24" lens would be a stretch, I imagine.

Graham Patterson
14-Apr-2018, 07:40
I have only had a chance to do some backyard tests with mine to get a feel for how it works on the tripod. It feels about the same as my 4x5 Wista DX - a little flex at full extension but nothing exceptional. It looks like I can also do 4x10 (and maybe 5x8) using a mask inserted in the back of the camera - there is just enough rise/fall and shift to zero the offset without going to tilt/swing.

I also make the extension just under double, so the longest practical focal length without a telephoto is going to be around 450mm with close focus and a flexible bellows.

There are two 'traditional' large format construction schools - the cabinet maker (hardwoods) and the engineer (metal, carbon fibre). The Intrepid seems to come more from a materials science and modern production school. But ultimately it is going to be the pictures that count.

20-Apr-2018, 15:59
I just received mine a few days ago, haven't used it yet...you will see why in a second. First impressions; yes, VERY very light and I like the design and built in handles...medal parts are well made..plywood seems like it won't hold up to much weather, but we will see. Front standard is quite flimsy at full extension, like unusable if outside for the most part and forget about putting a Kodak Commercial lens or anything heavy on it...will have to figure out a brace for that..the plywood ,on the rear standard is warped and because of this light leaks inside. I have an email into the company and I'm sure they will fix the problem. The extension rubs wood and wood and has a very cheap feel to it. Perhaps that will go away with more use or maybe it can be waxed, idk. Camera looks great and hopefully they will stand behind there products and continue to improve the design.

Eric Leppanen
20-Apr-2018, 17:12
Ben Horne has posted some initial thoughts on the camera:


Andrea Gazzoni
10-Jun-2018, 01:27
Anyone using this camera with wide lenses? I am curious to know if a 120mm can be used without the bed entering the frame, as I read the back standard cannot be moved. Thanks

10-Jun-2018, 08:08
Now that Iím two months further along with my Intrepid 8x10, I thought Iíd pass along a few things Iíve found. Please keep in mind that these comments relate only to my particular camera and may not even represent an average.

1) When I lift the rear standard to open the camera and the upper two knobs fall into their respective detents in the struts, the back is not necessarily perpendicular to the base; there seems to be quite a bit of ďplayĒ with regard to the size of the screw and the half-moon slot it goes into.

2) When I screw down the front standard to the base, the vertical metal struts are most definitely not perpendicular to the base; not even close honestly.

3) When I set the front standard to what looks like a vertical position aligning along the metal struts, itís not vertical (see #2.) Once I have it in a perfectly vertical position, it looks like Iím applying a bit of front forward tilt to the lens when looking at the camera from the side.

The whole front standard issue doesnít concern me nearly as much as the rear standard. To resolve all this when setting up the camera, I bought a 10Ē plastic 90 degree triangle that I keep in my camera pack. When setting up, I use the triangle to ensure everything is square. Itís a couple extra steps, but worth it for the portability of this camera.

Bottom line...Iím still glad I have it. Itís not as precise as my Deardorff, but a WHOLE lot easier to carry in a backpack! ;)

Graham Patterson
10-Jun-2018, 09:41
I'd say those are fair comments, based on my experience. I find pulling the back into the detents helps, and it seems square enough. I am happy to have the rear tilt, so I will forgive the zeroing issue.

You cannot use the 5x4 reducing back with a 90mm lens. The rear-most standard mounting for the front standard is about right for 110mm. Out of curiosity I made a little wooden adapter to let me mount the front standard behind the normal rear-most point, and I can get a 90mm on, but it is significantly bellows limited. So the Wista 5x4 still has an edge there.

On the plus side, I have a plywood internal mask that lets me do 4x10 or 5x8 without modified dark slides.

I would like to see captive screws for the adjustments. There's a risk of loss in the long grass. Maybe they should include a spare with the camera.

I'm happy - if it encourages me to get out more, it is worth it.

10-Jun-2018, 10:08
I noticed that vertical on the back is off a bit on mine, too, but it doesn't matter to me because I don't use levels, which never seem precise enough, but rather move to the side and set vertical visually. If the front were off on mine, I'd try to straighten it out by laying tape under the front or back edge of the bottom strip. I did scrape out just a bit o material from the center of that strip so that the ends would come down more securely, preventing the front from rotating too easily. Just a couple of thousands of an inch of material removed..... literally thousandths--sufficed.

10-Jun-2018, 12:29
I would like to see captive screws for the adjustments. There's a risk of loss in the long grass. Maybe they should include a spare with the camera.

Oh, yeah, forgot about that one! I had one of the knobs on the front standard tilt fall off while the camera was in the pack, and it rolled off into the grass while I was setting it up. Luckily, it was easy to see so no problem. Maybe I'll e-mail Max and suggest selling a "knob bag" so we'll have spares. ;)

Graham Patterson
10-Jun-2018, 17:33
For the knobs where the washer is fixed to the knob, I think I am going to put a loop of thread around it and tie it off to the camera. That way I can rotate the knob, but hedge against my natural clumsiness.

Miguel Coquis
12-Jun-2018, 07:19
Got both of the Intrepid large format cameras. They have good use for creative camera workshops I have been running in Perķ.
They are light weight and easy to carry. Nevertheless there are few details on both of the cameras that make their use very fragil.
No question on mounting heavy lenses. The lightest will be better !
The 4x5 camera rear does not offer any interest. No movs. and uncomfortable to insert film holders (so, take your time...).
As for the 8x10 rear movs. are restricted, something like Ritters ULF cameras rear movements could be adapted on the Intrepid to bring versatility.
I have adapted very easily a home made 5x7 camera back and seems worthily !
I got the impression that Intrepid Co. will make some progress, they are open to any "positive" suggestions coming from buyers.
This is a large format camera to be enjoyed !!!