View Full Version : 16 1/2 Gundlach Achromatic Meniscus Portrait lens

Jonathan Brewer
19-Jul-2006, 14:20
Can any of the 'Usual Suspect's' give me any info on the Gundlach Achromatic Meniscus portrait lens? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I've had advice that it's a 'doublet', the way it's been explained to me is that it's 'doublet' construction is more corrected than a meniscus lens but still very soft.

Also, how similar/different is the this Gundlach lens to the P&S semi-achromat?

19-Jul-2006, 15:10
And who, may I ask, do you count as the 'usual supects'?

19-Jul-2006, 15:14
A quick dive into the LVM - not necessarily trustworthy - gives me this:
"Gundlach Portrait Lenses.
Achromatic Meniscus f6.0 5.25, 7.5, 10, 13.5, 15, 16.25 or 16.5, 18in, the first 4 sizes being absent in some lists. It is suggested to use 15in for 10x8in. This may be the oldest of the portrait line."
Yours will cover 8x10, is that enough?

Jonathan Brewer
19-Jul-2006, 15:53
Despite the way I phrased my initial query, I do welcome any info from anybody, there are some folks who've researched these lenses far more than I have and I refered to them as the 'Usual Suspects' in a complementary way(they know their stuff).

I got this lens from researching it on the 'Cameraeccentric' website and perusing the Gundlach catalogs, one suspicion of mine(although it may be wishful thinking), is that the lens might be similar in construcion/it's soft focus effect as the P&S semi-achromat, and even if it isn't, I was intrigued by the prospect of experimenting w/the thing.

I understand from the Cameraeccentric catalog that it covers 8x10, although I'll be using it for both 4x5 and 8x10. I won't be holding my breath for a P&S semi-achromat, and I figure if one ever comes up on the market, the price would be breathtaking, so the Gundlach was 'gettable', and I keep saying to myself.......'just maybe'.

19-Jul-2006, 16:08
Despite the way I phrased my initial query, I do welcome any info from anybody, there are some folks who've researched these lenses far more than I have and I refered to them as the 'Usual Suspects' in a complementary way(they know their stuff).

Jonathan, I took no offense to your words. Just wondering who you counted in. As it happens, The Usual Suspects is one of my favorite movies!

Kayser Sose

Jonathan Brewer
19-Jul-2006, 17:43
I'd say that these folks in no particular order would include among others, Jim Galli, a guy everybody should pay not to mention his latest $20.00 lens until we get 'em first, Jason greenberg Motamedi, Ernest Purdum, Ted Harris, and some others.

The 'Treasure of Sierra Madre' was one of my favorites.

Fred C. Dobbs

Ole Tjugen
20-Jul-2006, 03:25
I think it's more similar to an Imagon, although without the strainer disks. IOW it gets sharper as it's stopped down, soft and dreamy at full aperture.

Jim Galli
20-Jul-2006, 04:01
Hi Jonathan. It sounds like it's the same as the Kodak Portrait lens. A single doublet behind an iris. Very soft and round wide open and gets sharper closed down. My Bausch & Lomb 18" Plastigmat and my 15" Spencer Portland work like that.

Jonathan Brewer
20-Jul-2006, 10:07
Hey thanks U guys for the info, from the picture of the lens, it looks like a 'doublet' in front of the lens iris(barrel lens), I got a question, looking at the P&S cataglogs, the Semi Achromat came in a single meniscus, and a version w/a doublet, so would the Gundlach be similar?

Hey Jim,..................would the two lenses you have compare w/the Gundlach lens and/or the P&S semi-achormat(the doublet)? Also, if you have any images from those lenses, I'd of course love to check em out.

Jonathan Brewer
20-Jul-2006, 17:12
Let me clarify some on what I'm asking, from cameraeccentric in the lens catalog section, I went to both the Gundlach and P&S catalogs, according to the P&S catalogs, they made 2 lenses, one was a single element meniscus lens, the other was a boublet, P&S calls this doublet lens a 'semi-achromat', Gundlack calls their 'doublet' achromatic, is the term 'semi-achromatic' more ad hype than accurate regarding what the lens is?

If these two lenses are both meniscus 'doublets', how could they be the same/different(let me know if I'm mis-stating this proposition)?

Ernest Purdum
22-Jul-2006, 13:27
"Meniscus" refers to the lenses shape, so it can be one piece of glass with considerable chromatic aberration (simple meniscus), or can be color corrected by using an additional element (achromatic meniscus). When P&S used the term "semi-achromat", I'd guess they were saying that the designer purposefully left some chromatic aberration uncorrected. Gundlach, on the other hand, presumably corrected the chromatic aberration as much as possible.

If using the semi-achromat, it might make sense to experiment in using filters to mimic the color response of the films of the time the lens was designed.

Ted Harris
22-Jul-2006, 20:41
No answers off the top of my head but I willcheck Kingslake and Vade Mecum tomorrow.