Saunders 670 Enlarger versus 6700

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by dousterhout, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    Hello All,

    My daughter wants a dark room and wants to focus on B&W, but may want to do color at some time in the future.

    We have the option to pick up a Saunders Enlarger LPL 670 DXL with color dichroic head with a Beseler ColorPro lens 50mm f. 2.8

    or... Saunders LPL Dichroic colour enlarger #D6700 with a Rodenstock EL-Omegar 75mm f/4.5 lens.

    They are both about the same price, but the 6700 does not have the easel or negative carriers.

    We are trying to figure out what the difference between these two enlargers are? Can anyone please help us?

    Thank you very much for your help... Dean

    PS... I guess I should add... She is very interested in making large prints. Would you use either of these Enlargers or would you use a D2 instead? Or... something else? From what I have read, the Saunders are pretty well built with some nice features.


    Thanks again, Dean
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 30, 2011
  2. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Hi welcome to Apug! Does she shoot 35mm or larger i.e., medium format (6x4.5, 6x6, 6 9, etc) or larger (4x5)?
     
  3. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Try KHB Photographix' website and their LPL Enlarger Guide: http://www.khbphotografix.com/LPL/index.htm

    KHB is in Canada, and the main model designations here are the same as the worldwide (non-USA) designations, but the listings themselves show the USA equivalents. Essentially, the lower grade enlargers are the 6700 series, and the higher grade enlargers are the 7700 series (670 series in the USA).

    KHB is a great resource for information on enlargers.

    But then, so is APUG :smile:.

    Wish your daughter well from us.
     
  4. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    zsas... right now she only has a 35 mil.... but I know she would like whatever she can get into... :smile: I think someone called it GAS... something "access syndrome"?

    Mattking... thanks... I was at that site, but I couldn't find the 670, so I was confused... So the DXL670 is the same as the 7700 series?
     
  5. Jon Shiu

    Jon Shiu Subscriber

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    The 670 is a larger and more sturdy enlarger than the 6700. Also, the Color Pro 50mm is a better lens to make large prints than the 75mm Omegar. I use a 670 and it is a pleasure to use. It can do 16x20's easily.

    Jon
     
  6. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Well given that she is only into 35mm now, of the two options you show, provided everything is in top notch working order, I think the DXL has everything she needs (lens, carrier, enlarger and easel). The other one has no carrier ($30ish on eBay) or easel ($20ish at a Craislist usually). The 75mm lens on the 6700 might be too long for 35mm printing too, so you might need a 50mm lens too??

    Gosh, all things being stated as you say, option 1 seems like a great bet! Save the money for some papers/chems/film!!!

    Anyone dissent on my recommendation?
     
  7. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    Will she be able to "grow" into this if she wants more cameras with larger film? :smile:
     
  8. zsas

    zsas Member

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    I believe both can go to 6x7, if she has aspirations for 6x9 and above neither are gonna work
     
  9. zsas

    zsas Member

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  10. ozphoto

    ozphoto Subscriber

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    I've removed the blades from the universal carrier and been able to print 6x9 without any problems. :smile:
     
  11. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    I have a lot of experience on both machines, the darkroom I teach in has 3 of the D6700's, and one 6600(plain black and white head). and I have the 670XL in my personal darkroom at home.

    You would want to hedge your bets on the 670XL, it is the better machine. LPL build quality is top notch on both machines, but the 670XL has certain advantages:

    Longer center column for bigger enlargements
    Ability to easily spin enlarger around on base for floor enlargements
    Allows for tilting of the head, and tilting of the bellows for perspective correction or wall enlargement
    Has a larger standard baseboard for a working surface
    There is a locking switch for negative carriers which I like

    Advantages of the 6700:
    Very stable, and keeps alignment well as there are not many variables for adjustment of head
    Raising and lowering the head is very easy, you just squeeze on column lever and push up or down, but not too precise
    You don't need a separate power brick on the side

    I would advise you to get the 670xl, hunting for carriers is a pain, and the 50mm 2.8 lens is optimal for 35mm
     
  12. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Yes - in the USA the 7700 series machines are designated as 670, while the 6700 machines are designated that way worldwide.

    If it were me, I would go for the heavier duty machine - the 670 (aka 7700) series. But I understand why you might want to forgo the extra cost and delay of obtaining the additional carrier and lens so as to be ready to go with 35mm.
     
  13. chioque

    chioque Subscriber

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    Matt, do pardon me, I think there's a confusion somewhere. Based on the first post, the 670 DXL, the more sturdy machine already comes with negative carrier and easel. Whereas the 6700, lower configured enlarger does not. So, IMHO, it's a no brainier to choose the 670DXL.

    Mansur
     
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  15. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    Thank you all SO MUCH for the wonderful help. I really appreciate your thoughtful and prompt replies. It is so great to be able to find a forum like this with so many subject area experts who are willing to help new folks.

    I hope I can get my daughter to realize how valuable, and fun, this kind of online experience can be... versus just facebook type activity.

    Hopefully today we will be able to "seal the deal" on the 670. I guess the next step will be finding all the accutraments (pans, tanks, thermometers, timers, lights, etc...) :smile:

    Thanks again... and we will keep you posted.

    Dean
     
  16. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    You are, of course, right :smile:.

    This confusion makes one wonder why the US distributor chooses to use the model designations they do - is it because they want to be sure that "67" is in both model numbers?
     
