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best enlarger lens ever
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 7:04 pm    Post subject: best enlarger lens ever Reply with quote

some say, the Zeiss S-Orthoplanar 4/60mm, here Click here to see on Ebay with a M42
focusing mount ... well a bit overpriced.

Data is here on my site: http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=78


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Enlarger ? or repro lens ?
(I must say that I look at the photocopiers of the office with a different glance... Laughing )


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was originally made for highest reproduction on microfilm and for re-enlarging those back - so actually for both. later people foudn out that it makes an excellent (if not the best) enlarger lens for their work. And of course it also works as a quite nice lens for macro photography (what I use it for). I even have one built into a double focusing helicoid for that purpose:
http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=43


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
It was originally made for highest reproduction on microfilm and for re-enlarging those back - so actually for both. later people foudn out that it makes an excellent (if not the best) enlarger lens for their work. And of course it also works as a quite nice lens for macro photography (what I use it for). I even have one built into a double focusing helicoid for that purpose:
http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=43


The double focusing helicoid is brilliant, why don't we see that more often?


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice.
I tried to get one of these Macro Quinar too, but prices flew aways, now.
(I must add that I'm surprised by the prices paid by some forum members lately...)


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fuzzywuzzy wrote:
kds315* wrote:
It was originally made for highest reproduction on microfilm and for re-enlarging those back - so actually for both. later people foudn out that it makes an excellent (if not the best) enlarger lens for their work. And of course it also works as a quite nice lens for macro photography (what I use it for). I even have one built into a double focusing helicoid for that purpose:
http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=43


The double focusing helicoid is brilliant, why don't we see that more often?


Because it is a sacrifice to slaugther a Steinheil Macro Quinar for that!!


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:30 pm    Post subject: Re: best enlarger lens ever Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
some say, the Zeiss S-Orthoplanar 4/60mm, here Click here to see on Ebay with a M42
focusing mount ... well a bit overpriced.

Data is here on my site: http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=78


For 35mm film, the Leitz Focotar-2 50mm f/4.5, introduced about 1977 or so. Optimum aperture is about f/6. Smaller apertures show diffraction effects under an enlarging scope.


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
fuzzywuzzy wrote:
The double focusing helicoid is brilliant, why don't we see that more often?


Because it is a sacrifice to slaugther a Steinheil Macro Quinar for that!!


Ouch! My condolences Wink

I mean why didn't more manufacturers use that mechanism, it seems so perfect.


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought mine like this, just to make things clear!

There are others using double helicoids, but very rare.


PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2012 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
I bought mine like this, just to make things clear!

There are others using double helicoids, but very rare.

Just stack two helicoids together and we will have a double helicoid though it is not as cool as the helicoid from Quinar. Wink


PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool stuff, thanks for sharing, it's given me some new ideas for an enlarger/macro project that I've been working on.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2012 1:56 am    Post subject: Re: best enlarger lens ever Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
some say, the Zeiss S-Orthoplanar 4/60mm, here Click here to see on Ebay with a M42
focusing mount ... well a bit overpriced.

Data is here on my site: http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=78


It cannot beat the Focotar-2, I bet.


PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2012 7:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

readers prefer experiences here, not assumptions Wink


PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2012 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
readers prefer experiences here, not assumptions Wink


The Leitz Focotar-2 50mm f/4.5 is the best enlarging lens ever made. There, I said it. The tonal qualities are just unbelievable.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 105mm Apo-EL Nikkor is no slouch either...


Picture Credit: The Online Photographer

Cheers!

Abbazz


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it even possible to determine which lens of this "1000$ and more"-class is the best without good scientific methods?

Is there a difference visible by amateurs between a 3000$ enlarging lens and a 50-150$ enlarging lens for enlargements of normal film?
For macro work and reprodcution ok, there will be a visible differnce. But for normal enlargements? Will it make a picture any better?

Bye the way, I heard that the Schneider Kreuznach Makro-Symmar is also such a high quality and high resolution beast.


Last edited by ForenSeil on Tue Feb 05, 2013 3:22 pm; edited 3 times in total


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ForenSeil wrote:
Is there a difference visible by amateurs between a 3000$ enlarging lens and a 50-150$ enlarging lens for enlargements of normal film?

