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Thread: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

  1. #1

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    Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    I'm looking at what's actually available out there at the moment (from web inventories) and these two are. The Tachi is about $1400, the Canham is $3500. Both look pretty good in the few picks available and appear to have similar movements. At 110x110 it looks like my Toyo AX lensboards might fit the Canham, where I would need some kind adaptor board for the Tachi. Both have had reported here some rigidity issues at 8x10 (I think I saw some comments to that effect here). So here's my questions - 1) Does anyone know if Tachi makes a 4x10 back? 2) There is $2000 difference in price. I'm wondering what that extra $2000 is buying me with the Canham? 3) Are there any differences in film holders for these cameras? 4) Any movement quirks or bellows limitations with either that you all have found?

    My impressions are that the Canham will be more versatile and probably allow me to leave lenses on their Toyo lensboards, but again that is an assumption. And if anyone has strong feelings about not going with the Tachi, but waiting for a Shen Hao to wind up in country I would like to hear those opinions as well.

    Thanks

    Stew

  2. #2

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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    You can buy a lot of lensboards for $2000! Or for that matter, how hard would it be to have a good woodworker make a new front end for a Tachi to use 110 lensboards? Or for Grimes to make an adapter with a slight extension (since the Tech and 110 boards are close in size).

  3. #3

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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    I have a 4x5 Tachihara and an 8x10 light weight wood Canham.

    You get what you pay for.

    The Tachi now sports a pinhole shutter. For 4x5 optical work, I use an Arca-Swiss.

    The Canham is great. I bought it used for $2500.

    You'll be very happy with the Canham new or used.

  4. #4
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    While I'd agree that the Canham is probably more versatile, and has more extensive features, I own a Tachi 8x10 (the double extension version). The Canham was just more than I wanted to spend. I made my own lens board adapter, and mount most of my lenses on 110mm Toyo boards, as I use a Toyo 45AX in the field and Toyo monorails (45C and 810G) in the studio. I haven't encountered any rigidity issues with the Tachi, and the build quality is quite good - especially considering the price. There are times that I wish the Tachi had interchangeable bellows, and a bit more flexibility in movements, but overall, I've been happy with it.

    As far as I know, Tachihara doesn't make either a 4x10 or 4x5 adapter back. Again, I made my own 4x5 adapter using Toyo components.

  5. #5
    Ted Harris's Avatar
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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    There are other differences. AFAIK, at the price you are quoting you are talking about a double extension Tachi and the Canham has more extension. Second, the standard lensboards for Canham ARE Toyo (at least in 4x5 and 5x7). If you want to change to Technika boards Keith can do a conversion.

    I have used the Tachi 8x10 and use a Canham 5x7 extensively, different beasts. Not really a comparison. If you shoot 8x10 infrequently and if the bellows extension is sufficient then go withthe Tachi,it is a solid camera. OTOH, the Canham is somewhat more precise and locks down better, IMO.

  6. #6

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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Harris
    ...If you shoot 8x10 infrequently and if the bellows extension is sufficient then go withthe Tachi,it is a solid camera. OTOH, the Canham is somewhat more precise and locks down better, IMO.
    This LF thing is a bit of an exploratory journey for me. I shot 35mm for years, have a Pentax Pz-1p that I have enjoyed alot. Have a 20D Canon to get me into the digital side and action (plus some G-1 Powershots). The MF and 4x5 climb upward is only recent. I want to experience the whole gammit of this LF experience before settling into a particular medium, but really like the deliberate nature of setting up and shooting both MF and LF. Cost is a factor for sure and so I would say I will shoot a ton of 120 based images, fewer but still a lot of 4x5 and it will be infrequent shooting with the 8x10. I like panoramic imaging and the 4x10 component of the 8x10 add-on is an attractive part of the Canham model (as well as 5x7). That said I appreciate quality build and don't mind paying for it if it will last for a lifetime. Since I have some longer focal length 4x5 lenses that will cover an 8x10 frame size, I'm really only looking at the addition of a camera and film holders.

    Thanks again for all your comments.

    Stew

  7. #7

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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    I would strongly recommend looking into a Wehman - Very sturdy, Very light, great field camera - new about $1800?

  8. #8

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    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    I agree with Scott, I've had three 8x10s. If I were buying one today it would be a Wehman, especially now that he's got it down to something under 8 lbs I think. I've never used either a Canham or a Tachihara 8x10 (I did use a Tachihara 4x5 for several years and liked it a lot). However, I've played around with the double extension Tachihara and it felt like it weighed a ton. An 8x10 under 8 lbs that has as good a reputation as the Wehman does would make it my choice.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

  9. #9

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    Smile Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    I have an Ansco 8x10 and a Canham 5x12. I am considering replacing the 8x10 with a Wehman 8x10 when I can get the money together.

  10. #10

    Re: Tachihara 8x10 vs Canham 8x10

    By all means look at the Wehman as the price is right and I have heard good things about its functionality. The camera looks bullet proof and is very light weight.

    No camera is without its strengths and weaknesses so at the end of the day it all comes down to what feels good for you when you photograph with it. If you can find a used Canham wooden camera you have considerable amount of operating flexibility (long bellows, compendium etc. as accessories) directly from the manufacturer. I went ahead and acquired the 8x20 back for my 8x10 that I purchased used and it converts in less than a minute from regular 8x10 to 8x20. However, Keith can also set you up with a 7x17 conversion back as well as that format seems to be the hot item these days probably because of the ability of more lenses that can do double duty with coverage (8x10 and 7x17).

    I like the fact that Keith uses American Walnut and through bolts in his cameras as opposed to endangered woods and wood screws. The double front standard locking mechanism is also great because it allows you to lock down the front rise and independently apply front tilt with your fingers as needed and lock it down when it is in the right position. I am not thrilled about the bar that locks the camera closed but such is life.

    No matter what camera you acquire the challenge is to use it as often as you possibly can. More aggregate film users is our trump card to a positive outlook to the future of sheet films. Always use a compendium of a lens hood and always protect your holders in the camera with a dark cloth over the camera back. Learned that lesson the hard way.

    Good Luck!

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