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newmoon2night
7-Feb-2008, 05:05
I currently have a Nikon 90mm, Nikon 120mm macro and Schneider 150mm lens for use on an Ebony 5x4, and am looking at getting a longer lens ... but not too long, and not too heavy!

It's for landscapes rather than portraits.

I'm not sure whether 210mm is too near the 150mm to make very much difference, or whether I should go for a 240mm or even 300mm.

The Ebony I have is an SW45, but I also have the extension back, so have 270mm of extension.

I also (a complete impulse buy that I shouldn't really have made, but it was under 45% of new price and is pretty close to mint!) just bought on eBay an Ebony SV45TE, which has much more extension at 445mm.

I'm planning on keeping one of the Ebonys, but haven't decided which will stay and which will go yet. My hunch at the moment is the SW45 will probably stay, as it gives me an easier option of getting a 75mm (I'd have to change the bellows on the SV45TE I think), and it's lighter and looks easier to operate.

I favour Nikon lenses really, and have been following two 300mm F/5.6 lenses, but would imagine these are pretty big and heavy (I think they are Copal 3).

My budget is up to 400 ($800), and if used would want a pretty mint condition lens.

So any suggestions for the lens I should go for?

Thanks.

Jim Becia
7-Feb-2008, 05:21
I currently have a Nikon 90mm, Nikon 120mm macro and Schneider 150mm lens for use on an Ebony 5x4, and am looking at getting a longer lens ... but not too long, and not too heavy!

It's for landscapes rather than portraits.

I'm not sure whether 210mm is too near the 150mm to make very much difference, or whether I should go for a 240mm or even 300mm.

The Ebony I have is an SW45, but I also have the extension back, so have 270mm of extension.

I also (a complete impulse buy that I shouldn't really have made, but it was under 45% of new price and is pretty close to mint!) just bought on eBay an Ebony SV45TE, which has much more extension at 445mm.

I'm planning on keeping one of the Ebonys, but haven't decided which will stay and which will go yet. My hunch at the moment is the SW45 will probably stay, as it gives me an easier option of getting a 75mm (I'd have to change the bellows on the SV45TE I think), and it's lighter and looks easier to operate.

I favour Nikon lenses really, and have been following two 300mm F/5.6 lenses, but would imagine these are pretty big and heavy (I think they are Copal 3).

My budget is up to 400 ($800), and if used would want a pretty mint condition lens.

So any suggestions for the lens I should go for?

Thanks.

Just a personal opininion, but I would keep the SV45TE, it allows use of lenses from 75 to 450. I know because I use those on mine. The extra bellows extension is a must for me as I like using longer lenses. I have a 75 for my SV45TE and used it just last week. The only "requirement" is dropping the bed which was simple. I have the mahogany version of the SV45TE so my camera is fairly light compared the the Ebony wood version. As for the 300, the Nikkor 300 F9 is a gem, lightweight and sharp. Jim

BarryS
7-Feb-2008, 05:27
`I'm putting together my system and so far I also have 90mm and 150mm lenses. I'm in the process of getting both 240mm and 300mm lenses, but if I was only getting one it would be the 240mm. I'd check out the 240mm Fujinon A f/9, 300mm Fujinon A f/9 and the Nikon 300M (as above). All have excellent reputations and are compact for field use.

IanG
7-Feb-2008, 05:28
Look for a Nikon 300mm f9, I've had one for some years now and it's a great performer and light weight. But any 300mm lens would only be suitable for the SV45TE.

Your other option is to find a tele lens, but most available S/H in the UK are usually quite old.

Ian

Walter Calahan
7-Feb-2008, 05:57
My natural jump in seeing goes 90, 150 & 210, so no, I don't believe the 210 is too close to a 150.

Like any gas attack, once you get a 210 or 240, you'll need something a little longer, and then longer, and then longer. Enjoy the discoveries with your new lens whatever it is.

Ron Marshall
7-Feb-2008, 06:18
200/210 is not too close to 150, but 240 would also be fine.

I would go either 210, 300 or 240.

For the 240 the Fuji 240mm f9 can't be beat. For the 210 I have a Nikon 200mm f8, tiny, 180g, sharp, contrasty.

Eric James
7-Feb-2008, 07:28
I also shoot 4X5, and with so little real estate I hate to crop. This "zoom with your feet" principle is ill-founded for landscapes - I know when I've found my tripod holes and I want the proper focal length in my pack to match the vision. I shot with a 150mm and 240mm for two years and often found myself wanting a focal length between the two. I found a Nikon 200mm f8 and I'm now happy with the progression. Now there's the conspicuous void between 110mm and 150mm. 90,110,135,150,200,240,300 might seem too close, but with such a small transparency I feel I have to have the right lens.

