TravelWide 4x5 portable camera project launched!

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by larry kellogg, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. Yesterday, a Kickstarter project was launched for the TravelWide 4x5 camera. Think of this camera as a lightweight plastic life support system for a film holder. The camera is designed for the 90mm Schneider Angulon, f/6.8, but it will take a wide variety of 90m lenses. The designers also have a 65mm version of the camera.
    More information is here:
    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/wanderlust/travelwide-45-camera
    Basically, they need to raise $75k in order to pay for the manufacture of this camera. I'm in for a 90mm version of the camera. At $99, it's a bargain. Bring your own lens. If they don't hit their fundraising goal, then the camera will not be produced.
    No money is taken from your credit card until they hit their fundraising goal. I hope people here can help them out.
    Regards,
    Larry Kellogg
     
  2. I am not sure why someone would want to invest into something designed for a lens that isn't really rated by its manufacturer to cover 45 and that has been out of production for decades and then show it with a shutter that has also been out of production for decades.
    In addition, the flange focal length for a given lens can differ with the shutter it is mounted in. Since there has been no source of new Synchro Compur shutters for so many years and since the performance of the Angulon is "spotty" at best comaperd to later designs that do fully cover 45 it would seem a better idea to make this for a modern lens in a Copal shutter.
    That would also mean that helicals are available from both Rodenstock and Schneider for their 90mm lenses so the user could easily mount his own lens in a correct focusing mount and attach it to the camera.
     
  3. Hello Bob,
    The short answer is that it is cheap fun. ;-) By all means, bring up your concerns on the thread at the Large Format Photography forum, here: http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/forum.php I'm sure they would be glad to discuss your concerns and would like to hear your input.

    The idea is to get people excited about large format, at a cheap price point, and with a camera that is light and can be easily thrown in a bag as a point and shoot. I don't know how many times I've almost bought a Speed Graphic only to come to the conclusion that I would not carry the camera. I will carry this camera.


    Larry
     
  4. I am not sure how excited I would be if that old shutter breaks and can't be repaired or if the lens doesn't fully cover the format I would not be a happy user. I would rather carry a few more ounces with a more modern 102° coverage lens then a old, discontinued design.
     
  5. Or is it that you would rather sell one of your products? Many photographers use old lenses in old shutters and are perfectly happy doing so. Yes, they also frequently ask how to repair them or where to send them to to get repaired. Still...<br>The Wanderlust project offers a cheap way to put the lens at the right distance from a film holder and be able to take pictures with the minimum of equipment.<br><br> Harmless fun for little money.<br>Who can begrudge anyone that?<br>Oh, right... ;-)
     
  6. There are loads of these old Schneider lenses (just not new ones, and not from Bob S.), inlcuding two in my closet -- sounds like a great idea to me!
     
  7. I couldn't care less what lens someone puts on this thing. I can't see investing in a new camera that is made to only accept a half century old, or older, mediocre lens.
    If you had read my posts above you would have seen that I only stated that a more modern 102° coverage lens. Rodenstock, Schneider, Fuji all make these.
    If you want to invest in something new that relys on ancient lenses and shutters, of which there are fewer each year go ahead. It is your money.
     
  8. >> I can't see investing in a new camera that is made to only accept a half century old, or older, mediocre lens. <<
    Bob, it will accept modern lenses too, so long as the rear cell isn't too large. The f/8 and f/6.8 lenses are likely to fit, the big f/5.6 and f/4.5 lenses not.
     
  9. Except for the description:
    "The Travelwide 90 features a helical focus (focus ring) system which is specifically marked for the Angulon 90mm ƒ/6.8."
     
  10. Oh, that specific marking is just a sticker on the plastic. It can be changed.
     
  11. According to the Kickstarter description, there will be instructions to adjust the camera to other 90mm lenses...
    BTW, just put down my $99 pledge -- had been looking for a (handheld) travel 4x5 for a while, and neither the Titan Pinhole nor the various Polaroid Frankencameras really fit my bill or budget :)
     
  12. Also, thanks Larry K. for posting this, as I wasn't aware of all this...
     
  13. There's provision to adjust for some variation in FFD, so you can nail down infinity or whatever other distance you like. Beyond that, yes, there will be some slop in the distance markings because actual focal length of different lenses varies from marked focal length, and because of sample variation. If that matters, a user can slap a piece of tape on and recalibrate it.
    This is a $99 camera. It's designed as a fun, affordable, ultralight, ultraportable way to explore what it's like to work with a large negative. It also works as a low-cost accessory to let people who already have a 90 for their view camera try a different kind of LF photography. It'll also be a great base for all sorts of DIY camera projects that people will invent.
     
