Quote Originally Posted by Steve Hamley View Post
I'd have to add that Michael's optical physicist is ... sort of right. That's the problem when dealing with physicists and engineers, you only get a technical opinion. I feel safe saying that since I do have a degree in physics.

So let's have the optical physicist tackle all the criteria for which the Dagor is desirable, and not just the optimum optical performance. Here's what I'd ask the optical engineer to design:

It has to have the the same, or better, circle of illumination to 5 lpm (coverage) as the Dagor

It has to have the same, or better, circle of sharp coverage as the Dagor

It can't weigh any more than the Dagor

It can't cost any more than the comparable plasmat that replaced it.

I'd be interested if such a lens is possible. And it might very well be possible. I've always maintained that if Schneider made the Super Symmar XL series at f:6.8 to f:11 in more focal lengths (like the Dagor), there wouldn't be any discussion at all about Dagors, they'd all be sold.

Cheers, Steve
I asked precisely the same questions that you posed Steve to my lens design expert a while back. You can get to these criteria with a lens design program and then you come full circle to the realities of this situation. Because of fixed set up costs and volume purchasing requirements necessary to obtain decent pricing you need to be able to sell hundreds of these lenses to attain an affordable price point inclusive of your margin for the average LF/ULF photographer. If you get realistic about the number that you can sell (or your project risk tolerance) which is a far lower number you find that the need to make sure that it is truly an exceptional optic that you produce because your sales price needs to increase due to the smaller lot produced. Then at some point you realize that the market for these products is only so big and already seasoned with old Artars. Ronars, Dagors, Protars and a wide range of other repro lenses that find their way to the lensboard of a LF/ULF camera. Add a poor economy to the mix and it becomes even more unlikely that it could be done. I agree with you about the Super Symmar lens series. Lets start a petition for Schneider to do this?