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Xpan & Other Panoramics For Hasselblad Xpan, Xpan II, Fuji TX-1 and TX-2, and all other Panoramic cameras

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Old 12-20-2012   #101
NicoM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hteasley View Post
OK, got a roll developed, and I'm scanning it now. Fuji Pro400H, and the 90mm lens.



Love those shots!
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Old 12-23-2012   #102
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Ok... I've had this sitting in a shrink-wrapped box on my desk for two days. Should I open it? Or send it back?

Dante
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Old 12-23-2012   #103
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I have not had time to develop my test roll yet.. My impressions from handling the camera..

- shutter release reminiscent of the Kodak box camera.
- your choice of f8 or f12. If I remember correctly Kodak used sunny f12 rule on cameras like their touristor
- recessed bayonet mount, not to sure at this time how hard to modify for other lens. Simple flat style three prong, feels like friction bump style latching. Will eventually wear out.
- scissor struct only has one position extension for all lenses
- Cock and release like the old leaf press shutters.
- leaf shutter behind the bayonet mount inside the body

W/o batteries defaults to 125 shutter speed, which happens to be max speed anyway. Given the release mechanism, I have been thinking maybe better to just not have batteries and just depend on latitude of the film I am using.

Right now mainly planning to leave the 21 equiv lens for 6x12 as normal setup, min. Wear out issue mentioned above.

Aperture at f12 is perfectly round.

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Old 12-28-2012   #104
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Short analysis of the mechanics, construction, hackability, etc.

Here: http://wp.me/p2RAff-f8

Let me know if I missed anything.

Dante
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Old 12-28-2012   #105
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That's the most complete review I've seen so far, Dante, I didn't notice anything missed. I bought this camera for the format but didn't give enough consideration to the "Lomo" part of it. To be fair I haven't shot or developed anything with it yet, so we'll see. But generally speaking I shoot MF for its resolution and tonality, so perhaps this wasn't a wise purchase on my part.
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Old 12-28-2012   #106
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It ain't sharp, and I'm finding that it's just hard to get a good level shot with that shutter lever, and the format is not forgiving of that. But it's still sort of fun.
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Old 12-29-2012   #107
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How does it keep tension on the takeup spool with no spring or foam pad? Any light leaks?

Thanks
Dante

Quote:
Originally Posted by hteasley View Post
It ain't sharp, and I'm finding that it's just hard to get a good level shot with that shutter lever, and the format is not forgiving of that. But it's still sort of fun.
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Old 12-29-2012   #108
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How does it keep tension on the takeup spool with no spring or foam pad? Any light leaks?
It keeps tension pretty poorly. The light leaks come from opening the back of the camera and finding the film not so tightly wound on the takeup spool. If you open the camera in some nice shade, and are careful to cover the film until you can remove it and tighten it by hand, you should be able to avoid polluting your shots. No other light leaks.

I did ruin a couple of rolls before being vigilant about how I remove the film, though.
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Old 12-29-2012   #109
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I was experimenting with this, and it seems the best thing to do is to keep tension on the film with your fingers (takeup side) until you see the start arrows. Then wind briskly between frames. The first roll today resulted in the loose-roll problem (which I have only experienced twice in about 1,000 rolls of MF file - usually because the paper band (or a piece of it) got caught behind the spring tensioner. After that, using the finger pressure technique, it was ok.

Out of curiosity, will yours fire a flash when the camera is held vertically, flash shoe up?

Dante

Quote:
Originally Posted by hteasley View Post
It keeps tension pretty poorly. The light leaks come from opening the back of the camera and finding the film not so tightly wound on the takeup spool. If you open the camera in some nice shade, and are careful to cover the film until you can remove it and tighten it by hand, you should be able to avoid polluting your shots. No other light leaks.

I did ruin a couple of rolls before being vigilant about how I remove the film, though.
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Old 12-29-2012   #110
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Out of curiosity, will yours fire a flash when the camera is held vertically, flash shoe up?
Haven't tried; I rarely shoot with a flash. Have you found a problem doing that?
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Old 12-29-2012   #111
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Old 12-29-2012   #112
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Not sure if I'm ever going to shoot this at anything other than 6x12...



A little light leak on this in the lower right, from a loose roll.
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Old 12-29-2012   #113
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dante_Stella View Post
Short analysis of the mechanics, construction, hackability, etc.

Here: http://wp.me/p2RAff-f8

Let me know if I missed anything.

Dante
Dante, I think it's a good write-up on the camera. As I wrote above, I returned mine for a refund. The horrible plastic ratchet wind mechanism in particular tipped the balance for me. And lack of any pressure plate. The photos I've seen from this camera so far (to me) are more unsharp than I expected/hoped, supporting the lack-of-film-flatness hypothesis. Finally, I disagree with your assessment of the scissor strut - perhaps it's me who is ham-handed, but I felt that I would break that camera in no time at all collasping and expanding it.

