Speed Graphic vs. Super D

Discussion in 'Collector's Corner' started by Alpha, Jul 14, 2007.

  1. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Okay this one is a tough call. I really like the rangefinder on the graphics. I was thinking perhaps a super speed graphic (though it lacks the focal plane shutter). However, a 4x5 SLR is rather appealing as well. I can't decide. Help.
     
  2. montresor

    montresor TPF Noob!

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    Get one of each, of course.

    I've played with Speeds and Crowns, never with a Graflex RB Super D, but I've read up on the latter (operating manual available on graflex.org), and my first thought is that the Super D might not be as fast, operationally, as the Graphics. I suspect that's just a feeling I get based on long experience with my slowness on the learning curve. Still, I want one!

    It sounds like the Super D is the way to go. From the Graflex website: "The Super D differs from the Series D in providing an automatic diaphragm setting capability in the lens, and a built-in electrical circuit for automatic open-flash photography."

    From what I can see on eekBay, the Super Speed Graphics are kind of pricey, but they look like interesting machines. If you already have a Speed or Crown, I'd go for the Super D, just for the experience of handling a different system. I like that they both have revolving back capability.

    One consideration: if you're at the age of presbyopia, you might have some issues with the Super D's focusing hood. I had to go to a prism finder on my TLR because I got tired of whipping off my glasses every time I focused.

    Have you started looking longingly at Graflex Graphic View II's yet?
     
  3. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I find myself not using the rangefinder on the 4x5 I shoot with. As a matter of fact I'm thinking about removing it altogether so it's lighter overall when carrying it. I use the ground glass with a magnifier for critical focus. That's why I'm inclined to lean (pun not intended) towards the Graphic.

    Oh, BTW, I never use the focal plane shutter on my Graphic either.

    Just my $.02 here...
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Tough call. I have a lot more experience with Speed Graphics than Super D's, but I want a Super D too. I would tend to think that for me I would prefer a Speed Graphic on a tripod, and a Super D for hand held. That said the Speed Graphic works fine hand held, and I'm sure a Super D would be great on a tripod. Price could be a factor. Last time I was looking at Super D's on Ebay (about 3 years ago) that had a 4x5 graflok back, and were in pretty good condition the price ranged from $1000 to $2000. You can get a Super Speed Graphic body in excellent condition for under $400 (mine was used, but completely functional for $200).
     
  5. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Don't need one. I've got an old Calumet monorail. Interestingly enough, I'm shooting super wide angle on it right now with an 80mm Rodenstock Heligon that I ripped off my now defunct Graflex XL and mounted on a recessed lensboard. Full coverage with some movements.

    Anyway, they both look like very interesting cameras. From a collector's standpoint, I'd like to have both. From a practical standpoint, I was looking for something more affordable than a modern field camera. Change your opinions at all?
     
  6. JC1220

    JC1220 TPF Noob!

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    Max, Whats your budget? There are few Tachi fields where you bought your recent 4x5 Super XX that you might want to check out.;)
     
  7. Mitica100

    Mitica100 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    How about a Linhof Technika III? They are very compact, they offer some back adjustments (tilt and swing, but not a lot) which the Graphics don't have. It's an all metal camera, somewhat smaller than your regular Graphic and it does offer triple extension (double on the front and a little in the back). They are less pricey than the IV or V Technikas.
     

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