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Thread: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

  1. #31

    Join Date
    Feb 2010

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    Re: too precious- the same can be said, and even moreso, about the recent craze over the softfocus lenses. IMNSHO, they are mostly overrated, all relatively similar, and even more ridiculous price-wise... But people still want and buy them. Who knows....

  2. #32
    Corran's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    GA, USA

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Justification and rational for a lens with f2.8 is to have that as a useful aperture. If stopping down to f4 improves the out of focus rendition, it might make more sense to consider a much lower cost f3.5 to f4.5 Xenar as these are less precious market value wise. Going up in film format size results in similar shallow depth of focus similar to a smaller film format using a lens with larger aperture.
    A run-of-the-mill Tessar is simply no substitute. I have several 150mm Tessars here, among other focal lengths, and their performance is not in the same league, not by a long shot, most especially at wider stops. And they don't open up to f/2.8 - it's as simple as that. If you need to go there, it's there. Just because you can doesn't mean you have to. As for stepping up to 8x10 and shooting a 300mm f/5.6, the difference there is that I can handhold my Technika and shoot wide-open just fine and shoot easier to manage 4x5 sheets that I can carry dozens of in the field in Grafmatics.

    It's simply a unique lens and that's all there is to it. Since they aren't sold new, the market determines their price, and so it is that they sell for so much, but let's not forget that owners of the lens didn't necessarily pay that much for it. My Linhof-Select lens with a matched cam cost me exactly $0. I happened to buy one at a good price, then found another with a large lot of Technika gear from an old pro, and resold the rest and kept one Xenotar. So it goes.

    And Ed, great point about the soft focus lenses. People want what they want and the market follows that.
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  3. #33
    Green Hand pierre506's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Suzhou, China

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is the 150mm xenotar in Photo-Sonics barrel on Graflex Speed 4x5.
    Sometimes love just ain't enough.

  4. #34

    Join Date
    Dec 2001

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    Hmm. I have a couple of normal lenses for 2x3 that are faster than f/2.8. 4"/2.0 TTH Anastigmat, made for Vinten F.95 and Williamson/AGI F. 134 and F.139 aerial cameras. 100/2.5 Uran-27, which flew on several Soviet aerial cameras. Both are bright, heavy and render out-of-focus highlights unpleasantly at large apertures. There are no substitutes when I need the speed but for most of my shooting I use smaller, lighter slower dimmer lenses.

    I used to have a 6"/1.9 Dallmeyer Super Six. I never managed to shoot it, eventually sold it. Really too heavy to carry on a Speed Graphic. Same was true of my 200/2.0 S.F.O.M. Completely unusable. Speed brings weight.

    All that said, some users value speed highly. I can't say they're wrong. Same goes for soft focus, whatever that means. Not what I like but I can't say that people who value lenses that provide it are wrong. Let them spend their money as they wish and be happy.
    Last edited by Dan Fromm; 9-Jul-2017 at 10:19. Reason: typo

  5. #35

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    One more early Xenotar 150mm F2.8 test. Shot wide-open in bright sun, two 4X-ND filters stacked, and a Sinar 104mm Dark Red Filter added also. Plaubel Makiflex 6x9 Foma rollfilm I put the two 4X ND's on so I can shoot in bright sunlight wide-open even with faster film. Also my Standard Makiflex only goes to 1/125.

    Makiflex Std 150 Xenotar 105 Red Sinar Filter + 4XND by Nokton48, on Flickr
    Last edited by Daniel Unkefer; 22-Apr-2017 at 17:43.
    - Sinar Norma User

  6. #36

    Re: Schneider 150mm f/2.8 Xenotar

    On the left, the classic 150mm F2.8 Schneider Xenotar, in Plaubel Makiflex Auto-Iris mount. I bought the original barrel-mount lens from Photo-Sonics on the big auction site. The Auto Iris mechanism came from Igor in Cleveland.

    On the right, a lens that I consider to be very similar to the Xenotar, although slightly longer and 1/2 stop slower. The modern retro Fuji GX680 180mm F3.2 lens cells, removed from the original GX680 mount, and transplanted into a modern Seiko shutter, and then onto a Plaubel Makiflex lens board. Both of these lenses were in the $400-$500 approximate price range at the time.

    The rear groups on these two lenses is very similar; I believe Fuji reworked the Xenotar into a retro modern lens. It will be interesting to do a direct comparison and compare the results. Both of these lenses have somewhat of a "cult" following. Both are superb performers wide-open. I do not stop down my Xenotar, I so far have only used it wide open. There it has a definite advantage over other lenses.

    DSC05754 by Nokton48, on Flickr

    From the internet, the 150mm F2.8 Xenotar. A lovely example
    Last edited by Daniel Unkefer; 23-Apr-2017 at 10:37.
    - Sinar Norma User

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