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Otakar Priboj    Panorama Photography

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All images on this site are copyrighted. They may not be used except by written permission from Otakar Priboj.
All rights reserved.

Camera pages updated 30.12.2004, more images of cameras.

I have interest in design and cameramaking. I prefer format 5 x 7 is "not to heavy not to light just right", between 4 x 5 and 8 x 10.  5 x 7 camera its little bigger than 4 x 5 and smaller than 8 x 10. That my opinion based on my experience.

The first camera that I built is a large format , 5 x 7 inch , monorail camera (based on Cambo 4 x 5 inch) which can be used in panorama mode. I designed special rail to fit 5 x 7  inch film holder to snugly fit cut 120 size film. Film is cut in dark room and film inserted in holder. I made special cutting board for this, I also can cut 8 x 10 inch fit to 5 x 7 inch format, 5 x 7 film is hard to obtain ( find ). With film holder fit with rail I can take 4 images 6 x 17 cm. To do this I made new mask for G/G ( link to PDF file G_G_5X7A_www.pdf file size 8Kb ) to help me focus first to top section of holder. I close lens and remove the dark slide and insert special cut dark slide to mask bottom of film holder, fire the shutter with a cable release. Remove special (half dark slide) and insert normal dark slide turn film holder around and continue as before. Next is to focus on bottom of film holder, then I close lens and remove the dark slide and insert special cut dark slide to mask top of film holder, fire the shutter with a cable release. Remove special ( half dark slide ) and insert normal dark slide turn film holder around and continue as before. More information's, images and how to develop strips of film you will fined in PDF file 5x7to617.pdf .( I am working on it and will publish on www later) ( file size 800Kb include new mask for G/G)

converted 5x7 film holder

5 x 7 inch D/D holder with 120 film.

converted 5x7 film holder2

5x7 DD film holder with rail for 120 film.

5x7 camera1

Cambo SC 4x5 , converted for 5x7 back.

5x7 camera2

Cambo SC 4x5 , converted for 5x7 back.

My second camera is based on maximizing  use of 120 roll film. My calculation give me 4 images and 4 mm spaces. Image size is 56 x 195 mm. Me desire was to design film holder for this image size. I was told this format its not standard and development laboratory will cut to my images. This discouragement didn't stop my desire to maximize use of the film. Finally, I made two film holders and ground glass. To fit film holders to this adapted Cambo 4 x 5 SC,  I made back standard adapter plate. This allowed me to take even wider images. With longer monorail and bellows, lens from 72 mm to 450 mm can be used. I use 72 mm SUPER-ANGULON XL and 90mm SUPER-ANGULON XL. Components are made from aluminium (6061) and black satin anodized. I machined them myself.

  6x20 camera1

Monorail panorama camera 6 x 20 bellows compressed.

6x20 camera2

Monorail panorama camera 6 x 20 bellows extended.

6x20 camera3

Monorail panorama camera 6 x 20 bellows extended.

 cambo & 6x20 back

Monorail panorama camera  with 6 x 20  film back.

camera belows

panorama camera  with 6 x 20 film back side view.

6x20 film back1

6 x 20 film back.

6x20 film back2

Inside of 6 x 20 film back.
Back made from 6061 Aluminium, polished and satin anodized. Other materials used Stainless steel, Brass, Bronze. I have new improved design for 6 x 20 back.

6x20 ground glass

Hand ground Ground glass (grid size 10mm).

My third camera its "point and shut" based on 6 x 20 film holders. Again I made back plate to fit 6 x 20 film holders and G/G. Front frame hold frame which accept Cambo lens board. Back frame have tripod mount and front can be moved for focusing.

6x20 pnd

Point & shoot 6 x 20 Camera components - not yet anodized.

In year 2000 I began designing and building my 300° & 360° panoramic camera. Because of financial difficulties and I was site track to build others projects, work progress slowly. I will continue work on this camera.

pan_opta 300

Pan_opta 300 & 360 camera.

Left : Main body, 
Middle front:
300° film plane for 80 mm f2.8  CZJ Biometar MC lens.
Far right:
360° film plane for 50 mm f4  CZJ Flektogon MC lens.
Lens will be mounted on body where is blue dye. Image size will be for 80mm lens
(for 300°) 418mm and for 50mm lens (for 360°) 314mm.

The frustration is that I have even more designs for panorama cameras and film holders, no time and money to build them. The results though can be improved greatly.

Designs in progress:
  • 6 x 13 film holder for new Panoramic camera ( 5 images on film)
  • 6 x 12  film holder for 4x5 camera (under G/G).
  • 6 x 17 film holder for 5x7 camera (under G/G).
Special Interests:
  • Pinhole photography, BW paper as negative and contact printing.

Other cameras I use:
5 x 7 Cambo SC with reduction for 4 x 5. Pentagon six, 6 x 6 ( 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 ).

Image of Cambo 5x7 and 4x5 reduction back.
Image of Pentacon six.

Please if you have comment send email.
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About digital revolution

Digital imaging technology has brought new and exciting tools to photography. Today digital revolution offer some advantages over classical printing process. I use those advantages to create the stunning images. Combination Large format special build camera precise exposure, film development, drum scan and high resolution LightJet Digital Enlarger. Computer controlled laser exposure ensures that print density and colour fidelity is guaranteed across the entire print surface. Photographic imaging is a continuous tone print process that relies on colours embedded within photosensitive papers. Continuous tone printing means that there is no discernible printing dot.

Many sources believe that in the years to come we will replace traditional film with digital images. While this may be true of the amateur photographer and the commercial or technical photographer, I believe that the time honoured artistry of photography, exhibited by Ansel Adams, Yuseff Karsh, Annie Leibowitz, and other famous photographers, will continue to be recorded on film. With a single piece of equipment the camera, different film emulsions can be used to control grain, contrast, tone, and texture of an image. This image, and the lighting of the subject, is composed in the artistic eye of the photographer and captures a moment in time. While we certainly believe that digital imagery is an enhancement to the portrait photographer, and its application in portrait photography will increase, I do not believe that it is a replacement for special landscape camera.

Web-based images may be used at no cost for non-profit educational school projects and non-profit research projects by requesting via email and or letter and including a description of the use of the requested image.

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This page Copyright © 2003 by Otakar Priboj Panorama Photography.
Last updated December 30, 2004

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