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Havoc
3-Jun-2018, 03:36
I started out with 2 lenses I found cheap on fairs: a Fuji SWD 75mm and a Symmar 180/315. Since then I added a Fuji CM-W 250 and a CM-W 125. But the Symmar has a shutter with issues and I find that I have a "hole" in my focal lenghts. Between the 75 and 125 it is a really large difference. And because the 180 is not dependable, then the hole between 125 and 250 becomes an issue. I see several options to proceed but as budget is limited getting a dozen lenses is just impossible. At the moment I can add a single lens and I'd like to get the most out of it for the summer.

My main interest at the moment is "landscape" but this includes the city and its borders. I'd like architecture as well. The problem is that Belgium is a rather ugly country so being able to select the view is important (for me).

option 1: fill the gap between 75mm and 125mm (and live with the problematic shutter of the Symmar 180). I really like both lenses but the hole is big. In that range there are 2 alternatives:

option 1a: a fuji SWD 90. Reasonably easy to find and not too expensive.
option 1b: a fuji CM-W 105. A bit more expensive and less easy to find.

From what I find in the list of the forum, the SWD has the larger image circle but is more a wide angle design and larger than the CM-W. The larger image circle is attractive but I fear more distortion.

Option 2: replace the Symmar 180. Again 2 options:
option 2a: Fuji CM-W 150
option 2b: Fuji CM-W 180
(option 2c: replace the shutter of the Symmar, but I think this will cost as much as a new lens)

Don't think there is much to differentiate them for my use. Has any of them a better reputation than the other?

My gut feeling is to go with option 1a or 1b and try to get the shutter of the Symmar working myself.

blue4130
3-Jun-2018, 04:23
Instead of replacing anything, why not get the shutter professionally repaired? It sounds like you are looking for a reason to buy gear to me. (which there is nothing wrong with by the way)

As it stands you have 75, 125, 180, 250. That is a pretty solid spread if you ask me.

Havoc
3-Jun-2018, 04:29
Instead of replacing anything, why not get the shutter professionally repaired?

Because there isn't any repairer in the whole country. And just sending it would cost already half of a lens. I don't have 2 left hands but without a good manual I don't touch it myself.

Mark Sampson
3-Jun-2018, 09:14
Havoc, almost everyone with your lens lineup would choose the 90/8 lens. And if you like the way the 180 sees (as I do) get another and sell the convertible Symmar to partly fund the purchases.

Leigh
3-Jun-2018, 11:23
option 1a: a fuji SWD 90. Reasonably easy to find and not too expensive.

My gut feeling is to go with option 1a...
I have that lens, and have used it frequently on 4x5 Fuji ACROS. I think it's excellent.

- Leigh

Bob Salomon
3-Jun-2018, 16:03
Bruge is ugly?

Bob Salomon
3-Jun-2018, 16:06
Because there isn't any repairer in the whole country. And just sending it would cost already half of a lens. I don't have 2 left hands but without a good manual I don't touch it myself.

How about these people?

https://www.yelp.com/biz/camera-repair-service-gent

And what about in Holland?

Doremus Scudder
4-Jun-2018, 03:21
If you're interested in architecture/cityscapes as you say, then you likely don't want the 105mm; no room for movements at all (I don't even know if it really covers 4x5 at all). FWIW, my most used lenses in the city (Vienna, where I've lived and photographed for 25+ years and I'm about to move away from :( ) are a Nikkor SW 90mm f/8 and a WF Ektar 135mm. Both give me the coverage I need for narrow streets and close quarters. I think a 90mm would fill your needs perfectly (you can always crop just a bit to get to the 100mm focal length if you want, but not vice-versa). the f/8 versions are significantly smaller than the f/5.6 ones.

As for the 180mm (nice focal length!). I second trying to find a repair person in the EU somewhere first. The shutter repair is likely not all that complicated. My favorite lens in that focal length is the Fujinon A 180mm f/9; it's much smaller than the other Plasmats. I have its bigger brother too, the 240mm f/9.

Best,

Doremus

hiend61
4-Jun-2018, 08:14
In my opinion, your options are clear: Fujinon SWD 90/5,6 or if you find it very close to the SWD 75/5,6, try the superb Fujinon SW 105/8, which has a nice 250 mm image circle. I used this lens and its superb.

