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stiff68
04-03-2008, 09:46
Thinking to get a swave camera and poundering on Noblex and Widelux.
However, not easy to find spec and review of Widelux.
Anyone can provide some information concerning the comparison between N and W? As well as the tech spec of them?
So far as I know, Widelux is full mechanical but Noblex needs battery. I'd appreciate if someone can provide some information about these two camera or other choices.
Thanks!

chambrenoire
04-03-2008, 12:35
I've had a Widelux 1500 - mechanical. Uneven reliabilty. I have a Noblex 135U now - I feel it's better build quality and feels more reliable as a whole.

photogdave
04-03-2008, 12:38
A Horizon is better built, has more shutter speeds available, focuses closer and is cheaper than Widelux.

stiff68
04-04-2008, 08:22
Thanks both of you.
How about Widelux F7 or F8? Are they better and reliabel than 1500?
I heard about Horizon, produced by Russion. Is Russion product reliable?

I wanna shoot 135mm film, because I'm not going to shoot landscape but would rather scan on street, or shoot silently among people. So I want a pana-camera small, quiet, reliable and sharp.
So, which one is suitable? Does Horizon has a good lens?
RGDS

Stiff68

photogdave
04-04-2008, 08:33
The newer Horizons are quite reliable. They have a metal frame with a high impact plastic outer skin.
I've only shot extensively with the older, metal Horizont from the late 60s-early 70s. I found it worked well but only had a few shutter speed selections so I didn't keep it, but will someday get a newer Horizon. You can browse my gallery for some photos from the old Horizont.

stiff68
04-04-2008, 08:45
The newer Horizons are quite reliable. They have a metal frame with a high impact plastic outer skin.
I've only shot extensively with the older, metal Horizont from the late 60s-early 70s. I found it worked well but only had a few shutter speed selections so I didn't keep it, but will someday get a newer Horizon. You can browse my gallery for some photos from the old Horizont.

Thanks.

I visited your gallery and like some of the pictures very much.
I found that you shoot some pictures by Kodak 400TMY film. Do you develop them to negative and then scan them and revert their color on PS?

photogdave
04-04-2008, 08:52
Thanks for the compliment! TMY is TMax black and white. I just scan it as a black and white negative and it comes out looking normal. You can also scan it as a positive and invert it to get more highlight detail.

anglophone1
04-04-2008, 15:07
Started off with a Horizon, got pan bug, bought xpan, like it but still wanted the "curved" look sometimes, bought Noblexa as well. Noblex streets ahead of Horizon!
However for street work you will find that Noblex has some shutter lag whilst the drum gets up to speed....................
Clive

pfoto
04-04-2008, 17:30
or other choicesTake a look at the Fotoman 612 (http://www.fotomancamera.com/product_list.asp?id=189). Very high quality & takes a wide range of lenses.

pfoto
04-05-2008, 07:44
They are very simple and beautifully machined bodies. There is virtually nothing to go wrong with them and the manufacturer provides a lifetime warranty. There are one or two quirks, the film winds from right to left for example but OTOH film flatness is not a problem even on the 617 or 624 bodies because you can counter rotate both film knobs just before you take a shot so the film is tight along the back. The hidden cost with them is the lens cones, you need a cone for each lens but if you are already a MF or LF shooter you already have lenses so that's a plus. The camera is an attractive option IMO.

stiff68
04-05-2008, 08:45
A Horizon is better built, has more shutter speeds available, focuses closer and is cheaper than Widelux.

I went to the camera shop today and saw Horizon. It's indeed compact and light. However, the workmanship is not quite good, esp inside. Seems made of plastic.
And the price no longer cheap now. The clerk charged me about US$500 per piece!
While in 2nd hand market, the Noblex seemingle costs about US$600-700?

stiff68
04-05-2008, 08:49
Started off with a Horizon, ... shutter lag whilst the drum gets up to speed....................
Clive

Quite right! I've also got an Xpan but still like the CURVE scene sometimes. That's the point why I'm thinking about Noblex/Widelux/Horizon.

Shutter lag? I cannot get the point very well at present. Possible to provide a picture to illustrate this?

stiff68
04-05-2008, 09:03
They are very simple and beautifully machined bodies. There is virtually nothing to go wrong ............. The camera is an attractive option IMO.

I used to consider 612 and 617 format. However, large format negative is impossible to be projected. So far as I know, only Rollei used to provide 6x9 projector. So I turn to Xpan and Noblex. Their film can be hold in GEPE 2702 and projected.
In addition, Xpan and Noblex are small and light enough to be hand-hold and shoot. 612 is a bit heaveier if shoot without a tripot.
To shoot people, a tripot is sometimes not convenient.
That's why I'm consider 135mm swing camera, which is light, can be hand hold, compact enough for a waist-pack.

stiff68
04-05-2008, 09:11
In addition, I heard that lens of Noblex is from Zeiss.
How about the lens of Horizon? Is it good?
Pls comment the qlty and difference between pictures taken by Noblex and Horizon.

photogdave
04-05-2008, 09:16
I went to the camera shop today and saw Horizon. It's indeed compact and light. However, the workmanship is not quite good, esp inside. Seems made of plastic.
And the price no longer cheap now. The clerk charged me about US$500 per piece!
While in 2nd hand market, the Noblex seemingle costs about US$600-700?
You can buy a brand new one online for about $350 I believe. The Horizon seems cheap feeling at first but they are really well-built. Metal inside and plastic outside. I have some good links bookmarked on my work computer that I'll try and post later today.

stiff68
04-05-2008, 09:51
You can buy a brand new one online for about $350 I believe. The Horizon seems cheap feeling at first but they are really well-built. Metal inside and plastic outside. I have some good links bookmarked on my work computer that I'll try and post later today.

