Hey everyone :)
I'm a newbie to darkroom equipment, being a coddled student who's used to having staff around to sort it out when things go wrong :) But now i'm second in command of my uni photo society and needing some help with getting our darkroom fully functional again :)
Kaiser System V, VCP 6001
(i think - thats all the info i could get off the enlarger itself)
We don't have a lens for this enlarger, and would quite like to get it going :) I don't understand enlarger lenses at all so can anyone give me advice on what type of lens we need to get? Do they have different fittings like camera lenses, are they all the same, or are they specific to each enlarger? Focal lengths?
Any help at all you can give would be appreciated :) - my IM information is in my userinfo if you fancy talking me through it on msn/yahoo/aim ;)
First, there are manuals in the Kaiser site:
Most of the enlarger lenses have the M39 thread, so they are kind of standard (at least for 35mm and MF).
Enlarger lenses are inexpensive today, so I would advise you to get a 50/2.8 for 35mm and a 80/5.6 for 6x6 (if you use this format) from Nikon, Rodenstock or Schneider, the 3 big ones in this area.
They may be purchased used (but look for a mint unit) both in the classifieds or at Ebay for about US$ 50 (I've bought two Nikkors, one really mint (was it ever used?) and another almost at this price bracket).
Enjoy your photos,
I have a Kaiser VP6005 which I use for colour work. As your enlarger will cover up to 6x6cm you will need a 50mm lens for 35mm and an 80mm lens for medium format. I can recommend the 50mm f2.8 EL Nikkor for 35mm and the 80mm f5.6 EL Nikkor for MF. Both are 6 element lenses and have a well deserved good reputation. All things being equal they will turn out first class prints.
I'm a little confused. Am I reading that some lenses are for color, and others for B&W? I only ask because I have 8 lenses ranging from 780mm to 35 mm for enlarging. Most are Nikkor, but either way, I use all of them for color and b&w. I change mainly based on the size of the source image, with the 780mm being able to handle 30in diameter original, 485mm for roughly 18 in diagonal, etc.
I didn't think color or b&w had lenses specialized for each one.
I've reread the thread and I can't see where different lenses for color/BW could be inferred. Maybe it's your avatar :)
AFAIK, old (and I mean old) lenses were optimized mostly for blue, the color B&W fixed graded is more sensitive to.
Anything more up to date will handle color well, of course better lenses are better. APO lenses are optimized to focus perfectly on the three basic colors - or four, the money color...
That's what I thought. I guess the "I use ...for colour work..." just threw me for a minute. Besides you guys haven't seen my avatar for a while so I may have answered just to get noticed. :wink: