Schneider Curtar 4/35 vs. 5.6/35 (Retina IIIc)

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by BrianShaw, May 22, 2006.

  1. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    [Cross-posted from RangefinderForum.com because of no replies]

    Does anyone know the difference -- design or quality or anything-else -- between the C-mount (for Kodak Retina RF) Schneider Curtars. What I now know is that one is f/5.6 and the other is f/4. The f/4 is much larger, but other than that I'm clueless.

    The two lenses seem to share a similar design: 9 elements in 6 groups (including the common rear element). Both of the 35mm front lenses have 6 elements in 4 groups. Perhaps the biggest difference is the physical size -- the f/4 lens being more than twice the size of the f/5.6 lens.

    But... what about image qualities... is one better than the other?

    Any information about experiences with these lenses will be sincerely appreciated!
     
  2. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    I really don't know anything, but I found this thread:Retina Curtar and these pictures:the lenses

    Maybe it's something to start with...
     
  3. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Thanks for the links. I've seen the pictures, but somehow missed that thread.

    I have a f/5.6 35mm lens that I haven't yet used and recently bought a f/4 35mm on eBay but haven't received it yet. By the general lack of response to the question, I suppose I'll end up figuring out the difference on my own and posting the results.

    Thanks again!
     
  4. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    I have the 35mm F/4 which I have not used in many years, at one point I thought I lost it. I have not compared it with the 5.6 but the F/4 is very sharp, has good contrast, and was good performer for it's day; but it will flare if you are not careful. It is rather heavy, and I don't use it much because with the case it takes up a lot of room in my bag. I do use the 80 F4. I always thought it odd that the sleek Retina III was married to such large lens, something to do the the leaf shutter. Once your F/4 arrives post your take on the difference between the 2.
     
  5. tony lockerbie

    tony lockerbie Subscriber

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    I would sggest that you sell the 111c and get a 111S, a much nicer camera and you can get the really nice 2.8 Curtagon. I think the F4 curtar might have been produced to go on the original Retina Reflex. The 5.6 Curtar ir amazingly tiny, you wouldn't think one F stop would make that much difference!
     
  6. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Ha, Tony... it is tempting to start looking at a IIIs. The f/4 lenses are slow and it's impossible to fold up the IIIc with them on. That takes away one of the best features of the camera!
     
  7. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    I have had my III C for about 40 years, and as a travel camera it has several advantages (folds very flat, quite, and the 50mm standard lens is excellent) that quickly disappear once I add either the 80MM or 35mm. Both lens are heavy, the 35 is not really wide enough to justify lugging it around, as Brian pointed out it will fold with the 35 or 80mm. Neither lens couples directly to the rangefinder, and the ev exposure system is a pain. The IIIs, well I have given some thought to adding one to my camera bag, along with a 28 80 and 135. As I understand the system not all the Retina Reflex lens will couple with the rangefinder on the 111s you have to look for the extra pin that couples to the cam. The IIIs will even take the 200 although it will not couple with the rangefinder. The IIIs has built in viewfinders for 35, 50, 80, and 135 mm, but not the 28 or of course the 200. The IIIs still uses the EV system and if the shutter needs repair it can be expensive. But still much less expensive than a Lieca.

    I have not seen any IIIs on Ebay for a while.

    Paul