How about the lens of Horizon? Better than Noblex's or not? Is the lens sharp and good enought to provide a slide negative?
I heard that Noblex's lens is of Zeiss, is that true?

stiff68
04-05-2008, 10:06
Searching on net, I found that Horizon 203 S3 serie is the latest edition. It has S3 Pro, S3 U500, S3 Perfect and Compact. Any difference between them?

Of course, 203 is much more smooth and quiet than 202.

photogdave
04-05-2008, 10:21
I've never shot with the Noblex. I was pleased with the old Horizont lens and the newer Horizon lens is supposed to be better.
http://zenit.istra.ru/archive/horizon/horizon-vs-widelux-eng.html
http://cameras.alfredklomp.com/horizon202/
http://www.rugift.com/photocameras/panoramic_cameras.htm

agfa100
04-05-2008, 10:26
I started out with a horizon about 9 years ago, they don't feel great but they work.... After about 1.5 years I got a Noblex 135u great camera much better then the Horizon. The battery is just 4 aaa size easy to find, not a problem.

Widlux is out of production and I think the factory burned down??? they seem to have problems with banding, Noblex I have never had any banding problems. I would be looking for a used Noblex just my .02

wbill

stiff68
04-06-2008, 08:46
I started out with a horizon about 9 years ago, they don't feel great but they work.... After about 1.5 years I got a Noblex 135u
wbill

Thanks a lot.
Do you know any difference between 135U and 135S? It seems they have the same tech spec.

stiff68
04-06-2008, 08:48
I've never shot with the Noblex. I was pleased with the old Horizont lens and the newer Horizon lens is supposed to be better.
http://zenit.istra.ru/archive/horizon/horizon-vs-widelux-eng.html
http://cameras.alfredklomp.com/horizon202/
http://www.rugift.com/photocameras/panoramic_cameras.htm

Millions of thanks, photogdave.
Seems I'd better give up Widelux.
I will study all the information you give me.

Graybeard
04-12-2008, 17:56
I have, and use, both a Horizon 202 and a Widelux F7. Both are reliable cameras and produce impressive results.

Both of these cameras are mechanical with a swinging lens turret. If dirt, debris, or other trash can find its way into the swing mechanism the turret will not operate smoothly and banding may occur. In order to keep these cameras in good operating condition keep them clean. it isn't a bad idea to keep them in a plastic food storage bag inside your camera bag. have the camera serviced at approriate intervals; this is sound practice for any precision instrument.

Some of the comments concerning the virtues of modern electrical/electronic panoramic camera wonders strike me as sophistry. When the Noblex turret becomes fouled with foreign matter, it too will not operate reliably.

When a mechanical camera requires service, it can usually be restored to good operating condition with a thorough cleaning. If a camera which relies on electrical or electronic components fails, hope that the original manufacturer can provide replacement parts - don't count on this given the short manufacturing cycles of modern electrical components. Cirkut (sp?) panoramic cameras from the 1920's are still in use today. What electrical device of that era is functional now? For that matter, are electronic components for the 1980's era electronically controlled35mm cameras available? So far as I know, Fuji, the source of the Xpan cameras, has exited the film camera business. Reflect on this before you spend $1500+ on a camera than may be unrepairable in five years. Do you have sufficient confidence in the staying power of Noblex that you can rely on them to provide essential parts in, say 2015? I'll wager that there will be someone to clean and lucricate my Widelux then.

I suggest buying a new Horizon from a dealer who will exchange/replace a problem camera should things go badly for you. There is very little panoramic photography that a Horizon cannot accomplish for you. I recently took my five year old (and not serviced) Horizon 202 to Europe and it behaved perfectly - even with my pulling bits of lint and film chips from the turret with tweezers. I ran twenty-five 36 exposure rolls through the camera with complete camera reliability.

My Widelux is to my Horizon as a Leica is to a Russian Leica copy - finely crafted, a joy to use, but not as tolerant of abuse.

I remain to be convinced that a plastic camera with an electric motor is, in any way, an advance over a well made mechanical panoramic camera. Your mileage may, of course, vary.

europanorama
04-26-2008, 16:47
I went to the camera shop today and saw Horizon. It's indeed compact and light. However, the workmanship is not quite good, esp inside. Seems made of plastic.
And the price no longer cheap now. The clerk charged me about US$500 per piece!
While in 2nd hand market, the Noblex seemingle costs about US$600-700?next year i can celebrate my 30th anniversary in rotapancamera. pls do not say its plastic! its metallic like older model but you dont see- its covered by wonderful design. i had horizon(endless amount of problems-mainly light leaks but we finally solved), i have horizon 202 and s3-pro. my repairman had to improve 202- that camera is now called perfect. i hope i am right. but most perfect of all is s3-pro despite the fact that they wrongly changed lens-design from 202 to s3-pro. the lens was/is not the problem but its position to get best possible depth of field(DOF) since the lens is fixed focus fixed to infinity. newer s3-pro and the other newer model have the lens at a "better" position. dont ask me when they changed this. the answer must come from kmz-zenit. there are one or two russian camera-forum. pls post its links.
3 option: a) closeup-lens b) change distance film-lens version 1) using dymotape(0.25mm)-glued to filmrails.
2) changing lens-position

wrong lens design of S3-pro results in unsharp fstop 16/compared to 202. see here:
comparisons fstop 16- horizon 202 versus newer s3-pro
http://www.pbase.com/europanorama/image/36197074
yes kmz-zenit did not like me finding this out. but its not up to us forcing the producers doing it right. its up to them analyzing what is wrong. and doing the right things. i could not see any lens-quality-improvements 202-s3-pro. improvements means better resolution(we dont need 202-lens is razorsharp). if in fact resolution would have been improved this would have resulted in a smaller circle of confusion(COC). am i right or is it vice-versa. this could explain the problem with unsharp fstop 16. this would be called diffraction, right or not.