  14. Mike,
    You're welcome! Thanks for joining the cause. I've been pitching the camera all over New York, to my lab guys, to someone at B&H, to 4x5 shooters I run into, to anyone who will listen. I want the backers to hit their target so I can get a camera. I'm not getting paid for my marketing efforts. Everyone needs to spread the word if they want this to happen, otherwise, nobody's credit card gets charged and the camera does not get produced.

    I have other cameras, including 35s, medium formats, and a Wisner Technical Field Camera that I love, but this camera looks like too much fun to pass up. I considered a Polaroid Franken camera and was discouraged by the prices, like you. This is just the ticket for a cheap solution.

    By the way, if all goes well, they hope to have them by December, maybe sooner.
     
  15. Well, good luck w/ it Larry. It's a neat looking camera, and the price is right. But it needs to be able to accept a Grafmatic from the get go. Toting a bunch of heavy, bulky film holders defeats the whole Point and Shoot idea, not to mention light and portable. Now this is just me, but the whole marketing process seems somewhat unorthodox. The norm is to come up w/ an idea, develop a working prototype, pitch it to some investors, and go to market w/ your product after you've solved the issues of QC, proper inventory, product distribution, marketing and sales etc. You can throw in some focus group market research if you want to hedge your bets, but that usually isn't necessary in a project like this. I think all that's necessary before launching any product. It looks too vague to me as it is.
     
  16. The camera only weighs 1 pound 6 ounces. For that weight, I can put up with carrying a bunch of film holders. I might even be able to talk my wife into carrying a few of them. By the way, I think you can bungey cord or rubber band a Grafmatic or any other kind of film holder on the back. There is an example on this page showing a roll back. (http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?86921-Wanderlust-4x5-P-amp-S/page53&highlight=Blik) I don't know that much about the Grafmatic as I never went down that road.

    I'm not sure why you think it looks vague when they have built two working prototypes, solved the design issues, and have posted test pictures from the camera. They're almost there. Welcome to the new world of product development where you don't waste all that time and money on sales and marketing only to find out that you have a flop. It's only $99. Sure, it could all go wrong, but these guys have had another successful KickStarter project and it looks like they have done their homework on this one. Read the whole thread on the Large Format Photography forum to see what I mean.
     
  17. So a question that Bob brings up, and would be a concern for me... the 90mm f/6.8 doesnt sufficiently cover 4x5. Will it
    take the f/8 version?
     
  18. Schneider's specifications for the 90mm f/6.8 Angulon give it an image circle of 154mm at f/16, which in principle is just enough to cover 4x5 at infinity focus. That said, the Angulon is an old design, and many of the ones you'll find now date from the 1950's, when Schneider's quality control hadn't yet reached the high standard that we take for granted today.
    If you want to use the camera to make negatives intended for big enlargements that will be examined critically, you may want to mount the camera on a tripod and use a newer, more complex design like a 90/8 Super Angulon, 90/6.8 Grandagon or similar. If you intend to use the camera hand-held in free-and-easy mode, you're already going to be trading off some technical quality, and the size and weight advantage of the Angulon can help make the camera more fun to carry and use.
    Take a look at the Kickstarter page. They mention that they've specifically tested the 90/8 Super Angulon on the camera and that it works well.
     
  19. And a comment for Steve: the folks behind this project spent several months on the Large Format Photography Forum soliciting input and testing ideas. They've also been using prototype cameras in the field. You can go read the thread for yourself if you're curious. But the take-home is that the product design as you currently see it reflects a set of design/cost tradeoffs that's been pretty carefully thought through. They've tried very hard to keep the price under $100 while still maintaining enough functionality for the camera to appeal to a wide audience.
     
