Great deals to avoid?

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Robert, Mar 1, 2003.

  1. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I noticed somebody is trying to sell the Zeiss projector lens on Ebay again. Is there a list of lens that sound too good to be true and really aren't worth the effort?
     
  2. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    There should be if there isn't. I was told (but won't spend my money to find out) that projector lenses can be pretty good if used like a barrel lens. I do know some telescope hobbyists use them sometimes. Sometimes I think there should also be a sleeper list, of under-rated underpriced lenses too. But, once the list came out, prices would probably climb [​IMG]
     
  3. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I think this one was some sort of industrial lens. It's on Grimes list with no way to fit a shutter to it. F/5.6 or so. No other stop. For awhile somebody from Europe kept trying to peddle one. The price was high enough but the shipping would make you faint.

    Last week I was tempted by a Soviet built 5x7 [well the metric version] Bidding for the camera started very low but shipping was about $100. Worst part? That was shipping within the EU. To North America it was to be quoted.
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Don't be tempted by those ex-Soviet LF cameras. I forget what it is exactly, but they have some serious problem, like non-standard filmholders. Some of them have this interesting behind-the-lens shutter, though, which is kind of like a Packard shutter with three speeds--I guess you could think of it as a souped-up Packard or a poor-man's Sinar shutter.
     
  5. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Robert @ Mar 1 2003, 06:14 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>I noticed somebody is trying to sell the Zeiss projector lens on Ebay again. Is there a list of lens that sound too good to be true and really aren't worth the effort?</td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    Hmm.... Now there is an idea.

    I have a Hasselblad PCP80 Projector - with the big, whumping Zeiss P-Planar 150mm 1:3,5 lens.

    Now to figure out how to cobble it to one of the 'Blads....

    Man-- What a *beautiful* piece of glass!!!
     
  6. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Here's another one I've heard to avoid--lenses made by Carl Meyer. This was apparently an American company that sourced lenses from various manufacturers, some good, some bad. The name of the company was designed to create confusion with the venerable firm of Hugo Meyer, Goerlitz, which ended up in East Germany after WWII. I had not realized the ruse until someone pointed it out to me. Carl Meyer sold some very fast LF lenses, but apparently they are not very good.

    One might say that Cosina is engaging in a similar scam with their "Voigtlander" line, but at least they are making good lenses. I just wish they would give them new names to avoid confusion with the old names like "Skopar," "Lanthar," and "Heliar," which have come to designate specific designs, and which are completely unrelated to the current lenses.
     
  7. Robert

    Robert Member

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    If the camera had a reasonable shipping amount attached I would have bitten. The lens alone might have been worth the selling price but the shipping scam -(. Of course the shipping was buried in paragraphs of text. Felt like chapters.
     
  8. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    There have been several listings on Ebay recently in which a wooden field camera is identified as a Deardorff copy (don't recall the name offhand). I have heard others who have had experience with this particular camera say that it is not equivalent in any way, especially in "fit and finish". I guess one gets what one pays for. As someone once said "If it seems to good to be true, it probably is".

    Along the line of lenses, I recently purchased a 610 mm Apo Nikor barrel mount lens. It was properly and adequately described by the seller. However, I had no concept from the ad what a hunk of glass this thing is, (almost 5 1/2 inches in diameter at the mounting flange). I am going to need three sherpas when I use in on my 12X20 (one for the camera, one for the holders, one for the lens). As for myself, I plan on carrying the meter and notepad.
     
  9. Robert

    Robert Member

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    Teaches you a lesson for outbidding me-))) Actually the 360 barely fits my camera. Have to mount it with only a couple screws to avoid distorting the lens.
     
  10. GreyWolf

    GreyWolf Member

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    In reference to Ebay articles....

    I am often amused at the excessively high prices that used Rodenstock Sironar-S series of lens are sold for. There is no disputing the quality of a Rodenstock lens but if people where to check around and read specs/reviews on Schneiders. Nikkors, Sironar-N and others they would see that the advantage of a Sironar-S is not as significant as some think.

    Just goes to demonstrate once again that some folks are buying the name and not the product for an intended use.

    I guess Kerry's comment about "prying from my dying hands" has served to make Rodenstock Sironar-S a collectable, regardless of other performers. Too bad that it is currently available new as that prevents it from being classified as a collectable.

    But heck.... for $40.00 less that a new one, you too can own a used, almost collectable lens. :>))
     
  11. avandesande

    avandesande Member

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  12. David Hall

    David Hall Member

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    It's all relative, isn't it? Anyone seen Mark Tucker's use of loupes as Hassalblad lenses, or Domenico Foschi's quest for the fastest, oldest, "most character" lenses? Or Sally Mann's?

    Maybe what would help would be some kind of guide that compares resolution, contrast, coverage, etc for ALL lenses, including the Mark Tucker Plungercam.

    dgh
     
  13. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I thought the "answer" from the tests done awhile back on older lens was if they got stopped down far enough they all acted about the same. The small aperture overcame anything positive the designers could provide.
     
  14. David Hall

    David Hall Member

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    Robert,

    I'm not sure if you were answering my post or not, but not everyone's looking for the same thing, such as sharpness. Maybe it already exists, but I would to see a chart that shows many qualities of lenses so you could tell the more "creative" ones from the sharper ones, etc.

    dgh
     
  15. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The character things, though, aren't always easy to quantify in a useful way. I'm sure you could quantify all the aberrations in a Heliar at f:4.5, for instance, but it would be difficult to translate that into a visual description of what the lens looks like when used for portraits at a certain subject distance range.

    A conventional list of items "to avoid" would probably be useful to someone with a Sally Mann or Mark Tucker sensibility as well, because they might want to see what happens when you use precisely those lenses that are to be avoided. Many of the Sally Mann lenses were damaged lenses, maybe with a cell missing or separation or severe surface damage--lenses about which no useful predictions could be made, and the same goes for loupes, eyeglasses, magnifying glasses, Holgas and such. The chance element is part of the attraction.
     
  16. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    David,

    That is an interesting and valid observation. I hadn't thought of it in those terms, but I agree with your observations. Thanks.
     
  17. Robert Kennedy

    Robert Kennedy Member

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    Hey, the right tool for the right job. I just bought an old Kodak Anastigmat 7.7 with a ball bearing shutter because I wanted a nice, softer, uncoated lens to play with. Hell, the thing has a BUBBLE in the front glass! I have yet to mount it properly, but I can't wait to see what it does!

    Besides, it was like $20.00.....
     
  18. Steve Hamley

    Steve Hamley Member

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    Folks,

    Interesting comments by David and Robert. I ran across an old usenet thread about portrait lenses where Steve Grimes and others recommended using, among other things, close up lenses (diopters).

    So I scarfed a used Vivitar set, taped the #4 (250mm focal length) to a shutter, and it actually did very well. Nice smooth look. Have yet to test it on landscapes, but that's a spring project.

    Thanks!

    Steve
     
  19. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

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    Perhaps things like sharpness, coatings, etc...being a matter of taste for most of us, isn't really "list-able" if I understand your question, however things like shody workmanship and poor engineering---the sort of stuff that is a waste of LF dollars(like, I understand, Tilt-all 4x5 holders) would be valuable things to avoid and might "make the list," if one were to be compiled. Of course anything included would be suspect since a contributor might not have the knowledge to evaluate something fairly, especially used equiptment. If I were to get a trashed Betax shutter, I might assume that all Betax shutters(maybe all Wolly shutters) are junk--which they aren't!. I might not take into account that I only paid six bucks at a yard sale (found it in a cigar box with Junior's Rock Collection)for the thing, or neglect to add that info to my gripe.----Cheers!