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Thread: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

  1. #11

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    IC I've bought two 240 Rodagons for under $100 ea! Kind of hard to pass up at that price

  2. #12

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by interneg View Post
    The usual Rodagons etc state '2-8x' and optimise at 4x, but I'd prefer to find something that optimises at closer to 2-2.5x with a range of good performance from 1-4x - unlikely to find myself needing/ wanting to wet print bigger than 4x off 8x10.
    As mentioned, one approach to consider is a taking lens designed for that magnification -- such as a "process" or "macro" lens. For example, the Fujinon A 300mm f9 is optimized for 1:1 but works great away of that -- PLUS you get a great macro taking lens! I've used my Fujinon A 180mm f8 on my enlargers a few times with great results.

  3. #13

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Nikon rates their 240mm f5.6 and 300mm f5.6 at 1X - 8X, with the optimum at 4X. My 270mm G-Claron f9 (in shutter) might perform better at 1X, but at almost a stop and a half slower I might lose that in focus issues. I chose to put a 240mm EL-Nikkor on my modified Beseler 45M, and it seems to meet my needs at 2X. In my case a 300mm was out of contention - I could not make the mechanics of the adaption reversible with the necessary lens and negative stage positions required by a 300mm.

  4. #14

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by ic-racer View Post
    For example I mounted this free Eskofot 305mm process lens with the intention of using it for small reproduction ratio 8x10 enlargements. However, after seeing no difference in the prints I now use the Rodagon Enlarging lens for just about everything.
    This is kind of what I have increasingly been suspecting - that the difference is really vanishingly small!

    Quote Originally Posted by xkaes View Post
    As mentioned, one approach to consider is a taking lens designed for that magnification -- such as a "process" or "macro" lens. For example, the Fujinon A 300mm f9 is optimized for 1:1 but works great away of that -- PLUS you get a great macro taking lens! I've used my Fujinon A 180mm f8 on my enlargers a few times with great results.
    Having been thinking about getting a couple of Fujinon A-series lenses for taking purposes, I'd quite forgotten about the fact that they were corrected for that magnification range - thanks for reminding me!

    Was also looking at the Nikkor AM ED 210mm - I recall someone on here (Sal?) was using the 120mm version for sub 2x enlargement off 4x5, but I suspect that for 8x10 a Fujinon-A is likely to be a better idea, at least in terms of coverage etc.

  5. #15
    Hack Pawlowski6132's Avatar
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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Why would you enlarge to 1x? Seems stupid. Why not contract print????

    Also, when you guys are all talking about better, best, etc. What are you talking about?????

  6. #16

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by Graham Patterson View Post
    Nikon rates their 240mm f5.6 and 300mm f5.6 at 1X - 8X, with the optimum at 4X...
    Correct for the 240mm, wrong for the 300mm.

    Per Nikon's specification, the 300mm El-Nikkor is usable from 1X to 8X, but its "Standard magnification" is 2X.

    For the OP's situation, I'd suggest first trying a 305mm f/9 Apo Nikkor. Reasonably available, not expensive. A good friend of mine, whose skill and perception are outstanding, and who has 16x20 prints from 8x10 negatives in museums, purchased both that lens and a 300mm f/5.6 El Nikkor, then made prints using both. He was unable to see any difference in the finished product, and returned the El Nikkor. Ansel Adams also used that Apo Nikkor on his horizontal enlarger.

  7. #17

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by interneg View Post
    ...Having been thinking about getting a couple of Fujinon A-series lenses for taking purposes, I'd quite forgotten about the fact that they were corrected for that magnification range...
    The Fujinon A-series were reportedly corrected for 1:5, so perhaps not optimum for what you intend.

    Quote Originally Posted by interneg View Post
    ...Was also looking at the Nikkor AM ED 210mm - I recall someone on here (Sal?) was using the 120mm version for sub 2x enlargement off 4x5, but I suspect that for 8x10 a Fujinon-A is likely to be a better idea, at least in terms of coverage etc.
    Yes, that was me. Nikon's specification for the 120mm at 1:1 and an f/22 aperture was coverage of 250mm. That trails off rapidly with increasing magnification in enlarging applications; even 1.75X taxes it to the limit. I'd not go much beyond 1.5X from 4x5 negatives.

    The 210mm is specified to cover 400mm at 1:1 and an aperture of f/22. Thought of proportionally to my 4x5 experience with the 120, it would not likely be usable for much above 1.25X from 8x10 negatives.

  8. #18

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pawlowski6132 View Post
    Why would you enlarge to 1x? Seems stupid. Why not contract print????...
    Yeah, really stupid. Why don't you let Alan Ross know what an idiot he is for doing that when making the Ansel Adams Yosemite Special Edition prints from 8x10 negatives. He'll likely be thrilled to learn from you.

  9. #19

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sal Santamaura View Post
    The Fujinon A-series were reportedly corrected for 1:5, so perhaps not optimum for what you intend.
    The Fujinon literature that I have says the A series is optimized for 1:1 to 1:5.

    I use my 180mm f9 from infinity to 1:1. Closer than that, I switch to a 100mm f4 Minolta due to my 360mm bellows limitation.

    But, from my experience, it makes a great enlarging lens. Talk about all purpose. In one lens, I get a great distance lens, a great macro lens and a great enlarging lens. Three birds with one stone.

  10. #20

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    Re: Best lenses for 1-4x enlargement off 8x10?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sal Santamaura View Post
    The Fujinon A-series were reportedly corrected for 1:5, so perhaps not optimum for what you intend.

    Yes, that was me. Nikon's specification for the 120mm at 1:1 and an f/22 aperture was coverage of 250mm. That trails off rapidly with increasing magnification in enlarging applications; even 1.75X taxes it to the limit. I'd not go much beyond 1.5X from 4x5 negatives.

    The 210mm is specified to cover 400mm at 1:1 and an aperture of f/22. Thought of proportionally to my 4x5 experience with the 120, it would not likely be usable for much above 1.25X from 8x10 negatives.
    Cheers Sal, that's incredibly helpful - helps to eliminate a couple of possibilities before I got too bogged down!

    Probably going to see if the 300mm EL-Nikkor will fit a DeVere 5108 lens board without custom machining (why are the 150mm & up Nikkors so much fatter than their Schneider or Rodenstock competitors?) & if not, probably look into getting a 360mm Rodagon, which is 2.5x optimised.

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