View Full Version : Is Shorter Focal Length Fine Art Lens Possible?

Richard K.
8-Feb-2008, 09:04
Just wondering...if one kept the design (is it Dagor type?), could a 360 mm Schneider XXL be made? With the same angle of view (same design, ~80 deg), this would cover 14x17 nicely and might be as useful to produce for 8x20/12x20/14x17 owners as the current 550 and 1100 for 16x20/20x24 cameras? Are these (550/110) lenses made to order or is there an occasional run? Even the old 360 Symmar Convertible is speced to 500 mm IC (short of that required for 14x17) so a 360 f/6.8 XXL with an IC of 590mm or so would certainly be welcome for the above mentioned formats (but for the price! :eek: ), no?

Anyone from Schneider listening?


Dave Wooten
8-Feb-2008, 09:14
The 355 G Claron covers 14 x 17 nicely as does the 450 C Fugi also the Fugi C 600 covers with room to spare, nice compact lenses and readily available in copal 3 shutters.

For portraits the G Claron will cover 20 x 24 when "pulled"

Gene McCluney
8-Feb-2008, 09:30
Of course a Dagor type Fine Art XXL lens could be made in any focal length you want. The only question would be if there is enough market to make a production run.

Jim Noel
8-Feb-2008, 10:03
Dagors longer than 12" are somewhat frequently found for sale on various web sites. My 12" covers 7x17 beautifully, so a 14" or 15" will likely cover 12x20 and 14x17.

John Schneider
8-Feb-2008, 10:15
A 14" Dagor just sold on *bay for a bit over $700 (to Kerry Thalmann), so they are available if you are patient. Maybe a 360 Fujinon-A would also work for you?

Colin Graham
8-Feb-2008, 10:18
Then there's the 360mm Zeiss Dagor that went for $2358.33 (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=270204715961&ssPageName=STRK:MEWA:IT&ih=017). (flange extra, apparently)

Still, probably a third of what a fine art xxl might cost.

Really Big Cameras
8-Feb-2008, 10:26

The problem is there are already a lot of lenses on the used market in the 14"/355mm/360mm range capable of covering 14x17. I don't know if there are enough 14x17 (and 8x20 + 12x20) shooters to justify a production run of a 360mm Fine Art XXL.

As mentioned, the 355mm G Claron covers 14x17 with a bit to spare and in spite of the specs to the contrary, the 355mm/360mm Convertible Symmar covers with even more left over for movements. Then, of course, there is the classic 14" Dagor. While long Dagors have gotten rather expensive lately, a 14" Dagor will still cost considerably less than a new 360mm Fine Art XXL.

There are several other lenses in this focal length range that are reported to cover 8x20 that may also work on 14x17. This includes the 14" Blue Dot Trigor, the 360mm WA APO Nikkor, the 360mm APO Gerogon and the 360mm f6.3 Fujinon W. I don't have my 14x17 camera up and running yet, but when I do I plan to test all these lenses, and more, to see if they are usable on 14x17.

For more info on 14x17 wide angle options, you might find this thread (http://www.largeformatphotography.info/forum/showthread.php?t=29734) interesting.

Kerry Thalmann
Really Big Cameras

Richard K.
8-Feb-2008, 10:42

I don't have my 14x17 camera up and running yet, but when I do I plan to test all these lenses, and more, to see if they are usable on 14x17.

I can hardly wait!

I guess I knew that there are lots of options in the 360-450 mm range but I was wondering if they go soft in the corners? But this probably doesn't matter for contact prints? Definitely not $5000 worth :) ! Thanks for all replies and Kerry, let's get that camera going, eh! :) ..................

PS Kerry et al, on 14x17, would the 600 Fujinon CS be as sharp in the corners as the 550 XXL?

Ole Tjugen
8-Feb-2008, 10:48
That seems to be the problem for large format lens makers - their worst competitors are their own old lenses.

Both lenses and shutters are relatively simple, compatibility is near 100%, and just about everything can be repaired and/or modified. So making a 360mm Dagor-type lens today just doesn't make economical sense: There are still plenty in the market, especially after the repro industry crashed.