  20. Well I own a Linhof Technika and a Sinar and I could see myself using this for specific projects.
    But, I have owned several 6.8 Angulons over the years and not one was sharp in the corners even at f/22.
    When I finally got my f/5.6 super angulon I was amazed how much better it was.
    If they made these with different cones like the Fotoman I could see using my 75mm grandagon on one. I actually fancied the 65mm version more, on which I would use my 65mm grandagon, but lack of focussing ability is a deal breaker for me, it is surprising how shallow the depth of field of 65mm on 4x5 is.
    To me this is a glorified Lomo idea, good luck to them, it will be good fun for many and if it introduces people to large format and gets them buying film it will help support the whole market. After all if they need $75,000 to start they must think they can sell shedloads of them.
    I actually see this as more useful and better value than the Titan pinhole 4x5.
    Good luck to them.
     
  21. Mark,

    I don't think you understand the Kickstarter process. The $75,000 is not just to get them started, it is to build cameras for about 750 people. Almost all of the pledge levels specify that you will receive a camera. To me, it is an amazing bargain. If 750 people do not step up then the camera will not get built, nor should it. The costs must be paid.

    How much profit do you think is going to be in it for the two designers after they pay for the mold creation, manufacturing, and other costs? Very little, I would say. At this point, those two guys are doing it out of love and a passion for large format photography. My hat is off to them.

    Ok, so you guys are complaining about the Angulon. Well, that lens crushes the lenses on the Lomos, which are little plastic lenses, aren't they? It's all relative. I'm sure the Super Angulon is better, if it is not, they should have fired the lens designer.

    It just doesn't make much sense to mount an expensive Super Angulon on the front of this plastic camera. For one, it will be nose heavy and awkward to shoot. Besides that, the lens will quickly find the pavement if you ever drop the camera.

    So, are there any higher quality, low weight, low profile 90mm lenses that would work with the Wanderlust? I'm all ears. I could see upgrading to a higher quality lens. After all, the lens is the most important part of the whole system.

    Larry
     
  22. I should have also mentioned that the Super Angulon f/8 will work with this camera, but the Super Angulon XL f/5.6 is just too big to fit.
    Larry
     
  23. It looks like a great idea to me and if it had been on the market a few years back I would probably have gone for one. The Schneider Angulon 90 issue doesn't concern me as the ones I used always had a bigger than advertised image circle - it just got a progressively more blurry beyond the stated circle. However in my experioence a Super Angulon f8 would probably be worth the extra size as they are normally quite noticeably sharper. The SA 65mm f8 is a nice little lens. Great idea - and best of luck to all concerned with it.
     
  24. Final comment on this issue (I think), and let me preface my comments that I have an Arca Swiss Field Camera for "serious" photography, with an assortment of Apo-Sironars and Grandagons for maximum quality and image circles.
    This camera, for me, is not competing with my Arca. It is the alternative to NO LF images when travelling. I also have a smallish Anba Ikeda, which (together with a couple of small, old lenses - Ektar 203, Ektar 127 and Angulon 90 -- yes, that one) fits in a small, old-school SLR bag, and is my normal backpacking or travelling camera. However, it still requires a tripod, and therefore is left behind on family trips and/or some international travel. With this camera (if the project gets off the ground), I can take the same old-school SLR bag and will be able to take hand-held 4x5 shots. With TMax 100 pushed to true EI100, a camera in this weight class should be okay at f16 and 1/100, especially if you utilize a wall or something for support.
    With respect to the Angulon 90, I have read/heard all the comments about it not covering, being crappy etc., etc., and while it doesn't compete with my Grandagon, it can produce decent images closed-down. Here is an example (shot at about f20):
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/nbg90455/8241452313
    Yes, the Angulon 90 doesn't allow for much in terms of movements, but I am assuming that in this camera it will be centered, so movements aren't going to be an issue...
     
  25. Mike,
    Great analysis and nice shot. I'm thinking along the same lines. I was actually considering trying to lug the Wisner and all my gear through France on one of our trips, but I don't think my wife would have the patience for it. I'm definitely getting one of those GorillaPods for use with this camera.
     
