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Thread: What is the difference between these view cameras?

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    What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Since I haven't yet decided on my DMF system, I'm looking into a view camera option, too. I would mainly use it for studio product, still life, jewelry etc. I would like to take advantage of digital large format lenses (Schneider) and camera movements.
    So, my question is - what is the main difference (if there's any) between the digital back dedicated view cameras Arca Swiss M2, Cambo Ultima 23, ToyoVX23D? I'm located in Europe, so the availability is also important.
    Thanks!

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pics2 View Post
    Since I haven't yet decided on my DMF system, I'm looking into a view camera option, too. I would mainly use it for studio product, still life, jewelry etc. I would like to take advantage of digital large format lenses (Schneider) and camera movements.
    So, my question is - what is the main difference (if there's any) between the digital back dedicated view cameras Arca Swiss M2, Cambo Ultima 23, ToyoVX23D? I'm located in Europe, so the availability is also important.
    Thanks!
    I am in Europe too... where are you?

    I have the ideal kit for your applications, (but I am too ill to use it).

    Hasselblad H4D-60

    Sinar 54H (16 shot 88mpx) (current replacement Sinar 86H)

    Schneider lenses including 120 macro.

    Set of Zeiss Luminar lenses for 1:1 to 40:1

    iPad

    Three Sinars... (giving up to about 2 meters of extension when needed for macro), with yaw-free sliding backs for H sys and V sys digital backs.

    Thinking about LED lighting for jewellery etc.

    For product work for which DOF stacking would work better than movements, the Hasselblad 120 Macro HC11 would be a useful addition (I have the old Zeiss 120 macro, but it has no power (remote) focusing, so cannot be used for DOF without touching the camera between shots)

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Dick,
    thank you for you reply. I see that you have a lot of experience with the setup.
    I'm thinking more about Phase One and Leaf Aptus backs an the moment, since I already have Mamiya AFD camera and Mamiya Phase One lenses (120mm macro, among others).
    I thought that these three cameras are somehow better than older 45 view cameras, because they were built with digital solution in mind. But what do you mean by "There is no decent MFD view camera at the moment (with no slop between standards)" in the other post? Do you think these cameras have the same problems like the older ones?

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    The Arca is nice. I was thinking about that, but I got a good deal on a Linhof C679, which is also an excellent studio camera--I use it with a Phase One back.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    The linhof cs679 was also recommended to me by another (very experienced) automobile photographer out here. I'd love one, but settled on techno though, as I desired the portability more than the full movements. I think the techno has the same range of movements as the Arca (except horizontal rear-shift on Arca, is on the front on techno). The Arca does seem tough, but I couldn't get my hands on one. I was able to see the techno and Toyo before I purchased. The Toyo was offered at a great price, but I didn't like it at all. I felt it was not as accurate, heavy and could not support wides (can't live without my HR40) is all I can remember.

    I can only offer what I considered when looking at these cameras some time ago. The Linhof has many more features, but clearly there is more opportunity for things to go wrong or out of alignment. I believe that is over-hyped to a degree, but the Arca does look extremely solid. The Linhof has a built in geared head (bolts straight to the tripod), full movements front and rear, an interesting way of tilting the bed to maintain on-axis tilt and be completely yaw-free, levels all over the standards. Linhof seems much more accessible than Arca (at least out here).

    That's my 'better-than-nothing' point of view. But I've only been hands-on with the techno which is more comparable to the Arca M2 in terms of weight and movements.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Can only offer my opinion on the Arca ML2 and that is probably very bias as, along with the Rm3di I own these cameras. The movements on the ML2 are quite limited when compared to a fully fledged view camera as it only has tilt/swing on the front carrier and vertical/horizontal shifts on the rear carrier. This however make for a much lighter weight and simpler camera to operate with the tiny, fussy chip sizes on MFD backs. Its beautifully engineered like all Arca equipment and rock solid in operation.

    The trump card IMO to the Arca is that its a true system camera and all the parts are interchangeable so if one day you decide you need tilts and swings on the rear carrier you just go out and buy the "full fat" M monolith rear carrier that fits directly on the same rail using the 6x9 format set from the ML2. You want to try your had a 4x5 film, no problem, buy a 4x5 format set, pull off the 6x9 one and off you go.

    And to top it all off, they are a great company to deal with, giving excellent support.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    I'm in the exact same position, also will be using the camera in a studio environment to shoot jewelry.
    Gazwas, do you feel like the limited movements on the ML2 make any difference for studio photography?
    It seems to me that rear tilts would be used for Architecture work where you'd like to change the perspective of background objects to foreground.
    I'm still not 100% convinced whether the extra movements will help me when I have an object that's standing up almost facing the camera, a ring let's say, where the movements would be less helpful.
    The other options are the Linhof 679 and Sinar has the P-Slr but $$$.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Thank you guys. I forgot about Linhof cs679, it's something to keep an eye on, too.
    MedShooter, it's seems that all these cameras are in the same price range, so you'll have to spend $$$ one way or another.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by MedShooter View Post
    I'm in the exact same position, also will be using the camera in a studio environment to shoot jewelry.
    Gazwas, do you feel like the limited movements on the ML2 make any difference for studio photography?
    I've never felt limited at all not having the rear movements but I'm safe in the knowlegde that if I ever do its easy to convert my camera. To be honest the only limiting factors with the camera are all down to the tiny format (645) being used and the critical nature of modern MFD chips.

    When you first open the shutter up, the image looks fantastic on the ground glass but its such a shame that you can only use a very small portion of it. Movements only need to be microscopic again due to the small format and from a studio photographers point of view photographic plenty of white /neutral objects on neutral backgrounds, even with longer lenses with big image circles any movements and an LCC capture is critical. One of the frustrations to using CCD's with very small pixels.

    If any company released a MFD back with CMOS so it eradicated the strong LCC issues and a top notch live view mode I don't think I'd use any other camera than the ML2 again and that includes the Rm3di I own (and treasure). That's how good I think the ML2 is.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    I've never felt limited at all not having the rear movements but I'm safe in the knowlegde that if I ever do its easy to convert my camera. To be honest the only limiting factors with the camera are all down to the tiny format (645) being used and the critical nature of modern MFD chips.

    When you first open the shutter up, the image looks fantastic on the ground glass but its such a shame that you can only use a very small portion of it. Movements only need to be microscopic again due to the small format and from a studio photographers point of view photographic plenty of white /neutral objects on neutral backgrounds, even with longer lenses with big image circles any movements and an LCC capture is critical. One of the frustrations to using CCD's with very small pixels.

    If any company released a MFD back with CMOS so it eradicated the strong LCC issues and a top notch live view mode I don't think I'd use any other camera than the ML2 again and that includes the Rm3di I own (and treasure). That's how good I think the ML2 is.
    So Gazwas, you're saying there is limited motion when combining the ML 2 with a DSLR like a D800E?

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Rear movements are nice because it is easier to keep the image plane in the image circle of the lens--front movements shift the image circle in relation to the sensor.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by MedShooter View Post
    So Gazwas, you're saying there is limited motion when combining the ML 2 with a DSLR like a D800E?
    Sorry, not sure what you mean by motion? Never used mine with a DSLR (Phase Back on ML2 MF version) so not sure of the limitations other than you're limited to using longer lenses. Complete speculation but probably the DSLR lens mount will vignette if you over cook the amount of movements you dial in compared to using a digital back.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Rear movements are nice because it is easier to keep the image plane in the image circle of the lens--front movements shift the image circle in relation to the sensor.
    The movements are on the rear carrier, (lateral shift, rise, fall) it's just you can't tilt and swing on the rear carrier and IMO, tilt and swing are mostly used to position the plane of focus hence Arca's decision to put this on the front carrier.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    The movements are on the rear carrier, (lateral shift, rise, fall) it's just you can't tilt and swing on the rear carrier and IMO, tilt and swing are mostly used to position the plane of focus hence Arca's decision to put this on the front carrier.
    The tilting and swinging the image/rear standard also shifts the plane of focus. It also allow control over perspective by either increasing or decreasing it. So instead of using the just front standard to for Scheimflug, you can use the rear as well with the benefit of tweaking the perspective. And that is the nice thing about the Linhof that it gives that control in the studio.

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    The tilting and swinging the image/rear standard also shifts the plane of focus. It also allow control over perspective by either increasing or decreasing it. So instead of using the just front standard to for Scheimflug, you can use the rear as well with the benefit of tweaking the perspective. And that is the nice thing about the Linhof that it gives that control in the studio.
    I'm curious if you've tried that with a digital back and digital lenses?

    I imagine the image goes all funky and soft pretty quickly especially for tabletop product/jewellery shots?

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    Re: What is the difference between these view cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    I'm curious if you've tried that with a digital back and digital lenses?

    I imagine the image goes all funky and soft pretty quickly especially for tabletop product/jewellery shots?
    I do it all the time with a digital back in the studio. The image stays perfectly sharp across the image plane--this is hardly anything new. A lens swing is just the same as rotating the back around the front standard.

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