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Thread: Noblex 6/150 U

  1. #1

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    Noblex 6/150 U

    I just bought a Noblex 6/150 U, with 150 Panlux meter and a slow time module. This was kind of a spur of the moment purchase that I made simply because I like the 6X12 format, without doing a lot of research on the Noblex. I am told the camera is in excellent condition and has seen very little use -- in fact the previous owner told me that he had not used it in over five years but never experienced any problems when he did use it.

    OK, is this a good camera that will provide reliable service, or did I just spend a lot of money on something of dubious quality?

    Sandy King

  2. #2
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    You bought a camera made by a company with a very interesting history. Look up KW - Kamera Werks, and John & Charles Noble, the original company made some innovative cameras in mid - late 30's and also the Patent Etui, the smallest plate camera of any time (the 9x12cm version).

    The company made Prakitina's, designed the Prakisix/Pentacon 6, became part of VEB Pentacon, and a factory was later given back to Noble after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and he made the Noblex then went bust and workers or other Directors bought it.

    If in good working order an excellent camera, with a Tessar lens.

    Ian

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    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    The 35mm models are known to be a bit touchy, but the medium format versions seem less problematic. It's very hard to find filters and closeup lenses (which are particularly important if you shoot interiors) for them, if that's important to you. I'm very happy with my Noblex 150.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

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    Ian,

    I did a quick search on the web and the history of the factory in Dresden and John Noble was indeed very interesting. And now I know that Carl Zeiss Jena lenses became Docteur Optic, and may have made the Rotelar lens on the 6/150 U I bought, which is described by many Noblex owners as "very, very sharp."

    Sandy

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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb View Post
    The 35mm models are known to be a bit touchy, but the medium format versions seem less problematic. It's very hard to find filters and closeup lenses (which are particularly important if you shoot interiors) for them, if that's important to you. I'm very happy with my Noblex 150.
    David,

    Is there a distributor in the US for filters and close-up lenses?

    BTW, the lens on the model I bought appears to have some adjustment for focus, and shift? I assumed that would be good enough for interior work. I gather that some of the models have a fixed focus lens?

    Sandy King
    Last edited by sanking; 03-04-2010 at 06:10 PM. Click to view previous post history.

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    I have a previous model with a fixed focus (Docter Optics) lens. The camera has always worked flawlessly and the lens is incredibly sharp and wonderful. I too would be interested in filters, etc.
    ___________________________________________

    Richard Wasserman

    http://www.richardwasserman.net

  7. #7
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Distribution has become difficult since KWD has been having financial difficulties, so I don't think there is a current US distributor that can get things reliably for Noblex, and same for Robert White, which used to be a Noblex distributor. Calumet and Photo Habitat were Noblex dealers, so they may have a few odd items. RTS was the US distributor, but I gather that RTS has dropped them. I've been scavenging Noblex filters on eBay. There's a #11 filter on eBay right now, if that's one you are looking for.

    Mine, which belonged to Ted Harris, has three focus positions, so I've calculated DOF charts for the lens and for the two closeup lenses (which can't be used together easily), and I bought a tape measure that I've marked with the optimal focus distances for all three positions with the main lens alone and with each of the close up lenses. I've attached a table that I have taped to the back of the camera with the DOF chart for the main lens in the three focus positions and the optimal focus positions for the main lens and the two closeups.

    Recently someone was selling lots of filters and closeup lenses for Noblex on eBay, and they had +1, +2, and +3 diopters, which must have been special order or custom items. I think it would be very difficult to work with those lenses, because of the short DOF and the necessity of having semi-circular compositions for the whole panoramic subject to fall within the DOF range.

    It makes astonishingly sharp images. Because of the swing lens design, sharpness doesn't decline at the extreme ends of the image, so it doesn't go soft where you would expect it to.

    Here are a couple of Noblex shots I posted to flickr--

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidag...b/tags/noblex/
    Attached Files
    Last edited by David A. Goldfarb; 03-04-2010 at 09:35 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb View Post
    I've been scavenging Noblex filters on eBay. There's a #11 filter on eBay right now, if that's one you are looking for.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidag...b/tags/noblex/
    Thanks for the note about the #11 filter on ebay. That is the filter I most use with B&W so I bought it, even though the price seemed pretty high.

    Sandy King

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    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Actually, that's a good price. Photo Habitat had a couple when I checked a while back for $40 each (you might call them and check), and those were imported when the dollar was stronger against the Euro. They were predicting that they would be $50 or $60, if they could get them again. If you can find the closeup filters or the ND grads, they tend to be around $90-100 a piece.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  10. #10
    luxikon's Avatar
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    Quote: BTW, the lens on the model I bought appears to have some adjustment for focus, and shift? I assumed that would be good enough for interior work. I gather that some of the models have a fixed focus lens?

    There's a handbook (in German) here: www.kwdo.de/download/noblex_150_175dt_96.pdf

    Klaus

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