First image from 58-year-old Rollei camera!

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by tbm, May 27, 2008.

  1. tbm

    tbm Member

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    At the top of my Flickr page I have posted a scan from a negative I exposed with a Rolleiflex Automat 2.8a camera that was manufactured in 1950 and that I bought late last year but only just last week used it for the first time. Boy, am I pleased with the old-look quality of its Tessar lens! Click on the main image, then click on the 'all sizes' button above the image to see it enlarged.

    http://flickr.com/photos/21652620@N08/
     
  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Your "Old" camera is actually quite modern, the only thing hats new since it was made is Multi coated lenses, that can be a vast improvement.

    But a well "single" coated lens is not very far behind at all. Zeiss coating is/was excellent.

    Ian
     
  3. dpurdy

    dpurdy Member

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    Nice thing about the tessar lenses is their lack of flare. That is a nice photo of the back garden.

    I think (though not sure) that model 2.8A with the Tessar lens is the one that Rollei had a lot of miss matched lens sets and had to put new lenses in them to fix them. If interested you could do some research and get the story. I think something about the division of Zeiss into East and West Germany after the war and some of the Tessar sets got mixed up so that the taking lens didn't quite match the viewing lens and the would be soft at certain focus distances. Thats all I know. And I might not even know that.
    Dennis

    PS You might as well sell the Leica now and buy a bunch of 120 film.
     
  4. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    NEVER MIND ! SHOOT ! SHOOT ! SHOOT !
     
  5. Trask

    Trask Subscriber

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    As dpurdy said, the 2.8A has an interesting history. As I understand it, Rollei first used Zeiss Opton lenses that turned out to be sub-optimal, then swapped them out for Tessars. As a result, there aren't a lost of Zeiss Opton 2.8A cameras left out there for collectors. I'm sure there's more info on the web provided by real Rollei experts.
     
  6. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    My old Rollei has a 75 mm Tessar 3.5 Zeiss Opton serial Nr 618215

    My old Zeiss Ikon Ikoflex has 75 mm 3.5 Zeiss Opton number Nr 635167

    (?) both lenses have a red T on them
     
  7. walter23

    walter23 Member

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    Heh, you didn't buy it from the ebay seller camera$, did you?

    You'd be surprised what older equipment can do. You can get spectacular images from 100 year old equipment (especially when you start using larger formats).
     
  8. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    No. Wrong. Really, really, wrong.

    Lenses which had been made for the prewar Zeiss Ikoflex (80.2.8 Jena Tessars) had been stored for the duration of WW2. These were available for Rollei to use in their post war camera.

    Half the production of the first batch was from Jena, half from Oberkochen. SOME of the Jena lenses had become mismatched ( the plant was bombed every night ) and prewar coating was certainly not as good as postwar.

    So, Rollei recalled the bad production block, and Zeiss replaced them with new, excellent, OPTON (Oberkochen) Tessars. Ensuing production was filled with new lenses. But Rollei was embarrassed and changed the camera as quickly as they could.

    Soon, Planars became available, whose wide open performance was better than the Tessar, and then Xenotars (Schneider Planars), and that was that.

    In short, it was a small problem with the 80/2.8 Tessars, they were Jena Tessars, the OPTONS are very fine indeed, and the bad ones were replaced.

    A quick visit to a Rollei history site would clear up any questions. And, for history buffs, Zeiss had not been divided yet.

    Again, the OPTON Tessars are great, and any Jena Tessars that remain, work very well. I'd be proud to own the camera in question !
     
  9. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    As The old saying goes " many a good tune can be played on an old fiddle", it makes one wonder if if all the TTL 9 metering mode SLR s, with multi-point AF systems and 5 frames a second motor drives have actually done anything for the results we get, or have they just kept the wheels of the camera manufacturers turning ?