Looking for lens info

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by timjnh, Feb 12, 2011.

  1. timjnh

    timjnh Member

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    Hey folks,
    I recently lucked out during the purchase of a second-hand enlarger. The fellow selling it included a number of items that was I was not originally expecting. Those items included several lens that I'm looking for info/comparisons on. They include:

    Componon-S 50mm f/2.8 (early 90s)
    APO Rodagon 90mm f/4 (not "N", early 80s)
    Rodagon 105mm f/5.6 (mid 80s)
    APO Ronar 150mm f/9 (early 80s)

    First, as far as I can tell the Ronar isn't actually an enlarging lens. Does anyone know what the typical application is? It's not big enough to cover 4x5 so is it 6x9?

    Next, I'm typically enlarging from 6x4.5. Would the 90 or the 105 be a better bet? The APO lens is slightly older than the non-APO one. Is there any reason to think that the newer, non-APO one would perform better? Ignoring the APO vs non-APO issue, would I notice any difference other than maximum print size between the 105 and the 90?

    Lastly, what sort of resources are available for learning about different types of lenses other than bothering strangers on the internet? Are there any books or publications that contain this type of data?

    Thanks,
    -Tim
     
  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    The Apo Ronar is a Process lens.

    The 90mm will be better for 645 negs as you, mainly because at the top of the column it'll give a larger print than the 105mm, but both are excellent lenses.

    The Apo 90mm is a newer design.

    Welcome to APUG BTW

    Ian
     
  3. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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  4. mopar_guy

    mopar_guy Subscriber

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    Tim,

    Welcome to APUG.
     
  5. timjnh

    timjnh Member

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    This is great, thanks for the info guys. ic-racer, the resources you pointed me to were really helpful but I'm wondering if anyone has recommendations for more general resources explaining types of lenses, lens design, practical considerations when using lenses of certain types, etc. I'm a big book person so hardcopies would be preferred. Thanks!
     
  6. CJBo001

    CJBo001 Member

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    Tim,
    It may not be exactly what you're looking for, but Ctein's book "Post Exposure - Advanced Techniques for the Photographic Printer" has a pretty extensive discussion of how to test enlarging lenses and three pages of tables summarizing the results of testing he has carried out on popular lenses including the Schneider Componon-S 50mm f2.8. Its also a good general reference if you want to improve the technical quality of your printing.

    Chuck
     
  7. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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    A lot of a second hand enlarging lenses performance is dependard on how much "life" (or abuse/mislandling) a lens has seen

    They are all potentionally excellent lenses

    You will need to run a few simple tests to work out which ones perform the best now

    Remeber to test the lenses for contrast/flare as well as resolution

    Cteins' book "Post Exposure" gives good advice how to do this

    Or Richard J Henrys "Controls in Black and White photography" is also excellent

    Welcome to APUG BTW

    Martin