in my forum you can read about all the problems. and i have spent/lost almost half of my life with non-working rotating lens panoramic cameras(widelux 1500 is another sad chapter)
link is inside the am-lens-test or here
rotapancamera-forum
http://forums.delphiforums.com/pancams/start

be aware the scans are made with low-ressolution 2700 dpi ls-II(ls-20) coolscan. we only need to see the difference. if you have most perfect scanner or you print yourself, you can expect outstanding results. large prints up to 6m long. there is no alternative to horizon rotapan camera. its fully mechanic, you have almost all exposure times. forget that horizon compact. i have no clues why they put that on the market. would have better invested time in a perfect s3-pro. meanwhile they changed its name..... widelux 1500 has only 3 exposure settings, its a pain, i must work with nd-filter, depth of field is limited. horizons have bubble-level built in viewfinder. newer models have old-style camera-case- you can leave pistol-grip when camera is inside. bravo! lately in dpreview a siberian complained about lacking aa-batteries in digital-cameras. he should complain that there is no mechanical digital-camera...or a dynamo-loader. i cannot work without neigher horizons and widelux 1500 be for the latter, be aware it had 1000 problem due to main manufacturing errors. we had to improve. newest models are improved but dont ask which no.s, if you cannot test dont buy. and it must be done properly. if not you cannot check sharpness.
the noblex rotation is different from horizons. its speed depends upon exposure. horizons have two speeds(horizont only one) noblex slits are smaller, resulting in sharper-not much sharper images. MF-cameras: factory made close-up lenses if needed on fixfocus version results in perfect images at any distance.
noblex canada has them also for 135.
in narrow places or if you cannot stop down, you will need perfect lens position. for horizons easiest way is using dymotape-see my forum.

ishpop
05-31-2009, 11:15
Cool thread! I am narrowing my choices of a pano cam down also. Leaning towards the Horizon 202 no due to price.

The fotoman cam looks like a beauty and can take so many lenses!

europanorama
05-31-2009, 17:21
despite the fact that its not perfectly sharp at fstop 16.
you have more exposure times than 202. this unsharpness can only be seen when enlarged at least 20x maybe 30x. you need a good loupe to check it. check my pbase-link -be aware that there are older and newer s3pro around. newer build have lens set at "better" position. first production fixed focus-lens was set at the position where infinity was also sharp at 2.8. but best fstop start at 8-to get good optical results. so at 8 also infinity should already be sharp when lens is at its best position. since there is a closeup-lens-solution to change depth-of-field i would take a camera of first production run. infinity sharp(but not of best sharpness, which starts at 8) at 2.8 already.
there is also a solution to add tape to filmrails to get the same effect. all described in my forum. also link to closeup-lens-production(easy task for an optician).
fotoman-production will/is stopped.

noblex will stop production in 2010. just got the information from kamerawerke ...dresden.
i once had the first noblex 5x12. fantastic camera. improved now. newer model have improved start-speed
and 35mm-modell improved technics.
its ultrasharp. forget any digital camera if you have a good scanner. older cams with fixed focus can take up ultrasharp closeup-lens(magnetic).
never buy widelux 1500, its only for collectors. endless amount of problems. check them at my forum.
we had to rebuild it. and it had been rebuilt by panon later. i dont know how its looking now. george s. pearl of atlanta still has mechanical widepan(widelux-copy) which has 35mm-option. 1/250 has overexposure at start which can be corrected with photoshop-said george when using colornegative-film. but it has only three exposure times. it is a big mess. one has to deal with nd-filters. if they were magnetic, no problem. pro photo-connection of irvine/ca-usa once made a magnetic filter-holder for widelux 1500.
i would forget any other horizon than horizon s3-pro, above all the compact, which even has only TWO exposure speeds. i am still reflecting why kmz-zenit had this stupid idea. i was told -an there was a press-conference about it, that they are working on a digital horizon. i wonder if it has the important shift.
if you intend to buy large format pancam be aware of limited depth of field. this problem will not be solved if the lens can be focused or close-up-lenses used.
i hope kmz-zenit will change its information-policy.
on the net there are lies saying that s3-pro lens is better.
i didnt see a difference expect at fstop 16 when lens is at best position(i used tape-method).
why all the fuss: if lens is fixed focus at set too far away from film and you shoot near subjects one has to stop down a lot. when shooting people indoors, one must use quick rotation not slower. horizons slowest speed at quick rotation is 1/60. horizont/the old metallic beast which also cost me all my nerves between 1979 and 1988 when i first met my repairman, has at least 1/30 as slowest quick rotation speed. together with tape-method near subjects were sharper, no need to further stop down or use speedier film. i also used 1600 asa sucessfully.
there is a horizon camera wikipedia. can someone pls search and post the link. i already added specifications or corrected them.
i love mechanical cameras. when its very windy one has big problems with noblex-rotating drums. impossible to cure. big problems shooting in windy helicopter-situation. when i had to shoot a new bridge-inauguration(dreilaenderbrücke-3 countries-bridge germany/france/switzerland) it was terribly stormy. my widelux, despite only 3 speeds, saved me. i used 1/60 and 800 asa. we once added slower speeds, interesting for artistic works. this had also be done with 35mm
wideluxes shooting sports.
i started rotating panorama just 30 years ago-1979 with horizont and its 1000 problems. lens is bad compared to horizon 202. forget older widelux 120/panopic etc. with hexanon, impossibel to shoot against light-source. noblex is perfect, widelux a bit worse. only george s.pearl has the perfect widepan. i hope i didnt confuse you totally, only bit.....

