Large Format to Medium Format experiences? : LUSENET : Bulletin Board for Medium and Large Format Photography : One Thread

For the past six years I have been using happily a Wisner Tech Field 4X5 and a Pentax digital spotmeter for B&W landscape, cathedral interiors et al, mostly in Europe. Film has been Delta 100/400, with the good images unsharp masked and printed 16X20 for hanging or 11X14 for portfolio. About 75% of the images are using a 210mm lens at f22-45, often at exposures of several minutes - a deliberate, contemplative approach always using a tripod. I am looking for (1)more mobility and less gear with which to travel, (2)very sharp images and (3) an entry point for Photoshop learning via scanned negatives. Hasselblad 6X6 seems like a possible answer. I wonder what other happy large format users have experienced with a similar move? Which body and lens would you start with and why?

-- Dick Silven (, June 26, 2001



I own both large format (Linhof Tech V) and medium format (Bronica ETRS), but most of the time my bronica is sitting on my labīs shelf.

Large format will give you much more sharp images at 20x16 than any medium format.

It is also truth that medium format equipment is much more portable than large format equipment, so it is a matter of copromise.

For me... Large format is the bet whenever conditions allow.

-- Enrique Vila (, January 03, 2002.

You will miss the movements as much as I wish I had them. Also, unless you have a lot of film backs,you will have to more or less dedicate an entire roll to either normal, +X, or -X processing.

Having lamented that which I do not posses,I will now recomend the cameras that I have been pleased with.

1, Zeis Ikonta folding 6X6 (prysm fangefinder); Quite sharp,fits in the pocket of my cargo shorts,Reliable!, and where I am it was relatively inexpensive. You can't cange change focal lengths and if you let sit for a while, it's a good idea to run it through an imaginary film to loosen up the shutter and refamiliarize yourself with it.

2, Voightlander Bessa II 6X9 (coupled rangefinder); It took me 3 junk cameras to make one winner, but the resuts were "WOW!".

3, Kodak Brownie 6X9 (PAT 1916); Under the right conditions a little lower contrast and soft focus = magic. I would recomend some ND filtres to hold in front of the "hole".

-- michael Wetzel (, May 19, 2002.

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