Let me preface by remarks by saying I've only used a Beseler 23C III and 45mxt (not the latest iteration).
The Beseler 45 is a rock solid piece of machinery that works for everything up to 4x5. The other thing is it is American and still manufactured. The 23C is also American and still manufactured. As was mentioned the 23C covers most of the normal medium format sizes. With that duo you can enlarge just about anything you will ever shoot. It is nice to have different enlargers set up for different formats. If someone was in Europe I would recommend a European model that had plenty of parts in the used market over there.
The Durst might be worth keeping if you really plan on doing color in the future. Depending on your geographic region enlargers and enlarger accessories can go for next to nothing. But the problem I have found is sometimes the thing you need for whatever reason just doesn't pop up when you need it. You already have a color setup. Unless you can get a good price for it or swap it for the same price as a Beseler color head I would be reluctant to let it go.
If I were you I would research what makes a good enlarger. One thing you seem to be overlooking is how solid the support column(s) is. The Beselar 45 is solid. The Beseler 23C is pretty respectable. It is the choice for many institutions. I don't see the Beseler 67CP being in the same league.
I only have space to use two enlargers (both Beseler M series of different vintages). I have my Durst M605 and F30 packed away. I'd probably keep the 45 and then choose between the 23C and the baby Durst based on future space/format needs. This assumes that the enlargers are complete and do not have any special wish lists for obscure carriers or condensers. That is where the Beselers score in N.America - they are ubiquitous.
better watch out...
... she heard you say that!!!:confused:
Originally Posted by MARKNABIA
Oh the misogyny in this thread...
Being the wisenheimer wno was single in an earlier post, I also knew as that same single man that a good wife is a blessing. I'd allow my entire house and contents to be jacked up and hauled away in trade for one. Then I'd go re-buy another enlarger, maybe.
I have my darkroom, and my wife has her recording space. Big computer, software instruments, real instruments, mics, mixers, the lot. She's good too 8-)
Sadly I haven't used most of them. So far only have had one house that I was able to get a darkroom setup in but we have moved since then and so the stuff has been playing tag along till I we get another house that I can setup a darkroom in. Think I finally found one though :-)
Originally Posted by ic-racer
So far the only one I have had the pleasure of using was the b600 and that was mainly cause it was nice light and easy to carry and I had the stuff that went to it sitting right next to me. Honestly I'm not sure what all I have for the other enlargers though but honestly I'm sure have have most anything I need. The stuff I bought came with boxes upon boxes of stuff and I still havent' been able to go through all of it yet. This came from a lot that was donated to a school. The schoo switched to digital and just wnated to get rid of it. So I picked up 5 enlargers tons of timers, trays a couple lens's and I know multiple negative carriers and much more for about $50. This was a couple years ago though.
Right now another problem though is cash. I wouldn't mind picking up a color head for the 45 or the 23 but I'm broke and was just recently laid off. I can't afford another head currently which is partly why I was thinking of the 45 and the durst. at least that way I've got it covered for most any format and then if I want to switch to color I have the durst for that. Might try to fenagle my way into keeping three of them but I'm not sure how well that will go. Could use the money from selling them also.
One thing I did notice about the 45 though is the motor makes a burning smell once it gets near the top of it's range. On the wya down it's fine and as long as you stay near the bottom of the range it's ok but the closer you get to the top the slower it goes and the more it stinks. I saw something about an adjustment or spring that goes out of adjustment but couldn't find any other information on how to fix that.