What Enlarging lens for 4X5?

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by bmac, Nov 18, 2002.

  1. bmac

    bmac Member

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    I have Nikkor's for both 35mm and 6X7, now am looking for one for my 4x5. What focal length do I need for 4X5? 150mm?
     
  2. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I asked the same basic question awhile back. It's either 135mm or 150mm. The 135mm will give you larger prints from the same height. 135mm are supposed to be for 9x12 but all/almost all should cover 4x5 just fine. I got a 150mm because I found one cheap.
     
  3. b.e.wilson

    b.e.wilson Member

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    I got a 135m lens so I could print 20x24 on the basebard. A 150mm lens would have required me to raise the head farther than my column goes. Had my column been wall-mounted with an adjustable-height base, I would have gone for a 150mm lens because it bends the light through smaller angles.
     
  4. paul owen

    paul owen Member

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    I found myself an "as new" but used, 150mm Rodenstock Rodagon. Excellent lens. I'd certainly recommend a 150 for the extra "coverage" - but many swear by a 135mm.
     
  5. bmac

    bmac Member

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    On the same topic, does anyone have any opinions of the 135 mm F5.6 Rodenstock Rodagon Enlarging Lens? IS it comparable to the Nikkor?
     
  6. paul owen

    paul owen Member

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    IMHO, you would be hard pressed to tell the results from different modern enlarging lenses - ie which lens made which print. The offerings from Rodenstock, Schneider, Nikon will all produce excellent results.
     
  7. Thilo Schmid

    Thilo Schmid Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (paul owen @ Nov 27 2002, 08:09 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>The offerings from Rodenstock, Schneider, Nikon will all produce excellent results.</td></tr></table><span id='postcolor'>
    Paul,

    I would agree. However, a second-hand 135mm Rodagon or Componon-S would be easier to find than a 135mm EL-Nikkor. You should check whether the lenses are single or multi-coated. The majority of Rodagons and Componons around are only single coated version whereas the most (all?) of the EL-Nikkor offers are indeed multi-coated lenses. The enlarger lenses are usually not labeled as single or multi-coated versions (unlike camera lenses). But you can easily recognize single coated lenses by their glass surface reflections.
     
  8. BobF

    BobF Member

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    tschmid

    My Nikor 105 is certainly multicoated from the looks of it and my Rodagon 150 is just as certainly single coated. My 50mm Companon-S could be multicoated from it's looks but I am not positive. I just have to wonder how much difference it makes when printing B&W. I have several single coated 4x5 lenses that compete quite well with my multicoated lenses.

    I am assuming you feel that multicoating would help resolve flare problems in enlarging. In Ctein's enlarger lens test there doesn't seem to be any correlation between coated and uncoated in his flare testing. I am assuming Nikors to be coated and Rodagons not. His testing results and his conclusion is that flare is not a problem with the newer 6 element lenses, and significantly he doesn't mention coatings.

    I obviously agree with Paul's statement as I have one from each manufacturer simply because I found each one used at a good price.
     
  9. Thilo Schmid

    Thilo Schmid Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (BobF @ Nov 27 2002, 11:52 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>I just have to wonder how much difference it makes when printing B&W. &nbsp;I have several single coated 4x5 lenses that compete quite well with my multicoated lenses. </td></tr></table><span id='postcolor'>
    BobF,

    as always: it depends. Generally, better coating delivers better contrast and better contrast delivers better resolution an sharpness. Of course, an enlarger lens does not have to deal with environmental light, but inner-lens-flare is an issue, too. This is totally independend of whether you are printing color or B&W. Whether you may profit from multi coating depends much on the enlargement factors used. And if you happen to make partial enlargements, you may need higher magnification factors with LF, too. Particularly, an enlarger lens for 35mm-format sould be multi coated.

    The difference between a multi-coated and a single coated lens can be as much as one paper grade (at higher mag.-factors). This may even be an advantage, depending on the contrast of your negatives and because maximum sharpness is not always required. I've got an old Componon from the 60s (most probably not coated at all) which sometimes helps me to print negatives that are a little too contrasty.
     
