Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion
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Old 09-11-2013   #1
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Default Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I had the opportunity to buy a Cambo Legend LF camera a while back. I bought it with the full intention of converting the back to accept a dSLR. S.K.Grimes out of Woonsocket, RI did the conversion but as of yet haven't had the time to play with it. Anyone else convert their LF camera for digital? What are your thoughts?

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Old 10-09-2013   #2
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I am building a large studio stand for the camera. The base is done and now I'm working on the pulley system for the counter weight. I'll try to post some pics.
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Old 10-10-2013   #3
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I used to use a MF digital back on a Sinar F in the early days of digital capture. The MF back worked well, in spite of the hassle of extra cable releases to awaken the back and then fire the shutter on the lens. The main issue was the limited focal lengths available in LF lenses. There was no wide angle available for a sensor that small. Since then there have been small format WA lenses and small view cameras developed just for that application.

A second issue was the need for a short sensor to lens distance which required using a bag bellows.

There was also the constant exposure of the bare sensor to all of the dust floating around inside the bellows.

Your situation of using a DSLR body on a 4x5 view camera will have all of those issues in addition to the one of image cutoff when applying camera movements caused by the depth of the DSLR body or the distance from the sensor to the camera body's lens mount.

If you want some of the camera movements while using your DSLR, a better choice would be a tilt/shift lens.
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Old 10-10-2013   #4
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I understand that the focal lengths will be different because of the smaller sensor size and that I will definitely be loosing peripheral information because of the size differences. I am planning on keeping this camera strictly for studio work. I have seen several versions of what I am building used by a few other photographers with some impressive results.

This project started off as an experiment just to see if I could do it. I have learned so much from this that I want to continue exploring with LF cameras.
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Old 10-10-2013   #5
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

You should be fine if you stick to longer focal length lenses. A 150mm lens on a 4x5 format would be considered a normal focal length while a 75mm would be a very wide angle, requiring a wide angle bellows for infinity focus. Either of those focal lengths would be a telephoto on a crop DSLR.

Good luck and share some of your results here if you like.
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Old 10-10-2013   #6
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I'm curious how the back was converted to fit the camera. Personally I just bought one of these:

It works fine, but as Brooks pointed out, you're limited to the longer focal lengths. It works well when you want to do some macro, but if your conversion is anything like the plate I bought expect to be limited to focal lengths longer than 100mm. . . . . until you get your hands on a MF digital back, which is my ultimate goal.
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Old 10-10-2013   #7
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

I had S.K. Grimmes out of RI do the conversion for me. I gave them a lens board and an extension tube and they drilled and screwed the parts together for me. They are great for manufacturing custom photo equipment like that.

As for the digital back... that's also something I would probably end up doing somewhere down the road. Right now they are too expensive and too slow for me to consider them.
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Old 11-14-2013   #8
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

get a 4x5 film holder and a sheet of film and watch what that baby can do
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Old 01-07-2014   #9
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

Hey Duck, get a chance to shoot with your Cambo at all?

I was poking around to see if anyone had experience with the Sinar P-SLR, and similar rigs, and stumbled across this thread. It looks like your Cambo conversion would accomplish about the same thing.

My local medium/large format dealer is hot on the Sinar P right now (especially since I don't need an expensive medium format digital back like I would if they tried to sell me an Alpa tech camera or something similar). They just came out with a version for the Leica S (immediately after Leica acquired them) so the Sinar P has to have some happy users. The lenses one can mount on the Sinar or something like your Cambo should, in theory, be much better than any tilt shift lens from Nikon, Canon, Samayang, or the EF/F/M645/S mount Schneider tilt shift lenses...
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Old 01-09-2014   #10
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Default Re: Cambo Legend with dSLR conversion

Sorry, not yet, at least nothing worth posting. It's a heavy camera and I don't have a tripod strong enough. I put it on my heaviest Manfrotto but I noticed the legs bowing and didn't want to risk bending it (too expensive). I am in the process of making my own heavy duty studio stand. I have the base, post, arm and most of the hardware to put it together. Just searching for a suitable counter balance and a head strong enough to hold the camera. Since it's not a priority right now it's a slow project.

I will definitely be posting everything when it comes together.

Thanks


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