Large Format Lens Hoods?

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by michael_kadillak|3, Mar 16, 2001.

  1. The subject of contrast and flare has gotten my attention recently. Is the utilization of lens hoods so common with 35mm and medium format worth considering in large format? Anyone out there with experience on this subject? My initial inclination is that the positive benefits of a lens hoods for large format photography is not considerable or the manufacturers would be pushing these acccessories. I use screw in filters and wondered if the two are compatible? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. I always use a shade or shade the lens with my hand when I use any camera, especially large format since the lens I have are only single coated. Flare greatly reduces contrast and I do my best to avoid it.
     
  3. I've never seen hoods for large format lenses. I know they sell lense
    shades that resemble a bellows that fits on the front standard of a
    view camera. These can be adjusted in or out to fit the coverage of
    your lense. I usually use black cards on stands or a "magic arm" to
    flag direct light from hitting the lense (gobo).
    It is well worth the effort to "flag" off your large format lense,
    just as you would a 35mm. I've had several ruined shots from unnoticed
    flare from point light sources.
     
  4. try a compendium shade with a mask and see the difference for yourself.
    toyo has been giving away compendiums with new 45aII's. most, if not
    all, manufacturers sell some kind of lens shade, even if they don't
    promote them.
     
  5. Hi Michael

    <p>

    I use allmost a MF or 35mm lens hoods but you have to take a wide one
    for a normal 4x5 lens and a normal for the long lenses,and super wide
    for the 75mm, because of more coverige of the large format. So thad
    works fine for me! And is much cheaper then the originall bellows hood
    for the Arca. And I testet each out so it works even when i`m fully
    shift etc. so it dos not vignetting!
     
  6. Michael, I favour the black card option. It is cheap, easily carried
    in a outer pocket on my pack and most importantly it works! I used
    to religiously use lens hoods on MF as I had a few shots ruined by
    flare. Quite often they were expensive accessories (that should be
    supplied WITH the lens in my view!). When entering the world of LF
    the problem of flare was a thought when it came to choosing lenses.
    But I didn't want the fuss or expense of a bellows shade and as the
    lens manufacturers don't (to my knowledge) offer hoods I made a few
    cards from matt black mounting board about 8 inches square. I use
    double thickness and tape the edges for longevity! They are also
    useful as I have stuck filter factors/exposure info on one side.
    They may be worth trying before paying out for an expensive
    accessory. Regards Paul
     
  7. I use the dark slide from the film holder. All you want to do is keep
    sunlight off of the lens and it doesn't add any extra weight or gear
    to accomplish the mission. Just be careful with wide angles not to
    include it in the frame. It can never be forgotten, lost or misplaced
    and it gives you something to do with the slide while you expose the
    negative.
     
  8. Several of the above respondents have implied that you only need to
    worry about blocking light from a point source (like the sun). But
    every test I've ever seen shows that image quality is degraded due to
    light spill from ALL directions, not just from the direct sun, and
    those who say "Pshaw! Don't waste money on a lens hood when your hat
    will do just fine" (aka "the Ansel alibi") usually don't realize how
    much contrast they're losing by not putting a 360-degree hood around
    the lens.

    <p>

    Fwiw, I use the Lee compendium shade/filter system, with 4x4 and 4x6
    filters and with different-sized front-lens-thread adaptors for
    various lenses. These have been amply discussed in Older Messages in
    this forum.

    <p>

    .,.
     
  9. There are two factors in large format photography that determine
    whether you can blissfully ignore lens hoods, will absolutely require
    a compendium hood, or experience something in between. First, the
    design of your camera. Does it have an oversized, square (vs.
    tapered) bellows? If so, stray light will have a greatly reduced
    chance of bouncing around inside and adding flare exposure to your
    film. Second, the image circles of your lenses. Are they
    substantially larger than the film? If so, more stray light will have
    an opportunity to bounce around inside when a properly adjusted
    lenshood is not used. Note that, despite his legendary hat trick, St.
    Ansel wrote about all this and did say that a correcly used compendium
    is appropriate for optimum flare protection, whether a point source is
    present in the scene or not.
     
  10. Many thanks to all that took the time to respond. The free sharing of
    experience is very valued on many subjects and that is what makes
    this post work so well. I found all of the responses adding something
    on the subject that I will take to the field and try out.

    <p>

    The post on a complete 360 degree shade particularly made sense. As a
    result, I found a generic rubber wide angle and standard shade ($8 -
    $15) that will allow me to screw the shade over my filter (or go
    directly on to the threads on the lens)and reduce the sharp angles of
    light into the edges of the lens surface that could wreck an image
    without warning. I will have to be very carefull with the wide
    angles. Many times I get so damn caught up into the composition,
    exposure and the large format process that I forget to think about
    that nasty word. Again, my sincere appreciation.
     
  11. Yes, Sal, you're right about Ansel endorsing the need for true shades.
    I probably had St. Edward in mind more than St. Ansel (the latter of
    whom obviously could make do with a hat on occasion but knew better).

    <p>

    .,.,.,
    .,.,
     
  12. I think you had it right the first time. I can't count the number of
    imaged I've seen of Adams with his Stetson, and do recall one image
    of him using it as a shade with hid 'blad. Weston on the other hand
    more often than not seems to have gone "lidless". I can only recall
    seeing two shots of him with a chapeaux - a Campaign hat and a
    beret. In his list of equipment for his Guggenheim, he always seems
    to mention the "Worsching Counter Light Cap" a combination lens
    shade/lens cap.
     
  13. The hoods they sell for the RB-67 lenses are incredible. They are big
    enough to fit LF lenses, I even have to step mine down a bit. They
    also have a metal ring inside the rubber to stiffen them. I think
    they are actually the nice Hoya hoods, labled as Mamiya. The 645
    system hoods are great, too, but in smaller sizes. You can find them
    used for less the $15 sometimes. They squish flatter to carry, too.
    They don't fold within the field camera, but I always take one along.
     
  14. I tried using a hood, but gave up. The metal/rubber hoods sold for MF
    cameras won't work if you use much movement, since you will cut off
    your image circle. The bellows lens hoods sold by Lee allow one to
    adjust the hood in response to movements. I tried the Lee hood, but
    found it was too long for my usual combination: G-claron 270mm with
    8x10. The hood often got into the picture even at its shortest
    position. The hood worked well with my Fuji 450mm, but I don't use
    this lens much. Now, I block the sun with my focusing cloth.
     
  15. The movements used with large format cameras makes the use of lens
    shades more difficult that with 35 mm or medium format, where the
    lens never moves up, down, or sideways (ignoring PC lenses for the
    moment). That's why compendium shades are used - they can be adjusted
    to conform to the lens movement. As someone else has pointed out, you
    don't use a lens shade only to prevent direct sunlight from striking
    the lens. It that were the case no one would ever need a lens shade
    since it's fairly simply to block direct sunlight with a dark slide,
    hand, hat, etc. The need for a shade is actually greater in bright
    diffuse light than in direct sun light and a hat, hand, dark slike,
    etc. won't help in that kind of light. The difficulty I've found even
    with a compendium shade is the problem of the shade causing
    vignetting of the film corners. In theory you can see this by looking
    at the ground glass but you're supposed to look at the shooting
    aperture, not with the aperture wide open, and who can see the
    corners of the ground glass very well at F 32 or 45?
     
  16. Take the back off and look through the aperture from the corners of
    the rear frame. If there is cut-off, you'll see it in the irregular
    shape of the aperture.
     
  17. ... or look at the groundglass through the stopped down lens (from
    in front of the camera). if you can see the corners of the groundglass
    ....
     

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