Minolta Panorama adapter for 7000i

Discussion in 'Sony/Minolta' started by paul_clayton, Sep 22, 2004.

  1. Hi, can anyone tell me how the Minolta Panorama adapter for 7000i works?

    Also, does film require special developing?

  2. It will black out the top and bottom part of the frame, just like APS does. The original frame size does not change, so you don't need special development. If you use print film you can achieve the same effect with the high-tech device called "scissors" applied to the prints.
  3. As above, the panorama adapter is a nice toy, but unnecessary. A decent lab will crop and print your negatives for you, if you need them to.

    As a more practical alternative to the panorama adapter, you might try a panorama head. These are small dials that can mount between the camera body and your tripod head. Some are only free-spinning, but many also feature preset detents (click stops) for different focal lengths. The benefit here is that you can combine multiple 35mm negatives or slides into one long strip of exposures -- meaning the resulting image of a chain of 35mm frames is of a much higher quality than a portion of one 35mm frame. The trick is making sure that the exposures and compositions match.

    Minolta made one, but I couldn't find it, so I ended up getting a Nikon head -- unfortunate, because while two of the preset focal lengths are the same between the brands (35mm and 50mm), Minolta did not make a 105mm lens, and I am forced to compensate by overlap.
  4. ok, but with the Minolta panorama adapter, how is it panoramic, since it is still only the same width as normal 35mm film, if u see what i mean.
  5. Paul,

    Remember that 35mm film is not a series of individual frames, but actually a continuous roll of film, 24mm high. Your 35mm camera divides the roll into a series of 24mm x 36mm frames when you snap your pictures. The panorama adapter simply uses a wider piece of the film than 36mm for each panorama frame. (I don't happen to know what the precise width is in millimeters, but it is probably something on the order of twice a normal width, or 72mm). It then compensates for the different aspect ratio of panorama shots by blacking out part of the top and bottom of each frame, making the height of each panorama frame narrower than 24mm. (Hence the "letterbox" look.) The film can then be processed at any film lab, as long as the lab knows that the roll contains panoramic frames, just as though the film were shot in an APS camera.

    I own an 8000i, but not the adapter. But if I am not mistaken, I believe one big limitation of using the adapter on a 7000i or 8000i or another similar Maxxum is that you cannot switch from panorama to normal within a single film roll, because you have to open the back of the camera in order to install the adapter. The Maxxum models which are actual panorama model cameras allow you to throw a switch and go back and forth from panorama to normal even in the middle of a roll.

    These adapters are almost always for sale on eBay for $25 or 30. If you are interested, you might ask for more details from someone there who has one for sale.

    I hope this explanation is not too confusing. It would be much easier if I knew how to post a drawing!
  6. Thanks John.

    One final question, so if the camera lengthens the frame, then surely you would get less than 36 pictures to a 36 film?

    I have purchased one off ebay, waiting delivery. I will post some results soon.
  7. Yes, you get fewer than 36 shots. If I am right that panoramics are about twice as wide as normal shots, you would get about half as many shots on a "36 exposure" roll.

    I, too, have thought about buying the adapters on eBay - even thought about buying another cheap 7000i body to leave the adapter in all the time. May decide instead to buy one of the genuine panorama bodies (the 400si or 600si versions, for example) with the feature built in. Let us all know how you make out.
  8. What are you talking about? The panorama adapter does NOT result in a wider frame. There's no way a Minolta AF camera can expose a frame larger than 36x24. The adapter just crops the top and bottom of the frame, resulting in a wider aspect ratio, but not in a wider frame.
    If you want a wider frame on 35mm film you have to use a Hasselblad X-Pan or Horizon 202 or Noblex 135.
  9. Paul,

    Looks like the info I gave you earlier was incorrect. As I said in my previous post, I do not actually own the Maxxum panoramic adapter, but was under the impression from what I had read that it did, indeed, allow you to create a true wider-than-36mm panoramic image. (As a matter of fact, there is a Maxxum panoramic adapter for sale on eBay right now, the owner of which makes that very claim.) "After further review," however, I find I was wrong. I checked with someone far more knowledgeable than I about Maxxums, and learned that Michael is correct. The adapter simply lops off the top and bottom of a standard 24mmx36mm frame to create an approximately 13mmx36mm panoramic aspect ratio, not a wider picture. This is true not only of the adapter you want to buy for your 7000i, but is also true of the later Maxxum models which feature a panorama switch that is built right into the camera body. Frankly, I am glad to learn this before buying an adapter myself, because this strikes me as something I have no interest in spending money on. But I hope that I did not not lead you astray in buying one for yourself.

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