In your case, I think that you should make the camera decision first, and then come back to the advise in this thread.

Brian Ellis
7-Feb-2008, 07:48
I owned a 150 and a 210 for many years and found that I almost never used the 150. For me they were too close. If you think of it in 35mm terms, it's roughly like owning a 50mm and a 70mm lens. Would you have bought those two focal lengths in your 35mm days (if you had any)? As for a lens, for your purposes the 300mm Nikon M is hard to beat. It's f9 but with a lens that long f9 is no problem for viewing on the ground glass. The Nikon is light, sharp, and well within your budget ($400 - $500 or so). I've owned one for years and wouldn't part with it.

Ole Tjugen
7-Feb-2008, 08:02
I use 150mm slightly more often than 165mm, 180mm, or 210mm. I use the 240mm a bit more, but that's partly because it also gets used on larger formats. I also use 65mm, 80mm, 90mm, 105mm, 120mm, 135mm, 270mm, 300mm, 355mm, 360mm and 420mm.

There's difference enough between one length and the next that I consider it worth owning all of these (and more); and enough that I'm also considering a 75mm to fill in the largest gap.

BarryS
7-Feb-2008, 08:18
These discussions always go around in circles because you have the guys that like a series of twelve lenses and the guys with two lenses who're perfectly content. I've decided that the only sane policy is to buy used lenses in excellent condition at a reasonable price and try them on for size. If they don't fit, you can sell at very little (or no) loss.

Ole Tjugen
7-Feb-2008, 08:33
I've never really got the hang of that "selling" bit, but apart from that I agree with Barry. :)

mrladewig
7-Feb-2008, 08:34
I'm like Ole, in that I agree with Barry except for the selling part.

I've got a 65, 125, 150 and 210. I plan to add a 90 and 180.

So no, I don't think that 150 and 210 are too close and the 210 I recently purchased has quickly become one of my favorite focal lengths.

I backpack and day hike with my gear, and when I do, I'll only take 3 lenses at the most. If I need something in between, I'll crop, but this way I can have the best match for the scene that I anticipate I'll shoot. I use my topo application to figure out which focal lengths I'll need in advance.

Ralph Barker
7-Feb-2008, 09:01
I agree that these "favorite" threads tend to be circular in nature, because everyone "sees" slightly differently. The OP needs to sift through the opinions and then guess about which group he or she might fall within.

That said, my experience was that after I bought a 210/5.6, the 150/5.6 saw little use. Then, I bought a 240/9 G-Claron for use on both 4x5 and 8x10. The larger, heavier 210 now mostly stays at home, sorrowfully wishing it could feed on a few photons.

mrladewig
7-Feb-2008, 09:57
Ralph, you're right that many people will have different views on this. I think some background information on both how he wants to use a lens and how we use our lenses would be most helpful to him.

While I don't feel the same about cropping a 4X5 shot as Eric, I also shoot landscapes, also have limitations to the "zoom with your feet" paradigm. I also feel that having the "right" field of view for a shot you've envisioned is extremely helpful. I'm my opinion, the normal 30mm steps in 4X5 lenses are not too close together, but I will not carry every lens I own on every trip, its just too much weight. I think it would difficult to justify 10mm differences from a field of view perspective, but 30mm is acceptable and meaningful separation for me and the difference between 150mm and 210mm is significant.

In 35mm, I shoot with a zoom lens for landscape shots. I know what focal lengths I tend to use most often. I also know that from my own photography, I wouldn't have much need for a 4X5 lens longer than 210mm, so a 240 or 300mm lens is pretty far down on my list.

newmoon2night
7-Feb-2008, 14:30
A broad base of opinions can be confusing, but in this case I find isn't a bad thing. Maybe in time I end up getting two or three lenses ... something like a 210, 240 and 300 ...I don't know at the moment.
I think my course of action will be to shortlist three or so lenses that I'm interested in, and the first good one that comes up at a decent price will be the one I start with.
Ralph mentions the 240mm G-Claron, which by coincidence I was offered by the person from whom I 've just bought the SV45-TE. He wants 260 ($520) for it ... does that sound reasonable? He says he's had it from new and little used.
The Ebony I bought from him doesn't look very used at all, with just some scratches on the tripod plate. That was until I very carefully unpacked it and the focusing glass protector plate fell off and a corner broke off! It's plastic and the newer ones are metal now ... a replacement will cost me about 10 from Robert Whites, but it will be a few weeks before they get them in. Does anyone know anyone else who stock them?After that I took fright and will have a proper look at the camera when I have quiet and peace! I've printed of the instructions from the Ebony website in the hope that I don't break it in opening it the wrong way!

thetooth
7-Feb-2008, 17:59
i have a 250mm 6.3 fuijinon that i am very happy with . so that makes my list 90mm , 150mm , 250mm . the 250mm was the right price at the right time so that made up my mind for me .

good luck in your search

tim

Brian Ellis
7-Feb-2008, 20:42
"Does anyone know anyone else who stock them?"

