What are the best 4x5 camera's to buy for portraits?

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by moodlover, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

    Aug 2, 2004
    West Midland
    Multi Format
    That depends on the 90mm lens and the "Flange Focal Distance". My 90mm Angulon needs to sit on the inner rails and has a Flange FD of 90mm where as my 90mm f5.6 Super Angulon has a Flange FD of 100.2mm from memory it (or my 90mm f6.8 Grandagon) work on the outer rails of my Crown Graphic with the front bed dropped and rear tilt and rise (to centre). I tend to use my Super Graphic far more as it has far better movements, the Crown lives abroad in Turkey and I tend to only use my Speeds for shutterless lenses.

  2. Neil Poulsen

    Neil Poulsen Member

    May 28, 2005
    4x5 Format
    If I were doing 4x5 portraiture, Iwould consider the following camera at Glennview.COM.


    Glenn sells the riser extensions needed for about $150 per pair. I have them available to use w/a Norma front standard tha I have for a Sinar rear 8x10 standard. So using these extensions, I can get virtually unlimited front rise. Otherwise, front rise is limited using either an F or P front standard.
  3. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Member

    Sep 19, 2003
    Medium Format
    'best' is a strong term but, I would argue that the Linhof Technikardan with i'ts accurate fine mechanics, stability and long bellows and universal lens plates makes for a fine studio camera; too fine for harsh outdoor conditions by the ay
  4. DC Lohenstein

    DC Lohenstein Member

    Dec 15, 2017
    4x5 Format
    Doing portraits in 4x5?

    A very interesting question!

    Your camera has to be quick, because the person you want to portrait will not hold the position forever.
    Your camera has to be simple, because apparative reality is a big obstacle while doing something like social interaction.
    You should use a portrait lens, what means 180-300 mm focal length because a huge 4x5 camera will be a huge menace.
    You should use a camera on which you can read the bellows extension simply, because doing portraits in 4x5 is macro photography, c.f. the YAPN macro bellows extension factors chart.
    You should use one ore more flashes to get a small aperture like f32, in order to get sufficent depth of field to get the face sharp, not only the nose.
    You should use something like a sliding back to change rapidly between ground glass and film holder.
    Perhaps you should use a dedicated press camera (Graflex, Busch, Linhof Technika) with a range finder and a flash gun - that's been used for decades to produce good photographs.
    Most people used to take a medium format camera like the quicker Mamiya RB67/RZ67. When enlarging your negatives to 8x10 inch, there will be no visible difference between the formats. The bellows factors are indicated on the outside of the camera, You have a reflex viewer and a quick winding lever. You will have a greater range of sharp lenses for this system.

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