Linhof Super Rollex 6x7 back

I got a Linhof Super Rollex 6x7 back for my 4x5 camera, because 4x5 is so damn expensive. I got this one pretty cheap because it doesn’t look too great on the outside.

I was thinking, this is a good way to get still high quality shots, be able to use movements, and get price down per shot into something more reasonable.

With this back you get 10 shots per roll, and you just swap the ground glass into this back when you’re ready to take a shot.


For some reason a previous owner removed the Linhof badge that is supposed to sit there in the middle.


But mechanically everything works fine.

Understanding how to load this back and how it works was actually quite tricky. You need to put the unexposed film into the middle, and then just pull out a good 20cm of backing paper, attach it to the other side (top side in pic above), and then crank until the film is tight. The rubber roller will NOT turn before you have everything shut and in place, which was confusing. You need to, BY HAND, remove more backing paper and roll it over to the other side, until you see the arrow in the little window in the middle, and then align it with the red arrow next to it.

After that, you close it up, and crank it until it won’t let you crank any more, and you are at frame 1, ready to shoot. After each shot, you nudge the button towards the direction of the arrow, to release the crank lock, and a little window will tell you which shot you are on.

There is a big downside to using a roll film back which I did not consider before I bought this one. The main one is, you get crop factor. I have a normal lens, and a wide angle lens, but with the crop factor I instead have a too long lens and a too short lens. This makes composition difficult, since I mostly shoot with normal lenses. I don’t really want to buy a third lens just for when I am shooting with this back, I don’t like to lug around a lot of gear.

The second downside is that it is much more a hassle to swap with the ground glass, than it is to insert a film holder. The ground glass is sensitive, and made from glass. When out in the forest or something, this is an extra step that takes time, and you have to place your ground glass somewhere safe for taking the shot.

I think for me personally, I will probably not use this as much as I thought I would. Probably for portraits and such, where you want to take a few shots “for safety” and having a short telephoto lens is preferrable.

What are you thoughts on roll film backs, I am curious?