For macro work and reprodcution ok, there will be a visible differnce. But for normal enlargements? Will it make a picture any better?


Yes. The Focotar-2 sells for about $500 when you can find one. It visibly out-performed every other enlarging lens I tried (not the APO repro types, however, which aren't necessarily better for enlarging).

Here's one:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Leitz-Leica-Focotar-2-4-5-50mm-enlarging-lens-Super-Sharp-Rare-MINT-/250974057653?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item3a6f3834b5


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would love to see a comparision print between Focotar-2 or a S-Orthoplanar etc. with a cheap Componon-S etc. on a A4 print.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ForenSeil wrote:
I would love to see a comparision print between Focotar-2 or a S-Orthoplanar etc. with a cheap Componon-S etc. on a A4 print.


The tonal qualities, for want of a better term, are what impressed me most about the Focotar-2. What a lot of people don't understand is that an 'APO' designation is not necessarily the best lens. I learned that the hard way with the 180mm APO-Telyt f/3.4.

An APO designation means only one thing, and does not necessarily imply overall superior quality.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FluffPuppy wrote:
kds315* wrote:
readers prefer experiences here, not assumptions Wink


The Leitz Focotar-2 50mm f/4.5 is the best enlarging lens ever made. There, I said it. The tonal qualities are just unbelievable.
that sounds interesting, can you post some test or comparison?


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FluffPuppy wrote:
ForenSeil wrote:
I would love to see a comparision print between Focotar-2 or a S-Orthoplanar etc. with a cheap Componon-S etc. on a A4 print.


The tonal qualities, for want of a better term, are what impressed me most about the Focotar-2. What a lot of people don't understand is that an 'APO' designation is not necessarily the best lens. I learned that the hard way with the 180mm APO-Telyt f/3.4.

An APO designation means only one thing, and does not necessarily imply overall superior quality.

Yes
Many APO lenses (esp. real apo lenses, for example many microscope lenses) often have much lower contrast than their achromatic counterparts as they have more corrective elements. But what has this to do with the topic?


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ForenSeil wrote:
FluffPuppy wrote:
ForenSeil wrote:
I would love to see a comparision print between Focotar-2 or a S-Orthoplanar etc. with a cheap Componon-S etc. on a A4 print.


The tonal qualities, for want of a better term, are what impressed me most about the Focotar-2. What a lot of people don't understand is that an 'APO' designation is not necessarily the best lens. I learned that the hard way with the 180mm APO-Telyt f/3.4.

An APO designation means only one thing, and does not necessarily imply overall superior quality.

Yes
Many APO lenses (esp. real apo lenses, for example many microscope lenses) often have much lower contrast than their achromatic counterparts as they have more corrective elements. But what has this to do with the topic?


Just everything! LOL I am saying the Focotar-2 is a splendid enlarging lens, but is not APO corrected, and probably because it is not so corrected.

The topic is 'best enlarging lens', is it not? Well, the best one I know of the Focotar-2. I own one, and I did test several others (Schneider, Rodestockt, etc.) at the time I purchased it. It was notably superior to the EL-Nikkor 50mm f/2.8 I had been using.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

berraneck wrote:
FluffPuppy wrote:
kds315* wrote:
readers prefer experiences here, not assumptions Wink


The Leitz Focotar-2 50mm f/4.5 is the best enlarging lens ever made. There, I said it. The tonal qualities are just unbelievable.
that sounds interesting, can you post some test or comparison?


I did the test in 1977 or so, and it was not really close. I compared 4 or 5 premium enlarging lenses from Nikon, Leica, Rodenstock, Schneider, etc. The Focotar-2 was clearly the best. It is next to impossible, though, to show this in scanned images. Too much is lost in scanning.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:22 pm    Post subject: Re: best enlarger lens ever Reply with quote

kds315* wrote:
some say, the Zeiss S-Orthoplanar 4/60mm, here Click here to see on Ebay with a M42
focusing mount ... well a bit overpriced.

Data is here on my site: http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail.php?ObjektiveNr=78


I doubt it very much, in fact I am going to say no it isn't.


PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Without clear comparisons, lets stay away from absolutes.