John Robertson
05-31-2009, 17:44
Had my 202 since 1995 no problems. The newer ones are quieter, I believe they have nylon gears to reduce noise.
Camera has a strong outer plastic covering, the body itself is cast aluminium, back door is plastic but very strong. Lens is Tessar type and multicaoted, mine is very sharp.
Works best on a tripod, mine came with pistol grip which has a built in storage for four supplied filters. UV,Yellow,Green,N.Density. I added a red and orange later.
Loading is not easy and requires a bit of practice, there is one roller it is easy to miss, which gives flared ends to the frame.

http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l28/JohnRobertson/248978-Large-1.jpg
http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l28/JohnRobertson/248979-Large.jpg

Pablito
05-31-2009, 18:23
Widelux mechanism is very finicky.

John Robertson
05-31-2009, 19:11
somewhere on the web there is a stripdown of a Horizon, although it looks robust its NOT for the fainthearted!!

ishpop
05-31-2009, 19:33
despite the fact that its not perfectly sharp at fstop 16.
you have more exposure times than 202. this unsharpness can only be seen when enlarged at least 20x maybe 30x. you need a good loupe to check it. check my pbase-link -be aware that there are older and newer s3pro around. newer build have lens set at "better" position. first production fixed focus-lens was set at the position where infinity was also sharp at 2.8. but best fstop start at 8-to get good optical results. so at 8 also infinity should already be sharp when lens is at its best position. since there is a closeup-lens-solution to change depth-of-field i would take a camera of first production run. infinity sharp(but not of best sharpness, which starts at 8) at 2.8 already.
there is also a solution to add tape to filmrails to get the same effect. all described in my forum. also link to closeup-lens-production(easy task for an optician).
fotoman-production will/is stopped.

noblex will stop production in 2010. just got the information from kamerawerke ...dresden.
i once had the first noblex 5x12. fantastic camera. improved now. newer model have improved start-speed
and 35mm-modell improved technics.
its ultrasharp. forget any digital camera if you have a good scanner. older cams with fixed focus can take up ultrasharp closeup-lens(magnetic).
never buy widelux 1500, its only for collectors. endless amount of problems. check them at my forum.
we had to rebuild it. and it had been rebuilt by panon later. i dont know how its looking now. george s. pearl of atlanta still has mechanical widepan(widelux-copy) which has 35mm-option. 1/250 has overexposure at start which can be corrected with photoshop-said george when using colornegative-film. but it has only three exposure times. it is a big mess. one has to deal with nd-filters. if they were magnetic, no problem. pro photo-connection of irvine/ca-usa once made a magnetic filter-holder for widelux 1500.
i would forget any other horizon than horizon s3-pro, above all the compact, which even has only TWO exposure speeds. i am still reflecting why kmz-zenit had this stupid idea. i was told -an there was a press-conference about it, that they are working on a digital horizon. i wonder if it has the important shift.
if you intend to buy large format pancam be aware of limited depth of field. this problem will not be solved if the lens can be focused or close-up-lenses used.
i hope kmz-zenit will change its information-policy.
on the net there are lies saying that s3-pro lens is better.
i didnt see a difference expect at fstop 16 when lens is at best position(i used tape-method).
why all the fuss: if lens is fixed focus at set too far away from film and you shoot near subjects one has to stop down a lot. when shooting people indoors, one must use quick rotation not slower. horizons slowest speed at quick rotation is 1/60. horizont/the old metallic beast which also cost me all my nerves between 1979 and 1988 when i first met my repairman, has at least 1/30 as slowest quick rotation speed. together with tape-method near subjects were sharper, no need to further stop down or use speedier film. i also used 1600 asa sucessfully.
there is a horizon camera wikipedia. can someone pls search and post the link. i already added specifications or corrected them.
i love mechanical cameras. when its very windy one has big problems with noblex-rotating drums. impossible to cure. big problems shooting in windy helicopter-situation. when i had to shoot a new bridge-inauguration(dreilaenderbrücke-3 countries-bridge germany/france/switzerland) it was terribly stormy. my widelux, despite only 3 speeds, saved me. i used 1/60 and 800 asa. we once added slower speeds, interesting for artistic works. this had also be done with 35mm
wideluxes shooting sports.
i started rotating panorama just 30 years ago-1979 with horizont and its 1000 problems. lens is bad compared to horizon 202. forget older widelux 120/panopic etc. with hexanon, impossibel to shoot against light-source. noblex is perfect, widelux a bit worse. only george s.pearl has the perfect widepan. i hope i didnt confuse you totally, only bit.....


Haha, wow.

You really know your panorama!

What I took from your post is that the best balance of price and features is the Horizon S3 Pro. The only regression from the 202 to the S3 is the F16 sharpness, but it is not significant enough to warrant buying the 202.

It seems any other options would really run me expensive anyways.

What kind of Panorama do you think was used for these shots?

http://www.mvgphoto.com/portfolio/portfolioliste.html

Love them!

HenningW
06-01-2009, 11:09
At first (1960's) I had a Widelux; I forget which version but got an F7 in the late 70's. All Widelux I've tried have had banding issues to some degree or other. With my F7 I had to dry shoot it about 50 frames just before loading film to have any chance of having good shots. It got to be less of a problem after the camera had a few hundred rolls through it, but it never went away completely. The MF Widelux 1500 was a disaster.

I got one of the first Noblex 150's (sn 6) and used that for a couple of years, and then a 150U. These are great cameras with fantastic lenses, and of course they have definite shutter lag, but shooting action with a rotating lens camera is a bit of a hit and miss thing anyway.

I also have used a number of Horizont and Horizon cameras, and still have a 202 for occasional use. If you can get a decent used Noblex 135 for $500 or $600, I think you'll be happier. The Horizon optics are OK, but not outstanding like the Noblex's, and general handling as well as overall quality are not really comparable. I've had mine adjusted and lubed (it came dry and if you don't get it lubricated many parts will rust) and shimmed as necessary, and now it's decent.

