View Full Version : Nikon 90/4.5

16-Aug-2005, 05:22
Hi all,

I noticed that Joe Cornish uses now a Grandagon 90/4.5 instead of his Nikon 90/4.5.

As this is his most used lens does anyone know why he changed.

I tried to ask directly but have problems with the form on his site.


I have a Super Symmar 80 XL but I will probably use it with my next Fotoman 617.The enlargement for prints is greater for 6x17 (about 7 times) than with my 4x5 (only 4 times) and I prefer to have the best lenses for that reason. I have the 75mm Nikon and would like to get the Nikon 90/4.5. What do you think ?


mark blackman
16-Aug-2005, 06:08
unless you take exactly the same shots as Joe Cornish, how do you know that the lens he uses will be the best lens for you?

Diane Maher
16-Aug-2005, 07:53
I have a Nikon 90 f/4.5 and have used it a lot with my 4x5. I don't know the difference between the Grandagon and the Nikon though.

Armin Seeholzer
16-Aug-2005, 08:35
Maybe he droped the Nikon and now checks something new!
The Nikon f4.5 has 7 lenses 600g the Rodenstock 8 lenses and 700 gramm and the Nikon is 100 g lighter. He maybe thinks he need one lens more to get sharper images!
I love my Nikon it is a tiny bit contrastier then the Rodenstock because of only 7 lenses and maybe the Rodenstock is a tiny bit sharper at the outer parts because they had one lens more for correction. Would I see a difference on a picture not at all!

Ted Harris
16-Aug-2005, 09:20
When you talk about "best" in terms of large format lenses from the big four manufacturers (Rodenstock, Schneider, Fuji and Nikon) you are talking marginal differences when comparing apples to apples in terms of lens design. Differences that are so slight that it is unlikely you will ever see the differences in your final prints. I have my favorites, of course, as does everybody but if I had to go out and shoot with say a Schneider Apo Symmar L instead of a Rodenstock Apo Sironar S I am not sure I would see the difference or be able to say, a year later. "aha, that is the shot with the Symmar."

16-Aug-2005, 10:10
Ted, a Schneider technician who I used to be friends with said the same thing. He said there are no secrets in lens design anymore ... it just takes a minute to reverse engineer an inovation by your competitor. He bragged about Schneider's quality control, but that's about it.

Comparing my own negs made with modern schneider lenses, to my friends' negs (made with similar rodenstock and nikon lenses) it's painfully clear that there are mountains of variables more significant than the brand at which you throw your money, allegiance, and adoration.

Bob Salomon
16-Aug-2005, 13:32
"made with modern schneider lenses, to my friends' negs (made with similar rodenstock and nikon lenses"

Symmar L? Apo SironarS? Or something else? Especially as Nikon does not actually have a similar lens.

16-Aug-2005, 16:40
"Symmar L? Apo SironarS? Or something else? Especially as Nikon does not actually have a similar lens"

this was comparing apo symmar-s and super angulons to apo sironar n and s and grandagons, and whatever the current nikon lenses were about 10 years ago.

and the comparisons did not include extreme movements, or pictures taken wide open or at large magnifications, where I imagine you might start seeing some differences. It was a look at the kinds work that my friends and I actually did, and we all agreed we wouldn't be able to tell the difference in practice.

This is in contrast to some older lenses I've used, like some 70s vintage caltars and older kodak lenses where the limits of the lens were immediately evident.

Just looking at my own work, there is such a huge difference between the sharpest negs that I produce and the average ones (which are still pretty sharp)-- it makes me realize that I only ocasionally approach the limits of what the lens can do. Other times issues like depth of field and wind make a much bigger difference.