  10. Thilo Schmid

    Thilo Schmid Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (BobF @ Nov 27 2002, 11:52 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>I am assuming Nikors to be coated and Rodagons not. &nbsp; </td></tr></table><span id='postcolor'>
    AFAIK, this isn't always true. Current Rodagon and Componon Lenses are MC. The "Apo" versions of them (7-element) have always been MC (except perhaps very old ones). All Rodagon-G lenses (6-element) have been multi coated, too.
    So if Ctein didn't state, whether his test samples have been MC or not, we can only speculate about any correlations.
     
  11. chrisl

    chrisl Member

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  12. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    I bought a Rodenstock Omegaron 150mm for less than 150. It looks and works like new. I am not sure how different it is than a Rodagon. I wouldn't necessarily make assumptions though. I bought a relly nice looking Schneider Symmar off e-bay and found it was single coated (I only looked after reading an artical in View Camera Magazine) the serial number was just a little shy of the midyear shift to MC.

    BTW I have two Nikkors that I really like. The Rodenstock is EASILY as good though..

    Frank
     
  13. Robert

    Robert Member

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    I received a Omegaron 50mm with an enlarger I bought. The 50mm is certainly a lower grade then the Rodogan.

    150mm lenses can be real cheap. My Rodogan cost about $50. It just takes a little bit of time.

    I think the general feeling towards the APO lenses is everything else in your system must be perfect first. No use spending the money if your enlarger isn't 100% aligned. If you aren't using a glass carrier. Etc. It's not that they aren't better lenses. They most certainly are but if you have other problems in your setup you might not notice.
     
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  15. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  16. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Aggie @ May 14 2003, 09:39 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>I purchased a used comparon (schneider) f4.5 last fall.&nbsp; What I would like to know is it any good.&nbsp; I have no knowledge of lenses for enlargers other than what is good for what film size.</td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    What focal length? If it is the 105mm, I have one in the turret of my Omega D5500. The thing is a *gem* for smaller enlargements (optimized at 3X). I use mine on both 35mm and 2 1/4 film.

    I rescued mine from the top of a pile in a dumpster moving down the aisle in one of the places I worked.
     
  17. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  18. chrisl

    chrisl Member

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    Aggie, I've read alot of posts, apparantly even a 135mm will give slight light falloff at the corners on 4x5 enlargements. So I'm looking for a 150mm. Also I thought a Componon S is a better lens than a Comparon?? They sell for alot less on ebay.

    And Thanks for the suggestions on a lens too guys! I'd like to believe I have a 'perfect' setup lol, but prob. don't. So I'm holding off on that APO lens.

    Chris
     
  19. Thilo Schmid

    Thilo Schmid Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (chrisl @ May 14 2003, 11:02 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>Also I thought a Componon S is a better lens than a Comparon??</td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    Chris,
    the Comparon is a long discontinued 4-element design. It was optimized for a 4x mag-ratio. The Componon-S will perform better on a larger mag-ratio range.
     
  20. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I haven't tried my 4x5-setup yet, having too much fun with 5x7 I guess. But a 135mm on 4x5 should be equivalent to 180mm on 5x7 - and I haven't noticed any light falloff with that combination. Mine's a Rodagon...
     
  21. Thilo Schmid

    Thilo Schmid Member

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    The Specs of both Schneider and Rodenstock do specify that a 135mm el-lens covers 9x12cm (the european conterpart to 4x5"). Although their specs are usually conservative, they do not leave you much tolerances in practice. So you may find it difficult to exactly center a 4x5 in your 5x7 carrier.

    Light fall-off might is not necessarily a bad thing. You may even use it consciously to compensate light fall-off of a super wide camera lens.

    BTW: the 180mm lenses officially do cover 13x18cm (which equals 5x7" quite exactly) - so it's not really the same situation here
     
  22. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (tschmid @ May 14 2003, 09:37 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> BTW: the 180mm lenses officially do cover 13x18cm (which equals 5x7&quot; quite exactly) - so it's not really the same situation here </td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    Just to add a note of confusion: 13x18cm measures exactly 5" by 7", but 5x7" film is measurably smaller. Take a look at Schneiders spec's for f:6,8/120mm Angulon... They claim it covers 5x7", but not 13x18cm!