The Fujinon W 180/5,6 is a superb lens. The W version, previous to the last CM W version, will reward you with an impresive 280mm image circle. The newer version CM W has 260 mm image circle and is more expensive. I usedd the W version with 5x7 color transparencies and I find it superb.

Bob Salomon
4-Jun-2018, 08:19
In my opinion, your options are clear: Fujinon SWD 90/5,6 or if you find it very close to the SWD 75/5,6, try the superb Fujinon SW 105/8, which has a nice 250 mm image circle. I used this lens and its superb.

The Fujinon W 180/5,6 is a superb lens. The W version, previous to the last CM W version, will reward you with an impresive 280mm image circle. The newer version CM W has 260 mm image circle and is more expensive. I usedd the W version with 5x7 color transparencies and I find it superb.

Superb compared to what other lenses you directly compared them to? Nikon? Rodenstock? Schneider?

They all make superb lenses!!!

hiend61
4-Jun-2018, 10:13
I didnt made a direct comparison, but I own and use Rodenstck Grandagon N lenses (4,5/65, 4,5/75, 4,5/90 and 6,8/115) and Im not sure I could tell the difference with Fujinon W 8/105 in terms of sharpness, contrast, color balance, distortion or CAs in a 4x5 color trasparency enlarged to 20x24". This lens simply met my standards.

the Fujinon 5,6/180 has just a bit less "punch" that my Apo Sironar S lenses (150 and 210), but has a 280 mm image circle that can be used to shot 5x7, and I think I could not tell it from a Sironar N. On top of all these reasons, this Fujinon lens is very cheap compared to the rest of the "Big Four" similar offerings, and this makes that lens superb in my user opinion.

Of course an Apo Sironar S lens is better, but costs used around 4 -5 times more, but its not 4-5 times better. Our fellow Havoc has a limited budget and hes akready a Fujinon user.

Bob Salomon
4-Jun-2018, 12:19
I didnt made a direct comparison, but I own and use Rodenstck Grandagon N lenses (4,5/65, 4,5/75, 4,5/90 and 6,8/115) and Im not sure I could tell the difference with Fujinon W 8/105 in terms of sharpness, contrast, color balance, distortion or CAs in a 4x5 color trasparency enlarged to 20x24". This lens simply met my standards.

the Fujinon 5,6/180 has just a bit less "punch" that my Apo Sironar S lenses (150 and 210), but has a 280 mm image circle that can be used to shot 5x7, and I think I could not tell it from a Sironar N. On top of all these reasons, this Fujinon lens is very cheap compared to the rest of the "Big Four" similar offerings, and this makes that lens superb in my user opinion.

Of course an Apo Sironar S lens is better, but costs used around 4 -5 times more, but its not 4-5 times better. Our fellow Havoc has a limited budget and hes akready a Fujinon user.

Your S lenses also cover 57!

Havoc
4-Jun-2018, 13:12
OK, thanks for all your toughts and opinions, they are really helpfull.

So the option of adding the SWD 90/5.6 wins out. I'm very happy with the SWD 75 so there is no doubt that the 90 will be just as pleasing. Honestly, I'm not that good a photographer so anything more costly is probably wasted on me.

At the same time I'll stay with the Symmar 180. Already got a good lead on replacing the shutter for a price I cannot send it to a repair service and get a quote. So if I can get it running that will be great. The couple of shots I did with it where great but with the overcast weather that we so often have, not having the slow speeds is a problem.

Other things:
- yes, Brugge is great but just try to take a photo there! The place is swamped by tourists the year round. We don't have any countryside left and the little bit that is still there is being covered with wind turbines. I just hate those things, don't get me started...
- I do not doubt there are possible repair centers in the EU, but I contacted a few and they only do digital these days or don't do that kind of work. One I have send a Linhoff 220 and I had nothing but trouble with (came back with a different fault than when it left but still doens't work). I searched for the Ghent one, but didn't find much. Holland might be a possibility, found one, waiting for reply.
- I like the option to keep the Symmar 180 as from what I understood it is a nice one for portraits when used at 315. I have an inborn fear of portraits but one day... So having something that might work at hand is a good feeling.

Again, thanks for your help.

hiend61
4-Jun-2018, 13:17
Your S lenses also cover 57!

