View Full Version : 150G/159Wolly/165Dagor (etc.)?

John Layton
5-Dec-2017, 06:46
Am truly needing something in the range of 150mm to 165mm for 5x7 format...something compact and "reasonably" priced. Pretty much eliminates lenses like the 165 SA, 150 Sironar-W, SSXL, and their ilk. With this in mind, contenders would seem to be the 150mm G-Claron, 159mm (f/9.5) Wollensak WA Raptar, and the 165mm WA Dagor (preferably Gold Dot...but a bit expensive).

My gut tells me to just go with the most "modern" of these...the most recent design of the 150mm G-Claron - for its compactness, economy, and great performance across its field...and accept that its field of coverage is somewhat limited when compared to that of the WA Wolly/Dagor lenses.

Comments? Other (compact/economical/high performance) lenses in this range? (gotta cover 5x7) Thanks!

Keith Pitman
5-Dec-2017, 07:08
My 165 Angulon is used frequently on both 5x7 and 4x10. They are not expensive and easy to find with a little patience. Coverage is about 300mm. They do come in a #2 two shutter (Compur), so they need a custom board hole.

Jim Becia
5-Dec-2017, 07:21
A Kowa-Graphic 150 f9 is a nice lens for 5x7. I think it has about 290mm of coverage and that is what I currently use for 5x7. I’m guessing a Computar 150 would work also, but just speculating. I also used to have a Rodenstock 150 S with about 230mm of coverage that I used. Not quite as much coverage but worked okay for landscape.

5-Dec-2017, 08:00
How much movement do you need? I'm using an early (inside lettering) Fujinon-W and am happy with it. Cheap, and a good lens. 245mm image circle. My old wood 5x7 doesn't allow enough movement to need more.

John Kasaian
5-Dec-2017, 08:05
I have a WA 159 Wolly yellow dot (ie, coated version) in an Alphax which I got for use on an 8x10, but it spends most of it's time on the 5x7. It gives lots of coverage and I've no complaints.

5-Dec-2017, 09:19
I've read good things about the 150mm Graphic-Kowa (Computar). Most reports claim a 290mm image circle but I think that's 'illumination' before total cut-off. So I'M GUESSING the true image circle is closer to 250-260mm but that's still very good for an affordable (not SSXL expensive) lens. If you can live with the f/9 speed then the tiny size/weight are very nice. These are also very sharp.

Bernice Loui
5-Dec-2017, 10:56
+1 on the 165mm Angulon, use one in barrel with a Sinar shutter. These are more common in shutter, not too expensive.

Image circle is ideal for 5x7 and has been noted by Schneider for 5x7. It is lower contrast than the 150mm Schneider XL (have both), resolution wise the XL will produce higher resolution than the Angulon, but that should be no surprise at all. The Angulon wins on being a lot smaller, compact and more than acceptable performance. Other whopper modern WA lens, 155mm Grandagon, had one of these before. It is BIG, Heavy, image circle good for 8x10 with excellent performance. The other modern WA would be the 150mm SW Nikor.

The 165mm f9 WA Dagor will cost more, much more for the "Gold Rim" variants. Angulon are essentially the same symmetrical design reversed. Performance wise, they are remarkably similar. But know there are individual variation with lenses of this vintage. Suggest getting the lens of choice then do some testing to confirm performance..


My 165 Angulon is used frequently on both 5x7 and 4x10. They are not expensive and easy to find with a little patience. Coverage is about 300mm. They do come in a #2 two shutter (Compur), so they need a custom board hole.

John Layton
5-Dec-2017, 11:29
Wow...thanks for responses! My image-circle needs are not typically large for most of my landscape work...not much need for lateral movements, and for swings/tilts I can usually use rear movements (axial and/or base) which aren't nearly as demanding of coverage as front axial movements. I can also do front axials with drop or shift combo to sustain coverage if I'm more concerned with apparent distortion...or combine fronts/rears for an acceptable compromise.

From my needs and above responses...I'm leaning towards a Graphic-Kowa 150 f/9, or possibly a 159 Wolly Yellow-Dot or 165 Angulon...so long as I can test examples before committing to either one of these. Would still like to know of other's experiences with the 150 G-Claron for 5x7. Thing about the G-Claron and Graphic-Kowa is that they would likely be more useful for near-macro work (which is important to me) than the others - although I don't know about the Wolly in this respect.

Oren Grad
5-Dec-2017, 11:47
I use my 150mm f/9 Computar as a wide on whole plate; it's got very generous coverage for 5x7.

FWIW, the 150 Apo-Sironar(-W) doesn't belong in the same group as monster lenses like the 165 SA etc. The 150 W comes in #1 shutter and is actually very compact and lightweight compared to the big 8x10 wides; it looks and feels like a 4x5 lens. I have one that I use as a wide on 5x7. Also, re close-up work, per Rodenstock the W series optical design was "optimized for a 1:10 scale of reproduction, but with no noticeable loss at infinity".

EDIT: Dug up the specs... the 150 Apo-Sironar(-W) is specified as 56mm long, filter thread 72mm, overall weight 380g. Not tiny like a 150 G-Claron or Computar, but still very much within the range of compact lenses well-suited to a 4x5 or 5x7 field kit.

John Kasaian
5-Dec-2017, 12:01
I've used the Wolly for still life on the 'dorff and very much like the feel it gives to those types of subjects----smooth of like a Commercial Ektar (reminds me of a Fedoskino school of Russian paper mache painting,) not ouchy sharp like an Artar or G Claron, (which makes me think of Palekh school.)
172637----Artar/G Claron---Palekh

Sal Santamaura
5-Dec-2017, 13:38
If you can find one, go for the better, more modern version of the G-Claron: a multicoated 150mm f/9 Germinar W. Mine's not for sale. :)

John Layton
5-Dec-2017, 15:14
Germinar W. Oh...how I wish this industry were still vital enough to support analogue R+D - and I take this personally!

Mark Sawyer
5-Dec-2017, 17:08
Don't forget the 158mm Cooke VIIb...

Michael Clark
5-Dec-2017, 22:31
The 159 wolly I have works really nice for 5x7, but has poor flair protection, using a lens shade helps a lot.

Oren Grad
6-Dec-2017, 22:14
Not that you can tell much about optical character from small jpgs of negatives made at small apertures, but FWIW I put up a couple of pictures made with the 150 Sinaron WS (Apo-Sironar-W) in the 5x7 image sharing thread: