value of and comparison to Linhof III of a toyo 45A : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

There is a Toyo 45A with two year old bellows on E bay, currently $595. Would it be worth $600 to 700. Is it a good value at that price compared to a Linhof III?

-- joe zarick (, February 08, 2002


If you have a very late model Tech III I feel that overall it is more useful than the Toyo. It has more bellows draw, considerably more rise, more shift and can be made even more flexible by doing what I did to mine. Take off the accessory shoe and drill and tap a tripod socket in the top of the camera; this way you can turn the camera upside down for a lot of fall. I also made a plate with a tripod socket that mounted in place of the leather handle on the side to enable the use of the front swing for lens axis tilt when the camera is mounted side ways. Of course if you have a typical pan/tilt head on your tripod you could just turn the camera 90 degrees but with the side plate the camera is still on top of the tripod instead of the weight on the side of the tripod contributing to greater stability.

-- Jeffrey Scott (, February 08, 2002.

Why would you limit yourself to those two options? The Tech III is a great piece of machinery but around 40 years old. it is also heavy for my taste. Toyo 45A has also been discontinued for a number of years (not sure how long ... round 15 I believe) and is also heavy for my taste. To me neither one would be worth 600 to 700 when you can get 1)a new Shen Hao or a new Tachihara for that price 2) a used Wista DX for that price 3) for the upper price or a bit more a used Horseman HD or Wista Technical camera. the Horseman in particular offers you a lighter weight more compact metal field camera ... abeit without back movements.

Thnik about these other options.

-- Ted Harris (, February 09, 2002.


The Horseman is pitiful in it's lack of range of movements and from the posted question I think that Joe is in search of a metal camera. The Wista technical camera would be far better than the other choices yuou mentioned, but at a highr price than Joe wants to spend. Tech III's can be found for around the price Joe is looking for and having owned one for 9 years I know it to be rugged, lightweight and has more range of movements than the other contenders.

-- Jeffrey Scott (, February 09, 2002.

Thanks for the thoughtful replies. They all jerked me back to reality. I have owned a Zone VI made in the early days and it has plenty of movements for my skill level, but bulky. I think I want a metal camera this time. I still like my Crown Graphic and my Busch Pressman which though limited is small and shabby enough to be put bare in the trunk of my car. The Toyo went for about $800.

joe zarick

-- joe zarick (, February 09, 2002.

I own both a Technica III and a Toyo 45 A. I generally find the Toyo to be superior for tripod work. The main reason for this is that the lensboard can be lowered as well as raised. Furthermore, it is easier to use wide angle lenses (down to 75 mm) with full movements on the Toyo (with appropriate recessed lens boards, there are two types!). Forward and backward swing are also much easier with the Toyo.

When do I use the Technica III? For handheld photography with properly cammed angulon 90 and symmar 150 lenses. This is especially useful with my Horseman 6x12 filmholder and a sportsfinder that permits you to "follow" the rise of the lens when photographing architecture.

-- Emil Ems (, February 13, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