View Full Version : G-Claron 150mm as enlarger lens?

14-Nov-2014, 14:03
Would a G-Claron 150mm work as an enlarger lens for 4x5???
I know it is a "process" lens. Is that the same as an enlarging lens?

14-Nov-2014, 14:19
Yes. Inferior to a real enlarging lens. No
You ought to read the existing thread. http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/archive/index.php/t-87131.html

Drew Wiley
14-Nov-2014, 14:48
It would obviously be a slower lens than a typical enlarging lens. For best results you'd want it stopped down to at least f/16. But optically it depends on just what you are trying to compare, since G Clarons have been around a long time. One of the later ones would probably be crisper and have better microtonality than many older enlarging lenses of comparable focal length, but not equal to a dedicated high-end enlarging lens. I've compared them to both Apo-Nikkors and things like Apo Rodagon N's, and as much as I tend to praise G-Clarons for camera use, they certainly aren't in the same class as the two lenses I just mentioned, maybe not even equal to my ordinary Rodagons and EL-Nikkors in this respect ... but certainly better than old Componons or Componon-S lenses, which were highly regarded back in the day. Just depends how nitpicky you want to get. Go ahead and mount one and make some prints. They'll probably turn out great.

Neal Chaves
19-Nov-2014, 16:00
I made many satisfying prints from 8X10 negatives, most of which were also exposed through a 355mm f9 G-Claron.

Tim Meisburger
19-Nov-2014, 16:22
I use a 150mm G-Claron on my enlarger and love it!

20-Nov-2014, 06:40
i use my 150 gc as both an enlarging lens and to do copy work ...
it works very well

20-Nov-2014, 07:17
Ctein tested enlarger lenses a few years ago and found Componon-S' comparable to Rodagons, and some El-Nikkors as well.

Bernice Loui
20-Nov-2014, 10:52
Ultra high resolution enlarging lenses often does not translate to more resolution in the paper print as the paper cannot resolve the amount to information being forced on to it. Tried this years ago with a Goerz Magnar, on the grain focuser, every edge of the film grains were clearly visible and extremely well defined. Once all that extra information hit the paper, the paper did not know what to do with it and discarded it. In the finished 2-3X print it had no better resolution than using a EL Nikkor, APO Rodagon, APO Artar.

The primary difference between using a "Process Lens" -vs- "Enlarging Lens" the enlarging lens is optimized for a larger aperture to lower exposure times. If one can live with exposure times at f16 to f32, instead of the f8 to f16 for an enlarging lens, process lenses work fine for enlarging.

Point of reference, typical exposures on grade 2-3 fiber based paper using an APO Artar at f22 on a Durst 138 with matched condensers and a 250W light source is about 30 seconds with reasonable negative density. IMO, exposures of less than 30 seconds is difficult to burn/dodge and such. An enlarging lens would reduce that exposure time significantly.


Drew Wiley
21-Nov-2014, 15:12
I have quite a collection of enlarging lenses (including process lenses), and there is a specific reason for every one of them. Very high quality enlarging lenses
can truly give a different look, namely, superior microtonality actually visible in a carefully executed print on premium paper. But excessive MTF also comes at a
potential cost: tiny blemishes in carrier glass or film base, or any borderline tendency to show newton rings, might become more visible than when using a conventional enlarging lens. Then there's the matter of contrast, which might easily be tweaked using VC papers, but can become a trickier factor to fine-tune when printing color. Rather than creating a whole new contrast mask, a simple switch in enlarging lenses might suffice, if the problem is modest. Process lenses can be especially nice for making dupes, internegs, or separation negs, where highly detailed reproduction is critical. But having smaller maximum apertures, they are less suited to printing slow papers or even composing with color negative films, where that orange mask acts like neutral density, visually at least.
But I do a lot of different kinds of tasks with enlargers, and work in multiple formats.

25-Dec-2014, 22:26
Would a G-Claron 150mm work as an enlarger lens for 4x5???
I know it is a "process" lens. Is that the same as an enlarging lens?

To answer your questions as Bernice said; yes, provided you don't enlarge much larger than 3x (11 x 14), or smaller, and you can live with the f22 optimum aperture. Today I enlarged a 4x5 negative to an 8x10 print (2x), using a 150 Apo Rodagon, a 180 Apo Rodagon, a 150 Comparon, a 150 G Claron and a 210 Rodagon. In the finished 8x10 there was virtually no difference in sharpness between the five enlarging lenses other than the G-Claron and the Comparon were a little less contrasty, so required a 1/2 harder paper.

26-Dec-2014, 11:31
I just looked up the G-Claron literature, and Schneider gives values for a 5 x enlargement or reduction, so if you are enlarging and don't go above a 20 x 24 (5X), you should be fine provided you have enough light in your enlarger for the smaller working apertures. L

Peter De Smidt
26-Dec-2014, 11:39
Sure, you could use it, but real enlarging lenses aren't very expensive these days. Why go to all of the work and expense of large format and then not use the proper enlarging lens?

26-Dec-2014, 15:35
I actually use mine when making a small enlargement ratios and my enlarger is too bright. I can either stop the G-Claron to f/22 or find where I put the ND filters to dim the head.....and believe me, I own almost every Rodagon focal length made..........L

26-Dec-2014, 21:51
It depends what you are enlarging and to what degree.

A few years ago I had to enlarge 8X10 negs to 11x14and 16X20. I used a G Claron 305mm and guess what. My enlargements were very well accepted.

It will come down to your talent/ experience ...