Good LF tele lens for 4x5

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Jarvman, Oct 28, 2008.

  1. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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    What is a good reasonably-priced tele lens for a 4x5 camera? I was thinking somewhere in the region of 300mm, maybe a bit less but not too close to 150mm. I haven't spent any money in a few days! Any thoughts? :D edit: The title should say good, I'm not after another goof lens after past experiences!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 28, 2008
  2. pgomena

    pgomena Member

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    Look for a good used Schneider Tele-Xenar. I'm pretty sure they came in 300 and 360mm focal lengths. I own a 360, which needs about an 8 or 9-inch bellows draw. Good lens, very sharp. Mine is an early 70s model, I think I paid about $500 for it a decade ago. It is coated, but it appears to be single-coated, not multicoated. I may be wrong. Big copal 3 shutter which I mounted with no problems on a Wisner/Zone VI 4x4-inch lensboard.

    Nikon also made very good teles, but I'm not familiar with all the focal lengths they manufactured. The 300mm Schneiders often were sold for Linhof Technicas, so look around for ones on Linhof boards as well.

    Peter Gomena
     
  3. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Do you need a tele or just a 300mm? 300mm fast big lenses are pretty cheap these days but may be too heavy for a small 4x5. The small compact slower 300mm seem to have held their resale value better. But are cheaper new
     
  4. edtbjon

    edtbjon Member

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    Nikon 360 has a good reputation. It can also be converted to a 500 or a 720 (if memory serves me correctly), by changing the back group of the lens.
    Tele-Xenars are good lenses too and they are still made today.

    //Björn
     
  5. Trevor Crone

    Trevor Crone Member

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    The Tele-Xenars are good performers, compact too. I have the 210 which is a very capable performer. I also use a 240 Tele-Congo which I bought on Ebay some years ago and again this is a good little lens.
     
  6. Seabird

    Seabird Member

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    Its not clear whether you really do mean "tele" or just long-focal length. If the latter, and if your camera has sufficient bellows draw, I'd recommend the Nikkor M-300 f9 - particularly if you're into carrying your gear any distance. It is small, light and sharp.
     
  7. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i would suggest 2 different lenses .. either a symmar convertible
    or a 15" tele raptar ( usually comes in an alphax shutter if not in a barrel).
    the raptar is a telephoto and wil not take a ton of bellows to use
    ( it is used on a graflex slr or speed/crown graphic) the convertible will
    take full bellows ... and then some if it is used converted.
     
  8. coriana6jp

    coriana6jp Member

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    If you can find one a Fuji 300mm T F/8 is a good lens, that only needs about 210mm of bellows draw. If your camera has enough bellows draw skip the telephoto and go for a long lens like a Nikon 300mm M or Fujinon 300mm C. They will be lighter, take smaller filters and be marginally sharper. Also they have the benefit of covering 8x10 if you ever decided to go that route. None of the Telephoto lenses in the 300-360mm range will cover 8x10.

    Hope it helps.

    Gary
     
  9. Huub

    Huub Member

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    I use both a 9.0/240 apo-ronar and a 5.5/360 tele-xenar. The tele-xenar needs a bellows draw of about 220 mm. Mine is about 25 years old, single coated, Linhof labelled and very sharp. It weighs about 900 gr and takes 67 mm filters. My Toyo 45AII has about 32 cm maximum bellows draw and this is probably the longest focal length it can take without adding the extension back. Using movements with this lens is something to get used to because of the tele construction. The 240 mm fits nicely between my 150 mm and the 360 mm and is less sharp than the tele-xenar. It takes 49 mm filters and is much lighter and is easier to use with movements.
     
  10. darinwc

    darinwc Subscriber

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    Hey jarvman, let us know what camera you have. Alot depends on this.. BTW there are some very similar recent threads on htis subject. make sure you check those out.
     
  11. Daniel_Buck

    Daniel_Buck Member

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    I would suggest a 240mm G-claron. It's a small lens, but still covers more than 8x10! copal 1, and 55mm filter threads. It only opens up to f9, but it's a great little lens for hiking, both for 4x5 and 8x10. I believe they go for about $475 or so.