I'll be sad when Noblex stops production, but there is still Roundshot. I have one of their 28/220 cameras, and while that one takes in a much wider view both vertically and optionally, horizontally, it's the same kind of camera in the type of shots it takes, but here the camera rotates as well as the lens. I use mine with a 28/3.5 PC Nikkor. Quality of this camera is in another league entirely; they make Hasselblads, Linhofs and Sinars feel flimsy and crude.

I also shoot Xpan and 6x12 (with 35 Grandagon and 47SA-XL) and used to have a Brooks Veriwide. They have their uses, and produce wonderful results, but you can't really compare them to rotating lens cameras, just as Fisheye lens shots produce the third typ of extra wide type of shots with yet another type of distortion.

When you go wide, you distort. Different distortions serve different purposes.

Henning

raid
06-01-2009, 11:30
I have a Horizon 202 which has worked flawlessly for me since about 5 years. I also recommend the Graflex XLSW with the Schneider 47mm lens [for 120 format].

MickH
06-01-2009, 14:59
You may find these two worth a look...

http://www.ephotozine.com/article/Panoramic-camera-advice-113
http://www.zenitcamera.com/archive/horizon/horizon-vs-widelux-eng.html

europanorama
06-01-2009, 21:58
At first (1960's) I had a Widelux; I forget which version but got an F7 in the late 70's. All Widelux I've tried have had banding issues to some degree or other. With my F7 I had to dry shoot it about 50 frames just before loading film to have any chance of having good shots. It got to be less of a problem after the camera had a few hundred rolls through it, but it never went away completely. The MF Widelux 1500 was a disaster.

I got one of the first Noblex 150's (sn 6) and used that for a couple of years, and then a 150U. These are great cameras with fantastic lenses, and of course they have definite shutter lag, but shooting action with a rotating lens camera is a bit of a hit and miss thing anyway.

I also have used a number of Horizont and Horizon cameras, and still have a 202 for occasional use. If you can get a decent used Noblex 135 for $500 or $600, I think you'll be happier. The Horizon optics are OK, but not outstanding like the Noblex's, and general handling as well as overall quality are not really comparable. I've had mine adjusted and lubed (it came dry and if you don't get it lubricated many parts will rust) and shimmed as necessary, and now it's decent.

I'll be sad when Noblex stops production, but there is still Roundshot. I have one of their 28/220 cameras, and while that one takes in a much wider view both vertically and optionally, horizontally, it's the same kind of camera in the type of shots it takes, but here the camera rotates as well as the lens. I use mine with a 28/3.5 PC Nikkor. Quality of this camera is in another league entirely; they make Hasselblads, Linhofs and Sinars feel flimsy and crude.

I also shoot Xpan and 6x12 (with 35 Grandagon and 47SA-XL) and used to have a Brooks Veriwide. They have their uses, and produce wonderful results, but you can't really compare them to rotating lens cameras, just as Fisheye lens shots produce the third typ of extra wide type of shots with yet another type of distortion.

When you go wide, you distort. Different distortions serve different purposes.

Henning

1. roundshot also stops production of analogues.
28/220 has no focus. lens is too short wor certain shot.
no shift

2. horizon-there is a wiki.
instructions how to load film are around.
one can print up to 6m without a problem.
3. lens of noblex 150 5x12cm is better when shootin against light compared to widelux. never noblex have shorter delay. newest 135 are improved. noblex will stop rotapancamera-production in 2010. company will still exist doing industrial work. new ownership

europanorama
06-01-2009, 22:13
You may find these two worth a look...

http://www.ephotozine.com/article/Panoramic-camera-advice-113
http://www.zenitcamera.com/archive/horizon/horizon-vs-widelux-eng.html
horizont/horizon/widelux-article is unprecise as always.
he should have written 35mm horizon/widelux have foxfocus. widelux 1500 has focus, but below 5m resolution is reduced which can be seen at 20x50cm prints. first production was a desaster. forget shooting. banding, unsharp zones, 1 million construction mistakes, main mistakes in using material. they let other do the job. panon camer shoko co.(not shoke) didnt have its own fabrication, at least not at the end.
read my findings in my forum.

David Murphy
06-01-2009, 22:46
I don't know much about this topic, but I have briefly owned a Noblex and was not too impressed by its construction quality - I forgot which model. The Widelux on the other hand is an impressive piece of work mechanically and style-wise IMO. I'd favor it for that reason alone! It strikes me as one audacious old-school piece of Japanese opto-mechanical camera engineering.

ishpop
06-01-2009, 23:14
Which of all the options is the smallest?

Are any of these potentially hand-holdable in bright conditions?

I am still leaning towards the Horizon 202 as it is cheapest and seems to be light. I can't imagine spending 2k on a format I have no experience with.

:)

ishpop
06-01-2009, 23:15
That being said the Widelux 1500 looks and sounds sweet. Would love to have a 120 roll shooting this format.

*edit: All the issues not being considered, lol.

ishpop
06-01-2009, 23:21
I have a Horizon 202 which has worked flawlessly for me since about 5 years. I also recommend the Graflex XLSW with the Schneider 47mm lens [for 120 format].

Hey Raid. I realize this is not a swing camera, but you recommend it for general 120 wides right? Like a 21mm POV? What format, 6 X 9 roughly?

Here is one I found:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320376458416&fromMakeTrack=true&ssPageName=VIP:Watchlink:middle:us

My guess is this is a tripod only cam or maybe can be handheld?

MickH
06-02-2009, 00:37
I have only run a couple of films through my Horizon 202 so far. All shots have been hand-held at 1/250. Results are OK. I still have much to learn.

HenningW
06-02-2009, 23:51
1. roundshot also stops production of analogues.
28/220 has no focus. lens is too short wor certain shot.
no shift

2. horizon-there is a wiki.
instructions how to load film are around.
one can print up to 6m without a problem.
3. lens of noblex 150 5x12cm is better when shootin against light compared to widelux. never noblex have shorter delay. newest 135 are improved. noblex will stop rotapancamera-production in 2010. company will still exist doing industrial work. new ownership

True, Roundshot don't make film cameras anymore.

