View Full Version : How wide can I go?

27-Jun-2006, 21:08
Hi all,

I'm about to purchase a lightly used Calumet 45N package that includes the 90 f/5.6 super angulon and the 210 f/5.6 apo symmar. I'm very interested in wide angle photography including architecture, and in my small format experience no lens is too wide for me. With a bag bellows how wide do you think I can go on this body, and what would be the 35mm equivalent?



Sheldon N
27-Jun-2006, 22:52
I just sold my Cambo (similar model to Calumet 45N) so I can't measure it for you. From what I remember, a 90mm would focus to infinity with about 1/2 inch on either side of the tripod mount block (which was about 2 inches wide). If you were to put the standards side by side with the tripod block behind them, I think you could go as wide as the Schneider 47mm XL or easily a 65mm or 75mm, assuming you used a recessed lens board.

I've always found a focal length multiplier of around 3.75 when comparing 4x5 to 35mm to be about right. So, a 90mm is like a 24mm, a 65mm is like a 18mm, and a 47mm is like a 13mm. The more square aspect ratio makes giving an exact equivalent a little difficult.

Ron Marshall
28-Jun-2006, 00:10
I love a 20mm on a 35mm camera, but the equivalent in 4x5, a 75mm I rarely use as I find it a bit too wide. My next widest is a 110mm. But I shoot mostly landscape, and rarely architecture. Make sure that the image circle is large enough, since you probably will want to use some front rise for architecture. The following link to the front page of this site has the image circle of the current lenses:


Alan Davenport
28-Jun-2006, 16:56
A 90mm lens, on 4x5, is roughly equivalent to 24mm or 28mm on 35mm film, depending on whether you figure the conversion by the diagonal or the long dimension of the film. Any way you go, it's a nice focal length, and is (so far) the shortest I own.

IINM, the shortest lenses for 4x5 are 55mm (Rodenstock) and 58mm (Schneider) but I may have those bassackwards or worse, but no worries as I know I'll be quickly corrected :) . You can use them on your 45N but you'll need to get a bag bellows and maybe a recessed lensboard.