Yes I know.

neil poulsen
6-Jun-2018, 07:19
Bruge is ugly?

:confused:

neil poulsen
6-Jun-2018, 07:22
If you like the 105mm focal length, there's also the Fuji 105mm f8 SW. It covers 4x5 with movement.

Bernice Loui
6-Jun-2018, 08:41
Fujinon 105mm f8 NSW (or SW, older version) covers 5x7 with a image circle of 250mm. Originally found on the Fujinon 6x17 camera.

Bernice

chassis
10-Jun-2018, 11:40
Belgium is an ugly country? On the contrary. Have you been to Antwerp, Brugge, or Blankenberge? Not to mention Brussels and Tournai. Arguably, Belgium is one of the most history-filled countries in the western part of Europe within the former Frankish realm.

Regarding shutter repair, there certainly must be services available in Germany, France or Switzerland. Have you checked?

Regarding focal lengths for architecture on 4x5, I like: 58, 72, 90, 120.

Havoc
10-Jun-2018, 12:56
Belgium is an ugly country? On the contrary. Have you been to Antwerp, Brugge, or Blankenberge? Not to mention Brussels and Tournai. Arguably, Belgium is one of the most history-filled countries in the western part of Europe within the former Frankish realm.

Regarding shutter repair, there certainly must be services available in Germany, France or Switzerland. Have you checked?

Regarding focal lengths for architecture on 4x5, I like: 58, 72, 90, 120.

As I live here for almost half a century, YES it is a pug ugly country. I won't deny we have a certain interesting history. And sure, if you see nothing but the inner old cities then you can be mistaken for it to be nice.

Had very bad experienc in France, Germany is fine if you want german stuff to be repaired. Never looked in Switserland, no idea how it sits for customs.

swmcl
10-Jun-2018, 14:24
Perhaps the sticky shutter should be 'written off' ... ??
If you are willing to experiment then ... you could take the glass out and bathe the thing in alchohol. It might free things up. The other option is 1,1,1 TriChloro as in the fluid at a dry cleaning shop. Perhaps dunk it in the tank at the dry cleaners ?

:-)

jnantz
10-Jun-2018, 15:46
sorry for sounding like a jerk
but it seems like you need to find
some local repair people ..
AND
you have no idea what it is like
to live somewhere where it is not "picturesque "
your medieval disney-like city sounds like a photographers dream
i guess if they don't live there ...

best of luck with your lens issues ..

Jac@stafford.net
10-Jun-2018, 16:29
[...]I'd like architecture as well. The problem is that Belgium is a rather ugly country so being able to select the view is important (for me).
[...]
Don't think there is much to differentiate them [lenses] for my use. Has any of them a better reputation than the other?

Of course none of the lenses will make your pictures more appealing. Reality persists regardless. Reputation? WTF? Like some lenses have groupies? Get over it.

If you believe Belgium is ugly, then it will be.

You do not need new camera lenses; a personality transplant maybe.

LabRat
10-Jun-2018, 16:47
"If you believe Belgium is ugly, then it will be."

I second what Jac says... Hopefully the photo process can refresh and open your eyes to what is hiding in plain sight...

Find new worlds!!! (Even if the world's are ugly/disturbing...)

Steve K

consummate_fritterer
10-Jun-2018, 19:09
...

Havoc
10-Jun-2018, 23:11
Let's close the discussion on the ugliness of Belgium, it is getting off topic and is too subjective anyway.


Of course none of the lenses will make your pictures more appealing. Reality persists regardless. Reputation? WTF? Like some lenses have groupies? Get over it.

I agree. Maybe a misunderstanding about "reputation". I'm more interested in things like reliability (ok, maybe more a property of the shutter), flare, etc. Sure, all lenses will be better than my ability to use them. But as getting mechanical photo gear serviced here is difficult I prefer to avoid it.


Perhaps the sticky shutter should be 'written off' ... ??
If you are willing to experiment then ... you could take the glass out and bathe the thing in alchohol. It might free things up. The other option is 1,1,1 TriChloro as in the fluid at a dry cleaning shop. Perhaps dunk it in the tank at the dry cleaners ? :-)

I haven't written it off but in the mean time I bought a replacement shutter (thanks, Kumar). So the 180 becomes usable and in the mean time I can look further to have it repaired. If it can be repaired I'll have a spare shutter that can always serve when another needs service, if it can't be repaired it has been replaced anyway. One place in Holland I asked replied they should be able to repair it depending spare parts if needed. So I'm waiting for the replacement to arrive and then I'll send it there.