Yes, the 28mm lens is too short for some shots. The 50mm lens on a Noblex 150 is too long for some shots, and too short for others. That's the way it is with lenses.

However, focussing is no problem. Does your 28/3.5 PC Nikkor have a focussing helicoid? Mine does. Does it shift? Mine does.

Newer Noblex cameras have the same delay as older ones. 1/2 drum rotation.

Henning

europanorama
06-03-2009, 07:19
ask the people on panphoto.com or in the panorama-list.
that is the main reason why those fixfocus pancams cannot be focussed. in roundshot 65/70/220 or 65 el focus is made by changing slit to film-distance not using helicoid ring. thats why changing lens roundshots were so expensive. they must be electronically conrolled.
thats why widelux 1500 is not sharp anymore below 5m, thats why noblex was using diopters first. i dont know how noblex focussing is working.
rotapan-shooting is not easy. also not easy is film loading. complaining about it is complete nonsense dont wonder if images are not sharp using 50mm lens. its a slow shooting procedure depending how near is foreground if you shoot indoors.
yes widelux 1500 is very robust, so are the older roundshot 65 el or 65/70/220, but w1500 is for the museum, or your have one of the latest rebuild ones.
noblex cams are not so rigig but the best swinglens-cams optically spoken and regarding versatility.(exposure times). for swinglens i can only advice between any of the noblex and horizon s3-pro(dont forget fstop 16 is not perfectly sharp, one has to exchange the lens and use a 202-lens.
everything in my forum.

raid
06-03-2009, 07:27
Hey Raid. I realize this is not a swing camera, but you recommend it for general 120 wides right? Like a 21mm POV? What format, 6 X 9 roughly?

Here is one I found:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320376458416&fromMakeTrack=true&ssPageName=VIP:Watchlink:middle:us

My guess is this is a tripod only cam or maybe can be handheld?

I have 3 or 4 backs for the camera, with coverages from 6x7 to roughly 6x9 depending on the back used. I often use it handheld for street photography. The 47mm 8.0 Schneider gives a 21mm coverage [for 35mm].

The Brooks Veriwide supposedly has a wider coverage with "true 6x9". The Brooks costs much more.

The XLSW is a light camera that is very well built [metal frame] and that can deliver very sharp images. I paid $330 for camera with lens and two backs many years ago. I also have a ground glass back for it.

mel
07-30-2010, 19:09
What kind of Panorama do you think was used for these shots?

http://www.mvgphoto.com/portfolio/portfolioliste.html

Love them!

I love them too.

ellisson
08-02-2010, 17:51
I have not tried the Horizen or Noblex, but I own a Widelux-7 and have not encountered any major problems. I keep the inside free of debris and rotate the turret a few times in between roles of film. So far, no banding problems. The lens is really sharp, resulting in uniform clarity from edge to edge. For me, this camera is a joy to use. I have a few Widelux images in my RFF gallery.

Vince Lupo
08-02-2010, 17:55
I bought my Horizon 202 about 10 years ago new, and it's a great camera for the money. The only thing I found that happens is that the film advance lever loosens, and you have to remove the plastic top cover to tighten it back up. Not a big deal, and that's really been the only issue. A fine camera if you don't want to spend a lot of money -- and mine came with a grip, filters, and a carrying case to boot!

[email protected]
08-02-2010, 18:30
I have been monitoring ebay widelux, noblex and recently horizon cameras.
My comments:

Widelux prices are steep because they are collectibles.
Noblex prices are steeper because they are newer and supportable (?)
Horizon prices are artificially priced high because of the lomo crowd.

In the end, I bidded and won a S3 U-500 for under $200. Hope it works out.

tim_n
08-03-2010, 13:28
Just a comment on comparing the uses of Widelux, Horizon and Noblex. All 3 are nice for landscapes, but Widelux is nicest for street photography and reportage-type event photography. It has a 26 mm lens with fixed focus at 3.3 m (11 feet), and can reach both nearer and to infinity with modest stopping down. If you take photos of people or animals, you will want focus in this nearer range, and you will not want the shutter lag of the Noblex. Horizon is fixed at infinity focus. The full aperture 2.8 on Widelux is probably of most practical use indoors, where the closer focus is an advantage, too.

varjag
08-04-2010, 06:05
Tim, Horizont focus is fixed at 5m.

varjag
08-04-2010, 06:07
Widelux prices are steep because they are collectibles.
Noblex prices are steeper because they are newer and supportable (?)
Horizon prices are artificially priced high because of the lomo crowd.

The reality though is that none of those are really ubiquitous.

presspass
08-04-2010, 10:23
Are the Noblex cameras still available new? If so, where can they be purchased in the US?

Finder
08-04-2010, 10:59
Are the Noblex cameras still available new? If so, where can they be purchased in the US?

Noblex and Widelux are out of business. There still seems to be a few places that have stock of new Noblex cameras--or they have not updated their web sites. I have seen a place in Canada that has some. I would do a search.

europanorama
08-07-2010, 12:31
Haha, wow.

You really know your panorama!

What I took from your post is that the best balance of price and features is the Horizon S3 Pro. The only regression from the 202 to the S3 is the F16 sharpness, but it is not significant enough to warrant buying the 202.

It seems any other options would really run me expensive anyways.

What kind of Panorama do you think was used for these shots?

http://www.mvgphoto.com/portfolio/portfolioliste.html

Love them!

