A Look At The 4×5 View Camera

The view camera was one of the earliest photographic camera designs and among serious photographers and hobbyists is still very alive and well today.  Especially big in the current industry for film cameras is the 4×5 view camera  The quality of the photographs as well as the creative freedom offered are a couple of the many reasons for this.So a 4×5 view camera is what exactly?   though most people used to dealing with digicams would find a view camera somewhat complex, the truth is the complete opposite. A camera with a lens really can’t get much more basic than this.  Essentially it is comprised of a front standard, a rear standard, a set of bellows in between and a lens.  The shutter (which is usually inside most modern-day lenses) and the lens itself is mounted to the front standard.

The film is contained for exposure in the back of the camera or the rear standard. And the rear standard at the other end of the camera is where the film is held for exposure.  Obviously nearly all cameras possess more parts, particular later model cameras, but this is the basic layout. The size of the negative produced and the format of film utilized is four inches by 5 inches, thus where the 4×5  part of 4×5 view camera comes from.  There are quite a few format sizes of view cameras.  Let alone custom sizes, a few are 5×7, 11×14 and even 20×24.  But 4×5 film can, as opposed to many of the other options, be fairly readily found at most specialty shops and processed for less than a fortune.The 4×5 view camera is typically found in one of a couple of basic design types.Monorail cameras are the first of these types.  This is the type of view camera that’s often used in a photo studio.  This design employs a single track that  the front and rear standard are mounted and can be adjusted back and forth for focusing.  Monorail 4×5 cameras usually possess a far better range of movement and are more useful for making many types of delicate shots, not excluding macro photography, than the other major camera design.

The disadvantage is that they are usually rather weighty and awkward as well as being a bit bulky for toting around.  Calumet is one company that makes mainly monorail  camerasField cameras represent the second general variety of 4×5 view camera.  It basically reverses the disadvantages and advantages of the monorail type camera.  While a 4×5 field camera wants somewhat in movements it is normally far less weighty and simpler to deal with than a monorail.  Also, the field camera can usually be folded up to quite small proportions for convenient lugging around.  The field camera is the chosen camera for most landscape photographers.  Camera makers including Linhof have a good selection of field cameras.Visit us at The4x5Camera.com if you would like to find out more about 4×5 view cameras and large format photography.

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