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Thread: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

  1. #21

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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    hi, what about the good old reliable stripped down and unleathered mahogany Graflex Crown Graphic?

    rangefinder, lens stores in the housing, viewfinder, separate tilt and shift, idiot proof, no fiddling around, no wrap (400g), no.dark cloth 800g), very affordable ...

    Quote Originally Posted by AdamD View Post
    Ok guys, totally unique thread here...never been done before...🤪

    I'm pretty much ready to move on from my Cambo monorail and get something wooden. I've essentially "settled" on the Chominix F2 (about $1300). Thing is, I don't necessarily need all those features the Chominix offers. For instance, I can sacrifice on:
    • Weight. It can be a little heavier than the F2
    • Bellow extension does not need to be as long (so long as I can get a 70/300mm lens on it)
    • does not need as many movements or extent of movements


    I would like a wooden camera and just a point of clarification, I'm talking about 4x5 only. To me, ease of setup, minimal fiddling and good rigidity are important features.

    Looking around eBay, the prices between many cameras I looked at last year and beyond have risen to the point that the Chominix F2 just makes sense on account of it making little in the way of compromise. But anyway....

    Got ideas?

  2. #22
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    While the Zone VI 8x10 does not have a low-friction focus track, it also takes two hands to tighten. My Chamonix 11x14 takes only one hand...different focusing system altogether.

    But with experience and doing basically what you wrote above in #2, second step (partially tighten the locking knob), I adjust focus with the adjustment knob, and when I want to lock focus, I use one hand to maintain the adjusting knob's exact position and then put the other hand back on the locking knob and tighten it. I just have to make sure that the adjustment knob does not move as I tighten the locking knob.

    Easy, but I still double check the focus. A thought -- what I actually do is firmly hold the adjustment knob and the camera bed with my fingers at the same time...this gives my hand a reference point to tell if the adjustment knob has moved when tightening the other knob.
    The problem is after you make the locking knob tight with your left but not tight enough yet so you can move the focus knob with the right hand, you then hold the loupe with your left hand. Then make the final adjustment with the right hand. Let go of the loupe and use your left hand to make the final tighten. The problem then is the possibility that locking it may have moved the focus. Since you're no longer looking through the loupe there's no way of knowing. You can look again, but if it shifts ever so slightly you won't see the slight change, and now you're locked tight.

    I suppose I could forget about the last locking action and leave it with the last focus with the loupe and hope it holds for the shot.

  3. #23

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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    The problem is after you make the locking knob tight with your left but not tight enough yet so you can move the focus knob with the right hand, you then hold the loupe with your left hand. Then make the final adjustment with the right hand. Let go of the loupe and use your left hand to make the final tighten. The problem then is the possibility that locking it may have moved the focus. Since you're no longer looking through the loupe there's no way of knowing. You can look again, but if it shifts ever so slightly you won't see the slight change, and now you're locked tight.

    I suppose I could forget about the last locking action and leave it with the last focus with the loupe and hope it holds for the shot.
    Have you ever seen an indication of misfocusing on your negatives? I guess if you’re really worried you could tape a small laser range meter and measure any potential shifts when following your standard process (I mean in a controlled environment like at home, eg. focusing on some object right in front of a wall and pointing the laser at the wall behind it). That would also tell you for example how much things move when you insert the film holder. You may be surprised.

    In the field you could also shoot the same scene twice, one with and one without the last locking action and see if you see a difference.

  4. #24
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    The problem is after you make the locking knob tight with your left but not tight enough yet so you can move the focus knob with the right hand, you then hold the loupe with your left hand. Then make the final adjustment with the right hand. Let go of the loupe and use your left hand to make the final tighten. The problem then is the possibility that locking it may have moved the focus. Since you're no longer looking through the loupe there's no way of knowing. You can look again, but if it shifts ever so slightly you won't see the slight change, and now you're locked tight.

    I suppose I could forget about the last locking action and leave it with the last focus with the loupe and hope it holds for the shot.
    If the adjustment knob did not turn while tightening the other knob, then the standard did not move and focus is preserved. And always double check after tightnening -- no reason to just hope.

    I suggest practicing a score or two times -- set the camera up, with or without lens. Set the standard at one of the marks on the scale on the camera using the adjustment knob, and then tighten it with the other knob. Check that the standard is still at the same mark. Do it until you can always keep it at the same mark...then out in the field you'll not have to worry about it.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  5. #25
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    If the adjustment knob did not turn while tightening the other knob, then the standard did not move and focus is preserved. And always double check after tightnening -- no reason to just hope.

    I suggest practicing a score or two times -- set the camera up, with or without lens. Set the standard at one of the marks on the scale on the camera using the adjustment knob, and then tighten it with the other knob. Check that the standard is still at the same mark. Do it until you can always keep it at the same mark...then out in the field you'll not have to worry about it.
    I believe the problem is it can move when you locked it tightly after making the final adjustment. You want to hold the right focus knob too to prevent drift. So you have to drop the loupe so you don't know if it's shifted. I'll have to play with it and come up with a good solution. But I find it's a nuisance and poor design for any human without three arms.

  6. #26
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    That's why you keep a hand on the adjustment knob -- so you know it does not move when you tighten the focus down and there is no focus movement. One might give the adjustment knob a little counter-rotational force to counter the force placed on the other knob if that helps. I do not even look at the GG when I tighten the focus down. Good luck figuring the best way to work for you.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  7. #27

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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    I'm not sure what you guys are even talking about anymore. Sounds complicated.

  8. #28

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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by AdamD View Post
    I'm not sure what you guys are even talking about anymore. Sounds complicated.
    Don't worry about it too much-- it's an unusual issue for a specific model of camera that for basic use, shouldn't be a problem. IF you have a heavy lens, and IF you have the base board angled downwards, then you MIGHT need two hands to adjust focus. But only on the 45H1. The 45N-2 and 45F-2 don't have this issue at all, since they use a screw-drive mechanism for focusing.

    Even on the H1, I think Vaughn's got it right, and all Alan needs to do is monitor the movement of the knob he used to adjust focus with in the first place.

    I considered the H1 (and was going to buy it at first), but on reflection, decided I'd rather have the lightness and flexibility of the 45-N1(c). I would have bought an N2 happily, but they were out of stock at the time.

    As for crown/speed graphics, they're great little cameras, but as a novice, my concern was having to learn a new style of camera, AND deal with any potential issues a used camera might come with. Buying new, with good customer support, seemed like the right approach.

    While I agree that the H1 is quicker to set up and put away, raising and lowering the standard is a 10-15 second task each way. Having a lens always on the camera means I've got a 1 in 4 chance of having the right lens on the camera at any time-- or worse, that because I'm being hasty / lazy, I don't bother putting the *right* lens on the camera, and do it half-fast.

    If it's in your budget, consider the 45N-2 or 45F-2. You won't regret either. Also, the burgundy bellows looks fantastic.

  9. #29

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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    Quote Originally Posted by AdamD View Post
    I'm not sure what you guys are even talking about anymore. Sounds complicated.
    Essentially your thread got hijacked Adam. Don't worry about it.... just get the camera you're after and start photographing. You learn more as you go along....and as necessary.

  10. #30
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    Re: Chamonix vs. Xxxxx?

    +1
    The most important thing is to GO SHOOT!
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