  26. Hit submit twice by accident.
     
  27. Larry- thanks!
    Yeah, since the camera won't be delivered until December, and I have trip in June to Germany & Turkey, my Kodak Medalist II will have to do (zero chance of getting the permission to take a tripod instead of diapers etc. along :) )
     
  28. Mike,
    Cool about your trip! I just so happen to be working for a company run by some Turkish people. A bunch of them are in Istanbul at the moment. I'm sure they would be happy to provide travel advice. Are you going as part of a tour? Where in Turkey are you going?
     
  29. Larry -- thanks. It's a family vacation, so we'll be hanging out at a beach in Belek (near Antalya), but there should also be some time for ruins in Side or Perge...
     
  30. bms

    bms

    For someone who only gets his LF out on rare occasion due to its size, but already in possession of a 90 mm .. for $99 I am in.
     
  31. This a a great idea that I have been following for a while. I already use Mamiya flattop with the 65mm lens and a homemade 5X7 with a Kodak 135/6.3 Widefield in helical focus. This 4X5 may the the best of the bunch.
    I just ordered one!
     
  32. I'm happy to see that so many can join. They're over halfway there now. People still need to keep spreading the word, though.
     
  33. I'm in. Even if I only us it for a 4X5 pinhole camera it is less than half the price of a Harman Titan. (Yeah, I know, you get some DP paper and film with the Titan.) Still, I watch with interest. Hope they make their goal.
     
  34. Larry, I certainly do understand Kickstarter and think it's so good I'm looking to use it to finance a project of my own.
    However you are mistaken if you think they will be supplying 750 cameras for their $75,000 (assuming they reach their target). Try adding up what people get for their pledges, it does not add up to anything like 750 cameras. After all some of the pledges get a camera plus lens for much more than $99, others get a camera for $49, others just get a photo taken with the camera.
    The numbers fascinate me, I wonder how many new 4x5 cameras are sold worldwide in a year. In fact I wonder if it adds up to 750? If not they are expanding the large format community hugely which can only be a good thing. Also how many 90mm angulons come up on Ebay in one year. I bet it's nothing like 750. so where are all these old lenses going to come from. A quick check on Ebay shows a grand total of TWO for sale right now WORLDWIDE. Maybe I should buy every one that comes up and corner the market, could do well when the production cameras go out to their new owners. (only joking......).
    My main reaction to this, and I am positive about it, make no mistake, is that this could boost the amount of 4x5 film used and therefore help make producing film a viable activity, which will help all of us in the large format community.
     
  35. Mark,
    Out of the current number of backers, 394, 363 of them will be receiving cameras. A few of them will be receiving two cameras. There are only 7 people who are signed up to receive a print, and there are no takers at the higher philanthropic levels. Sure, it would be great if someone wrote a big check to help them out but that looks doubtful.

    They're 63% of the way towards meeting their goal. In order to get from $47,473 to $75,000, they need to sell 278 more $99 cameras, to total 641. So, ok, not 750, but 641, I'm off by 15%, not that much. I think they'll exceed their goal, based on the reasonable purchase price and the excitement over the project. Good for them.

    As has been stated many times, the camera works with more than just the 90mm Angulon f/6.8. The Super Angulon f/8 will also work, although the camera will be a little more nose heavy. For other lenses than the Angulon, people will have to adjust the focus marker but it's no big deal, and instructions will be provided. There were thousands of 90mm lenses produced in the last 60 years. I think the majority of people who have pledged already have a lens. I sourced one just last week.

    Also, 30% of the people probably want to shoot the 65mm version and some will do pinhole, so that will lessen the demand for the 90mm lenses. eBay only needs to provide about 20 lenses a month for the new pledgers to get a 90mm lens, a reasonable expectation.

    If there turns out to be huge demand for the camera that outstrips the supply of 90mm lenses, doubtful, then the designers could produce a version of the camera with a lens. I think they said it would add $50 to the cost of each camera to do that.

    I absolutely agree with you that this project will help boost film sales, a great thing for all of us in the large format community.
     
