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  1. #11
    Jesper's Avatar
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    210mm is a nice focal length, and slightly longer than normal (160mm would be about normal on 4x5).
    If you want a cheap start you can get an older Symmar 150/5.6 or 180/5.6.
    The older Symmar 5.6 can be used without the front element and then you get a longer focal length. The 150mm will also give you 265mm and the Symmar 180/5.6 will double as a 315mm. These lenses are cheap and easy to find. Two lenses in one.
    Since lead was banned in lenses these lenses have been recalculated and the modern version is slightly slower at 6.8 (and is not supposed to be used with only one element).

  2. #12

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    Fresnel lens for the focus screen if you don't have one. Wouldn't be without one myself. Cambo's reflex viewer is a good one - not as bulky as the Sinar and lighter and cheaper too - but 90 deg. viewing not 45.
    If you buy lens boards unseen, ask seller to measure outside dimension - I think yours needs 162mm. and I think some Cambo boards were a lot smaller.

  3. #13

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    Hi, at the moment I am just testing the 4x5 waters - as it were, and am looking at three lenses with a 'standard' focal length of 210mm. for my recently purchased CAMBO CALUMET 45 SCX camera.

    The three lenses are: Caltar ll-N MC 210mm. F/5.6 Rodenstock
    Fuji Fujinon 210mm. F/5.6
    Nikon Nikkor-W 210mm. F/5.6

    All three lenses have a Copal shutter, and all three will probably be selling in the $250 ~ $300 USD. price range. I intend to use the 4x5 format mainly indoors for still-life and table-top photography.

    My question to those in the know is this: Which one of the three above mentioned lenses is "Best"? Or to put it another way: Should I avoid any of the above three?

    Cheers,
    Deryck

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Deryck View Post
    My question to those in the know is this: Which one of the three above mentioned lenses is "Best"? Or to put it another way: Should I avoid any of the above three?
    At this level of comaparison you are essentially comparing apple-to-apple-to-apple. While there might be some minor differences (Nikon, for instance, always had a reputation of being "more contrasty") you probably won't notice it in practical applications. I'd suggest you shop for "best value". Between these three (and even if you threw a Schneider Symar-S MC into the mix) go for the best condition lens for the least amount of money. Enjoy!

  5. #15

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    With those choices, you could easily choose by condition of the shutter and glass and not be disappointed.
    The Caltars usually retail for slightly less than their Rodenstock or Schneider labeled counterparts, but performance-wise, they are equal.

  6. #16
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    A Caltar 150/5.6 would be my first choice (primarily of landscapes), but a 210mm would be also be a good working focal length. The 150/5.6 is a small light lens in a light shutter, so adding one to your kit later on won't add much weight or bulk.

    We have Caltar 180mm/5.6 lenses on our Calumet 4x5's at the university. Nice lenses, too. A nice choice if one is going for just a single lens kit, but too close to 150mm and 210mm in a multiple lens kit.

    I photograph in dark areas (under the redwoods) and I appreciate the f5.6 lenses. I have a couple f11 lenses that can be a pain to focus in low light.

    Fresnel lens -- I don't like them, but that is just me. To me they just cloud up the image. Save your money for now and perhaps take a look through someone else's camera that has one later one and see if they are for you.

    Enjoy you new camera!

    Vaughn
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  7. #17
    EASmithV's Avatar
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    Tip: When you think you have your kit complete and are ready to shoot... Shoot some paper negs. Good practice, and you can test for leaks.
    www.EASmithV.com

    "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera."— Dorothea Lange
    http://www.flickr.com/easmithv/
    RIP Kodachrome

  8. #18

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    I have a very nice specimen of a Rodenstock Geronar 210 f/6.8 that I would sell you for $165 if you want to go something a little less expensive to start.

  9. #19

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    I'm always forgetting to include bellows factor in my exposure decisions. When I DO remember I use the Photobuddy app on my iPhone to calculate exposure with bellows included. I also really like my Horseman 6x9 back.

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