I found a darkroom! Good lenses?
I've been at university for the last year and a half, but continually found myself missing my darkroom. I asked the tutors very early on if there was one, but was dissapointed to hear that it had been knocked down a few years previously.
A few days ago I went on a pointless exploration of the Art block and at the top of a flight of stairs found a single dusty room - an unused darkroom. One of the lecturers heard me cluttering about excitedly so came up and had a chat, turns out a department head wanted it rebuilt; but its had no use for the last few years.
A good old cleaning has been very worthwhile; there are five enlargers (including a few durst M605's), a long steel sink, a dry mount press (Glanvill Reid), film drying cupboard and all the usual goodies - so it looks as though I've aquired my second darkroom!
There are a number of lenses but I'm a little miffed on their qualities. An opinion on the best would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Meopta Anaret - 50mm - 4.5
Schneider - Kreuznach - 50mm - 3.5
Rodenstock - Roganor - 50mm - 2.8
Komuranon - E - 50mm - 3.5
Minolta Rokkor - 50mm - 3.5
and a single medium format lens - may bring up my Rodenstock from home:
Palar - 75mm - 3.5 (opinions on this one? - I enlarge mf mainly)
I am very excited about this. As far as I know there is just a one 'traditional' (and very busy) printer on campus, so I might start doing some small workshops. The lecturer I spoke to is certainly keen and I want to spread the analogue bug
I have personal experience with the Minolta Rokkor - great lens; and the Schneider 50mm f3.5 as an OK lens. No experience with the others.
The meopta anaret is a highly regarded lens. It was a favorate of the late great Barry Thornton who comparred it to various schneider and rodenstock lenses in his book "Edge of Darkness".
I'm not familiar with all the lenses you listed but I do have an Anaret 50mm and although a cheap lens has never let me down. I quess it would be similar in design if not identical to the Roganor on your list (both 4 element designs I think) but the later being a brighter lens at F2.8 and easier to focus. I'd go with the Anaret and compare the results with the other lenses it terms of edge sharpness and contrast.
Thanks all. The Rokkor seemed to be in the best condition so I'll start with that and try the others from there.
Originally Posted by John Simmons
John, thanks for pointing that out. I've been meaning to get hold of his book for a while now. When printing for the first time in a college darkroom a few years back, and having no experience of other lenses and enlargers, I always thought the Anaret's looked a little plasticky and cheap. Even as a complete newbie I was pleasently suprised with the results.
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