Tell me about the Durst Optimo

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Stuart Richardson, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. Stuart Richardson

    Stuart Richardson Member

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    I run a small custom lab, and I know of a Durst Optimo that has been sitting idle for several years. It is near me, and it appears to have been only very lightly used. I know this is a extremely complex and sophisticated enlarger, but I am wondering whether it makes any sense at all as an enlarger for a low volume fine art style lab. The price on it would probably be very low, as I am on an island and shipping it out would be a massive undertaking. The owner is an older photographer who is in retirement. All I have found online is the brochure, which lists an impressive number of features. I am a bit more interested in hearing how it works as a daily user, and in particular, how it works for black and white. I know it is primarily a color enlarger, but most of my clientele is interested in black and white.
    In any case, I know it would cost an arm and a leg to fix if anything is wrong with it (or went wrong with it), but I am curious to hear if anyone has used one or knows much about them. They seem to be quite rare.
     
  2. K-G

    K-G Subscriber

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    Hello Stuart !
    I have no experience from the Optimo myself, but Durst Pro USA seems to be the main source for knowledge and spareparts for all the big old Dursts. Perhaps it is from them you got the brochure but I enclose a link in any case. Also the German company Kienzle have Durst spareparts but I haven't seen the Optimo mentioned on their website. This is as far as I can help you.
    Good luck

    Karl-Gustaf


    http://www.durst-pro-usa.com/imagine_2009.htm

    http://www.kienzle-phototechnik.de/
     
  3. Stuart Richardson

    Stuart Richardson Member

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    Hi Karl-Gustaf,
    Thanks very much for the help! Yes, I had a talk with Jens Jensen at Durst Pro USA and he certainly knows what he is talking about! The first order of business for me is to see if I can get the person who has it in storage to find the manual. Once I get ahold of that, I should have more of an idea as to what I am dealing with. Unfortunately, the enlarger is packed up in a way that it is a bit hard to get a feel for it...there is too much other stuff wrapped up around it. Certainly before I bought it, I would make certain that it is all working and that it runs in a way that makes sense for me. By the way, thanks for the link to Kienzle, I had not hear about them either!

    Best,
    Stuart
     
  4. gary mulder

    gary mulder Member

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    Without the manual this enlarger is nearly useless.
     
  5. ROBBERT1844

    ROBBERT1844 Member

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    Durst optimo i used for 10 years and it ismost beatiful and easy to handle enlarger

    :whistling:
    when you buy one there are diverent models first de ful automatic 4x5
    and the semi this is one you have chanche the lentes manual but you can do much more
    and if it is posible buy a digtal led display for durst by devere

    greetings Robbert