Graphic View I , Graphic View II, Grover 4x5 : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I am ready to move from my Crown Graphic to a true view camera. I'm still learning and experimenting, so I don't want to make a big investment. I want a monorail, and I have found and am considering three cameras: the Graphic View I, Graphic View II, and a B&J Grover 4x5.

I would appreciate comments from anyone who uses any of these cameras. I would particularly be interested in comparisons between the View I and View II. I believe I am aware of their different features, but I would like to hear about the differences in practical use.

-- Les Alvis (, October 23, 1999



I have used the Graphic View and the 8x10 Grover. I think the Graphic View is a much sturdier and better designed camera. I still have my Graphic View and don't shoot much 4x5 anymore but it is really a fine tool. Tough, not too heavy, has all the movements, who could ask for more? And to top it off you can get a very nice one for less than $200 on ebay.

-- Erik Ryberg (, October 23, 1999.

Les, I used a Graphic View II for years. Landscape, Architecture, tabletop -- it will do anything, and ask for more. Built like a brick outhouse. Adapters are/were available to use your Crown Graphic lensboard on the GVII. You will need a recessed board to use 90mm lens with any movements. Some of the last cameras were made with a Graflock back, in my opinion this option si worth extra $100. I think the GVI was almost the same, with shorter monorail and less bellows extension. B&J wasn't considered in the same league. Feel free to contact me directly for any specific questions. Good luck. Mitch

-- Bill Mitchell (, October 23, 1999.

Additional infomation. Quoting from the 10th edition of Graphic and Graflex Photography:

-- Bill Mitchell (, October 23, 1999.

Additional infomation. Quoting from the 10th edition of Graphic and Graflex Photography: "...the focusing panels (of the GVII)are equiped with the Ektalite Field lens for easy focusng and viewing to the extreme corners of the screen. The original Graphic View Camera had a bellows extension of 12 1/2 inches. The model II camera which superseded it in 1949 has an extension of over 16 inches. On the model II, all tilts and swings have centrally located axes which aid in maintaining proper image centering while focus and perspective controls are being adjusted. All adjustments have click stops to facilitate returning to center after use. The camera features a bu8lt-in spirit level on top of the camera, focusing-cloth clips, and a pan-tilt camera bvase which would normatlly be considered part of the tripod. Hope this helps. Mitch

-- Bill Mitchell (, October 23, 1999.

One thing to check on the Graphic View is the locking knobs on the two focussing controls. These are the knurled metal knobs just beneath the black focussing knobs. If they have been forced in the past, the lock threads may have been partially stripped. Get the II if you can, with the Graflok back.

-- Tony Brent (, October 23, 1999.

Les, check today (q and a section). There's a guy who wants to know what his grandfather's GV is worth. Mitch

-- Bill Mitchell (, October 26, 1999.

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