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Thread: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

  1. #21
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon - HP Marketing View Post
    Since we were the last distributor of Zeiss and Voigtlander lenses as Zeiss Ikon Voigtlander USA (up to 1979) I can tell you that both Rodenstock and Schneider were very strong in the US market well before we stopped offering the Zeiss and Voigtlander lenses. Zeiss lost their headway it seems when they lost major market share VS Leica and Nikon in the 35mm market. Voigtlander bounced around after their name was sold in the 70's Rollei and currently to the Ring Photo camera store group.
    I think you're right and I guess I was also thinking of the broader scenario, by the time I became seriously interested and involved in photography in the late 1960's both Zeiss and Voigtlander were spent forces in terms of camera production and when I bought my first LF camera in 1976 Schneider was predominant in the UK, but Rodenstock had a good reputation.

    LF is on a limb, it's always been a small niche market and look how long it took Schneider to sell off (and assemble) their last production run of Xenar lenses, a few years.

    Ian

  2. #22
    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Leigh View Post
    If it is in fact whiter, then it's a better white. Why not call it such?

    - Leigh
    Because iconic and being a good lens are different things.
    Chris

    Quote Originally Posted by Pawlowski6132 View Post
    Grow a pair and go shoot.

  3. #23
    Abuser of God's Sunlight
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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    All these companies have evolved ... their historical relationships don't necessarily reflect their current ones. In the early years, Schneider was known mostly for cheaper Zeiss knockoffs. In more recent decades, they generally outperformed and out-innovated zeiss in the medium format market where they competed.

    Schneider seems to have innovated the most in the large format space in the last decades. Rodenstock has arguably been the most innovative in the medium format digital space (they're the only ones with top performing retrofocus wide angle lenses).

    Now Schneider and Zeiss are going head to head again in the high-end small format market. I wish Rodenstock would join that party. It seems their wide angle designs would be perfect to convert into tilt/shift optics for 35mm.

  4. #24

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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by paulr View Post
    All these companies have evolved ... their historical relationships don't necessarily reflect their current ones. In the early years, Schneider was known mostly for cheaper Zeiss knockoffs. In more recent decades, they generally outperformed and out-innovated zeiss in the medium format market where they competed.

    Schneider seems to have innovated the most in the large format space in the last decades. Rodenstock has arguably been the most innovative in the medium format digital space (they're the only ones with top performing retrofocus wide angle lenses).

    Now Schneider and Zeiss are going head to head again in the high-end small format market. I wish Rodenstock would join that party. It seems their wide angle designs would be perfect to convert into tilt/shift optics for 35mm.
    A few years ago at Photokina and at PMA Rodenstock showed three lenses for SLR cameras including tilt shift. However they would have been too expensive and were shelved. We did show them to a few dealers in the USA after the PMA show but that was the extent of it.

  5. #25
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by paulr View Post
    All these companies have evolved ... their historical relationships don't necessarily reflect their current ones. In the early years, Schneider was known mostly for cheaper Zeiss knockoffs.
    It's unfair to tar Schneider with that brush.

    Aside from the Xenar they designed their own lenses. Almost all companies made Cooke Triplet and Tessar clones, that's what camera manufacturers/customers wanted to buy, look how many companies made Tessar & other Zeiss lenses under licence before WWI.

    WWI seemed to mean they stopped paying Zeiss royalties, so a Bausch & Lomb Teesar became a Kodak Anastigmat (when sold by Kodak)

    Ian

  6. #26

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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    No one's ever asked me if any of my photographs were made with an 'iconic' lens. Wait, that's not true, a Leica nut once asked me if a certain (35mm) shot was made with a German or Canadian Summicron. The few Rodenstock lenses I have used always performed impeccably. Mostly enlarging lenses, but a Sinaron-branded 210 did stand out.

  7. #27

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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Could it be that the main question here is how to define an "iconic lens"? Do you go by how popular it is now or in it's day, by unique design or innovative (breakthrough) new construction, by special characteristics or unsurpassed quality? Does this lens need to have a fan club?
    c&c always welcome!

    "The world just does not fit conveniently into the format of a 35mm camera." (W. Eugene Smith)


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  8. #28

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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Sampson View Post
    No one's ever asked me if any of my photographs were made with an 'iconic' lens. Wait, that's not true, a Leica nut once asked me if a certain (35mm) shot was made with a German or Canadian Summicron. The few Rodenstock lenses I have used always performed impeccably. Mostly enlarging lenses, but a Sinaron-branded 210 did stand out.
    Just to preempt this thread from going the wrong way, allow me to re-remind everyone something I said in my original post:

    Quote Originally Posted by genotypewriter View Post
    I'm also not saying that every lens manufacturer must have some really special lens... but this is about Rodenstock in particular.
    I'm just trying to understand the company. Not whether people can make good photos with Rodenstock lenses or not, etc. I mean, people make great photos even without using lenses too don't they

  9. #29

    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    To get back to the OP's original question, like Ian I have an old 150mm Eurynar f/3.5 that is quite a good lens. It is uncoated, but I hesitate to think how good it would be if it was coated. The only problem with it now is that it is a little low in contrast due to all of the air/glass surfaces. I would love to get it coated, although I think that boat has sailed since I can't find anyone who will coat it for a non exorbitant price since the Russian coater doesn't do it anymore. Olé has one that is coated I believe and has said it is pretty amazing in that state.

  10. #30
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Rodenstock's iconic lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by patrickjames View Post
    To get back to the OP's original question, like Ian I have an old 150mm Eurynar f/3.5 that is quite a good lens. It is uncoated, but I hesitate to think how good it would be if it was coated. The only problem with it now is that it is a little low in contrast due to all of the air/glass surfaces. I would love to get it coated, although I think that boat has sailed since I can't find anyone who will coat it for a non exorbitant price since the Russian coater doesn't do it anymore. Olé has one that is coated I believe and has said it is pretty amazing in that state.
    I had planned to get my Eurynar coated and had a quote from an Australian company, the cost wasn't bad but the coatings aren't as hard as multi-coating so you'd need to use a filter to protect the front element. Mick Fagan posted the name of the company I think on APUG.

    There was a company in the UK Balham Optical who were re-polishing & coating lenses but went bust about 2 years ago. I use a company to re-silver front surface mirrors, Vacuum Coatings Ltd, I know they do all sorts of coating so it's worth asking them. Their mirrors are superband they do anti-reflective coatings. You'd need to send the lens elements as they aren't optical specialists. I only found this company last year after I'd decided against having my Eurynar coated - I found a MC lens for the prohect.

    Ian

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