How much to start out : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I am contemplating moving to large format. After doing what research I could and considering my budget my best choice was to go with the Toyo system. What am I looking at for a full system that will get me started with the Toyoview 45 All- I mena so that I can take it out and start taking pictures. As recommeded by the manufacturer home page I am thinking of buying only two lens (28mm and 50mm equivalent in terms of 35mm format) and a polaroid back. Any other comments or suggestions are welcome. Please forgive if this is not a proper question for this forum and just ignore.

-- Suk Jung Choo (, March 28, 2002


In addition to the camera and lenses, remember additional costs such as meter, darkcloth, and film holders. You may also need a sturdier tripod and head. The Toyo is by most accounts a fine camera, although somewhat limited in it's movements with shorter lenses.

Your initial lens choice should be dictated by your past experience with lenses in other formats - choose the LF equivalent of your favorite focal lengths.

Depending on your shooting, you may find the Polaroid back unnecessary.

-- Michael Mahoney (, March 28, 2002.

it sounds like you will be photographing in the field. You may want a folding field camera instead of a rail camera. Wooden fields such as Shen-Hao and Tachihara a less expensive, lighter, and more portable than a view camera. They're also less sturdy, but everything is give and take.

-- Paul Frank (, March 28, 2002.

I would recommend renting lenses before you buy them. Since the working style of LF is different you may not use the same lenses that you use in 35mm. I have a 150mm 4x5 lens and I do EVERYTHING with it. A 90mm would be too wide for my taste. You should also look at people's work and find out what they use to get an idea of what can work for you. Remember to buy the best equipment you want because trading in equipment is expensive. You should also find out what you can rent in Korea because you maybe limited, if you shoot an unpopular camera brand or want a certain piece of equipment.

-- David Payumo (, March 30, 2002.

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