View Full Version : What is the smallest two element Petzval lens?

14-Aug-2013, 13:40
Hi there,

Could you guys advise on the smallest two elements Petzval lens with swirly bokeh rendition.

links where can we purchase one or if any of you would like to sell yours are appreciated..


Thank you!

Mark Sawyer
14-Aug-2013, 13:45
Petzvals by nature have four elements in three groups; no such thing as a two-element Petzval. The smallest will probably be a cine lens for 8mm film.

14-Aug-2013, 22:29
Guys at SK Grimes advised me to search for two-element Petzval lens. Therefore, I posted here in case people knew about it.

Any particular one you recommend, cine or..?


15-Aug-2013, 05:56
As Mark Sawyer wrote: there is no such thing as 'two-element Petzval lens', however commonly they were built as two pieces screwed in each end of a barrel; both pieces actually consisted of two elements (lenses), front one cemented, rear one air spaced.

Petzval lenses were common for portrait photography in the second half of 19th century, as projecting lenses they survived a bit longer. As enlarging was very uncommon that time, the smallest photographic lenses were designed to cover carte-de-visite format, almost the same as current 6x9 and had focal length of about 150mm (6"). They usually covered actually more, almost 4x5, yet with blurred and swirly rendition - that's why we love them now.

Projecting lenses might have been smaller, depending on diapositive/film format.

Alex - what camera you want to use this lens for?

15-Aug-2013, 08:06
There is a cine Kodak lens, Ektar I think, that is a modified petzval design, and about 1 inch focal length.