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Thread: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    116

    Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Hi all,

    I had a chance to use a 8x10 and I'm so stoked!

    I've narrowed it down to two cameras, a used Deardorff 8x10 and Wilderness 8x10.

    Which one would be better for field backpacking camera probably near my car?

    Deardorff 8x10 v8 is around $1400 good condition and the wilderness is $2630 (include shipping) new all metal.

    The weight is about the same. Both are around 12lb.

    Is all metal camera sturdier than wooden Deardorff? Not sure what would I gain for spending extra $1200 more.

    http://www.bhcamera.us/wilderness810.php

    Advice needed!

    Thanks!!

  2. #2
    David Schaller
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Williamstown, MA
    Posts
    667

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    The Deardorff is fine with me. I've never wished the it were a metal camera. It's easy to use and love.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Midwest, USA
    Posts
    63

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Wood is nicer when it's very cold. Metal tends to suck the heat from your fingers.
    Bill

  4. #4
    Lachlan 717
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2,363

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Buy a 'Dorff and don't like it? You can probably sell it for the same price.

    On the other hand, ever seen a "WTB: Used Wilderness 8x10" thread?

    Somewhere in between the prices that you quoted, you can get brand new Chamonix and Shen Hao 8x10s that have the same (basic) design as the Wilderness. Have you considered these?
    Lachlan.

    You miss 100% of the shots you never take. -- Wayne Gretzky

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    116

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Thanks guys for the advice! I will go with Deardorff.

  6. #6
    Lee Smathers
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Daegu, South Korea
    Posts
    371

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    That Wilderness is uuuuugglly. I've got a self portrait of Richard Misrach with his 8x10 Deardorff. Those are beautiful classic cameras! Perhaps if I enjoy 8x10, I will upgrade for it's compactness.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    155

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    So much love for the Deardorff on this site, but I'm not so sure. It's heavier than the Wilderness and I can't imagine it's as rigid, especially a 20-40 year old used and well-experienced model. If the goal is to have a pretty picture taken with your camera, sure, buy a Deardorff. If the goal is to use it as a tool for great photographs, I'm not so sure you discount the Wilderness so quickly.

    I've been asking the same type of question myself (Wilderness v. Chamonix v. Toyo M). If it weren't for the Toyo's weight, I'd be on that in a minute. I wonder if the Wilderness is as steady (probably not). I also wonder if it's more steady than the Chamonix (probably yes). I have a Chamonix 4x5 and it's beautiful and will not be sold for a long time. I also have a Deardorff, but it just feels too heavy for what it brings to the table. I'm thinking about selling it, but wondering if it's just me, or the format, or being spoiled by having worked with a massive studio camera that's a rock.

    Anyway, there's my two cents. Hope it helps, although it probably just muddles things more.

    All the best,
    Leo

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    9,042

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Deardorff works for me.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    3,114

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Quote Originally Posted by 36cm2 View Post
    So much love for the Deardorff on this site, but I'm not so sure. It's heavier than the Wilderness and I can't imagine it's as rigid, especially a 20-40 year old used and well-experienced model. If the goal is to have a pretty picture taken with your camera, sure, buy a Deardorff. If the goal is to use it as a tool for great photographs, I'm not so sure you discount the Wilderness so quickly.

    I've been asking the same type of question myself (Wilderness v. Chamonix v. Toyo M). If it weren't for the Toyo's weight, I'd be on that in a minute. I wonder if the Wilderness is as steady (probably not). I also wonder if it's more steady than the Chamonix (probably yes). I have a Chamonix 4x5 and it's beautiful and will not be sold for a long time. I also have a Deardorff, but it just feels too heavy for what it brings to the table. I'm thinking about selling it, but wondering if it's just me, or the format, or being spoiled by having worked with a massive studio camera that's a rock.

    Anyway, there's my two cents. Hope it helps, although it probably just muddles things more.

    All the best,
    Leo
    A wood camera will never be as rigid as an all metal camera. Look at a KMV 8x10 next to a Deardorff. But, as long as the wood camera locks down solidly and stays where you set it, it will be functionally as steady as anything short of a monorail.

    My V8 was made in 1950, and it was very well used. It still locks down solidly, and it's still tight. Original leather bellows, too, these would be perfect except for some accidental damage to a few of the corners. I've been using it since I refinished it 1989.
    One man's Mede is another man's Persian.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    653

    Re: Deardorff 8x10 vs Wilderness 8x10

    Every camera is a series of compromises. In my opinion, an 8x10 Deardorff balances those compromises better than any other 8x10 camera I've used. I do like fact the my 8x10 Canham is lighter, has rear shift and occasionally the longer bellows. I did love the fact that my old Kodak Master was so fast to set up and was pretty well impervious to the elements, but in the end I always come back to the Deardorff. It just a really friendly, elegantly designed camera that does what it's supposed to very well.

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