Brandon Powers: Photographer » Photojournalist & Freelance Photographer

Testing the 4×5

Close up of Pine Bark Arista EDU Ultra 100 and Rodinal 1:50

Close up of Pine Bark. Arista EDU Ultra 100 exposed 1/25s @ f16. Developed with Rodinal 1:50 (N+1)


I’ve had a Calumet 4×5 view camera lying around for the past few years but have sadly never gotten around to using it. It’s an all metal monorail view camera mostly likely produced in the mid to late 60’s. Calumet began producing this model in 1964. It has two lenses. A ┬áSchneider Kreuznach 5.6/150mm Symmar (convertible to 12/256mm by removing the rear element). The mounting ring is engraved with “Made in Germany West”, a reminder of the era this equipment was made in. I also have a 6.3/200mm Yamasaki Tele-Congo.

So after 3-4 for years of storage I finally order some film and begin to get to know this fantastic camera.

Before ordering the film though I used a dark room to test the camera for light tightness (by placing a flash light inside the camera and looking for light leaks on the outside). I also checked the shutter speeds of my lenses for accuracy. I’ll write more on these topics in a future post but I was able to determine that I had a working and ready camera so I ordered up some Arista EDU Ultra 100 film, Rodinal and fixer.

Above is one of the first test results. I’m very pleased with the results and the resolution, even with my simple scanning setup, and am looking forward to learning a great deal from this camera.