  17. zsas

    zsas Member

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    It's because we here in the States are trained to think XL is always "better" and in this case DXL, as in "double extra large", it is even better! It's not the model number we fixate on, it's the extension (ie iPhone 4...no iPhone 4S). Kinda half kidding here, but in all seriousness, this does confuse 6700 v 670 DXL...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 1, 2011
  18. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    Well.... it looks like the seller decided to keep their 670 DXL....or... 7700... so.... we are back to looking for an affordable one.

    Thanks again for all the help.

    Dean
     
  19. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    This is a easy choice. The color pro lens is of better quality. The 670 gives you the negative carrier, easel and you can use the dichro filters vs buying a contrast filter set. I have a 670 and it's column is more stable than the 6700. The 670 base board is a few inches larger and will be appreciated with enlargements of 8x12 or larger. My bet is not many prints will be made over 8x10 but if you need to the larger baseboard is nice.

    I would not recommend doing chemical color. However, B&W is simple and silver fiber prints can look nicer than digital.

    670 Disadvantages:

    The LPL 670 is larger and heavier (10 or 15 lbs) than the 6700. The transformer is an additional 10 lbs. Not a big consideration.

    6700 Disadvantage:

    Smaller baseboard, not as sturdy as 670, does not have tilts on the head, may not be a diffused light source which helps suppress dust, largest negative size 6x6, has a poor quality lens for not optimized for 35mm, and is not complete with carriers.
     
  20. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    OK.. so the original deal fell through and we are back to square one. If we can find a bare bones 670 DXL without a lens.... and we can find some reasonable, or free, accessories, including lens, will any lens fit any enlarger? Or, are there specific sizes for each manufacturer?

    Dean
     
  21. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Craigslist is often a great place to look? Sometimes the equipment is junk, othertimes a gem, we can try to help you best we can. Lenses typically work on all enlargers so long as the right lens mount is avail. Generally you want a 50mm lens for 35mm photography enlarging. Your daughter I believe you said is starting w 35mm, so that is what you should aim for, an enlarger with a 50mm lens (a Nikon, Schneider, Rodenstock brand is usually a great score), a negative carrier for 35mm and some other items can usually be gotten for next to nothing. I just opened up craigslist, is this close to you? It looks like an Omega B22, this might be a good start? What do others feel re this one?

    http://richmond.craigslist.org/for/2734029530.html

    Of course it should be tested, i.e., you and or your daughter should find the manual and make sure at the time you show up to test an enlarger, you all are familure with how it works to test it. Ask here as you wish, as we would love nothing more than to have another printer!
     
  22. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Why are you so bent on the Saunders 670 DXL? I have recently set up my own darkroom and in the many many months of searching craigslist and forums like this, I dont believe I ever saw one avil. In the States, that model wont come up much in a community much for sale, generally you will see many more Omegas and Beselers than Saunders 670 DXLs.
     
  23. dousterhout

    dousterhout Member

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    What I was wondering... we find a Saunders.... without a lens.. and then we find 50 MM lens... and other equipment... say with another enlarger, but one we are really not interested in... but what we really want is the lens and other equipment? Would the lens work on the Saunders? Does it take a special "mount", or attachment to get it to fit on the Saunders? :smile:

    Just thoughts... :smile:

    Thanks... Dean
     
  24. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Generally you can find on Craigslist the whole shebang (enlarger, lens, carrier, easel) for a great price. See my other post, the one before the above.
     
  25. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Dean:

    Most lenses can be made to fit on most enlargers.

    The mounting system for enlarging lenses is generally really simple - there are threads at the back of each lens, and they either screw into a threaded lens mount/board, or go through a hole in a lens mount/board, with a retaining ring (jam nut) threaded behind, to hold them to that lens mount/board.

    Each style of enlarger has a different approach to the lens mount/board issue - a Saunders lens mount/board will generally be different then a Beseler lens mount/board, which will be different then an Omega lens mount/board, but it is relatively easy to specify and find which lens mount/board you need, if you specify what focal length lens it is to be used with, and what the thread size is for that lens.

    The most common lens used with 35mm negatives is a 50mm lens. If you did a poll, most likely you would find that the majority of 50mm lenses have 39mm threads - which happens to be the most common thread size for other lenses too.

    For many enlargers, a lens mount that permits mounting the lens close to the negative is needed for 50mm lenses. As I understand it, the Saunders/LPL enlargers use a lens mount that you just turn upside-down to change the distance between lens and negative. So you could use just a single mount to change between shorter (50mm) lenses and the longer lenses (75-90mm lenses) that one would use for larger negatives. It is, however, much more convenient to have a mount for each lens if you intend to switch back and forth.

    If an enlarger comes with a lower quality 50mm lens with a 39mm thread mounted in a lens board, it is relatively easy to start working with it while you look for a higher quality lens to swap it with.
     
  26. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Both the 670dxl and the 6700 use a reversible 39mm threaded lens board/mount ring to provide focusing for 35mm and 6x7 negatives.

    Most enlarging lenses from 50mm-105mm's use the 39mm thread mount and are interchangeable. Older lenses or ones with a even shorter length usually have a smaller mount. Longer lenses used for large format have a larger mount.

    Since your goal is to print 35mm, stick to the 50mm 2.8 lenses. El-nikkor, Rodagon, and Componon are versions made by Nikon, Rodenstock, and Schneider, and are ones you want to keep an eye out for.

    Good luck on your enlarger search, you can try posting a WTB ad on the classifieds for one.