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Thread: Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

  1. #1

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Out of the Nikkor T, are they any lightweight and affordable lenses (around two pounds 1Kg) in the 900 - 1000 - 1200 range (I have 600)? The process lenses like the Ronars in that size are usually made for ultra large format and are therefore huge. Or maybe a convertible? I reckon that a lens that long is not the most commonly used, but could be worth too shoot on a larger chrome what would otherwise be shot on rollfilm. Now, don't ask me how I would extend my camera to that length! I still have to think about it ;-)

  2. #2

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    You could try the Fujinon-T 600mm-it's a telephoto so will need less bellows. Also Artars spring to mind.

  3. #3

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Already had one. Have now the C, much better. Next step should be at least 900mm. Thanks¨!

  4. #4
    the Docter is in Arne Croell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Huntsville, AL

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Paul, with that weight requirement of just 1 kg, there is not much left. Maybe you could try to use one half of a 480mm Plasmat (Symmar S, Sironar; there was no 480mm in the older convertible Symmar line) and see what focal length and quality you can get?

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jun 2002

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Not having a rig that could handle such a beast, let me indulge in an academic question: Could you really use such a long lens to practical advantage? I could see using twin heavy duty tripods with a reinforced geared monorail and a modern long lens, but you might also have to build a wind screen and sandbag the whole contraption. I think that trying to use a "normal" camera in the field might make the whole venture a wash compared to cropping an image shot with a good 600mm lens. But I really don't know for sure - does anyone have real experience?

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Massachusetts USA

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Paul - Could you share a link to any of the images taken with the Fujinon 600T or C ? I'd also like to hear about the difference in image quality, if no photos are available. I have read that there is an upper limit to resolution for longer lenses, and the published test results I have read seem to bear this out.

    Another option would be to get a longer lens (or a telescope) for 35mm or Medium Format, take multiple images, and stitch them together digitally. For landscapes, this might be possible, since many of the subjects do not move, except for clouds.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Mar 1999

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    I use a 30" Artar on my 8x10. It can get tricky in windy conditions and is perhaps best used with a monopod supporting the front. I don't know if the 4x5s, which are smaller, are upto the task. One option might be to use an 8x10 camera with a 4x5 reducing back. I know there are 35" Artars and even longer, though they are pretty rare. Artars are probably the smallest and lightest of the process lenses but even they might be overly heavy on a 4x5. You could try using the single element of the long Protar VIIs but the bellows demands get really high with these when they are used behind the stop as intended. If you are looking at a 900mm or 1200mm, that is about 36"-48" of bellows extension at infinity. There aren't too many 8x10s that can handle that kind of extension, and no 4x5s. So that pretty much limits you to telephoto models like the Nikkor. I'm not a big fan of tele designs but there were some earlier lenses that were also tele lenses - I seem to recall B&L having some really long ones, maybe some aeriel type lenses, maybe Dallmeyer who was supposed to be quite into teles. If nothing else works, maybe using the Dallmeyer Adon, which is a sort of Galilean telescope that can be used on its own or in front of another lens, miht be the way to go. I've used the Adon on its own and its pre-anastigmat performance is pretty evident but maybe it will make out OK at doubling the focal length of a good anastigmat design. Good luck, DJ

  8. #8

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Cropping a shot taken with a good 600 is probably what reason would tell. Maybe there is some irrationality in my move. I know none of you are and I admit that I am sometimes a gear freak and I like experimenting, it's just part of me! Has anyone ever tried to take apart a Tele-Xenar? I have a 500, maybe it would produce a soft 900 with lots of chromatic aberration? Of course the best would be a small process lens like an Artar 960mm f16 weighing only 800g! Maybe they will make one for me... Oh well, the more I think about it, the more I think the solution is in cropping a sharp shot taken with the 600C! Bear with me!

  9. #9

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    Ken, I could compare images taken with the 600T (Fuji) to a same size crop of a shot taken with the 450C. The 600C however is a very sharp lens just as are the 300 and 450. There is no point linking you to a web JPG, but I can send you a crop of the scan. I noticed with the 600T that is was reasonably sharp at f16, but beyond, degradation occured quickly and it was quite soft at f32.

  10. #10
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Honolulu, Hawai'i

    Leightweight long lens over 600 for 4x5 / 5x7 suggestions?

    I have seen one of those "Big Bertha" type cameras--a Graflex SLR with a 35" or longer lens for sports photography on a long rigid extension tube with something underneath to support it. I think this arrangement functioned with a single tripod, so it's possible, though I'm exactly sure it's desirable.

    What about negative diopter lenses or tele-adapters, perhaps designed for some other purpose?

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