You do not need new camera lenses; a personality transplant maybe.

I'll ask my psychiatrist about it on Wednesday.

chassis
14-Jun-2018, 18:31
https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4488/37246607864_f7e6822f49_c.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/YKmASd)
Brugge

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4466/24008644378_7cbb947b04_c.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/Czyzws)
Antwerp

I enjoyed my visit to your country, and hope to return.

andrewch59
14-Jun-2018, 18:41
What is not to love about old world architecture! I just googled some pics of Brugge, amazing place for photo opportunities!

Mick Fagan
15-Jun-2018, 02:45
Something which may be an issue, is filter size.

The SWD f/5.6 90mm uses 82mm filters. Image size is 236mm, angle of coverage is 105

The SW f/8 90mm uses 67mm filters. Image size is 216mm, angle of coverage is 100

When looking for a 90mm I weighed up the alternatives and went with the SW f/8 90mm lens over the SWD version solely because of the filter size.

Mick.

Bob Salomon
15-Jun-2018, 03:47
Something which may be an issue, is filter size.

The SWD f/5.6 90mm uses 82mm filters. Image size is 236mm, angle of coverage is 105

The SW f/8 90mm uses 67mm filters. Image size is 216mm, angle of coverage is 100

You actually decided on size rather then coverage, fall off, distortion, color curves, etc?

When looking for a 90mm I weighed up the alternatives and went with the SW f/8 90mm lens over the SWD version solely because of the filter size.

Mick.

Pete Oakley
15-Jun-2018, 12:02
I've sent lenses to Carol at Flutots in the past, why not post shutters to the US for repair? I'm in the UK, never had a problem with Flutots, stop being insular the EU isn't everything!
Pete

Havoc
16-Jun-2018, 04:52
I've sent lenses to Carol at Flutots in the past, why not post shutters to the US for repair? I'm in the UK, never had a problem with Flutots, stop being insular the EU isn't everything!
Pete

I'm not insular, just practical: customs and post service in Belgium is PITA. Not a big issue if you just order, it adds only about 4 weeks to the delivery time if it comes from outside the EU.

But today the shutter from Kumar arrived. So now I can swap out the defective shutter and have it send out for repair. Right now I have 2 addresses in Holland that say they can do the repair (depending parts).

Also have some film in transit so if the good weather persists for a couple more days...


Something which may be an issue, is filter size.

The SWD f/5.6 90mm uses 82mm filters. Image size is 236mm, angle of coverage is 105

The SW f/8 90mm uses 67mm filters. Image size is 216mm, angle of coverage is 100

When looking for a 90mm I weighed up the alternatives and went with the SW f/8 90mm lens over the SWD version solely because of the filter size.

Yes, saw that as well. The uniform filter size is why I intended to stay with the Fuji CM/W line with their 67mm size.

Mick Fagan
16-Jun-2018, 18:35
You actually decided on size rather then coverage, fall off, distortion, color curves, etc?

Yes I did.

Size, fall off, coverage, distortion are all important things to consider; so is the fact I am strictly an amateur and only have myself to please.

Another consideration for me, was the ability to use my 67mm centre filter (which I have for my Fujinon SWD f/5.6/65mm) on the 90mm if I needed to. As it turned out, using the centre filter on the 90mm in some instances has been beneficial.

I didn't consider colour to be an issue for me, the build and glass quality of these lenses is more than adequate for my needs. Around 30+ years ago I was working in a big studio complex, having a colour corrected in camera transparency was the order of the day for magazine reproduction and overall efficiency. I do appreciate that how a lens handles different colours also effects the outcome in B&W.

Mick.

jim10219
18-Jun-2018, 12:29
Something which may be an issue, is filter size.

The SWD f/5.6 90mm uses 82mm filters. Image size is 236mm, angle of coverage is 105

The SW f/8 90mm uses 67mm filters. Image size is 216mm, angle of coverage is 100

When looking for a 90mm I weighed up the alternatives and went with the SW f/8 90mm lens over the SWD version solely because of the filter size.