  36. I think most of these cameras won't be used with the suggested lens. I am an inveterate camera tinkerer. Just can't leave well enough alone. The focusing helical on this is what piques my interest. A lot of possibilities there, for hacked barrel lenses etc. I can un-clip the 101mm f4.5 Anastar lens from my Kodak Tourist II and try that. It won't cover the whole 154mm diagonal but so what, it is just dinking around with cameras for the fun of it. I also have a 130mm f7.7 Kodak Anastigmat from a 1930 Autographic. I know that will cover, I've tried it on 4X5 already. All I'd need is to hack a 40 mm or so extension made out of ABS plumbing pipe.
    Sure, I'll keep an eye out for a 90, but I'll find a way to use the camera for sure.
     
  37. John,
    The camera is definitely meant as a base for other projects. I think it does appeal to the DIY crowd. Let us know how things turn out with the 130mm. I might like to mount a 125mm Fujinon on it. It would be great if someone produced some extension tubes.
     
  38. The video is pretty humorous and, unfortunately, deceptive if you have never shot 4x5. The guy never uses a light meter? He trundles around like he is using a digital camera. Point and shoot! And great shots every time. With a handheld camera no less. And on a 50 year old lens. Oh, well for 99 it is fine. But I suspect people are going to be surprised how expensive it all is in the end. A box of 20 sheets plus developing is more than the price of the camera right there. Plus film holders, a meter, and finding one of those ancient lenses.
     
  39. Conrad,
    Color negative film has tremendous latitude, you don't need to shoot with a meter, you can basically guess and get great shots. Film is better than digital in this way. See this review of two films, 500T and Portra 400: http://www.twinlenslife.com/2010/12/in-bleak-midwinter-new-kodak-portra400.html

    Here is the last paragraph:

    "It seems that both stocks do very well rated to be between 3 stops over (50), and 2 under (1600) in the mid-tones, which allows for a 6 stop margin of error. But the 500T still holds some exposure as much as 7 stops under! I would not knowingly underexpose even these amazing films more than a stop without push processing, though I also would shoot with confidence that no matter where I meter a scene the image will expose well. I mean, thats why we shoot film essentially. We don't need to chimp a shot, or even re-meter much at all, especially knowing that if we err on the side of overexposure it will be beautiful. And apparently the occasional underexposed shot would turn out as well! Granted, one would have to try very hard to underexpose an image 4 stops, especially when you know you could go over 8 stops in the highlights and be golden. It's the difference of f/1.4 and 16 for goodness sakes! What I walk away with from this example is; that no matter what the lighting situation is, or how you are reading the light, all the precious times and moments in life can be (as it should be) lived like a movie. ;-)"

    This review of Portra 400 says you can choose from four exposures: http://www.shutterbug.com/content/kodak-portra-400-latitude-grain-and-“scanability”-combined Discard the indoor option for this camera. TravelWide means you should go outside.

    By the way, the lens on my 49 year old Rolleiflex still produces stunning images, pretty much my favorite shots out of everything except my large format 4x5 field camera.

    Portra 400 is $36 for ten shots, say $2.50 a shot for processing, brings you to $6 a shot, not cheap, but you can get a 150-250 megapixel image out of each shot. How much is a 150 megapixel digital back? If you want the sharpest possible shots, you buy one of those plastic gorilla tripods and stop down to f/22. This camera is going to produce amazing shots from an incredibly lightweight package. Just wait and see!
     
  40. you can get a 150-250 megapixel image out of each shot.​
    Only? :D
     
  41. Mike,
    Ok, you can go to 300+ megapixels. I didn't want to rub it in. LOL. Here is your 8x10 digital sensor solution, just a couple of hundred thousand dollars:

    http://gizmodo.com/5834699/this-is-the-largest-camera-sensor-in-the-world

    H
    ow much are the cheaper 4x5 digital sensor solutions? Ha ha. A Hasselblad system will set you back $30-60k, and the value will plummet as soon as you buy it. We have the cheap solution covered.

    Here is something to look at, from Ken Lee's terrific website:

    Peonies:

    and a bug from that shot:

    I can pull 1-2 megapixel images showing detail of buildings that are half a mile from my apartment when I do a 3200dpi scan of a 4x5 shot. Just incredible.
     
