Who are the leaders in LF camera sales?

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Who are among the top three in sales of LF field cameras in America? Are American manufacturers mere spear carriers in the back of the stage where imports stand in front before the audience? Is there a single LF field camera manufacturer who dominates sales to the degree that Nikon dominates sales of 35 mm cameras to professionals? To what degree does this market position reflect how well the LF field camera manufacturer is marketing its line of LF field ca

-- David Caldwell (caldw@aol.com), July 23, 2000


I'd have to say the big three in large format are Sinar, Linhof, and Arca Swiss, probably in that order. Sinar probably does the best marketing/product support job in the U.S. among the manufacturers (though Linhof is certainly no slouch -- Arca Swiss has a ways to go however despite their excellent product). Sinar appears to have the pro and rental market the way Hasselblad has over Rollei in the pro medium format market in the USA. Those are just my observations from a marketing perspective. All three have excellent products you would be happy with -- I don't have any hard market data. I'm sure the manufacturing reps from Sinar and Linhof will chime in here soon. There are of course the more artisan-type manufacturers such as Wisner, Phillips, Canham, and Gandolfi who make excellent products and provide good product support as well.

-- Donald Brewster (dpbrewster@prodigy.net), July 23, 2000.


I can't comment on studio cameras, but I have heard that the Canham DLC is giving the Toyo AII a run for the money in the field camera market. None of this is substiantiated by facts, but in my experience, I have seen a great deal more DLC's in the field than I have seen AII's. Since the DLC is a fairly new camera, the sales must have been brisk, to say the least. The pricing on the Linhof equipment generally keeps them out of the running, even though they have the greatest name recognition.

I would be very intrested in hearing sales figures for some of these cameras, but I doubt that any real data could be collected that didn't include some major presumptions.

-- Michael Mutmansky (psu4ever@ix.netcom.com), July 23, 2000.

I wish Arca-Swiss would get with the times and set up a web site. Some of us don't have access to the big city photo stores that carry a lot of LF gear. I've heard a lot about Arca-Swiss, and would sure like to see some information and photos.

-- John H. Henderson (jhende03@harris.com), July 24, 2000.

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