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Thread: Newbie question

  1. #1

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    Newbie question

    I just picked up a Wisner 4x5 technical. I am wondering what lens to pick up on a limited budget. In other words, what is the best bang for my buck say around $200? Is that even possible? I would like to get something right away to start shooting and then save up later for a more advanced lens.

    Thanks,

    Ari

  2. #2
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie question

    Ari, look for a 150mm Tessar, or a Paragon, both should cost you less than $200 and are good performers.

    You might be lucky and find an early Symmar or Sironar, for that price.

    Ian

  3. #3
    IanG's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie question

    Ari, I should have also said the 135mm Tessar, another option is a Xenar. You could try posting a wanted add on this forum.

    I use a 135mm Tessar on a Crown Graphic and it's almost as good as my modern Sironar's

    Ian

  4. #4
    MIke Sherck's Avatar
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    Re: Newbie question

    If you're willing to shop on E-bay, for $200 or less you can get a very nice Fuji 150mm f/6.3, and I've recenly seen 210mm lenses go for that as well. You ought to be able to get a Caltar 90mm, or perhaps a Schneider Angulon or (preferably) maybe even an older super-Angulon. Patience, but good deals do come along fairly regularly it seems.

    Mike
    Politically, aerodynamically, and fashionably incorrect.

  5. #5

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    Re: Newbie question

    I had a Rodenstock 150mm Geronar that was a great lens. Tack sharp when stopped down and enough movement capability. They come up fairly often and are inexpensive. I sold it to obtain a newer whizbang super zappem state of the art 150mm and quite frankly can't tell the difference in the prints.
    *************************
    Eric Rose
    www.ericrose.com
    yourbaddog.com

    I don't play the piano, I don't have a beard and I listen to AC/DC in the darkroom. I have no hope as a photographer.

  6. #6

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    Re: Newbie question

    Since you are new to lf may I suggest some reading

    the archives on this forum
    one of these books

    Using the View Camera, User's Guide to the View Camera, or Large format Nature Photography

    I can't tell where you live but come to foto3 if you can

    www.foto3-2008.info

    and you will meet a lot of other lf photographers and see a lot of equipment

    also, the Free Articles section of the View Camera web site

    www.viewcamera.com


    As for a first lens, well here is my usual advice

    take your favorite 35mm lens and multiply it's focal length by 3 to get the 4x5 equivilent.


    steve simmons


    good luck.

  7. #7

    Re: Newbie question

    Another recommendation for a Geronar. You might also look for Congo or Yamasaki lenses, though be warned that quality control has been variable on some of these. Another option is Calumet or Caltar branded large format lenses, many of which are Rodenstock. Don't limit yourself to EBAY either, you can also check KEH in Atlanta, and MPEX, who sometimes have some good deals, and a return policy.

    Ciao!

    Gordon Moat Photography

  8. #8

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    Re: Newbie question

    PM Sent :
    Lauren MacIntosh

    Whats in back of you is the past and whats in front of you is the future now in the middle you have choices to make for yourself:

  9. #9

    Re: Newbie question

    Quote Originally Posted by ajankelo View Post
    I just picked up a Wisner 4x5 technical. I am wondering what lens to pick up on a limited budget. In other words, what is the best bang for my buck say around $200? Is that even possible? I would like to get something right away to start shooting and then save up later for a more advanced lens.

    Thanks,

    Ari

    Here is a 135mm f5.6 Caltar-N being offered on eBay. Another sold for 182.50 on the 28th. That is really good value for the money. You might get a more common 150mm for a little less. I would prefer the 135mm, but either would make an excellent candidate for your requirements.

    I have both that I use in a Wisner 4x5 Technical. Both can be reversed and left in the camera when you close it and, no, I have no connection with the one being offered and I make no claims regarding it, specifically.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Caltar-II-N-f-5-...QQcmdZViewItem

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