  42. I think it could be a fine camera, I ordered one myself---how can you go wrong for $99, IF you have the equipment, including the lens already. But for anyone who hasn't does large format before, they are in for a rude awakening. The video is hugely deceptive, 400 speed or not.
    And the 6.8 lens from what I see is available nowhere in this country. Ebay, BandH, adorama, nothing.

    And a handheld pinhole camera? I don't think so.

    Anyways, I wish them luck.
     
  43. Conrad,
    Why is the video deceptive? They show actual shots taken with the actual prototype cameras. The shots with the production camera are going to be better because the plastic material they used to build the prototypes is not 100% light tight, no matter how much they taped up. The production cameras will be 100% light tight.

    It's pretty easy to handhold with 400 speed film in bright sunlight. This is not a low light camera.

    There are Angulon 6.8s available on eBay, and the Angulon f/8 also works although it is a little heavier. I keep bugging them to list other 90mm options. There are a lot of old 90mm press lenses that will work. The Optar is another. See the Large Format Film photography thread for more choices.

    With the camera weighing so little, a plastic gorilla tripod is going to be easy to use. I'm getting one. No need to carry my Gitzo 1228.

    I'm glad you're onboard! It IS a bargain. You can't go wrong.
     
  44. Oh, the test shots were on 160, as Ben said, from the other thread:

    "Regarding metering and Sunny 16... All the Brazil stuff was shot on a combination of Portra 160 and Fuji 160S, and only a couple shots were explicitly metered. The nice thing about negative film is that you can split the exposure without losing half the image to pure black or white."
     
  45. This is my last post. I have no interest in a back and forth.
    There is right now ONE Angulon 6.8 on sale on ebay and it is 260 dollars. And these guys are planning to sell 750 of these things?

    As for deceptive they metered a couple of shots, and that is probably all you need if all your shots are in the same conditions. And yet they leave that rather important point out.
    As I said, I hope they make these things. I really do. I have an old Angulon 6.8, and to play around with one of these would be fine. But if you know nothing about LF and watch that video, and buy one, well good luck.
     
  46. Yes, there is a learning curve to shooting film. People can always velcro a Digisix meter to the side of the camera. I hope that the camera comes with a good set of instructions for people who are not experienced large format shooters.

    Still, I would think at this point that most purchasers have shot large format film. I think people know what they're getting into. There are more than 600 large format shooters on the planet. As for lenses, that situation will work itself out. I bought my Angulon a couple of weeks ago. People have eight months to get a lens.

    Anyway, I'm not trying to argue with you, this post is for other people who read the thread.
     
  47. The cool thing is there's going to be an instant community of photographers with Travelwides, so they'll be plenty of help
    to get everyone up and running. There are tons of 90mm f/8 lenses that will work just fine on the camera as well as many
    lenses besides the 90mm Angulon. Everyone will get a high quality pinhole to start with, so the camera is usable out of
    the box.
     
  48. Even for the folks new to LF there is the LF Photography forum, lots of help there. Another way to get your feet wet without the expense of burning film is the paper negative route. You can cut from Ilford 8X10 and load and process under safelight. If you preflash the paper the ISO is about 12. Even with that slow speed with an f8 lens shot wide open in direct sun you could get away with 1/30 sec perhaps.
     
  49. More photos from the TravelWide up on the Flickr stream: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wanderlustcamera/ Judge for yourself.
     
  50. Progress! An email:
    We're at 90%, everyone—thank you! We just need a few more backers, so keep telling your friends—it's working!
    We get messages and emails every day asking about lenses, so we'd like to take a moment and talk about them. First of all, we realize that the Travelwide project has temporarily upset the 90mm and 65mm lens market. It should return to normal in a few weeks—so if you haven't secured a lens yet, keep in mind that you have at least a few months before we're ready to ship the camera. Schneider made these lenses for decades, and they were extremely popular, so there is absolutely no danger of a global shortage.

    That last line is a bit optimistic. And on what evidence? I mean where are these extra lenses going to come from? They may have been popular for decades, but they also stopped making them decades ago.

    As I said, I hope this thing works out. But considering this thing is on kickstarter, a site I suspect is visited mostly by people whose first and only camera is an iphone, a lot of folks are probably in for a rude awakening. Oh, well all in fun. Like getting a 4x5 holga without the lens.
     
