Chamonix cameras are composed of wood and carbon fiber composite material, and are designed to be both light and durable while retaining the aesthetics of its hand craftsmanship. Uncommon camera functions are omitted to ensure the slimmest, lightest build possible.
The structural design of the Chamonix cameras overcome some limitations found in conventional wooden cameras. For example, the screw-focus mechanism and stainless-steel focus track makes the cameras much more accurate and durable than traditional models. The front standard of Chamonix cameras can be detached so that, with the extension accessory, the bellow can be extended freely like a monorail. This feature is especially useful for lenses of long focal length and outdoor macro photography.
Most Chamonix cameras has two different types of wood for you to choose: dark walnut and Canadian maple. The metal parts are painted one of two possible colors: black and titanium grey. Customers can choose any of these combinations according to taste. Regardless of color, the metal parts are always made of anodized aluminum, primarily aluminum 7075 and 6061. The wood choice has a minor impact on performance. Walnut is slightly heavier than the maple; a walnut camera weighs approximately 20-50 grams more than a maple one. Maple is also less rigid than the walnut, and thus able to absorb vibrations and deformations better. These differences become apparent only with testing instruments and are essentially invisible to the user. Walnut and maple differ in visual appearance as well, but both woods have beautiful grains that shift with light and angle.
Every stage of woodwork, from material selection, manufacture, and painting, demonstrates the exacting standards and superb techniques inherited from ancient Chinese craftsmanship. After basic semi-mechanical construction with power tools, each camera is carefully handmade to give it the best appearance possible. In order to ensure high quality, only the most experienced craftsmen are assigned to this task.
The asphalt-based carbon fiber filaments used in the 045n-1 are combined in alternating horizontal and vertical layers with epoxy resin under intense heat and pressure. This process is done manually, sometimes leaving marks of handwork on the surface. These are not flaws, but rather a sign of the careful labor which goes behind the construction of each camera, and are offset by the beautiful glaze of the carbon fiber.
Carbon fiber has another photographic benefit: its weak electrical conductivity. Chamonix is the first to combine wood and carbon fiber by heat pressing. The resulting composite material is used for the bed and focusing module. This is the key difference between the Chamonix and traditional wooden cameras, the core innovation of Chamonix, and embodies the Chamonix principle of "light weight and high quality".
Chamonix 045N-1 with lens.
Dark walnut wood and grey metal.
Chamonix 810C camera,
Dark walnut and black metal combination
Chamonix 7X17 camera with the combination
of Canadian maple and black metal.