camera stability : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

My basic question: is there a significant difference in camera stability between a tripod and a studio stand? I am currently using a bogen 3046 with 3263 gearhead, the camera is a Sinar P2 (Rollei Shutter) and I shoot mostly between 60-80 degree(camera inclination) closeups with long bellows ext.(20+ in.).The problem I am having revolves aroud the fact that the more the camera angle increases the more the stability decreases. Will a studio stand help??? I am aware of the fact that the price range is huge, but I was thinking along the lines of a mid-high end Cambo or a mid level Foba or Linhof. Thanks to everybody that contributes in this forum and thanks in advance for the always valuable feedback.

-- Marcel Perez-Calisto (, September 29, 2001


A studio stand of any good quality should be like a rock under just about any camera, and will easily be sturdier than any given tripod. Last spring in my "Intro to Photographic Illustration" class, we did all of our stuff in the studio on studio stands. Several times I did shots that required my camera (Linhof Kardan Bi, about 10-12 lbs) at full extension pointed straight down. Even pointed straight down everything was rock solid. The nice thing about a studio stand is that it's heavy and I can't imagine any camera that you would be using that could make it go off balance. Of course, you can't really take it on location, but if you're working in the studio, then it's not really an issue.

-- David Munson (, September 29, 2001.

A studio stand is a great help if you are having this problem, My favorite is the FOBA ASABA but the Calumet/CAMBO should be fine as well. I understand the FOBA stands may have been disconcontinued but there is a used one for sale (not mine!) in the photo,net classifieds.

In the meantime you might want to consider a Majestic tripod, a geared head, and sandbags.

-- Ellis Vener (, September 29, 2001.


My experience with Sinars would prompt me to suggest that with 20" of bellows extension the problem may not be the issue of tripod vs studio stand but rather the Sinar rail clamp.

Might I suggest that you try using two rail clamps attached to a base support plate (Sinar item #: 418.31 or the equally good but much cheaper Manfrotto Accessory Long Plate # 430).

As you would be aware, the Sinar rail is actually clamped by a plastic ring. This is 'gripped' on opposing sides by the rigid frame of the rail clamp and the force of the adjusting screw shaft resulting in the top and bottom sections of the ring being able to flex somewhat.

Check it out and see what you think ... WG

-- Walter Glover (, September 29, 2001.

A less expensive (about $1000?) alternative to the studio stands mentioned above is one from Peter Gowland ( He doesn't have the complete list of stands on his web site, but you can give him a call or email him for a brochure. He'll send it immediately. I just received one myself a few days ago.

-- Tony Karnezis (, September 29, 2001.

Is your film "bowing" because of the steep angle? You could be blaming the wrong piece. I would be surprised if the Bogen isn't getting the job done. Although if you have many of those shots to do repeatedly the stand would make life easier I would think. J

-- Jim Galli (, September 30, 2001.

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