Medium & Large Format Systems

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Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

Let’s start with the cheapest Large Format (LF) camera at the show, and, as far as I am concerned, the one that is likely to be of the most interest to the largest number of our readers: the Bulldog 10x8” camera (also available in 8x10” for the American market—it’s a reversing back and can be used either way). The UK price is £250, which means that although a...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

When it came to rangefinders, Leica completely stole the show: Zeiss and Voigtländer had only one new product each. Admittedly they were interesting—an 85mm f/4 Tele-Tessar in Leica M-compatible ZM mount and a dual-format rangefinder folder, the Bessa III—but they were somewhat eclipsed by Leica’s four new lenses and the revised M8.2 camera body.

The item...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2009 1 comments

As ever, medium format—hereafter MF—ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. For sublime, it’s hard to beat the new 50-megapixel Hasselblad or the 37.5-megapixel Leica S2, or possibly the Rollei/Sinar/Leaf Hy6, built by Franke & Heidecke (with their new option of a 6x6cm rollfilm back). As for ridiculous, well, I know I’ll get hate mail from Holga owners, but...

Jack Neubart With Linda Bohm & Gerard Marrazzo Posted: Sep 01, 2008 1 comments

The latest member of the H-series Hasselblad cameras is the H3DII, which takes digital photography and the H-series to new levels. With one version boasting an astounding 39 megapixels, this camera captures unrivaled detail. If you don't need that many pixels, the camera is also available with either a 22- or 31-megapixel sensor. I should also add that although we're...

Ibarionex R. Perello Posted: Jun 01, 2008 0 comments

The absence of the major camera and digital back manufacturers, including Hasselblad, Mamiya, and Phase One, probably reflects less on the viability of the format than the fact that this show is more oriented toward amateur and advanced amateur photographers. But the lack of those exhibitors didn't dim one of the most interesting announcements at the show--a camera that...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Apr 01, 2008 2 comments

What is the appeal of "retro" photography? I mean, surely, hasn't everyone "gone digital" nowadays? And equally surely, wouldn't you admit that the three new ZV Classic lenses from Zeiss, for traditional Hasselblads, are as retro as they come?
The answer is no, on both counts.

First, film has no more been killed by digital than...

Robert E. Mayer Posted: Feb 01, 2008 1 comments

There were two models of the versatile Mamiya Press medium format rangefinder cameras in the 1960s and '70s, the Universal Press and the Press Super 23. These cameras were designed to be more compact and in many respects more versatile than the bellows type 4x5 and 2x3 press cameras of that era, such as the Speed Graphic, Busch Pressman, and Linhof Technica. The main...

Rick Shimonkevitz Posted: Aug 01, 2007 0 comments

As we journey further into cyberspace, it is inevitable that the oldest of methods for forming an image has found resurgence. Pinhole photography can be both fun and a serious pursuit. Notice the introduction of make-your-own pinhole camera kits as well as manufactured cameras for small and large formats. There is a published journal devoted to the craft and several websites...

Jon Canfield Posted: Jul 01, 2007 0 comments

You'd think that with 12- and 16-megapixel digital SLRs so readily available that demand for digital backs and medium format digital bodies would be languishing. But 2007 looks like another good year for the big guns with both Rollei and Hasselblad showing very impressive new products, Pentax still showing a prototype digital body, and Phase One still doing very well...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: May 01, 2007 0 comments

The name gives it away. The Fotoman 810PS is indeed an 8x10" point-and-shoot (PS) camera. Well, sort of. It brings you that huge, beautiful 8x10" (203x254mm) image in a camera that is more basic than you may readily imagine.

Unlike smaller point-and-shoots, there's no autofocus or autoexposure, and even with a wide angle lens (150mm, pretty much the...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2007 1 comments

This would appear to be a new golden age for rangefinder users. There are now three major systems (Leica, Voigtländer, and Zeiss) and two minor (Epson and Rollei). All use the same cross-compatible lens mount, for which an extensive and excellent range of lenses is available, and all compete with one another, albeit at different price points. Who could have imagined this...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2007 0 comments

Despite innumerable premature reports of its death, medium format refuses to lie down. Instead, it polarizes increasingly into large-sensor digital (up to about 2x the size of full-frame 35mm) and highly specialized roll film--though the two biggest announcements of the show were actually traditional dual-platform (film/digital) SLRs.

Rollei deserves first...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jan 01, 2007 0 comments

Large format cameras, in the sense of "cameras that take large sheets of film," are ever rarer at photokina. There are still plenty of cameras, and sometimes (it seems) almost as many manufacturers, but because so many of the manufacturers are so tiny, making a few score cameras a year, they are known by word of mouth in the large format "fine art"...

Roger W. Hicks Posted: Jun 01, 2006 0 comments

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the show, at least in conventional photography, was the new 35mm rangefinder stereo camera from Horseman. This shoots stereo pairs in the standard format--2x23x27mm in standard stereo mounts--so they can be projected or viewed with the binocular viewer that is supplied with the camera.

If the camera itself looks oddly...

Jon Canfield Posted: Jun 01, 2006 0 comments

Anyone who tells you medium format is dead hasn't seen the recent spate of products coming from all of the major players in the medium format market. If PMA is any indication at all, medium format digital is not only alive, it's thriving.

Hasselblad had the new H2D-39 on display in a private area. A solid digital update to the H1 system, the new version...

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