  51. Hello Conrad,
    I think everything will be ok in the end. ;-) We'll see, though. The whole update is here:

    They mention other lens choices:
    • Schneider Super Angulon 90mm ƒ/8
    • Nikkor SW 90mm ƒ/8
    • Fujinon SW 90mm ƒ/8
    • Caltar 90mm ƒ/8
    • Rodenstock Grandagon 90mm ƒ/6.8
    • Caltar 90mm ƒ/6.8
    The project came out of a lengthy discussion on the Large Format Photography website before it went to KickStarter. The Large Format Photography forum is a place where people know what they're getting into when they shoot Large Format.

    The newbies will learn the ropes, and perhaps some of them will just do pinhole on a tripod if they can't get a lens. This camera is a cheap pinhole solution, from what people have said regarding the cost of other pinhole cameras.

    They're getting close to the goal! Everybody is pretty excited.
     
  52. Those are $400+ lenses. And not small. And not an unlimited supply. And kind of pointless on what is suppose to be a handheld camera. Also I think the pinhole idea will get pretty old fast with most of these folks. Especially at 5 dollars a shot. I suspect a lot of these will be showing up on ebay next year when the iphone crowd realize what is really involved.
    I have shot handheld 4x5 using a toyo cf and a small 135 rodenstock lens. And I found it to be a waste of time, money and film. It is almost impossible to get the camera level, the aperture has to be wide, and thus a small depth of field, or the speed has to be slow, and then you get blurring. For that kind of stuff a medium format camera, like the GW670III that I have, would be a much better deal and a lot cheaper.

    As I said if you have the equipment already this is fine for $99. But of the typical kickstarter person, good luck.
     
  53. The camera has a tripod socket and is light enough to be used with a lightweight GorillaPod, so, it is more than just a handheld camera.

    Guys carried heavy press cameras, like the Speed Graphic for years, and shot 4x5 handheld, sure, with flash, ok, but we have faster film now. This thing is going to be a piece of cake to shoot compared to carrying one of those, even with a more expensive lens. Some old Speed Graphic shooters said they were looking forward to getting the TravelWide.

    I'll carry a cheap plastic loupe, a GorillaPod, use my coat as a dark cloth, and focus on the ground glass for some shots. That way, I can stop down to f/22 and shoot longer exposures. The results will be amazing, and will certainly crush the Holga.

    There doesn't have to be an unlimited supply of lenses, we're only talking about 600-700 cameras, and I bet a lot of people already have a lens that works with it. Some people have said they had two Angulons in the closet. Good prices will force the lenses out of desk drawers and closets and into the hands of people who will shoot with them.
     
  54. Anything that increases interest in large format and especially large format film for $99 is well worth it. And Ilex Caltar 90s can be had for closer to $200. I'm sorry you didn't have a good experience, Conrad, and that you are paying so much per shot. I'm sure other people will find a technique that makes them happy.
     
  55. Ilex Caltar 90s for 200? Where exactly? There are none on ebay.
    And at Badger Graphics, whose prices are in line with everyone else, the cheapest C41 4x5 is $30 for a box of 10. And the cheapest E6 is $54 for a box of 20. And if you can find some who will develop color 4x5 for lest than 2.50 a sheet, well let me know. So $5 a sheet is on the low side, if you don't have Jobo processor like I have.

    And yes, good prices, like $400 or $500, will bring out those Angulon 90s, I might even sell mine. But then it is suppose to be a $99 dollar camera.
     
  56. I don't think the Angulon f/6.8s will go to $400-500, because people will see the wisdom of buying a better Angulon f/8 in that price range. I almost went for the f/8 but decided that I would want movements so I'll buy a f/5.6 at some point, not for the TravelWide, but for my Wisner.

    They said it was $99 for the body, they never said $99 with a lens. ;-)

    Film is not cheap, and I do pay $2.50 a sheet for processing, until I get darkroom privileges at the International Center for Photography (ICP). Still, the quality of 4x5 images is stunning. I really think all photographers should shoot 4x5 just to see what it is like.

    When it is expensive, you care more, and take more time with each shot. I don't think I'll go crazy shooting with the TravelWide but I will get some large format shots on vacation that I would not have gotten otherwise. There is cheap $.70 a sheet Foma B+W film at Freestyle for people to try out, so it is not expensive in all cases.

