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  1. #1

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    240mm Heliar or 250mm W.F. Ektar

    I am somewhat new to 8X10, but have shot 4x5 for years. I have always used modern lenses though.

    When I got the 8x10 I decided I wanted to shoot B&W exclusively and use older lenses. I fell inlove with the look of Ektar lenses and TriX film.

    So I have a 14" ektar that I like very much. And I wanted to get a 10" lens for the camera.

    How would anyone compare a Voightlander Heliar 240mm f4.5 and a 10" Wide Field Ektar?

    Any Ideas would be VERY HELPFUL.

    Thank You.

    Corey

  2. #2
    JG Motamedi's Avatar
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    How would anyone compare a Voightlander Heliar 240mm f4.5 and a 10" Wide Field Ektar?
    Apples and Oranges. The WF Ektar should make a nice medium wide with lots of movements. It is a well thought of lens, although I have have heard some complaints about how it renders out of focus areas.

    The 24cm Heliar won't cover 8x10. The Heliar is normally used as a portrait lens, although many use them for field work. While they are not by any means soft-focus, they are not really "hard" focus either. I love my Heliar, but coverage is limited. You would probably need a 36cm Heliar for 8x10, although I think a 30cm will just cover.

  3. #3
    jimgalli's Avatar
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    Correct, a 12" Heliar will just squeak around 810 but I don't find them useable. A grand lens for what you're looking for would be a Bausch & Lomb Protar VII with 13 3/4" and 16 1/8" cells. Combined they make an 8 1/2" lens. 2-16 1/8" cells make a 9 1/4" lens. They have a lovely combination of sharpness and contrast that many folks find just perfect for B&W work. And of course they're convertibles. Another good old standard is the 240mm 9 1/2" Dagor. I've got one I could probably be talked out of as it isn't getting used enough.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

    http://tonopahpictures.0catch.com

  4. #4

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    The reason I ask is that I saw this ebay auction :

    look here

    I emailed the person to question what sort of coverage it had and they told me that it would cover an area about twice the area of 8x10....??

    I asked about the age and he didn't know, so I asked for a serial # and he told me he couldn't find one on the lens.

    What do you think?

  5. #5

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    Oh, I should also thank you for your responses!

    Corey

  6. #6
    jimgalli's Avatar
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    Wow that is a pretty old lens but there's no way it covers 8X10. They're 5X7 lenses.
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep..to gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

    http://tonopahpictures.0catch.com

  7. #7
    MattCarey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimgalli
    Correct, a 12" Heliar will just squeak around 810 but I don't find them useable.
    What do you not like about the 12" heliar?

    Matt
    Last edited by MattCarey; 06-26-2005 at 06:09 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #8
    BradS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattCarey
    Quote Originally Posted by jimgalli
    Correct, a 12" Heliar will just squeak around 810 but I don't find them useable.
    What do you not like about the 12" heliar?

    Matt
    I think he means they're not useable for 8x10...because the coverage is marginal at best.

  9. #9
    Mongo's Avatar
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    I have a Fujinon 250mm f/6.3 that has coverage similar to the Heliar. You can get images on an 8x10 negative with it, but you will run into frustration immediately the first time you try to use movements. You'll be limited to back tilt, with no rise or shift at all.

    Lenses like this are great portrait lenses for 4x5 and 5x7, but the only reason to use them on 8x10 is if you already own the lens for a smaller format and you're either doing close-up work or you've not yet picked up a more suitable lens. I definately would skip the Heliar if you're looking for a slightly wide lens for 8x10.

    Depending on your subject, the best deals going might be for old process lenses. Many of these have huge coverage, low cost, and high sharpness, but you don't get a shutter with them. If you're shooting at 1 second or longer, you just use the lens cap. Mounting the lenses into shutters is usually - although not always - too expensive to justify.

    The WF Ektar is a nice lens; the large image circle makes it a joy for 8x10 work. As JG mentions not everyone is happy with how the lens handles out of focus areas, but I've never found it to be bad to the point of distraction.
    Film is cheap. Opportunities are priceless.

  10. #10
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Process lenses, though, often have a relatively small image circle at infinity. I prefer them at the long end.

    The 10" WF Ektar has a huge image circle--larger than most contemporary lenses of around 250mm--so it's a nice lens to have in the kit. The large circle, the design of the lens, and single coating make it less contrasty than a modern lens, so a compendium shade helps if you have one. I usually use this lens for landscapes and architecturals with everything in focus, so the out-of-focus areas aren't a problem for me. My latest discovery that came with another camera I purchased has been a 4" gel holder that fits the Ektar and looks like it was made for it (the metal has the same finish).
    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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