LInhof Super Technika IV : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

HI, I Have been offered the above camera + 4 lenses + 7 backs in exchange for an Nikon F4e+Mb20+50/1.8. I have to see this camera tomorow night. I would apreciate if someone could answer a few doubts.

1. Is it worth the change (on economical basis), since I have other 35mm and 120 cameras.

2. What To look for in the camera? I know nothing about it.

3. Is a usable camera or more like a nice old camera that can be used from time to time?

Any other coments are welcome.

Diego K.

-- Diego (, February 05, 2002


I looks like a pretty good change, but it will depend on which lenses are included and the condition of both lenses and camera.

The most important thing you should look for, is bellows pinholes. This is the most frequent damage of large format cameras. Beside that, little can go wrong with linhofs.

This camera is very usable, as many people uses it every day for their large format work.

Hope this helps and (in advance) welcome to the Large Format community

-- Enrique Vila (, February 05, 2002.

Only you can decide if it's "worth it" to you. From a pure resale standpoint, F4s in good condition sell for about $1,000 - $1,200 I believe, and a Nikon 50 mm F 1.8 lens sells for probably $100 or maybe a little more. A Tech IV in good condition, plus four lenses in good condition and seven film holders (I suspect it's seven film holders, not seven backs, that come with it) also in good condition, would sell for much more than that. As far as what to look for goes, check the reviews of the Linhof Technika camera, and especially the links at the end of the reviews, on this home page for much more useful information than it would be feasible to post here. However, even without knowing anything about the camera, you can do a cosmetic inspection. Is the bellows sagging or does it have obvious holes or other defects? Are there a lot of dings, dents, scratches, etc.? Is the ground glass scratched up? Are pieces of the leatherette missing or is the leatherette that is there peeling away so that the metal underneath is showing? This kind of visual inspection alone will tell you how well the camea has been cared for.

-- Brian Ellis (, February 05, 2002.

One website/page that describes that camera (and the Technika line) very well is:

Now, what's the value of your Nikon? I'd say $600 - $900. I guess a lot of readers of this forum is starting to drewl when they see this question.

1/ Unless this Tech IV is a wreck, it sounds like a very good deal. If the camera and lenses are in good working order that package could be worth up to $3000 or more. But it all depends upon the condition of each part in the package. You didn't say which lenses were included in the package and the worth of lenses varies a lot. (I.e. in between $50 and $2000, but in this case probably between $200 and $600 per lens.) You write "7 backs". That could be sheetfilm holders, which in good condition would be worth say $5-10 each. If there are one or more Linhof rollfilm backs, it's a different story. Such backs in good condition are worth $300 and more. Last, a decent Tech IV camera brings in (much?) more than $1000 these days.

2/ Have the owner demonstrate it. If you have a professional photo shop nearby, go there and rent a Polaroid 545 back and buy a pack of film for it. (It will set you back with some $70 or so, but you'll get instant proof of the workability of the camera and lenses.) Look at the cameras general condition. The leatherette is famous for its lousy glueing, so don't worry too much about that aspect. Also check the bellows with a small flashlight inside it. A few pinholes is acceptable, as you can fix them yourself, but no big holes or cracks. The camera is in general very sturdy, built in the same spirit as the Leicas, Nikon F2's (and F4's), Hasselblads etc. I.e. a very professional camera.

As the camera has a rangefinder, have the owner demonstrating how to change the lenses and cams. Check if the distance setting works, and if it is accurate. (I.e. set the distance with the rangefinder and then check the focus with a loupe on the groundglass.) Do this with all the lenses that are cammed.

Again, if the camera has a few flaws, but does indeed work, it still sounds like a very good deal. (Said he with tounge hangeth out.)

3/ You may have understood by this point that it is a very usable camera. A slightly improved (Master) Technika is sold today and it is not considered "esoteric", just a very good german camera that will last you a lifetime.