1. horizon

buy 202 and s3pro and find a repairman for these cameras. fototechnik wiese in hamburg is one. he has(although expensive) perfect 202s.
then ask him/them to exchange the lenses. exchange s3pro-lens by the 202 one. all the informations about better lens in s3pro are lies.

i would really think about buying wieses 202. if not you could encounter neverending troubles. ask him if he could get 202lenses and let him exchange the s3pro-lens then. i dont know if he can deliver s3pro. i also had them after the cam was sitting in the shelf. at least i knew what was wrong. the slit-opener-mechanism could move an avoid the opening. thats why this screw must be fixed with loctite(half-force).
with older metallic horizont i even had more problem with the mechanisme and light-seal too until i found a repairman. the metallic material was changing is shape/behaviour with changing temperature!

2. mvg uses widelux 35mm cameras.

bagdadchild
08-07-2010, 14:30
Hi Michael,
There are lots of new Horizon 202 for sale on ebay and other vendors. Are those the ones with the better lens?

Frank Petronio
08-07-2010, 15:06
You want this: http://www.roundshot.ch/xml_1/internet/de/application/d438/d925/f934.cfm

The only rotating pan camera that I've not had issues with are the medium format Noblexes, they seem to have perfected things. The 135mm Noblexes are not as nice as their larger brothers.

The older Horizants and Wideluxes that I used all needed TLC and luck to get consistently good results. I haven't used a Roundshot but it would be fun. I've considered the newer Horizants but think I'd rather save up for a Noblex 6x12 and do it right. I never found focusing to be an issue, I really appreciated the upwards shift, and making long exposures with a Noblex (stacking multiple exposures) is a huge pain, it is impossible to shoot a setting sun for example, you simple end up adding more exposures to make up for the fading light and chasing your tail.

Precision Camera Works in Chicago (Bob Watkins) has a lot of Roundshot, Alpa, and Noblex (and Sinar and other high-end cameras) experience and a stock of parts, so I wouldn't worry about the company not supporting the cameras, you should have another 20 years of servicing without problems, at which time finding film may be more of a problem.

Rotating cameras are vastly more interesting and fun than wide-angle lenses or simply narrow format cameras like the 6x17s and Xpan types. But, in terms of practicality, stitching images together from a normal camera is probably the most versatile, precise, reliable, and cost-effective method.

europanorama
08-08-2010, 04:21
so you eighter buy the best 202(from fototechnik wiese) or the newest best camera s3pro which need the best lens(from 202). details in my last post.
results of my tests-confirmed by others can be seen here:
http://www.pbase.com/europanorama/panoramic_camera

there is a wiki about horizon-pancams- there i had to make some corrections. i dont like to read lies or unprecise information. its waste of lifetime finding the truth. horizon-cams and widelux 1500 cam has killed a lot of my lifetime.

europanorama
08-08-2010, 04:25
and you will be delighted. much better, lighter and quicker than any rotapancam. you can even do hdr-handsfree- saving even subjects in motion.
btw: some years ago, a digital horizon was officially announced a a press conference of kmz-zenit.

bagdadchild
08-08-2010, 05:39
so you eighter buy the best 202(from fototechnik wiese) or the newest best camera s3pro which need the best lens(from 202). details in my last post.
results of my tests-confirmed by others can be seen here:
http://www.pbase.com/europanorama/panoramic_camera

there is a wiki about horizon-pancams- there i had to make some corrections. i dont like to read lies or unprecise information. its waste of lifetime finding the truth. horizon-cams and widelux 1500 cam has killed a lot of my lifetime.

Thank you for your reply. Why are the 202's from Wiese better? They cost €470 compared to prices of approx $230 for a new Horizon 202 on eday. Aren't they the same cameras?

Steve Karr
08-08-2010, 13:54
Wow.. timely thread for me. I wonder if a 202 is good for closer-up stuff? I know you can shoot at f/16 and get 1 meter but who can shoot at 16 all the time, besides thats hyperfocal, not really focus. 90% of my work is people in their environment, but People first. Will (or does) any of the less expensive cameras really get the foreground sharp?

Do I need a rangefinder (XPan) type of camera, because that 'kinda money is too much for me but even $400 wasted in a 202 that only shoots landscapes is not a great idea either. I love the pan look of the 202 over a 35mm full frame, but if it's not sharp.

Is there a Mod. where a tech can move the lens outward some? Seems like a reasonable request, right?

So ... or maybe a 15mm on a Leica?? Just seems limited when you think of a 2 frame spread!

Thanks~
Steve

pagpow
08-08-2010, 16:55
Back in the day --

I saw someone who had hotrodded their swing lens camera with a close up lens. This should be possible with the 202 by putting appropriate diopter in one of the filter holders, with or w/o getting rid of the filter.

Keep in mind, though that the focus plane would be very clearly curved close up, so subject placement and angle subtended by the subject make a difference to focus.

Steve Karr
08-08-2010, 17:42
Ah! ... Now you're talking!

So maybe eye glass diopters cut to fit into the little filter trays.
I wonder why this never was formally implemented?

Any others?

Steve Karr
08-08-2010, 18:01
Wow ... the Wiese 202's are $630.

That's a lot for an upgrade on a $240 camera. How is it Perfect, because $630 isn't all that much.

europanorama
08-10-2010, 21:48
read about my problems and others in my forum around horizons then you understand why its wiser to invest for the best horizon. or do you want to hd teh same faith like hundreds if not thousands which have to accept bad camera-end-controls.
if you dont want to listen let someone give you a horizon 202 for free, but dont come back here and whine.

europanorama
08-10-2010, 21:51
read about close-up-filters in my forum.

europanorama
08-10-2010, 21:58
i was even in moscov in 1981 and phototass/technointorg didnt want to help me get rid of light-leaks. meanwhile there are solutions. everyting in my forum. but it must be a repairman with decade-long experience. and wiese is one of the few horizon-experts worldwide.