    Expired film can give amazing results and you can shoot paper negatives. Life can be fun.
     
  57. Conrad, there is a user wide field Caltar on eBay right now with a buy it now of $125. And color? Real photographers shoot black and white;-)
     
  58. By March, 2012 Ilford had sold 1000 Harman Titan 4X5 pinhole cameras. At $219.00 each! Granted this was world wide but I think it indicates there is a lot of interest in 4X5. Since the TravelWide 90 is $99, has a helical with 20mm of travel and will ship with a pinhole I don't think they will have any trouble selling this camera.
    Finally, for the naysayers.
    This is a "fun" camera. If you need to hold down film cost for B&W use paper negatives, scan and invert in any simple image program. Even if you have never stepped foot in a darkroom you won't need much equipment or chemicals to process paper. In the US you can get everything you need from Freestyle Photographic Supplies and the learning curve is not too steep and loading and processing can be carried out under safe light.
    Oh, did I forget to say this is a fun camera?
    I didn't.
    Good.
     
  59. Larry, as one of those who tried digital and discovered that it's inferior to film, I'm glad to see your project and hope it works out for the best!
     
  60. Hello Talbert,
    This is not my project, I'm just an enthusiastic backer. ;-) All of the pre-orders for the TravelWide have been allocated but keep checking back for when they will be able to sell them to the general public. Everybody is really excited about this camera.
     
  61. Update #10 just went up on their Kickstarter page. Check it out.
     
  62. Update #10 just went up on their Kickstarter page. Check it out.
     
  63. For those we cannot see the updates on KickStarter, they're only available to backers, some information has been posted to the large format forum, here: http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?86921-Wanderlust-4x5-P-amp-S/page121&highlight=TravelWide

    The camera is looking good. I can't wait to take it out and shoot with it.
     
  64. Just got the newest update and I guess they're still having issues. Sigh. At least they care about quality. Can you imagine how long it would take for Canon or Nikon to out out a new DSLR is those companies were run by two people? : ) I'm hopeful for a lightweight 4x5 to shoot with by the spring. We'll see.
     
  65. For those who can't see the updates, basically, they had a minor light leak which they solved by adding a void to the mold. The latest test film shows no light leaks after 5 minutes with the dark slide pulled! I'm excited about that, as it means I can walk around for a while with the dark slide pulled without taking the shot.

    They're going to take care of tightening up the focusing ring, so that will be another engineering change. After that, they should be good to go.

    They will provide a pre-ordering link in the near future for those people who missed out on the KickStarter campaign. I'm so excited about this camera that I went out and bought a 65mm lens, so I will be preordering that body to go along with the 90.

    Keep the faith, this camera will ship, it's obvious that they're very close.
     
  66. I think I'm going to play around with the pinhole they're including first before I buy a lens. I want to make sure I have the processing down before I sink money in a lens. I'm planning on doing some practice shots with x-ray film and caffenol.
     
  67. Wow, old thread. I just checked up on it to see if folks were still posting. I figure if their vendor is moving at their usual glacial pace then they won't get the revised helical to test for another 2 to 3 weeks. By that time the natives will be restless again, like little kids in the back seat....are we there yet?....are we there yet?......are we there yet?....
    If the helical is naled down and they can get the metal insert in the pinhole cap to work then I would hope the camera is complete. Then they can pull the trigger on a 1500+ unit production run. The final number depending on how many preorders they take in for after the backer orders are all filled. and in 4 to 6 more weeks Xcentric will run the parts. Then it's off to Ben and Justin for assembly and finally they can start shipping the cameras.
    So, I figure 3+6+4=13 weeks minimum before cameras start shipping, early to mid May.
    Although Ben said they will not estimate a new target date this is how I figure it.
    I have hope.
     
  68. How very long a time has gone by. However update #31 has just posted and here is the nub of it;
    On 8-23-15, Sunday, there will be a pick-up party in Chicago for those who live nearby. I guess the rest of the backers will have their cameras shipped out shortly after that.
    At least one would hope it won't take too much time to assemble, box and ship the rewards.
     

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