Mick.

Quite true. I bought the SWD 90/5.6 and absolutely love the lens, but I hate the filter costs. I've basically whittled my filter collection down to two sizes, 52mm (because I already owned a bunch of 52mm filters from my Nikon and Pentax small format lenses), and the giant 82mm filters, plus a bunch of step up rings. My collection of 82mm filters are mostly generic brands due to the exorbitant costs of any brand of filters this large. So if you go that route, be aware of the financial consequences that await you further down the road.

Still, the 90/5.6 SWD is my favorite and most used lens.

Bob Salomon
18-Jun-2018, 12:36
Yes I did.

Size, fall off, coverage, distortion are all important things to consider; so is the fact I am strictly an amateur and only have myself to please.

Another consideration for me, was the ability to use my 67mm centre filter (which I have for my Fujinon SWD f/5.6/65mm) on the 90mm if I needed to. As it turned out, using the centre filter on the 90mm in some instances has been beneficial.

I didn't consider colour to be an issue for me, the build and glass quality of these lenses is more than adequate for my needs. Around 30+ years ago I was working in a big studio complex, having a colour corrected in camera transparency was the order of the day for magazine reproduction and overall efficiency. I do appreciate that how a lens handles different colours also effects the outcome in B&W.

Mick.

Being an amateur is no reason not to strive for the best possible results! Virtually all pros, at one time or another, were amateurs!

consummate_fritterer
18-Jun-2018, 13:17
Being an amateur is no reason not to strive for the best possible results! Virtually all pros, at one time or another, were amateurs!

Adding to that statement; Many 'amateurs' are better than most 'pros'.

Bob Salomon
18-Jun-2018, 13:19
Adding to that statement; Many 'amateurs' are better than most 'pros'.
Our experience was that most of our best customers were amateurs!

Mick Fagan
19-Jun-2018, 00:57
Being an amateur is no reason not to strive for the best possible results! Virtually all pros, at one time or another, were amateurs!

Very good point Bob, however, life is always a trade-off.

I did look for an 82mm centre filter, very hard to find, but find I did. Two places in Germany, one in the UK. Pretty much looking at $850 AUD for one, didn't matter from which country.

As an amateur, I decided that as I had an existing graduated 67mm centre filter that worked very well on my Fujinon SWD 65mm f/5.6 lens, it was going to be used on a 90mm lens as well. Also, if I ever get a 75mm lens in the future, which is a possibility, then it will use the same 67mm filter.

Trade-offs...

Mick.

Havoc
19-Jun-2018, 02:57
Being an amateur is no reason not to strive for the best possible results! Virtually all pros, at one time or another, were amateurs!


Very good point Bob, however, life is always a trade-off.

I did look for an 82mm centre filter, very hard to find, but find I did. Two places in Germany, one in the UK. Pretty much looking at $850 AUD for one, didn't matter from which country.

As an amateur, I decided that as I had an existing graduated 67mm centre filter that worked very well on my Fujinon SWD 65mm f/5.6 lens, it was going to be used on a 90mm lens as well.

I think both viewpoints are absolutely correct. There is indeed no reason not to strive for the best as an amateur, but as an amateur the trade-offs are different from a pro.

When your photography is a business, in brings in money (well, it should) and the added cost of an extra set of filters is a business decision. If this bit of added result means possible monetary gains then shelling out for another set of filters makes sense (if your businessplan makes sense). But if you are just an amateur then every bit of money you put into your photography is money you cannot use for more basic needs of life.

For me this is the difference between a hobby and work, "if it makes me money it is work, if it costs me money it is a hobby". The line will be somewhere different for each of us. To some 850 is loose pocket change, for others it can mean saving up for a loooong time.

That said, I went with the SWD 90/5.6. Reason is that I'm very happy with my SWD 75 and for some (maybe idiotic) reason I'd like to stay in the same family of lenses. I have used the SWD 75 without a center filter and the max movement I could get out of my Wista and was very happy with the result of the lens and B/W film. Maybe if I would go to E6 film I'll need a filter, but I cannot justify the cost of E6 film.

