When I had a Focotar 2 it was better than a 40mm 2.8 Focotar and better than an f 4 Durst 50mm Componon. I found mine to work best between 5.6 to 8...which is Ornello findings also. There is no doubt, that the 50mm Focotar 2 is a lens of good quality , to my mind. As far as I know the lens has not been upgraded since it introduction.
If you use glass carriers and have a ten year old lens that is by one of the best makers you will find it to be diffraction limited at about f4. There may be higher contrast a f 5.6; However, any lens that reaches its best performance at f 6 can not out perform a lens that reaches its best performance at a wider aperture..this is not my opinion this is the laws of physics and light.
Perhaps I am incorrect. It has been years since I owned my Focotar 2 but I believe that the lens offered for sale is a Focotar (1).
As far as it being the best enlarging lens in the world baloney is concerned I believe that the 105mm Apo El Nikkor is most certainly better but problematic for making the larger sizes of enlargements is concerned for amy enlargers.
If one wants to make 15x or bigger enlargements than the best (2) lenses ever released into general commerce are the 40mm f 5.6 Zeiss S-Biogon and the 60mm S-Orthoplanar. Neither lens was sold directly as an enlargong lens. They were sold as a part of a machine for making micro film copies.
My understanding is, that back in the 70's is concerned , price of the 60mm S- Orthoplanar exceeded $20,000.00 I do not know what the price of the 40mm S-Biogon was. Approximately one year ago an 60mm S-Orthoplanar was sold on Ebay. Its price was around $2,500.00
A 100 mm was sold at that same time and it fetched approximately $6,000.00
No Ornello I was not asking you to send me anything. From other postings I came,perhaps erroneously, to the conclusion that you retain quite a file of older data. Therefore, I had hoped you had saved test prints that you could share with this forum and we to could get the 'staggers'.