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Thread: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

  1. #31

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    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.
    What I'm finding out in this thread, is that it isn't just about resolution. There are multiple important considerations when debating 8x10 versus other formats.

  2. #32

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Larger film formats no longer automatically result in more resolution.. This was mostly correct decades ago when film imaging systems were no where as developed as they became at the zenith of the film image era. Where sheet film size can make a significant difference is in tonality (micro-contrast and all that), zero perceived grain in the print if the projected image magnification is not more than 4x (ideal would be 2x). This mostly applies to B&W, less so for color. There was a time when cibachrome-ilfordchrome prints were not difficult to obtain. For these prints, there was a define advantage to lower contrast color transparencies used to make these color prints. Coupled with contrast making, really GOOD color prints can be produced.

    Some Photographers obsess over "sharpness" believing the very best print images are the "sharpest" images. Highly expressive Pictorialism easly flattens that myth. What non sharpness photographers tend to be more interested in as what is considered a "GOOD" print is emotional content and emotional expression. All those image technicalities are secondary.

    The topic of sharpness obsession has been discussed on LFF more than once before:
    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...light=obession

    https://www.largeformatphotography.i...ight=obsession

    Keeping these factors in mind and working backwards from the availability of highest quality B&W fiber print paper which is typically 20"x24" (Wrestle with a fiber paper print in tray of this size, no fun at all. One crinkle and that print will never be the same.) and projection magnification of no more than 4x, physical size of the enlarger, film processing devices, chemistry required, camera outfit size, film holder set size... the answer comes out to .. 5x7 or 5x6..

    Where 8x10 and larger film comes to it's very own is contact prints. Going back into the history of Photography contact prints were the way to make prints. This drove the need and market for cameras, lenses and all related for BIG cameras. Once projection enlargement became popular and common, the market and need for BIG sheet film cameras became reduced.

    In the end, it is all a matter of your print goals and not much else. All image recording and print producing methods are mere tools to achieve a print image goal.


    Bernice


    Quote Originally Posted by neil poulsen View Post
    What I'm finding out in this thread, is that it isn't just about resolution. There are multiple important considerations when debating 8x10 versus other formats.

  3. #33

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    I wonder, what do ULF photographers think about the tiny 8x10" format? Is it still a cumbersome format to shoot with?
    I just love the bigger GG of the 8x10", that I can study. Much easier to see the total image.
    I shoot buildings, and landscapes. For landscapes I pick days without wind, I do that also for 4x5".
    As 8x10" film is costly I'm really selective in what I shoot. And s..l..o..w
    For me, 8x10", the effort needed, results in an image I do not toss in the bin afterwards.
    I own the gear, but those don't make masterpieces. My everyday experience.

  4. #34
    William Whitaker's Avatar
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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
    I've said it before and I'll say it again. The greatest motivating factor for 8x10 vs. 4x5 personally is that so many much more interesting lenses were made for 8x10 than for 4x5. And in response to other comments above, I must say that I seem to be gravitating more and more back to 5x7 as that aspect ratio is vastly more pleasing to my eye than the rather squat and plump 8x10 (or 4x5). Yes, I do know about cropping. But that defeats the purpose as I wish both to contact print and fully utilize the full negative.
    So, my favorite 5x7 is my Ansco 8x10 with a reducing back as it allows the best of both worlds, almost. Downside is that I still have to carry an 8x10 camera which also lacks the range of movements and corrections that another camera may offer. But most times and for what I do, the limited movements complaint is a non-issue.

    In fact, most days my Rolleiflex is a more effective tool for my purposes. But that is outside the realm of this post or, in fact, this forum. :-) After years of playing the format game, I do find that 5x7 is a real sweet spot. And, I know. That doesn't address the OP's question.

  5. #35

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    While I'd love to embrace 8x10 more completely, it is just those instances where I'm schlepping gear and working out in wet, windy weather, making time exposures with the intent on printing very large (up to 40x60, wet darkroom), which become (for me at least) untenable for anything larger than 5x7.

    For me to do this with 8x10, so much would need to come together so "perfectly," in spite of a host of variables completely beyond my control, to see anything but visibly compromised results, whereas 5x7 more often allows me (but sometimes just barely) to nail it!

  6. #36
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by fotopfw View Post
    I wonder, what do ULF photographers think about the tiny 8x10" format? Is it still a cumbersome format to shoot with?
    ...
    No. 8x10 is a cute little format...but what fun I am having with the 5x7! Okay, a couple times with a full backpack with the 5x7 on the pod and in my hands for 4 to 5 miles. Then it did not seem so small!

    The 11x14 is just a big jump in everything. Going from 4x5 to 5x7 was just a bunny hop, even same tripod and camera w/ 5x7 back. And the same was true for the alt processes I was using when I made the hop. Going to 8x10 visually (for me) was not a big leap, dealing with 8x10 equipment a little more so, but not significant considering the amount of time I spend on the image itself on the GG. It was a little more of a leap to using 8x10 negatives in the alt processes than the 4x5 to 5x7 hop. By the time I got to 11x14, I had been using 8x10 for a couple decades, so it is an interesting and challenging adding the 11x14 to my vocabulary...still learning.

    But two things...1) I make alt process prints directly from camera negatives. They are composed to be viewed at the size of the film used. if I want to make 11x14 prints, I want an 11x14 camera. To make it even odder, I many times split the 11x14 film into two 5.5x14 negatives. So here I am carrying all that bulk and weight to make negatives smaller than 8x10! (just barely).

    2) I am a big person use to hard outside work and inside full-on basketball (up to 25 years ago, anyway). That influences ones equipment choices and preferences greatly. For some, 8x10 is not that big and clunky...or wasn't until time catches up for some of us...
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  7. #37
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by fotopfw View Post
    I wonder, what do ULF photographers think about the tiny 8x10" format?
    The first thing they think is just how easy it is to load those tiny 8x10 film holders!

  8. #38
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    As I have written before, not everybody is lugging giant cameras on mules up mountains.

    I will be shooting outside this year, yet for a variety of reasons I have mostly shot inside my first and now second Last studio/darkroom.

    The giant Deardorff Studio camera can handle any lens including that monster 2500mm down under, I have aimed my lens out windows and doors.

    I can shoot 5X7, 8X10, 11X14 with it easily. I am converting the 10X12 back to 4X5 to add that format.

    When I bought the SC11, it came with only 5X7, I found or had made the other formats, film holders and 3 sets of bellows.

    We all just do what we can/aspire to, life is short, enjoy our time.

    I am not wasting another moment.

    but I am still in Duck and Cover mode, not going to Spring break!

    All those times, as kids crouching, with hands folded over heads in hallway was worth it.

    We remember
    2022

  9. #39

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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    You run out of breath quicker hiking with an 8x10
    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.

  10. #40
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    Re: 8x10 Photography Compared to 4x5 Photography?

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kasaian View Post
    You run out of breath quicker hiking with an 8x10
    A lot of opportunities to "enjoy the view", as I remember my parents saying often on our family hikes.

    To add insult to injury, some of my 11x14 holders have metal darkslides.

    Since I contact print, the only differences between the formats for me becomes proportions and size. An 8x10 contact does fit nicely into a 16x20 mat/frame -- lots of space around it, perhaps too much for some, but I like it.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

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