So when customs has finished playing with it, the line-up will be SWD75, SWD 90, CMW 125, Symmar 180/315 and CMW 250. On the Wista this covers the range it can take with the standard bellows and rail. The next investment is film, film, film and a basic darkroom course.

schafphoto
19-Jun-2018, 11:22
Bruge is ugly?

I guess he could be looking at the Ugly Belgian Houses instagram. One of my favorites.

Jac@stafford.net
19-Jun-2018, 11:40
If I had waited until I could afford a superior lens, I would have lost three years experience and a few remarkable images.

Randy Moe
19-Jun-2018, 12:24
In Bruges the movie. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_Bruges

I enjoyed how wacky Brussels was in 1975. They would change the language used on the street signs for night or day also changing street directions making me lost while driving.

To get over my confusion, I stopped in a Pub where nobody would or could speak a bit of English. I had a great beer and then ignored all street signs thereafter. Just drive.

Got to the house and my key would not work. So I waited. Soon the Police arrive and they speak no English. Good thing I had already put the local address in my passport. Police noted that and left. Then my host showed up and we had a fantastic 3 hour dinner in a very cramped house of meat. We ate triangles of meat we cooked ourselves on our table, like a rotisserie. It was very expensive.

Eddy Merckx lived down the street. Look him up. A far better man than Lance...

Corran
19-Jun-2018, 13:47
If I had waited until I could afford a superior lens, I would have lost three years experience and a few remarkable images.

AMEN!!

Sorry, haven't read anything else but needed to give a shout on this comment Jac :).

Havoc
19-Jun-2018, 15:26
I guess he could be looking at the Ugly Belgian Houses instagram. One of my favorites.

I don't need looking there, it is everywhere I look every day :D

On a serious note, there are a few nice spots in Belgium. Only, those are isolated spots in very few places. Belgium is ugly because there never has been any serious building planning or architectural planning over a timespan. You can find here and there a small spot, but most of Belgium is a hodgepodge of bad architecture. The result is that you cannot find any place that has a coherent feel or look. There isn't a single street that feels like it has "a look/vision" (*).

If you go to our neighbourghs then this coherence is there. Go to Paris and you can find the gracious and stately Haussmann boulevards. You can find La Dfence with its cluster of contemporary buildings and vision. Or you can go to old cities like Prouges, Concarneau, Carcassonne, Monpazier, Riom, Dinan, Troyes, Bourges and countless others. You may like one and not the other but each of them presents a coherent, sometimes historic, sometimes architectural whole. Want wide landscapes, go to the Jura or the Voges. Go into Germany and you have the same. Maybe a bit less of it in the large cities because so much has been rebuild after the war. You want modern, go to Frankfurt, Munich or others. Older, go to Quedlinburg, Goslar, Esslingen, Schmalkalden... Want wide landscapes? You got Bavaria, the nord part close to Denmark, the side of the Polish border.

But Belgium? The "famous" Brussels market place isn't the late medieval it looks to be just neo gothic destroyed to make it all into pubs and shops. There is a gothic cathedral but it is enclosed by '70's third rate hotel building trying to pretend to "blend in" and at the same time stick out as a pestulent sore. We had boulevards but they were "modernised" with 3th rate tries at modern architecture and even that failed to be beautiful as kitch. Ok, there are a few very nice art deco leftovers. But you couldn't say that in itself form they a kind of whole. Each is an isolated pearl sitting in a dungheap. Like the palais Stocklet or the narrowly saved Magazins Waucquez.

Speaking of Art Deco, if you go to Weimar and Dessau in search of the Bauhaus movement, then you will certainly come by the name of the belgian arcitect Henri Van De Velde. While well know with quite a lot of important influential buildings in Holland and Germany, it was up to some private persons to have is grave saved from demolition. His train staion in Blankenberge was demolished and not even replaced.

Went to look at the only remaining brick fortification of napoleontic date at the coast. It has been destroyed by the heritage fund.They simply broke away one of the 5 sides to insert a glass/steel block. And so it goes on.

You don't have to look for sweeping landscape either. Belgium is reknown (but not in a good sense) by its "lintbebouwing". Meaning the building just follows the older "highways" of the 1800's, completely cutting through whatever landscape there was cutting it up.

(*) only street I know of is the Cogels-Osylei in Antwerp and even that one has been only justly saved, adding another entry into the ugly belgian houses book.