4x5 View Camera, Focusing Loupe, Do i need one?

Discussion in 'Medium Format & Large Format' started by Dave Colangelo, Aug 17, 2016.

  1. Dave Colangelo

    Dave Colangelo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    So on a bit of a whim I picked up a 4x5 camera on the bay 2 days ago (should be here soon). I have been reading up on them and preparing everything I need for it. The camera is complete with case and plenty of film backs (Im sure I will have questions on loading when it gets here) and a curtain. My question is, do I need a focusing loupe? Can I use a regular jewelers loupe? Are they helpful or are they just another item to cary around?

    Can any one suggest a good one (in-expensive but solid)?


     
  2. unpopular

    unpopular Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I never had one, but I'd definitely it. It's certainly not something you need, but it's definitely very useful.
     
  3. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    I tried shooting without one. I missed focus far too many times. I'll never try shooting without one again.

    Since LF lenses are quite slow compared to DSLRs, sometimes it's hard to focus even when shooting in bright sun using a good cloth. Loupes also assist in making sure you have the DOF you want when you stop the lens down.
     
  4. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    An essential tool. It doesn't have to be specifically a camera ground glass loupe, but you need to magnify the ground glass image to focus.

    Joe
     
  5. Gary A.

    Gary A. Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    B&H has a number of loupes and they are relatively inexpensive. If you ever get into miniature format film (35mm) then a loupe is very useful for reviewing negatives. (Or you can reverse a 50mm lens if a loupe isn't handy.)
     
  6. Dave Colangelo

    Dave Colangelo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks for all the advice guys, I may pick up one from BH along with my film order. I have some smaller ones I use for repairing cameras and watches but they are pretty small and possibly not conducive to the application (they are also kinda poorly made which is the real issue). I may wait until the camera arrives and see how they work out before I do anything.

    Regards
    Dave
     
  7. Dave Colangelo

    Dave Colangelo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have been shooting 35mm for about a year and a half, and some medium format stuff as well and been using my small loupe to review negatives with some success, but my lab scans them for me and prints as well as an all in one deal, which is where most of the reviewing gets done. I have been using an old X-Ray viewing board to back light them which has worked out great actually.
     
  8. SoulfulRecover

    SoulfulRecover Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I find it very useful. They're inexpensive as well
     
  9. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yes, it is useful when really working on hitting focus ... not always easy to see a sharp image, depending on how good the ground screen is.
    I had a rectangular Nikon loupe when I was shooting with a Cambo 4x5 ... similar to this one 2018
     
  10. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    Another advantage is checking focus when you start using the camera's tilt & swing.
     
  11. epatsellis

    epatsellis TPF Noob!

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    In the field, I find a pair of 3.0 diopter reading glasses on a neck lanyard works better, and you can work a little farther back than with a loupe. In fact for 8x10 and larger, that's all I use outside of the studio.
     
  12. minicoop1985

    minicoop1985 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    You know, a Hasselblad chimney focusing hood can work quite well as a loupe. We use one at the studio to check focus.
     

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