Vince Lupo
08-11-2010, 02:46
I bought my Horizon 202 brand new about 12 years ago from a place in San Francisco, and used it for all kinds of magazine assignments. Never had any trouble with it, and the results were quite sharp (I still have it, but admittedly haven't used it in a while). As I mentioned in an earlier post, the only issue I ever had was the the tendency for the film advance lever locking screw to loosen, so you'd have to remove the plastic cover for the lever and tighten the screw underneath. I'm sure that some Loctite would have cured the problem, but other than that I've never had any other troubles with it. Maybe I just got a good one!

sjw617
08-11-2010, 04:44
Wow.. timely thread for me. I wonder if a 202 is good for closer-up stuff? I know you can shoot at f/16 and get 1 meter but who can shoot at 16 all the time, besides thats hyperfocal, not really focus. 90% of my work is people in their environment, but People first. Will (or does) any of the less expensive cameras really get the foreground sharp
I don't think any swing lens camera is good for close up work. The swing lens creates distortation like bending lines and close up work may have a fisheye effect. I think a fixed lens camera will fit your needs.
Steve

pagpow
08-11-2010, 16:35
Back in the day --

I saw someone who had hotrodded their swing lens camera with a close up lens. This should be possible with the 202 by putting appropriate diopter in one of the filter holders, with or w/o getting rid of the filter.

Keep in mind, though that the focus plane would be very clearly curved close up, so subject placement and angle subtended by the subject make a difference to focus.

Steve --

Gunter Spitzing in The PhotoGuide to Effects and Tricks, Amphoto 1974
has a section on close up diopters on a Horizont, forerunner of the Horizon 202.

He had an optician cut 16x16 mm squares of +1, +4, and +10 diopters and mounted them on the UV filter for the camera w. adhesive tape.

You'll have to check whether the focus of the Horizon and Horizont are set at the same distance.

For the +1, he gives a focus distance of 1m, just as you would expect from any lens set at infinity, with a +1 diopter. He does not provide dof figures w. the diopter in place.

For street, you might want to try +0.5 and +1, and play w. the aperture.
Remember that the limited depth of field at larger apertures will be curved portion of a cylinder.

Couldn't find your section on close up lenses at your link, europanorama.

kjoebek
10-09-2010, 03:15
This picture are taken with a old Horizon camera
http://www.phosee.dk/pictures/00000138/985-panorama-fra-frederiksberg-slot.jpg

europanorama
08-02-2011, 05:42
Hi Michael,
There are lots of new Horizon 202 for sale on ebay and other vendors. Are those the ones with the better lens?
read my first long message. there are a lot of lies about s3pro lens-quality.

europanorama
08-02-2011, 05:45
I don't think any swing lens camera is good for close up work. The swing lens creates distortation like bending lines and close up work may have a fisheye effect. I think a fixed lens camera will fit your needs.
Steve

go to my forum-link in older message. its all explained there about closeup-lenses and instruction how to make them or simulate them. its a matter of patience to dig through all the horizon-problems. i have had spent decades...

europanorama
08-02-2011, 05:51
Steve --

Gunter Spitzing in The PhotoGuide to Effects and Tricks, Amphoto 1974
has a section on close up diopters on a Horizont, forerunner of the Horizon 202.

He had an optician cut 16x16 mm squares of +1, +4, and +10 diopters and mounted them on the UV filter for the camera w. adhesive tape.

You'll have to check whether the focus of the Horizon and Horizont are set at the same distance.

For the +1, he gives a focus distance of 1m, just as you would expect from any lens set at infinity, with a +1 diopter. He does not provide dof figures w. the diopter in place.

For street, you might want to try +0.5 and +1, and play w. the aperture.
Remember that the limited depth of field at larger apertures will be curved portion of a cylinder.

Couldn't find your section on close up lenses at your link, europanorama.

everything is discussed and linked in the forum. maybe login is needed. contact lenses were integrated into empty filter-holders. i didnt yet do it but will. i have a dymotape installed. easily done. not perfect in terms of film handling. one must be very careful when loading film not to slip under the tape. cannot be glued perfectly at one end.

thegman
08-02-2011, 06:03
I have a Horizon Perfekt, very sharp lens, small and easy to use. I've not used it enough to comment on build quality, but it feels pretty decent. It's not a Leica of course, and there is a lot of plastic in the build, but don't let the "Lomography" name make you think it's a toy, it's not.

europanorama
08-03-2011, 03:42
You are right. Horizon Perfect must have been named after the bad issues with 202. We had to rebuild it. is working now. I wonder if perfect has the same unsharp lens(only at fstop 16) like s3pro. perfect is the replacement of 202. there is a horizon-wiki.

Horizon Kompakt must have been a crazy idea of Lomography. A pancam with only two exposure times! how many apertures?

Ugly plastic-shutter-button
What i dont like in my s3pro is the plastic solution for the shutter-button. better than on 202 but still moving. why? If you use cable-release you will get problems when cocking the shutter after each shot. Moving cable can fire the cam beforehand. Old metallic horizon had a stiff button.
Thats why i made a construction with built-in-cable-release. my repair-man could make a flexible solution where one have both shooting options.

Texsport
08-23-2011, 14:25
Unless you are going to scan your own work, the Noblex 150's 6X12s are easier to have scanned by commercial shops than the odd sized Widelux, for which very few shops have a scanning holder.

Texsport

Frank Petronio
08-23-2011, 14:40
Get the best Noblex you can afford. Precision Camera Works - Bob Watkins - in Chicago can maintain them. He also does Widelux service.

The later Horizons might be OK, the earlier ones are real hit or miss. Their lenses are fine, it's the drive train that chews up your film that sucks.

Personally, I would only bother with the 6x12 120 Noblexes after mucking around with the rest. 35mm isn't worth it. And for a lot of basic stuff, stitching works at least as well. But when you have the right situation for a rotating lens shot, then no digital solution is as good.