But, my intention here is not to rain on anyone's parade. In competent hands, this or any other camera is capable of producing interesting results, I'm sure.
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Old 12-30-2012   #114
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My experience is the same as others. I have shot three rolls with it and have nothing worth sharing. The 90mm lens seems to be better than the 58mm but neither is sharp (as would be expected from the price). For me, the colors don't look right either. There are now two Russian glass lenses (90mm and 114mm) available for pre-order. The only reason to purchase either of those is to get better 6x12 performance. I agree with others who have said that there are far better and cheaper 6x6 and 6x9 options out there.
The build quality is VERY low. Kodak's disposable cameras have a higher build quality.
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Old 12-30-2012   #115
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Harry, I absolutely adore the last shot (backyard)!


What film did you use? Also 400H?
I've mine loaded with expired Portra BW 400, but looking for a good color film.
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Old 12-30-2012   #116
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Harry, I absolutely adore the last shot (backyard)!


What film did you use? Also 400H?
I've mine loaded with expired Portra BW 400, but looking for a good color film.
Yeah, the color shots are all Fuji Pro 400H. A local camera store is getting out of consumer retail and going into professional video services, so they are blowing out all their film stock. Got several packs of the Fuji, and I quite like it.
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Old 12-30-2012   #117
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I have already fallen far enough down the photography rabbit hole, and don't need to be confused by medium format at the moment. However, I would point out that a serviced Super Ikonta is for sale on ebay for $349 (w/ f/2.8 lens). If I wanted to jump into MF, I would look at that first.

That said, the Belair camera does look cool, I was excited until I saw the lens is f/8, not f/1.8 .

Randy
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Old 12-30-2012   #118
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C'mon, Randy, jump in! Yeah, there are lots of better options at 6x6 and even 6x9. But I'm not familiar with any 6x12 options. Which isn't to say there aren't any, just that I'm not familiar with them.

Just shot 3 rolls - I definitely noticed the loose-roll issue. I also have no idea whether the shutter speed varied at all (assuming the batteries I put in aren't dead). Will try to soup them tonight and then scan tomorrow.

Maybe my standards are low but I didn't find it that bad to shoot with. Yeah, the film advance is super low tech, but I was able to hold the body fairly steady, the viewfinder gave a surprisingly nice view, and the shutter wasn't as awkward as I thought it would be. If the results are acceptable (a big if, lol) this could be a fun and cheap way to shoot 6x12.
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Old 12-30-2012   #119
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hteasley View Post
Haven't tried; I rarely shoot with a flash. Have you found a problem doing that?
This is what I found:

1. Vertically, flash-end up, flash does not fire at all (no matter how light or heavy the flash - I tried both a featherweight SB-30 and a normal-weight 283). It will fire in landscape mode or flash-end down (and I did verify that the back-to-body contacts were not being stressed.

2. A Vivitar 283 will randomly fire if carried on the camera. It observes behavior #1 but will belatedly fire when the camera is rotated to landscape position. I could not ascertain why this was happening except perhaps that the X-contact is closed when the shutter is at rest and the rotation opens it slightly and fires the flash when it reconnects.

3. Every time the flash failed to fire, the shutter instantaneously closed (definitely faster than 1/25 sec).

I also noticed that in low light, against a Sekonic L-358, the long shutter speeds only ran about half as long as they should have - really the wrong direction given film's reciprocity error.

I'm probably going to pack it in on this - I had very low expectations, but the lack of reliable flash operation takes out about half the use I had in mind for this (f/16 zone-focused flash pictures with the wide lens).

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Well, it's Lomo alright
Old 01-01-2013   #120
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Well, it's Lomo alright

So my results were decidedly Lomo-esque, which shouldn't be a surprise (the left side is esp messed up). It's too soft and distorted for regular uses but I'll use it to experiment with Lomo since I have it.

I've tried the flash with a couple of different units that I've used as generic flashes on different bodies, I couldn't get them to fire at all.

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Old 01-03-2013   #121
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Just got a roll developed from my new Belair Jetsetter and thought I'd share a couple of photos. For a camera under two hundred bucks (pre-ordered with discounts) it's not bad. Don't know if I would have paid more for it though...

Shot using the 58mm lens at f8; loaded with Fuji Superia X-TRA 400 film.



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Old 03-26-2013   #122
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There hasn't been much activity on this one - are people as underwhelmed as I am by this camera? Has anyone bought the new glass lenses yet?

With 58mm plastic lens;



Ilford HP5+





I had a fixer problem on these, but you get the idea.
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Old 03-26-2013   #123
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Interesting at a lower price, but the prices I see lately are just too high for such a cheaply made machine.
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Old 03-31-2013   #124
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Hi everybody,

I've recently published a short review of the Belair 612, along with some photos. Executive summary: it's not exactly a Linhof 612 :-). I'm waiting for the glass lens I ordered a while back (Lomography seem tohave given up on sending out excuses as to why they haven't shipped yet), but I don't hold out too much hope. It is sort of fun to use, but less so when you consider the relatively high price, and especially the running costs. Lomography need to decide if they wanted to produce a real camera or a toy... and make design and pricing decisions accordingly.
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