DeVere 504

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Amund, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. Amund

    Amund Member

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    I`ve been looking for a reasonably priced 4x5 enlarger, and I have a chance to buy a brown/cream DeVere 504 with a cold cathode head for around $350-400.
    Anyone with experience with this enlarger?
    Comes with a couple of lenses(for 35mm and 4x5)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2006
  2. Tom Stanworth

    Tom Stanworth Member

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    Yes. I have owned a 504 dichromat and now own a 5108.

    They are solid as it gets, well made and reliable. What head does it have? You should be able to find extra heads and ancilliaries (neg carrier inserts etc) very easily in europe.

    Just make sure the head moves up and down smoothly without graunchiness or stickiness that would make fine focus hard.

    What sort of chassis - wall mounted, bench, free standing.

    Great bits of kit. I now own the 5108 and a Durst 5x7. Sold the 504 as I wanted something to handle larger formats. Devere is far simpler, more intuitive and better made than the Durst IMO (which itself is still fine).

    Tom
     
  3. Amund

    Amund Member

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    Thanks Tom. It`s a bench I think(with base board) model with a Cathomag cold cathode head.
     
  4. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    I have the same enlarger, except I have a color head. The cream colored ones are older. It' probably from the 1970s. It probably has the thicker hinged negative carrier rather than the newer one. I prefer the older one, as you can completely open it, and it doesn't use ridiculous plastic hinges. (My old 504 is now in storage. I currenly use a 504 floor-standing unit from about 1986.) My only worry would be the Cathomag head. Worry one would be how reliable it is. Worry two would be what kind of contrast you can get out of it. This wouldn't be a problem with graded paper, but it could be with VC paper. Older cold cathode heads give unusual results through multi-grade filters.

    Btw., Odyssey Sales still sells and supports these enlarger. You might want to send them and email or call them up for their advice.

    -Peter
     
  5. Amund

    Amund Member

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    Thanks Peter. I`m also a bit concerned with that Chatomag head, and I`ll see if I can work out a trial period with the seller...
     
  6. HolgaPhile

    HolgaPhile Member

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    Yup, just recently bought a wall standing one, bloody solid bit of kit and so heavy in the process. It's got the dichromat head that needed a good cleaning out and I had to replace the fan because it was noisey, the fan cost me six quid. I assume it comes with the transtab and a timer, the dev's have a funnny connector to the timer so I had some fun with that too. I am using a RH Analyser pro so had to buy an adapter cable. Also had to buy some glass £10 and a 4x5 mask £45 so it starts to add up.
    Loads of odds and sods around for these and they are very solid so will last for years. Only neg point I have at the mo is its not as bright as my meopta for 6x7's, but then it s covering a much larger area. Oh and there's no fine tuning so as mentioned make sure the mechanism is smooth.
     
  7. Peter De Smidt

    Peter De Smidt Member

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    De-Vere Dichromats tend to fade dichroic filters fairly quickly, especially the megenta ones. They do so because the filter is between the lamps and the heat absorbing glass. Why they did it this way, I'll never know. When I first got my enlarger, I couldn't get above grade 3.5 contrast. After I bought new filters, I got to grade 4.5.

    I'm not sure what HolgaPHile means by adjustability. You can align the lens stage and negative stage easily, and all of the parts are meant for easy adjustment/replacement in a working commercial setting.