View Full Version : 1938 Xenar 15cm f3.5 (!)

22-Jan-2008, 09:39
I received one of these, and I was half sure that the Xenar was just a Tessar in disguise, but it appears it doesn't have the cemented doublet at the back, but has a cemented front group instead.
Anyone knows about this formula, or this particular lens ? It's quite fast too at f3.5 ! Will it cover 4x5 reasonably comfortably ?

Gene McCluney
22-Jan-2008, 10:27
The Xenar is always thought to be a Tessar derivitive. It may not be identical to a Tessar. 150mm, or 15cm should cover 4x5 with a little room for movements.

Peter K
22-Jan-2008, 10:31
The Xenar is like the Tessar a triplet variation with a cemented rear group. The angle of view is 55° and the image circle about 180mm. There were only a few lenses with a cemented front group but no Xenar. In a Schneider brochure from about 1938 the lens was buildt in a shutter size II/5.

22-Jan-2008, 11:08
I'm sorry, THIS xenar doesn't have a cemented rear group; they unscrew. And unless I'm very mistaken, it has a cemented front group. I can also find no reference to a Xenar f3.5; they all seem to have been f4.5.

Thus my question, this lens doesn't appear in the Schneider lens list I managed to find... A Mistery Xenar !

Peter K
22-Jan-2008, 11:20
1938 the Xenar was made in the versions f/3,5, f/5,5 and f/4,5 from 3,5cm up to 48cm. Also at f/2,9 but only up to 10,5cm.

Glenn Thoreson
22-Jan-2008, 11:20
You have an uncommon variation. Shoot some pictures with it and see if you like it. That's the only way you'll know. I have some uncommon Tessars, too. A 210/3.5 and a 150/3.5. The lens you have may be a reverse Tessar formula.

22-Jan-2008, 13:51
Thats my guess as well, a reverse Tessar of some sort. I'm surprised there isn't trace of it tho. I'm servicing the shutter, after that I'll give it a spin; I'm curious to see how it performs :D

Ole Tjugen
22-Jan-2008, 13:55
That's the same as my Tessar 15cm f:3.5 Typ D. A reverse Tessar, where the rear group has a negative focal length - it doesn't focus light at all.

It's fast, but rather soft. It stays softish even when well stopped down, but is quite nice for some subjects.

22-Jan-2008, 16:44
Well the problem half-solved itself, the compur broke. it's my second in a few weeks, and I bought that lens (supposedly damaged, but the optics are clear) thinking I'd vampirize the shutter.

And the same piece of 1930's metal gave up on reassembly : the arm with a prod used by the speed selector : snapped. I just can't beleive it. The first shutter that broke was one that was dropped. So I assumed metal fatigue. This one was bent, but I assumed it was OK and didn't really worry about it until I realized I had just two speeds on reassembly.