View Full Version : 6x9 Roll Film Adapters for 4x5

Joe Farrell
31-Jan-2006, 13:44
I have a Toyo 4x5 field camera and would like to start shooting 6x9 but don't know where to start. What exactly do I need? Is a roll film holder enough or do i need to buy an adapter as well? Will I be focusing on my 4x5 ground glass or a 6x9 glass (is that what the adapter is for?) And what about lenses? I have a 90mm, but will I need to go wider to accomodate the format?
Thank you in advance

Ralph Barker
31-Jan-2006, 14:06
In general, a roll film holder designed for 4x5 or 5x7 cameras is all that is required. There are various designs, however, with different pros and cons. Most come with an acetate GG overlay, so you can compose within the appropriate area of the GG.

There have been several discussions of specific holders here in the past. Plugging "roll film" into the search function at the top of the display should point you to those threads.

Kirk Gittings
31-Jan-2006, 14:17
I have used the 6x9 Calumet C2N's for years for commercial work. They have been very dependable. The new ones work better than the old ones as they have an effective dust trap which prevents film scatching. They should fit right in to your Toyo without adapters though you will have to mask the ground glass. As for lenses. On 6x9 a 65mm is the approx. equivilent of a 90 on 4x5. What are yoiu shooting? You will also need a bag belows with the short lenses.

Gary Smith
31-Jan-2006, 15:09
I just bought a horseman 6x9 roll film holder for my Toyo Field a few days ago. I am not sure which camera you are using, but mine has 6x7 and 6x9 markings already on the glass, so its easy to compose shots. The only downside to the horseman, is you have to remove the back, and attach it directly to the camera. This may or may not be a problem depending upon what type of shooting you are doing. Toyo makes a roll film holder that they claim will film under the ground glass like a normal film holder, I tried it but found it was a little bulky, and not easy to insert into the camera. I have never used or tried the calumet, but many people seem to like it.

Hope it helps.


Emmanuel BIGLER
1-Feb-2006, 02:20
If your camera is not a vintage, pre-WW-II camera, and if it is a 4x5", most probably you have the so-called 'International film back'. International since it will accomodate either 4x5" holders or 9x12cm holders.

Without any adaptor you can attach basically two kinds of rollfilm holders.
The first kind requires to remove the ground glass (like the Horseman back), some others slip under the ground glass (GG) exactly like a cut film holder (the old Calumet for example).

Those for wich you need to remove the GG are attached to the so-called graflok (or is-it graflock ?) system, named after the beloved Graflex line of press cameras.

Be careful about Horseman backs, there are two kinds, the small ones that attach the baby graflok 6x9-2x3" and the bigger ones that directly attach to the 9x12-4x5" international back. Basically they are the same except that the 4x5" are permanently attached to a bigger base plate. Baby graflock 2x3" backs require an adaptor to be attached to a 4x5" camera.

About the choice of lenses, probably you'd be interested to find a 75 mm or a shorter lens. the 75 will roughly be equivalent to a moderate wide-angle like the 35mm in 135-size film. This is a very comfortable focal length for landscape in 6x9, but for architecture you'd probably need a wider angle of view.

Lenses shorter that 75 mm can of course be used ; but depending of your camera, it can be difficult to focus or shift the lens if you do not use a recessed lens board.

Conversion of equivalent focal lengths between 35 mm photography and 6x9 are extremely simple since both formats have the same aspect ratio close to 1.5. So the focal length conversion factor is simply 100/43 =2.3 or 43/100 = 0.43