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Thread: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

  1. #1

    Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Hi, I'm planning a 1-week trip to Banff/Jasper NPs in mid-August. I currently have a Chamonix 4x5 (045N1) camera and 90, 180, 300, 450 lense, and a GSW690III for quick shooting. I'm also in the market of buying a 6x17 field camera, likely the Shenhao TFC-617A or PTB-617 which will appear on North American market soon. I will be able to use 90, 180 and 300mm lense on both 4x5 and 617 camera and I plan to also bring my GSW690III. The question is which one format (only one), 4x5 or 6x17, in your opinion suits the landscape (water, mountains, etc) in Banff/Jasper areas better? Which one will you bring with you if you travel to the area? I really appreciate your opinions on this. Thanks!

  2. #2
    おせわに なります! Andrew O'Neill's Avatar
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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    4x5. You can frame your subject in anticipation of 6x17.

  3. #3

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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    I use my 8X10 format, where I will periodically marry two images together to create a wide field image...

    That said, and not knowing what your final printing process happens to be, I would probably suggest you bring the 4X5, since that format and your obvious assortment of lenses, will do you well. The mountain faces are close, where they are mostly obscured by the roadside trees, but there are a few significant viewpoints along the roads, and if you are willing to hike along a few marked trails into the mountain passes, you will find many more wondrous viewpoints, as well as one or two bears. Be prepared...

    The sky in this part of the world tends to be without drama, where you can read that comment as "clear blue skies," but occasionally we become blessed with a wee bit of cloud cover. If I am out and about, and the clear skies are too abundant, my equipment migrates to the base of every thing growing out of the ground. I would also suggest that you are prepared for the warm strong winds that like to rip and roll off the leeward mountain sides.

    Contact me off list, and I will give you a few directions that should assist you, if you have not been in this area before...

    jim k



    jim k

  4. #4

    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Thank you Jim and Andrew for your help!

    I'm not a professional photographer and my plan is to shoot some nice pics so that I can print and hang them on the walls in my home. 6x17 is appealing to me because I can order 20x60" or 30x90" Lightjet C-prints at my local store. I saw some 30x90" examples at the store and they're breathtaking! I shoot some 4x5 pics last year in Michigan (link here) and I like the big 4x5 slides, but I'll be limited with a smaller output size (20x24, or 30x40). Also, If the sky is often pretty clear and empty in Banff/Jasper areas, wouldn't it be better to take 6x17 rather than the more square 4x5 pics, so that the empty sky won't take up too much space on the negatives?

    - Han

  5. #5
    runs a monkey grinder Steve M Hostetter's Avatar
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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Hello,,,

    For me, I think a 617 would limit you just as much as a plain sky.. You can use a normal - tele on a 4x5, taking several pics and then stitch them together in ps and you'll end up with a much higher res image then you ever would with a 617cm image.
    That is if your doing inkjet prints..

    PS.. Nice fall shots of "lake in the clouds" !

  6. #6

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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Hi Han,

    I'll second, third, and forth, the 4x5.... if you get the opportunity, take the short trip to Lake Louise and visit the old Chateau Lake Louise. I believe it's now known as the Fairmont Lake Louise (Jim may know better.)

    Anyway, there's a shot down by the water facing the mountains that is a "must see and photograph."

    Lastly, don't forget to take some bug repellent with you as the mosquitos can be quite annoying if you're shooting by any of the marshy areas.

    It's a beautiful part of the world and I hope you enjoy your visit.

    Cheers
    Life in the fast lane!

  7. #7

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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Shadow, I had a GX617 (for a week) with me a few years ago in the Banff/Jasper parks - I didn't use it once. IMHO the 4x5, 8x10 is the perfect format - you can always crop.

    Have fun!!

  8. #8

    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Thank you so much for all your help, folks! I will take the 4x5 with me on this trip.

    - Han

  9. #9

    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    Quote Originally Posted by Capocheny View Post
    Hi Han,

    I'll second, third, and forth, the 4x5.... if you get the opportunity, take the short trip to Lake Louise and visit the old Chateau Lake Louise. I believe it's now known as the Fairmont Lake Louise (Jim may know better.)

    Anyway, there's a shot down by the water facing the mountains that is a "must see and photograph."

    Lastly, don't forget to take some bug repellent with you as the mosquitos can be quite annoying if you're shooting by any of the marshy areas.

    It's a beautiful part of the world and I hope you enjoy your visit.

    Cheers
    Yeah I've heard about the Lake Louise. Looks like I really need to sit down and start to do some serious research into this trip now....Thank you for your suggestions!

    Han

  10. #10

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    Re: Banff/Jasper: 4x5 or 6x17?

    "Lastly, don't forget to take some bug repellent with you as the mosquitos can be quite annoying if you're shooting by any of the marshy areas."

    Not a small matter. When I was photographing Peyto Lake years ago with my Hassy, they were so numerous and fierce that I had to fan the camera opening while changing lenses to keep them from getting inside. I got just one shot (it was a dandy) and ran for cover.

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