View Full Version : 90mm wide enough for interiors?

David Nash
5-Aug-1998, 09:54
I currently have a Rodenstock Sironar S 210mm lens. I am looking to purchase a wide angle lens, and am considering the Rodenstock Grandagon 90mm f4.5 - I inte nd to take both landscapes and interior room shots.

For the latter, I think I need quite a lot of movement, (my 210 has loads of cov erage), and the 90mm has around 50mm on 5x4".

If I go down to 75mm, the movements are restricted to around 20mm, which I suspe ct may not be enough.

I suppose the trade off is between coverage and angle of view. As I've never us ed a wide angle on 35mm, comparisons with 20mm, 24mm etc don't mean much to me.

My second question concerns the use of centre spot filters. Rodenstock do one f or the 90mm which has an 82mm lens thread, and a 112mm filter thread. If I want ed to use additional filters such as a polariser, would I have to buy a 112mm fi lter, or could I safely fit other filters between the lense and the centre filte r (i.e. use an 82mm thread?)

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated

mike rosenlof
5-Aug-1998, 12:44
Compared to your 210, a 90 will certainly give you a lot more options for interi ors. But Schneider makes that 47mm Super Angulon XL, and I would guess it was d esigned primarily for interior/architectural photographers.

You will always find situations where what you've got is not wide enough, or doe sn't have enough coverage for the movements you want.

90mm is kind of the 'standard' wide angle lens in 4x5 photography. I have a 125 and a 210 and they make a nice pair for the kind of work I do.

Ron Shaw
5-Aug-1998, 12:45
20mm of extra coverage may be ok, at least for many interior shots. Often, you c ant use tilts for interior shots, because you need all 4 planes sharp. If you do use tilts, try to keep your lens axis centered on the film. Also, coverage circ les increase as you rack out your bellows, so for most interior shots, you will be focused closer than infinity. I think most photographers who do interiors for a living shoot much wider than 90mm, but going wider does get expensive for goo d corrections.

Ellis Vener
6-Aug-1998, 01:27
I have the 90mm f/4.5 Grandagon and a "centre spot filter" (mine is by Heliopan, not the Rodenstock flavor, No optical difference that I can detect.) You only n eed if if you using extreme shifts, in my experience. Whwn doing architecture th ere are times when I wish a 75mm lens was handy, but instead I opted to purchase a 65mm lens as I felt the difference in coverage between a 90 and a 75, or betw een a 75mm and a 65mm were not enough to justify the cost of all three. When usi ng the center filter I do either of three things: either I mount by tape a rigid resin filter to the rear of the lens (advantages: I don't stack filters in fron t of the lens and risk vignetting, also no problem with flare as filter is insid e the camera bellows;) I have mounted an 82mm filter between the lens and the CW F (advantages: 82mm filters are cheaper and easier to find (thought not much) th an 122mm filters. disadvantage: risk of vignetting at larger shifts) or I use a round filter I have cut out of a gelatine filter and carefully place it in the f ront of the lens where it is held in place by the center weighted filter.( advan tages, well it's cheap,it can work in a pinch. Ideally, you could use the 125mm resin filters and holder from Sinar but that is very expensive, large and once a gain risks vignetting.

Ellis Vener
6-Aug-1998, 01:44
To finish answering your question, The 90mm is a good standard wide angle focal length. Wider than that and your near/far spatial relationships can start to app ear unnatural and the apparent space gets very deep. Sometimes this is a nice v isual sleight of hand and sometimes it appears gimmicky, and some times you have no choice. Unless you have very strong experience with wide angles I would stay away from lenses shorter than 65mm, especially the extreme-ultra wides like the 47mm Super Angulon XL or the 45mm APO-Grandagon, unless you have no choice in t erms of subject matter and how far back you can set up

Larry Gard
7-Aug-1998, 01:20
A 90mm W/A lens is probably the best first lens to purchase for W/A work. I've u sed both Rodenstock and Schneider, they're both good lenses. If you can affort t o, get the f4.5 or f5.6 rather than the f8. You'll be surprised how much brighte r they are. I've made a living for many years doing home and recreational vehicl e interiors and I've never used a center spot filter. I'm sure there are some si tuations where one should be used, but before you buy one do a few shots without one and see how you like the results. Also, try to keep the filters behind the lens whenever possible. Filters in front of a W/A lens can be a pain if you've u sing any movements. If you do decide to go with a wider lens remember, the wider the angle of the lens the more the distortion in nearby objects is apparent.(i. e. lopsided chairs or counter tops running downhill.) Good luck.

Dave King
16-Aug-1998, 16:21

Yes, most interiors photographers will agree that a 90 is the best place to star t. If you start taking assignments you may find you'll also need at least a 65. I personally use a 58, 75, and 90.

Stacking screw type filters on a wide angle lens can quickly lead to the corners being cut off. I do not use the center spots on any of my lenses. Try the len s with out the filter first, you may decide you don't really need it.