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Comparing Two Early Stereo Camera Designs

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    Posted 2 months ago

    rniederman
    (316 items)

    One of the things that fascinates me is seeing how makers updated camera designs over time as the technology improved, and stereo cameras are especially interesting. Shown here is a comparison of stereo designs from two different photographic eras spanning 50 years: wet collodion plate and flexible roll film. What a difference in design and user experience.

    The larger John Stock (American) wet plate camera is typical of an 1860s rear focusing, field design making stereo pairs on 5 x 8 inch glass plates. The camera itself is heavy and photographers were burdened with lots of supplies including large tripods, glass plates, toxic developing chemistry and water, and a portable darkroom to immediately develop the plates. Exposures were made using lens caps or hinged wood panels mounted to the lens' fronts. Additionally, intrepid photographers often transported their equipment in horse drawn wagons.

    Wet plate photography in the 1860s was far from spontaneous. A lot of planning had to be done before going out to take pictures and exposures were often many seconds in duration.

    In contrast, the Kodak No.2 Stereo Brownie (1905 to 1910) was small, lightweight and convenient to carry. Snapshot photography was easy. Simply load a roll of film, open the camera, focus, and trigger the stereo shutter to shoot 3-1/4 x 2-1/2 inch image pairs.

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    Comments

    1. Manikin Manikin, 2 months ago
      Another amazing find !
    2. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      fortapache
      dlpetersen
    3. officialfuel officialfuel, 2 months ago
      Nice fine Rob! Great read!!! Thank you for sharing!

      Michael
    4. antiquerose antiquerose, 2 months ago
      These are Amazing !!
    5. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      BB2
      Phonoboy
      AntigueToys
    6. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      Newfld
      Ben
      MarmorealMaiden
    7. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      Manikin
      Thomas
      racer4four
    8. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      kwqd
      vetraio50
      MALKEY
      glassiegirl
    9. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      Vynil33rpm
      Hoot60
      f64imager
      Mrstyndall
      antiquerose
      Michael
    10. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks!
      Lady_Picker
      snowman3
      Manikin
    11. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks, shughs!
    12. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks, chrissylovescats!
    13. rniederman rniederman, 2 months ago
      Thanks, mtg75!
    14. rniederman rniederman, 1 month ago
      Thanks!
      Sean
      vintagegirl66
    15. rniederman rniederman, 1 month ago
      Thanks, mcheconi!

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