    There are also different lens series, with different coverage. Most 180mm cover 5x7, some do not. Some 135mm's cover 4x5", some only 9x12cm, some do not...

    Besides, we're not talking about infinity here. This far the biggest enlargement I've made from a 5x7" neg is 11x14", just a bit more than 2x (and that's big enough for me). Whether the lens covers 5x7 when enlarging 20x is irrelevant to me, as I'd have to rebuild the entire house to get the working distance!

    Check the specs for the lens you're thinking of buying before you buy.
     
  23. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    I used, for years, an older 135 mm Schneider Companon (Chrome barrel). I enlarged 16X20's with it and noticed no appreciable light fall off. I now use a 150 mm El Nikkor and the increased sharpness and contrast is apparent, not that the Schneider was a "bad" lens, just that the more modern lens is better.

    Depending on the subject matter, I might be inclined to use the older lens at times. Portraiture, if I did it, would probably be an application that I would try the older lens.
     
  24. chrisl

    chrisl Member

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    Yes, that does make sense. I think the light falloff is very much subjective. Some people have not noticed at all and others find it intolerable...kinda like requiring a center filter for wa lenses.
     
  25. JohnArs

    JohnArs Subscriber

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    Hi

    Chris

    I would not buy the Apo Rodagon for thad price.
    The MTF of the Rodagon is at f11 better then thad from the APO!
    Only wide open the Apo is very tiny bit sharper.
    Some years ago I asked Rodenstock what would be the best f stop for my Rodagon, they told me I get best results with 2-3 stops closed.
    And for the Apo it is only 1-2 f stops closed.
    I'm so happy with my 6 lens Rodagon I giv it not away for an Apo!
    But some tests in Germans Fotomagazin and in Color Foto showed in 35mm and MF categories was the winner in sharpness always either a Schneider or a Rodenstock and the nikkors was always on 3. place!
    But they where all very near each other! But 6 lenses are very important in thad case!!
     
  26. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Aggie @ May 14 2003, 10:42 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>its the 105mm.&nbsp; What size enlargements does it do?&nbsp; I was hoping to do all sizes with it.&nbsp; This summer I am concentrating on 16x20's</td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    The data I have at hand is for Rodenstock Enlarging lenses. According to them, the 105 Rodagon (I would not expect the Schneider Componar to be much different) is *designed* for a field of 6cm x 9cm - or more coherently, a circular area with a diameter of 10.8cm. A 4" x 5" (or, if you are in Jolly Old, 5" x 4") negative would have a diagonal of 15cm... So I would not expect it to "cover" - at least not without fall-out and optical "badness" at the extremes (read: corners).

    135mm and 150mm are designed with a 9cm x 12cm (4" x 5", or .. see previous ... ) field as a criteria ... so I *would* expect them to be appropriate. There is another choice - the Rodenstock "WA" lenses (I would guess that "WA" stands for Wide Angle - and I'm sure that Schneider and Nikon have equivalent wide angle enlarging lenses) where their 120mm f/5.6 Rodenstock WA is recommended for 4" x 5" ... The shorter focal length translates to a larger image at shorter column heights.

    The easel on my Omega D5500 measures something slightly over 16" x 20" - with a 6cm x 6cm negative, I'm close to the top limit of the column, using an 80mm Rodenstock Rodagon, at this magnification. With the "regular" Rodagon, I can expect an enlargemt of 20" x 20" to fall within the lens design criteria. If I was to use a 60mm RodagonWA (also recommended for 6cm x 6cm) in its place, I could expect a limit of 30" x 30" - at a "something similar" column height.

    I hope this helps - at least a little. It is difficult to be more specific without the data sheets for each individual lens. By massaging the information through some - really rather simple formulae - I could be more specific...

    Uh ... but .... I think you would do well to consult Schneider or Rodenstock, or Nikon or ... whoever... rather than to trust these rather worn fingers on these keys.