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  1. #1

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    Durst M700 - a good starter enlarger?

    Greetings!

    I have what I think is a good local deal on a used Durst M700 B&W enlarger (around US$80 for the enlarger, timer, safe light, trays, tongs, and a Nikon lens). Probably just the 35mm negative holder.

    I know very little about enlargers, and the seller seems to know even less.

    Is this a decent choice for my first enlarger, to get a taste of B&W processing? I figure that for that price I don't care too much if I'll want to get something different in a year from now. So, the only thing that I'm worried about is whether this model is quirky in some way: I don't want to be pushed away from wet printing. I tried searching the web for information, but found very little about this model.

    Any input would be highly appreciated!

    Edited to add: I'm interested in B&W printing from, for now, 35mm negatives, and my bathroom will serve as a dark room.

  2. #2
    Petzi's Avatar
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    All Durst enlargers are good. I hear that the M700 is no exception.
    If you're not taking your camera...there's no reason to travel. --APUG member bgilwee

  3. #3

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    I like Durst enlargers a lot. Functionally they are not quirky, and they are well built. In terms of parts and pieces they can be quirky in that everything has names instead of model numbers, and it can be difficult to sort out what fits what enlarger. The M700 is fairly recent though, and it sounds like you won't need to add much to it for the time being.
    Many of their negative holders are multi-format, so if you go up to medium format, you may only need a lens.

  4. #4
    Petzi's Avatar
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    The M700 was discontinued in 1979. Whether that is recent, is a matter of one's point of view.

    There is a bit of logic in the enlarger names though, the L1200 for example was called "Femo", and parts for it began their name with Femo also.
    If you're not taking your camera...there's no reason to travel. --APUG member bgilwee

  5. #5

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    Oops. I was thinking it was rather more recent than that, my mistake.

  6. #6

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    Thanks! I'm picking it up tomorrow.

    Any pointers what to check when buying it?

  7. #7
    Petzi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agenkin View Post
    Thanks! I'm picking it up tomorrow.

    Any pointers what to check when buying it?
    Make sure you get all the parts, e.g. lens plates. Also, try out the focusing and the crank for rising and dropping the head.
    If you're not taking your camera...there's no reason to travel. --APUG member bgilwee

  8. #8
    Jerevan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petzi View Post
    Make sure you get all the parts, e.g. lens plates. Also, try out the focusing and the crank for rising and dropping the head.
    I couldn't agree more! It could be really bothersome (and expensive) to find the correct lensplates (in 39 mm thread) and negative holders/inserts if something is missing. I am talking from my own experience here.
    “Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.” - Lao Tzu

  9. #9
    Christopher Nisperos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerevan View Post
    I couldn't agree more! It could be really bothersome (and expensive) to find the correct lensplates (in 39 mm thread) and negative holders/inserts if something is missing. I am talking from my own experience here.
    The M700 is a great enlarger. The lensplates are findable, but the negative masks are nearly impossible (while I have your attention, anyone know where I can get masks in 6x6, 6x7 and 6x9?

  10. #10
    clogz's Avatar
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    Try this company: http://www.northernphoto.co.uk/

    Hans
    Digital is best taken with a grain of silver.

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