Componon in Shutter - History?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by waynecrider, Nov 13, 2005.

  1. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    Does anyone know the history of Componons that came in shutters? Were they intended for darkroom work; were they created from enlarger cells or were they sold as a finished product? I have an 80mm in shutter that I got years back for my 6x9, which I rarely shot, and while just cruising the cameraeccentric site I noticed that he has one for sale and he lists it as a macro, studio (product?), and landscape lens. I'm just trying to determine were it's strength lies.
     
  2. big_ben_blue

    big_ben_blue Member

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    most if not all enlarger lenses are designed as flat-field, plus they are comparable cheap to "real" macro lenses. True macro lenses are also designed as flat-fields, but carry a much higher price tag, and don't really do anything much differently. I use a few darkroom lenses (Rodagons and Componons) on a HAMA shift/tilt macrobellows (kinda lika a mini Sinar for 35mm), and they work like a charm (plus non of these lenses cost me more than 50$).

    Cheers,
    Chris
     
  3. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

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    This has been discussed several times at some length on photo.net. Kelly Flanagan (spelling?) reported that in the '60s Schneider sold Componons in shutter for use as macro lenses and for copying. Schneider also sold Symmars in barrel and in shutter for use at distance.

    All that said, Componons are very similar to Symmars. And people who've been brave enough to try longer, say 150 mm up, Componons as taking lenses have reported good results with them.

    I've shot a number of enlarging lenses in the 6/4 plasmat family at distance, viz., 4"/5.6 and 135/5.6 Pro Raptars and 75/3.5, 85/3.5, and 135/4.5 Boyer Saphir <B> on 35 mm and 2x3. All were pretty horrible at distance.

    This leaves completely open the question of whether my lenses are worse at distance than Componons or my standards higher ... Until it is proven good, I'd regard any f/5.6 plasmat type enlarging lens as suspect at distance.

    But and however, my two Pro Raptars are outstanding from 1:8 to 1:1 at f/11 - f/22, as in no worse than a known good 100/6.3 Luminar at the same apertures. Similarly for the 4" Pro Raptar mounted normally (!) from 1:1 to 4:1 wide-open. My 75/3.5 Saphir B is about as good from 1:8 to 1:1, not so good above 1:1 mounted normally. At 1:8 to 1:1, the 135 Saphir B isn't up to the Pro Raptars. Not bad, but they're better.

    Wayne, IMO an enlarging lens around 100 mm is a bit better for out-and-about macro work on 2x3 than a 75 or 80 or 85. Not because of performance advantages but because of greater working distance. I shoot 2x3 Graphics; with them using too short a lens at too low magnification risks hitting the subject with the camera's front door.

    By all means do use your Componon for macro work up to 1:1, and with the cells reversed in the shutter above 1:1. I take it that its in a #0 or #00; unlike the #1, these sizes have the same size threads front and rear. And report back on results.

    I'd expect so-so image quality in the corners with it at distance. Again, burn a frame or two to find out and please report how it does.

    Cheers,

    Dan