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Thread: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

  1. #21

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Question again, why just 4x5 or 8x10, why is 5x7 so often never considered?


    Bernice

  2. #22
    Nodda Duma's Avatar
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    8x10 is nice to shoot for contact prints, and the subjects for portraits I’ve shot at 8x10 seem to enjoy the experience better. Since I typically shoot dry plates I made, cost doesn’t factor in too much. 8x10 can be more of a hassle — no, more of an *experience*. The larger the format, the more special the process in shooting the photo. Otherwise for making prints there’s not much of a difference.

    That said, my favorite format is Whole Plate...somewhere between 4x5 and 8x10.

    One note: In your photographic journey, you *really* should shoot and then hold up an 8x10 sheet of developed positive film.
    Newly made large format dry plates available! Look:
    https://www.pictoriographica.com

  3. #23

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    I expect more difference between two photographers using the same format than between two formats from the same photographer. Which is to say that tools are tools and as long as you know how to use them what matters most is how you use them.

  4. #24

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Question again, why just 4x5 or 8x10, why is 5x7 so often never considered?


    Bernice
    For me, it's the different aspect ratio. I really dislike the 35mm aspect ratio of 2x3. 5x7 is only a quarter of an inch on each side away from that.

    I have thought of photographing in 5x6.25 using 5x7 film. This would give me a 4x5 aspect ratio, but with substantially greater area. Plus, it would allow handles on each side by which to handle the negative. But then, one is looking at bigger lenses, a bigger camera, larger film holders, bigger developing tanks, larger enlarger, etc.

    And, I don't print much larger than 3x, so there's not really much advantage to the larger area negative.

    All this said, I can think of multiple, really excellent photographers, who love the 5x7 format.

  5. #25

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    As a practical matter, handling the physical bulk of the 8x10 format meant I had to physically work harder at taking photographs, which at times become a significant distraction to the creative process.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    In addition to the larger/heavier camera/film holders/tripods/filters etc., my architectural subjects necessitated use of large heavy lenses with large image circles.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    Transporting all this gear in the field required a large backpack for the camera and accessories, and separate stand-alone cases for lenses and film holders.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    My wind management and camera stabilization techniques had to become more exacting, which often meant slowing down and having less time to explore alternative compositions of a subject.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    Slower shutter speeds meant subject movement and reciprocity failure could become much more of a problem.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Leppanen View Post
    Depth of field is noticeably reduced versus 4x5. For example in my experience it is impossible to have a near foreground and infinity background in simultaneous sharp focus with anything longer than roughly a 110mm lens when movements are not possible. 110mm is a moderately wide lens with 4x5, but is ultra wide with 8x10, so the feasibility of shooting such compositions with 8x10 is vastly more limited.
    These are all very telling observations, especially the last one. Not having photographed that much in 8x10, I was sort of dimly aware of some of them. But, Eric's comments puts them into very clear perspectives.

  6. #26
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    I prefer 5x7 for landscape.

    I have cropped 11x14 to that ratio for portrait.

    However I always set my iPhone to square if it fits which may come from shooting 126 when young, even then I knew it was 35mm stock.

    I seldom use my Hasselblad it feels awkward.

    Trying out 6x7 RF as I like my RB.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Question again, why just 4x5 or 8x10, why is 5x7 so often never considered?


    Bernice
    2022

  7. #27

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Makes more sense to compare different sizes with the same aspect ratio.

    I like the idea of 5x7. When I first started large format I thought about 5x7 vs 4x5 for a long time as I like them both, but ultimately decided 4x5 was big enough, that it would be easier to outfit with lenses, and that it was unlikely I'd ever be able to set myself up to enlarge 5x7 negatives. That was the most important limitation for me at the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Question again, why just 4x5 or 8x10, why is 5x7 so often never considered?


    Bernice

  8. #28
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    In 1972 when I returned from years overseas where large cameras were impractical, 5x7 had an economic advantage over 4x5. Film was more expensive, but cameras and enlargers were not. Then, when the darkroom with its monster Elwood enlarger burned, 4x5 had become more practical. An improvised 4x5 back on the bigger cameras made the transition easy. Any loss in image quality from the downsizing didn't matter for 16x20 prints. Now even a digital camera comes close enough for much work. Ah, progress!

  9. #29

    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    I find that it's easier to make a super clean image on 4x5 for lots of obvious reason. The films we have now are so fine grained that a guy like John Sexton is basically correct, that for his style, moving up to 8x10 would have diminishing returns and cause him to likely make fewer pictures. If your goal is a technically perfect image, 4x5 makes that easier. You could too say the same thing about 5x7. In fact I think the best 4x5 field cameras are 5x7 cameras with a reduction back. But the aspect ratio changes things quite a bit, and if you're enlarging you need a bigger rig, etc...

    8x10 though has it's own unique qualities and I shoot as much of it as I can. IMHO you just get that different world look via 8x10 more easily, which is not really John Sexton's goal.

    A sheet of TMax 400 is absolutely stunning from 4x5 and up.

  10. #30
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    4x5 home scans look a lot better than medium format and 35mm. I don't have an 8x10, so I don't know if those scans would be better than 4x5.

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