Calumet 45NX : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I'm an avid 6x9 shooter and am ready to jump into some large format 4x5 stuff. I have a chance on a good deal (I THINK) on a Calumet 45NX Can someone give me some feedback on this camera? It will be for a new large format user that wants to do just portrait stuff with it. Also, what would be a good portrait length lens? 210?? Any feedback would be great


-- Joe Tasse (, January 11, 2001


I have this camera and it is a good starter camera. The camera system is very flexible and the camera has full movements. The shortcomings in my opinion are the inaccuracy of the controls; they don't have a real secure feel. Also, the lack of precision in these controls make duplication difficult. However, overall, this is a good beginner 4x5.

-- harold todman (, January 11, 2001.

I echo Harold's comments. I use the 45NX. It is simple and functional. If you are looking for silky smooth movements with a lot of precision, this is not the best choice. For Portraiture, it should be OK. I shoot mostly architecture, and I have to keep both standards in front of the tripod block. This makes it front heavy, but I make do & manage. For me, it is this camera or none at all. I am glad I have it, and I am using it more and more. I shoot 4X5 and 6X12 rollfilm.

For portraits, a 210 or 240 is fine. The 210's are generally cheaper.

-- Joseph Wasko (, January 11, 2001.

Ditto as well. I have had a Calumet 45NX for 14 years and find it to be an overall functional view camera. The controls while not fluid and smooth, will give plenty of movement. One of the nice things about this models is the stability factor. It will take a good amount of abuse and still function. Good L

-- Bruce E. Rathbun (, January 11, 2001.

hmmm - good beginner camera? i find that a bit amusing. i make my living as an architectural photographer, doing LF documentary work for HABS/HAER, and i have been using an NX for about 15 years as my primary field camera. if i did studio work, i might consider a fancier camera, but the way i see things from here, i wonder if i might wear out before this camera wears out. i do not have a single complaint about the NX - i have put it through incredible abuse in all types of godawful field conditions, i've knocked it slap over into mudpuddles, had it slide 50 feet down a cliff-face in the columbia river gorge, squeezed through greasy cramped passages in the heart of bridge machinery rooms, set it up in the middle of the umatilla river, the tops of suspension towers, helicopters, busy freeways - you name it - and this thing still looks great and works flawlessly. yes, i take care of it, but this is a rugged, professional piece of equipment, and i dont have any desire or plans to buy another camera. i feel the same way about my lenses - i selected each of my lenses carefully and i dont see any reason that i would ever need to replace any of them. there are certainly nicer machines out there than the NX, but i have never run into a situation where i needed to do something this camera couldnt do. i am very attached to my partner, a familiar friend in all circumstances, reliable, functional, sturdy, and, by god, in my eyes, beautiful.

-- jnorman (, January 12, 2001.

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