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Large Format Film RF Forum for Large Format Rangefinders (generally 4x5 or larger format) iIncluding Linhof 4x5, Graflex 4x5, and other Large Format Rangefinders.

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Old 06-08-2016   #41
zuiko85
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Whether it is a waste of $120 will depend on whether backers do their own research into what it will take to turn the basic helical/body into a working camera. At a minimum a lens and roll film back. I have a couple of Kodak lenses from the Tourist cameras and a separate shoe mounted RF given to me in a box of photo stuff. Also have some 2X3 cut film holders that can be adapted.
Whether money spent on this is a waste also depends on the person. I have neighbors who smoke and are always short of money, now that is a waste. If someone has fun with this and enjoys their hobby, no one should say to them, "For the same money you could......"
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Old 06-08-2016   #42
Roger Hicks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mani View Post
. . . Knowledge can be a hindrance to creativity.
What do you do for a living? Because knowledge can also facilitate creativity. I've earned my living from "creative" stuff for decades (writing and photography) and the more I know, the less time I waste.

The conclusion I came to many years ago is simple. It's called the "quality plateau". Below that plateau, better kit will get you better pictures. Above that plateau, your talent matters far more than the kit.

The plateau varies from person to person, and from subject matter to subject matter, but it's far lower than most people think. On the other hand, I've wasted a lot of time and money trying to get good results with junk. Nowadays I can judge pretty well what I'll need to accomplish something, and whether I can afford it (assuming I don't already have it, which after well over 40 years, I often do). Usually I can afford it because, as I say, the plateau is quite low. When I can't, I don't waste money on something that's almost but not quite good enough; something I will have to wrestle with every time I use it.

If you like playing with the junk, that's fine. For example, I grafted a Polaroid back onto a Lubitel. But as a means of learning more about photography, the main thing you're likely to learn is that there's generally a reason why good kit costs more than bad.

Also, because I've been to a lot of photo shows (above all photokina) I've seen a lot of ideas like the Mercury come and go. Most fail. They struggle along for a year or two, if they get beyond prototype stage, but that's it. Even the really good ones often fail from lack of money, poor marketing, personal decisions by the inventor(s) and more.

Cheers,

R.
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