I don't know whether it's feasible for you to buy from the U.S. but Calumet and Canham both make ground glass protectors. I didn't have an Ebony protector for my SV45 TE so I don't know how the ones from Calumet and Canham compare but I've owned both and prefer the one from Canham (which can be ordered from Badger Graphic) just because it seems a little more sturdy and maybe offers better protection than the one from Calumet.

newmoon2night
7-Feb-2008, 21:54
Yes, perfectly feasible to order from US, I do it regularly, and got my spotmeter from Calumet, and Nikon 90mm from B&H (in both cases literally ordered online Friday evening and they arrived Monday morning!).
I'll check those out.

John Kasaian
7-Feb-2008, 22:02
The 240 G Claron is a fine lens! How long you want to go depends to a great amount on how much bellows you've got to work with. Happy hunting :)

newmoon2night
7-Feb-2008, 22:19
[QUOTE=mrladewig;317266]

... and the 210 I recently purchased has quickly become one of my favorite focal lengths.

mrladewig
8-Feb-2008, 09:38
thanks for advice - which 210 did you get please?



... and the 210 I recently purchased has quickly become one of my favorite focal lengths.

I have a Fujinon 210/5.6 W bought used from a member here. Its the newer EBC type with lettering on the outside of lens in a silver ring Copal shutter, which should date it as roughly mid 80s. They seem to run around $250 on ebay and that is what I paid for mine.

On the downside, the 210 W is pretty heavy and large compared to my other lenses. On the upside, its very bright through the viewfinder and easy to focus.

So far, it seems like this focal length will work well for me and I think I'll get alot of use out of this lens.

Nick_3536
8-Feb-2008, 11:21
If you don't want too heavy you've ruled out the F/5.6 300mm.

So you're either looking at a slower 300mm or something shorter. I have a 210mm Fuji-W [first type] which I don't think is too heavy. I also have a Komura Commerical 210mm F/6. something I think. It's relatively tiny with I think 46mm filters [or is it's 52mm?] The Fuji covers a lot more but the Komura is cheap and cheerful and best of all tiny. Coupled with a tiny 150mm like my Fuji-W I've got a two lens set that weighs less then many single lenses. Light enough that carrying a third lens isn't an issue.

Ole Tjugen
8-Feb-2008, 11:40
You might be able to find a Schneider Xenar 210mm f:6.1 within your budget. If you do, I would advise you to buy it - it's a marvellous little lens!

Note that the Xenar 210mm f:4.5 is not a little lens - it's larger than both the Symmar 210mm f:5.6 and the G-Claron 210mm f:9.

The Xenar has less coverage than the others have mentioned, but sufficient for all but the very worst cases (on 4x5").

Hany Aziz
9-Feb-2008, 00:54
210 mm is not too close to 150 mm. It is my second most used focal length after 135 mm. Moreover since it was, and remains, a very popular focal length for 4x5 there is easy availability of many used lenses from all the 4 big lens companies at very reasonable prices. I do use my Nikkor 300 f9 lens also a fair bit but I would get the 210 first before going even longer.

Sincerely,

Hany.

Anthony Lewis
9-Feb-2008, 04:29
All I can say is what I use, and I am very happy with my lens choices. I have the 80mmSS Schneider, 110mmSS Schneider, 150mmL Schneider, 240mm Fuji, and 450mm Fuji. If one looks at the horizontal angles between these lenses, there is a fairly equal progression.
I feel if you get lenses too close together then you are just carrying too much, and it will be confusing. Too much gear, not enough art or enjoyment!
However I must say, I am amazed at how often I end up using my Fuji 240mm. It is one of my most used lenses and you will not be dissapointed if you buy it.

neil poulsen
10-Feb-2008, 23:57
Personally, I don't see that 210mm and 150mm are too close. Between 240mm and 210mm, I would recommend the 210mm. Lately, they've been very reasonably priced on EBay, under $400.

I think my next one would be a 300mm. (Or, maybe a 355mm or 360mm.) There's a 300mm Nikon M that's small. Or, the 305mm G-Claron. Or, the 300mm Rodenstock Geronar. These are in the smaller #1 shutters, versus the larger #3.