Now, please don't put it out for sale at Ebay next week. (Contact me first and don't tell anyone else. ;-) If you have the facilities to process and enlarge 4X5", you've found a very good camera for it. Large format photography is less forgiving than modern 35mm SLR's but it does pay off when you've learnt how to do it right.

-- Björn Nilsson (, February 05, 2002.

A Nikon F4 is a recent camera. A Technika IV is quite old. It was made from 1956 to 1963. Any piece of mechanical equipment that is used should be examined by a cometant technician prior to finalizing the sale. Any piece of equipment this old should be very carefully inspected.

Unlike the models that replaced the IV it has a non "0" groundglass position. That means that a lens that is cammed for the IV is cammed for the specific IV by serial number and the cam is not interchageable between other models IV or later cameras. In addition the cam is cut for the specific lens that it was cammed for. Therefore a cam for the IV MUST have the serial # of the body on the bottom of the cam and the serial number of the lens on top of the cam. If this is not the way the cams on the camera you are looking at they will not work properly. A sign of imprpoer cams on a camera are a series of small indentations along the rails that hold the infinity stops. This would indicate re-setting of the stops to try to compensate for improper cams - something that will only mar the rails but not correct the problem.

Lastly you should be aware that cameras with a serial # under 66175 no longer have factory repair parts available for the IV. The serial number is on the accessory shoe on top of the camera.

-- Bob Salomon (, February 05, 2002.

Thanks to all for the answers, indeed I was meaning sheet film holders and If IŽm not mistaking one of the lenses is a Super angulon 65 lens, schenider. I should go out and look at the camera in a 1 hour time.

And yes, I do mean to eventually sell it if I find that the cost is to high on film and development, I allready have a good 6x6 that I use alot, but my main goal was to sell the F4, so IŽll kipe you posted on this.

BTW Im located in Madrid, Spain. So I guess it only leave those who are really intrested.

Thanks again, Diego

-- Diego (, February 06, 2002.

Well, IŽve seen the camera and here are the details:

Serial Number: 75240 (Super Technika IV) There are 4 lenses enclosed, all 4 were CLAŽd recently and look and work Good. First 3 are with LINHOF mounting plates, the forth I dont rememeber for sure.

1. Schneider Kreuznach LINHOF Symmar 150mm F5.6 2. Schneider Kreuznach LINHOF Super Angulon 65mm F8 + Wierd WA Frame??? 3. Schneider Kreuznach LINHOF Angulon 90mm F6.8 4. Rodenstock Rotelar 270mm F5.6 There is a Ding on the front outer ring

There are 3 Focusing Cams for the 65/90/270, the 150 has none, all Matching S# with the lenses. There is a zoom Viewfinder (Linhof) for 75/90-360mm. RF has been told to be already CLAŽd and acurate. 7 Sheet film holders.

CameraŽs state: It is more of a USER camera, it is NOT mint, its only ok, the worst things are as follows: 1. Front center leather from the front door is completly missing. 2. Top left (seen from behind) cog, that tightens the back movments is missing and the base (whats left) is sligthly tilted and glued, as far as I seen its not to important (and the user told me you can use it that way). The back moves ok. 3. Bellows, are usable but a replacemente would be needed. There is one pealed point, another point where there is some black tape, and a few really tiny pin holes. It is usable but a new one would be nice.

The camera otherwise seems to be OK, all firm and solid. All movments go with no stucking in the midle, the ground glass seems the original with rectangular marcking in blue, and folding door with folding leather viewfinder mask. There is no grip nor cable release.

If any one is intrested in this camera, please contact mi to my mail, AS SOON AS POSIBLE, since here in Spain its close to midnight, and tomorrow IŽll see if I find a shop that will take it around here in madrid.

Price: as I said, I dont know much, and acording to what some of you said, I think a fair price would be 1300-1400$ + UPS shipping charges to USA + insurance. Just make me an offer, If there is more than one offer, IŽll take the highets and notify the others. Offers are final, I dont intend to do some kind of auction, just give an honest offer.

Thank you very much.

Diego K.

-- Diego K. (, February 06, 2002.

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