Are Mamiya KL lenses for the RB67 worth the extra $$ versus Sekor-C?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Removed Account, Aug 22, 2008.

  1. Removed Account

    Removed Account Member

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    I'm once again jumping in to the purchase of an RB67 and am wondering if the KL lenses are worth the extra cost versus the Sekor-C lenses? Is there a distinct improvement in sharpness and resolution when comparing prints/transparencies, or would it only be of concern to nitpickers?

    I'll probably get a Pro-SD body sinced they're not much more than a Pro-S at KEH. One thing that remains unclear to me is if the Pro-SD body requires an adapter for the KL lenses, or just the C. I've heard it can use all the KL lenses w/o adapter, while others have said only the 500mm and 75mm shift lenses work without it.

    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    Only the C lenses need the adaptor for the Pro SD body (I think).

    I have an SD body and both C and KL lenses. If there is a difference in sharpness, I can't see it.



    Steve.
     
  3. nsouto

    nsouto Subscriber

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    Got a ProS rb67 with 50C, 80C and 180C and a 127KL. I can definitely see better colour saturation and contrast with the 127.
    But I *am* a nitpicker!
    :tongue:
     
  4. max_ebb

    max_ebb Member

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    That is also my experience with K/L lenses vs C lenses.

    The K/L lenses need adapter rings just as much as the older lenses. The K/L lenses came with adapter rings when they were new, but many used ones don't have the adapter included. You don't necessarily HAVE to use the adapter ring. Lenses can be mounted and will function on the Pro SD without the adapter ring. The RZ67 has the same size opening as the Pro SD, and I have used RB lenses on an RZ without the adapter and didn't have any problems. In direct sun light, with the mirror up and dark slide out for an extended period of time, there might be a light leak without the adapter ring, but I didn't have any problems with normal use.
     
  5. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    The KLs are superior. How superior and whether it matters depends on you. My feeling is that if the price difference is as small as it is, go for the KLs.

    If you do go with pre-KL lenses, be sure to hood them judiciously.

    The real standout KLs, in my opinion, are the 127 and the 210 apo. Worth every penny, brand new.
     
  6. MAGNAchrom

    MAGNAchrom Member

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    I'm not convinced about C vs KL lenses -- they all seem equally sharp to me. However, the coatings are better on the newer lenses. That being said, I have an older non-C 250mm RB lens and as long as I have a long lens hood on it and I'm not shooting into any sun, I get great images with this lens (which I picked up for a song).

    The key thing for me is getting a great price on an older-style, mint-shape lens is a no-brainer: just do it.

    Cheers
     
  7. NJS

    NJS Member

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    bump.

    what I want to ask RB users is, beside mentioned coatings, are there any improvements in KLS over Cs?

    I borrowed RB Pro-S from a friend along with 50/4.5 and 90/3.8 and I liked the camera pretty much but I noticed both lenses have a lot of barrel distortions and I think it's something I can't get used to, coming from other mF systems such as SQ-A, m645 and P6. I like the format very much and I like the handling and other things but this distortions are something that really puts me off from jumping into RB/RZ systems.

    thanks.
     
  8. CGW

    CGW Member

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    "borrowed RB Pro-S from a friend along with 50/4.5 and 90/3.8 and I liked the camera pretty much but I noticed both lenses have a lot of barrel distortions"

    Have never seen any distortion from the 90/3.8--ever.

    I have a 150/3.5KL and love it as a short portrait lens. I do see a slight sharpness and colour fidelity edge over C lenses. Mileage is another consideration, especially in terms of shutters, so it's possible that lightly used C lenses will have more life left in them than smoked KLs. Overall, the differences are usually minor provided you're down with how and where flare can affect your shot.
     
  9. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    The RB 50 is not on the same level as the RZ 50 uld. The RB 50 was the only lens in the family that disappointed me. The new RB 90 has worked well for me, although I have a very specialized purpose for it and don't use it as much for general shooting as the 127 KL.
     
  10. martyryan

    martyryan Member

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    I have a 90mm C lens and yes, it does have some barrel distortion.

    Marty
     
  11. NJS

    NJS Member

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    I quite like the 50 although some barrel distrotions are visible when doing close ups or on peripherals when focused to infinity.
    90mm shows heck of a lot distortions, yes.

    that's the KL version you were mentioning?
     
  12. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Yes the KL or L or whatever it's called- the newest one is what I have been using.

    I am not using it for anything but adapting it with extension tubes to a specialized 360 lens.

    Overall I prefer the 127 KL to the 90.

    ~~~

    IMHO many of these discussions regarding newer or older RB lenses pivot around the issue of whether you shoot colour or b&w and what you will do with your negs or slides. If perchance you shoot colour, then colour neutrality and chromatic aberration and the appearance of flare are more obvious issues. If you scan then you don't care so much about neutrality. It all depends on your workflow.

    A central design goal for the newest lenses in the rb and rz lines (and pretty much every other lens on the market today) is to decrease chromatic artifacts... by incorporating low dispersion elements and/or introducing better correction and introducing better coatings. Granted, the major motivation behind all this is that [Bayer] digital sensors are far more susceptible to chromatic aberration. That is not to say that these issues are meaningless to film users- they do matter. How much they matter will vary from person to person.

    For me the bottom line is: test for yourself, decide what works for you, and don't assume that what works for me ( or anybody else) will work equally well for you. There are plenty of reasons to go for older lenses, and plenty of reasons to go for newer.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 2, 2010
  13. NJS

    NJS Member

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    how would you call these then?

    [​IMG]

    or these?

    [​IMG]

    sorry for these crappy examples, just a random shots while testing.

    so anyone noticing that been corrected in KL versions?
     
  14. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Looks like keystoning and close focus distortion with a wide lens. My 90 doesn't do this close up.
     
  15. Darkroom317

    Darkroom317 Member

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  16. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    You have pretty noticeable distortion there. The verticals are not at all straight (notwithstanding perspective, of course).

    I became sensitive to this when I was using an rb 50 and was comparing it to the performance from the 50 on my mamiya 6. Night and day difference. I saw almost zero distortion from the RF 50; the rb 50 was resold almost immediately. N.b. the rb 65mm is substantially better in this regard.
     
  17. Darkroom317

    Darkroom317 Member

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    I don't really mind the distortion but I am thinking about the 65mm for when I really don't want it
     
  18. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    I'd not hesitate to use either for sharp pix (with a lens hood, as Mr. Williams suggested)...but there is a visible difference, IMO. In fact, I like the older RB ones a lot of the time for the effects of the different (i.e. less advanced) coatings. I have a busted 250 that will not stop down properly, but I use it wide open for shooting people. I have tried selling it cheap, but no one wants a busted lens, so I keep it.
     
  19. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Yes, the 'effects' of the older lenses can be quite useful. I have no less than four 80mm lenses for the mamiya 645 system, ranging from uralt to spankin' new, and they are all quite different in many ways. It's not unusual for me to have two or three of those 80s in my bag at once.