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Linhof Super Technika IV 6x9
Though most famous for their 4x5 Technikas, Linhof has a long tradition of smaller 6x9 Techs
Technika III and IV 6x9's are almost the same camera. The III's back removes with four latches. The IV's back removes with a single lever lock, as shown on this camera. Most were made as a "Super Technika" with the top mounted combined rangefinder/viewfinder. The same body without the RF/VF and cams are properly called "Technika" -- without the Super. Generally III's have grey leather, IV's have tan leather as shown. IV's were made from 1956 to 1964. These make great shooters, but personally I advise passing up cameras in not so great shape, unless you are getting a great price. Repairs are likely to be expensive.
The Super Technika was manufactured in two versions, the normal and the "B" version meant to accommodate the 53 Biogon. The cameras are identical except for the finder optics, the normal model being designed for the 65 Angulon and the "B" version having a wider view to accommodate the 53. How to tell them apart? Easy; the "B" version has an engraved "B" underneath the serial number on the top of the camera. Perhaps the most famous original lens set for these are the Zeiss 53 Biogon, 100 Planar and 180 Sonnar. They could also be ordered with Voigtlander lenses, including the famous Apo-Lanthars.
The fit and finish of Technikas is extremely high, a beauty to behold -- especially in this age of plastic. Shown in left pic is the mount for the anatomical grip. Close-up on right shows one of the four knobs which lock the back movements.
III's and IV's have front rise and front tilt, but not front swings. The center knob in the center pic rotates to control the back front tilt. The grip is removed by depressing a catch on the bottom of the mount, and sliding the grip downward. If there is a more comfortable large format grip than the Linhof, I have yet to find it.
Beneath the sliding front standard base is the rangefinder mechanism. III's & IV's employ an interchangeable 3 position cam, for three different lenses. They had to be ground to fit individual lenses, and are no longer available from Linhof. In other words, unless you can find the craftsman out there who is still grinding Linhof III and IV cams, you can not use modern lenses with RF coupling on these babies. On the far right shows the two click position of the front bed strut, which allows a front drop of 15 degrees.
The "B" viewfinder shows the angle
of a wide angle 53 mm lens, the regular version the 65mm lens. By
placing masking in front of the finder, longer lenses can be accommodated. To the
right of the finder on the back is the focus sale. The rear of the finder can be adjusted
for individual vision to show all four corners of the view, as well as to manually adjust
for parallax. Finder masks were made in two flavors, each mask being produced for
use with sheet film and another for use with the 56x72 Rollex & Super Rollex backs.
The Rollex masks are engraved with an additional marking, "56x72."
The IV's back is easily removable with a quick lever lock, located on the top right of the back. Notice the chrome buttons on each side of the extendable back which must be pushed in before the back can be pulled backwards. Likewise, the four chrome knobs on the side of the body must also be loosened before the back can be moved. The back has up to 20 mm movement available for swings or tilts. Like all Technikas, there is no back rise or fall. The rotating back can be replaced with a number of roll film backs and even a condenser and light housing to convert the camera into an enlarger. The bellows is one piece, connected to the front standard and the extendable back.
6x9 IV vs. 4x5 V Super Technikas: the bodies without lenses and boards, with cams and ground glass backs, weigh 4 1/2 lbs and 6 1/4 lbs respectively.
My thanks to Linhof Super Fan Eduardo De Diego for supplying many important details.
Revised: November 25, 2003 . Copyright © 1998-2002 Stephen Gandy. All rights reserved. This means you may NOT copy and re-use the text or the pictures in ANY other internet or printed publication of ANY kind. Information in this document is subject to change without notice. Other products and companies referred to herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.