    If your camera can handle a 450mm, I would suggest a Fujinon-c 450. Like the G-claron, it's a nice small lens, copal-1 and 55mm threads.

    Both of these make excellent hiking lenses!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 30, 2008
  12. joneil

    joneil Member

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    If you can find one, a "true" telephoto for the 4x5 is the Wollensak Tele-Raptar. I think it is 15" inches, or converted, about 375mm. I have one and love it. Like most true large format "telephotos" the coverage is limited, but I really like mine.

    Going the route of a G-claron (i have two myself) or similar works very good too, but I personally find that any larger focal length lens that might cover 8x10 or larger is hard to find or expensive if you do. Maybe it is just me, but interested in the larger formats seems to be growing, not shrinking.

    good luck
    joe
     
  13. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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  15. seawolf66

    seawolf66 Member

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    the 15 inch raptar takes about nine and 3/8 inches of bellows , I have one : a nice lens :
     
  16. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Stay away from the 300mm Tele-Xenars: They were an older model, and some of them only cover 6x9cm.

    A 360mm f:5.5 Tele-Xenar is a completely different beast: Covers 5x7" straight on, and fits in a Compound #3. Most of them are coated too, unlike the LF 300mm Tele-Xenars. Flange focal distance for the 360 is about 210mm.

    If you want something closer to 300mm or a bit less, a non-tele lens is far lighter, cheaper, and has more coverage.

    Me?

    I use a 355mm G-Claron - when I don't want to lug the 360mm f:5.6 Symmar around.
     
  17. Wyno

    Wyno Member

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    I used to have a Komura 400mm Tele convertible (300mm, 400mm, 500mm) that I used on a Nagaoka 4x5 and a Shen Hao 4x5. It was just about too much for the Nagaoka at full extension, but the Shen handled it easily. It was a great lens and now Mick Fagan is enjoying the use of it.
    Mike
     
  18. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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    I went and got a 300mm tele xenar but aren't sure what copal lens board I need for it. Is it a 1, 2 or a 3?
     
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  19. edtbjon

    edtbjon Member

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    What shutter is it in? Lensboards are drilled for shutters. Anyhow, if it has a Compound shutter, which is probable, you cannot find any pre-drilled lensboard for it.
    As the Compounds usually comes with a flange instead of a retaining ring, it's better (in my opinion) to attach the flange to the lensboard and then screw in the lens in the flange. Anyhow, here's a link to Ole's data on Compound shutters:
    Ole's Compound data

    Good luck with your new lens.
    //Björn
     
  20. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    I love my Tele-Xenar. It is a 180mm made for medium format, but they made a whole bunch of different lengths. I would like to get the 270mm myself. Using front tilts and swings is very hairy, however...
     
  21. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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    Cheers bjorn. Here it is... http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&item=370132415827

    Maybe I should've taken Ole's advice and got a 360mm one. I never read anything properly before charging at things! I don't use front tilts/swings so that shouldn't be a problem. It must be a compound shutter which is the reason I couldn't find any marking designating it's lensboard size. How do I go about getting a board for this then? I'm using it on a Chamonix 4x5.
     
  22. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's not a Compound shutter - I think it must be a Compur #2.

    Data for those are in the same thread that Björn linked to. :wink:
     
  23. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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    Oh, how do I get a lensboard for it then?! Does this mean I've gotta get someone to drill one for me?
     
  24. edtbjon

    edtbjon Member

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    Yep, either by someone who has the tools etc. or try it yourself. Finding a 60 or 65mm drill-bit is hard, so it's more a matter of cutting a hole which will accomodate the flange or shutter.
    Of course a mechanical workshop will make you a "perfect" hole at a cost.

    //Björn
     
  25. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I use a circular hole saw on a manual drill (very old, hand-cranked), and adjust the hole size with a file or knife depending on the material and how much trimming is needed. It takes a little bit of time, and not much effort.
     
  26. Jarvman

    Jarvman Member

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    my cuz said he can make me a lensboard no problem, the only thing is the lens has a thread to screw into the graphlex board that came with it. There's no retaining ring if i have a wooden board made.
     
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