View Full Version : New Schneider lenses at 2004 photokina

Arne Croell
13-Sep-2004, 13:29
There is a short press release at Schneider Kreuznachs German web site about their new products for the upcoming photokina:

<a href="http://www.schneiderkreuznach.com/photokina/news_2004_e.htm">http://www.schneiderkreuznach.com/photokina/news_2004_e.htm<a>

Two lenses for ULF users ("Fine Art XXL" 550 and 1100mm) and 2 new Apo-Digitars.

Kerry L. Thalmann
13-Sep-2004, 13:59
Wow, neat stuff for the ULF users. That 550mm f11 XXL with a 900mm image circle looks mighty impressive (it makes my 600mm Fujinon C with it's "little" 620mm image circle look puny by comparison). In the photo, it makes the Copal No. 3 shutter look tiny. Any idea what size filters it takes? Also, any idea on the pricing for these two new marvels of optical engineering?

This announcement really caught me by surprise, and I applaud Schneider for continuing to turn out new lenses for us large format shooters - and targeted at the ULF crowd, no less. Kudos to Schneider!


Ted Harris
13-Sep-2004, 14:08
Wow, indeed. I think this announcement caught a lot of people by surprise including US Schneider reps. The one that deals with my local dealer told him about the software but had no notion at all about the new lenses.

Arne Croell
13-Sep-2004, 14:11
Now idea what the filter size is - 110, 125, 135mm, estimating from the pics? 900mm image circle with a focal length of 550mm means a coverage close to 80, I wonder what construction that is (Plasmat, Super-Angulon type?). It looks close to symmetric on the pictures. No idea about the pricing, but the line "The new XXL product line is the result of exclusive, small-scale manufacturing" probably means its not cheap. With the partial brass construction they seem to follow Cooke's lead in mount design....

Kerry L. Thalmann
13-Sep-2004, 14:30
Looks like I may have to update my "Future Classics" page. Back when I first proposed a list of Future Classics on rec.photo.equipment.large-format (exactly seven years ago yesterday), I mainly focused on lenses for 4x5 (and to lesser extent, 5x7). Back then, most current lenses for 8x10 were either standard plasmats, Super Angulon clones, and the occasional Tessar and Artar type. All good lenses, but nothing spectacularly unusual. Since that time, Schneider has introduced the 210mm Super Symmar XL and now these new Fine Art XXL lenses. Cooke has re-entered the large format market with their soft focus lens and now an updated version of their classic triple convertible.

Funny how when the digital crowd is constantly pronouncing the imminent "death of film", we suddenly have more choices in large format and ULF cameras and lenses than anytime in recent memory. I have yet to see a CCD or CMOS sensor that requires a 900mm image circle - and I shudder to think what one would cost.

These new lenses from Schneider, as well as the new Cooke lenses, are bound to become collectors items highly sought after in the future.


13-Sep-2004, 15:12
At 2.35Kg it would rip the front standard of my 8x10 tachihara in to million pieces..

very impressive specs. indeed..

Ken Cravillion
13-Sep-2004, 15:18
""Every first-time buyer can have his name engraved on the nameplate ring of the elegant brass mount at no charge (later owners may also have this done at cost). ""


Doug Dolde
13-Sep-2004, 17:12
Anyone see pricing on these? I bet it's over the top.

Darin Cozine
14-Sep-2004, 01:21
I wonder if they will take my Honda as a trade-in?

Andre Noble
14-Sep-2004, 03:27
Napolean himself once said: "There's a fine line between the sublime and the ridiculous."

Paul Schilliger
14-Sep-2004, 05:48
Fantastic! Are they made as decoration items for rich collectors? Does Fine Art XXL stand for High Bucks $$$ ? That tells of where the future of large format photography stands...

The 1100mm in Copal is very dimm with f22 wide open! Ad that to the large size of the ground glass and you have an idea of how light tight the focussing cloth should be!

Ed Burlew
14-Sep-2004, 06:04
I knew I should have bought that 20x24 Wisner out of Dallas, These lenses would have been perfect for it. Oh well ce la vivre

14-Sep-2004, 08:44
"Funny how when the digital crowd is constantly pronouncing the imminent "death of film", we suddenly have more choices in large format and ULF cameras and lenses than anytime in recent memory."

It is funny how this happens. The same thing in audio ... vinyl records have been dead for twenty years now (not counting the d.j. scene) but at the moment there are more high end (and ridiculously high end) turntables available than any other time in history.

george jiri loun
14-Sep-2004, 12:52
It's not by accident that the new lenses are in a category of "the unusual". There is certainly a logical trend. The more the digital can do "the usual" (P&S photography for ex.) the more the LF will be used for what the digital photography cannot do and the more this class of lenses will find its place in the photography. Specialized cameras have a bright future before them, I believe. And so have lenses for them.

Arne Croell
14-Sep-2004, 13:56
As for the pricing of the XXL series, I assume they will sure cost several thousand $, but hopefully not "over the top". I would hope that Schneider learned a lesson with the 1st series of Apo-Tele-Xenar HM's (those with the white/grey front barrel) that were essentially priced out of the market. They corrected that mistake with the 2nd current "compact" series of Apo-Tele-Xenars.

Jan Van Hove
17-Sep-2004, 11:49
Good news for the ULFers, but of course not for those on a budget...

I'm pretty sure Schneider will go above what is reasonable for the price, they already have positionned themselves in the loxury item category with the brass finish and engravings...

If they actually sell them at human prices, this is a time to rejoice for the ULFers, I now i really have a reason to swing by the Photokina in two weeks !


Arne Croell
13-Oct-2004, 10:12
Some list price information is now given by Robert Hall in a thread on the APUG site:


In addition he has a link to a pdf of the flyer on the XXL lenses with more technical information:


The lens diagrams show both lenses to be symmetric or at least close to symmetry and based on classical designs. The 550mm XXL is a 6/2 Angulon construction with 78 coverage and the 1100mm a 4/4 dialyte with 46 coverage.

Pricewise, unfortunately Doug and Jan were right. I had hoped that the prices would stay in the 4-figure range, but not so.

Arne Croell
13-Oct-2004, 10:18
Correction to my previous post: the lens diagram of the 550mm XXL is not the Angulon design, but a Wide angle Dagor one (both are related).

13-Oct-2004, 10:36
So how do Schneider list prices compare to selling prices?

Kerry L. Thalmann
13-Oct-2004, 10:52
So how do Schneider list prices compare to selling prices?


I don't have list prices on all Schneider lenses. Nor do I know if there is a linear relationship between list and street prices for all Schneider lenses. One example is the list price for the 110 Super Symmar XL is $3427. Badger Graphic currently sells the 110 XL for $1450 (42.3% of list) and B&H has it at $1669 (48.7% of list). So, for at least this one example selling price is less than 1/2 of the list price.