View Full Version : Sinar "C" help and buying advice

15-Jan-2013, 04:57
Hi all,

I have another thread open regarding a Linhof Kardan Standard, but when I went to view this a Sinar C had just arrived. It looks to be in immaculate condition and I wondered if any of you could speak for or against this system for me. I am a professional photographer, shooting portraits, products and architecture on digital SLR's with tilt-shift lenses. I have never used a view camera before, but understand the principles and think a system such as this will give me more creative freedom and a significant advantage over DSLR users. There is no price on the system, so if anyone could give me an indication of what I might offer that would be great. The complete kit list is:

Sinar P body with ground glass (rear) + Sinar F1 (front)
Schneider-Kreuznach Symmar-S 5.6/150 multicoated on copal shutter
normal and wide angle bellows
Compendium shade with additional second bellows
11 & 16cm stems
*Sinar case
Optical bench
15cm Optical bench extension
8 x film holders
2 x polaroid backs (med format and 5x4)
Mamiya 645 film back + adapter
adapter for loupe
100's of Kodak correction gels

many thanks

Steven Tribe
15-Jan-2013, 07:04
Depends on where you live.

There are some considerable differences in continental/national and regional availability/demand which influences prices a great deal.

15-Jan-2013, 08:27
I am in Switzerland, but have contacts and clients worldwide. How much would you pay in Denmark Steven?

Leonard Robertson
15-Jan-2013, 10:03
As I mentioned in my reply to your Linhof thread, I'm a Sinar lover, so I have to say go buy this C and forget the Linhof! But of course in the real world we must consider costs. I don't know if you have any budget in mind or not. I only found two Sinar Cs on eBay Completed Auction, and I only searched North America. One sold for $438 with free shipping and the other for $478 with $20 shipping. Both from the same seller, so either he had two cameras or one camera and the first buyer backed out. The both included the front and back standards, base rail, one standard bellows, and a Sinar case. I have a feeling these may have brought somewhat better prices in Europe, but Steven or someone may know better on Euro prices than I do.

I'll guess on US eBay actual selling prices for some of the other items. Hopefully someone will disagree if they think I'm wildly wrong. Wide angle bellows $50. 150mm extension rail (very common) $35. Film holders I'll say $10 each if they are nice. Polaroid backs I'm not so sure. I don't know if Fuji is making 4X5 Polaroid or not. For awhile when Polaroid was ending, the 4X5 backs were almost worthless, but that may not be true now. The 3X4 pack back (model 405?) has held it's value - $75. Complete compendium $75. The gels I suspect don't have much value to speak of, unless you plan to shoot transparency film in the studio. But you might find someone that would have a need and pay something for them. The "adapter for loupe" if it is what I think it is $75 (most people prefer the binocular viewer). 150mm Symmar-S $150 to $200. The thing I have no idea on is the Mamiya back and adapter. I have a vague idea this may be the basis of mounting a digital back on the camera and have some value due to that, but no idea what the value is. A quick add-up of $500 for the camera and case plus my guesses on the accessories come to under $1000 US, without knowing on the Mamiya adapter. That value may not relate well to European values. Also you stated it is in immaculate condition and that should increase the value somewhat. I'm going to contradict what I posted in the Linhof thread about "extras" being thrown in almost for free. I suspect with a Sinar, having everything all together in a complete outfit and not needing to shop all over for the pieces is worth a price premium. However, the Sinar C isn't as valuable as the model P (although lighter in weight), and that fact may be useful to bargain on the price. I suppose you make a starting offer of equivalent to $1000 US, but maybe by European standards that would be an insulting low offer. I really hope someone else will join in that has a better idea on prices.

I do feel this is a better camera to start with than the Linhof, mostly because of the interchangeable bellows and ease of finding lens boards and other accessories. I suspect by the time you buy a new bellows for the LInhof you are looking at, you will be close to the price of the C. And I do love Linhofs, but I would want a model with interchangeable bellows. If the Sinar C is just too expensive, there are Arcas and Cambos and other nice cameras to be found.

But all this is speculation without knowing what the sellers will take for the two respective cameras.


Jonathan Barlow
15-Jan-2013, 12:24
I'd say about $750 for everything, in the US market. Probably more in Switzerland, if the demand is there.

Alan Gales
15-Jan-2013, 12:43
I'd say about $750 for everything, in the US market. Probably more in Switzerland, if the demand is there.

I agree.

I paid $600.00 U.S. for my Sinar P and I feel I got a good deal. My camera came with short rail, the same 210mm lens, and a plastic Cambo case. The Sinar P and lens show light use but work well and the shutter is accurate. The case is rough on the outside.

Sinar P's generally sell for a little more than Sinar C's but the camera that you are looking at sounds nicer cosmetically than mine and it has more extras included.

Leonard Robertson
16-Jan-2013, 18:10
I must correct one price estimate I posted previously. I said "The 3X4 pack back (model 405?) has held it's value - $75." I was correct about the 405 holding it's value, but I was shocked when I recently searched US eBay and found these Polaroid holders are selling for about $160 to $250! I believe I sold mine locally a few years ago for about $50.

When I made my overall price estimate of $1000 US, I really thought I was being cheap and understating the price. Reading Jonathan and Alan's posts makes me think I was if anything a bit high on my estimate. But I still don't know how well US prices relate to European prices. I have been looking at some Sinar components on UK and Euro eBay the last few weeks, and it seems they may be somewhat higher than US prices, but I haven't looked at enough different things to really know if that is accurate or not.


17-Jan-2013, 00:59
Thanks all,

I have made an offer to the vendor of the equivalent of $700, and will keep you posted.

18-Jan-2013, 08:44
Well - the vendor came back to me and said he wouldn't accept less than the equivalent of - wait for it - $2000 (!)

The thing is, the camera has been in the shop window for 6 months...

Bernice Loui
18-Jan-2013, 10:29
This Sinar C will be there for a long time to come.

Not too long ago, I purchased a 4x5 Sinar C2 (black), 4 lens boards, 18 film holders, wide angle bellows, 6" rail, a few spare Linhof screens, dark cloth, a few cable releases, lens wrench and case for $475. Seller told me he had the system listed for month after month with zero interest. He sold all the lenses, but no one was interested in the camera system.

Time to move on, there should be better used Sinar system values in time.


Well - the vendor came back to me and said he wouldn't accept less than the equivalent of - wait for it - $2000 (!)

The thing is, the camera has been in the shop window for 6 months...

9-Mar-2015, 07:13
Based on those Sinars selling at those prices, I was able to convince a seller to let his Sinar C go to me for $375, plus shipping to Canada; and it was a consignment sale too.
Bought in June 2013 on the big auction site.

Kevin J. Kolosky
9-Mar-2015, 12:07
Having owned a P2 I can't understand why anyone would want to own a C. Buy a p or P2.

Miguel Coquis
10-Mar-2015, 07:15
If interested in a Sinar P project, check:
The complementary parts are not that hard to find.
P or P2 are far more comfortable to work with then a C.
Good luck with your camera project.

William Whitaker
10-Mar-2015, 08:31
Well - the vendor came back to me and said he wouldn't accept less than the equivalent of - wait for it - $2000 (!)

The thing is, the camera has been in the shop window for 6 months...

Oy!! Time to shop somewhere else!

Drew Wiley
10-Mar-2015, 09:32
"C"'s go for very little in this country. There is very little demand for them because they are basically a compromise in function - neither an ideal studio camera nor a desirable field model. You might look into shipping.