View Full Version : Fujinon A 1:9/300 Lens

3-Sep-2008, 03:42
In doing what due diligence I can on the equipment in Ted's studio that I have to sell (which usually means searching the info here!), I ran across this from Kerry in 2001, on the "Fujinon SW 1:9/300". Is this the same lens?

I can't find anything in papers or correspondence on where Ted's came from or why he had it, but I wonder if its use and desirability have morphed since that time. Very hard to find info on it, so I'm not entirely sure where interest in it would lie today, if anywhere.

Thoughts or info, anyone? Thanks!

This is a VERY rare, VERY huge lens with ENORMOUS coverage. I don't think there was ever much of a market for an ultrawide lens for the 18"x22" format (at least not in the mid to late 1970s). I think this lens may have been Fuji's way of showing the world that they could design and build LF lenses like nobody else. It came out at a time when Fuji was new to the LF lens business, and was probably intended to make quite the statement about their design and manufacturing prowess.

Here's a few of the sketcky details I have on this lens. In most of the literature I have, both Fujinon brochures and D.O. Industries price lists, if is listed as a 300mm f8 lens. However, in a couple pieces (see table below) and in all actual pictures of the lens (I've never seen one in person), it is clearly labled "Fujinon SW 1:9/300.

Specs: Covering Power (f22): 100? Image circle (f22): 720mm Recommended film size: 18"x22" Shutter Type: Copal #3 Smallest Aperture: f64 Designed Focal Length: 298.5mm Front Barrel Outer Diameter: 150mm Filter Size: 145mm 0.75 pitch Rear Barrel Outer Diameter: 140mm Length of Lens: 215.5mm Flange Focal Length: 325.3mm Weight: 3250g (7.15 lb.)

It is listed in the following references that I have:

Fujinon Lenses for Professional Use: 5/75 (f9) Fujinon Professional Lenses: 3/76 (f8) Fujinon Professional Lenses: 11/76 (f8) Fujinon Professional Lenses: 10/77 (f8) Fujinon Professional Lenses: 4/78 (f8) Fujinon Lenses D.O Industries Price List: August 15, 1979 (f8) Fujinon Lenses D.O Industries Price List: March 1, 1980 (f8)

D.O. Industries - Fujinon Professional Series Lenses for Every Photographic Purpose: undated (f9)

It is NOT listed in:

Fujinon Lenses D.O Industries Price List: January 1, 1977 (but shown on the cover illustration) Fujinon Professional Lenses: 1/79

So, it appeared in the official Fujinon literature from at least 5/75 - 4/78 and was discontinued prior to 1/79. It continued to be listed in the D.O. Industries price lists up until at least March 1, 1980 (probably selling remaining existing inventory). Unfortunately, there is no price listed (price upon request).

Like I said, I've never actually seen one of these in person, and I've never seen one advertised for sale. If you happen to find one somewhere, let me know. I'm not interested in buying one (I couldn't afford it, nor do I need it), but I would like to know a little more about this rare lens from someone who has seen, or better yet, used one.


Steve Goldstein
3-Sep-2008, 04:44
The 300mm Fujinon-A and 300mm Fujinon-SW are very, very different lenses. The "A" is in a Copal 1 shutter (it should say so on the front) and weighs a bit less than a pound altogether. The "SW" is much bigger and heavier, and comes in a Copal 3 shutter, which should also be labeled as such. If the shutters are not labeled, a Copal 1 has a maximum speed marking of 400 (1/400 second), while a Copal 3 tops out at 125 (i.e. 1/125 second). According to the tables at http://members.aol.com/subgallery/byseries.htm it is an f/8 lens (the A is f/9) and the front would be nearly 6" in diameter. In contrast, the A takes a 57mm lens cap, which is a bit less than 2.5" diameter.

The A is a desirable lens in its own right as it has quite a large image circle (420mm, according to Fuji's specs), and is a very fine performer. This gives is 40mm more coverage than the newer (and smaller, and lighter) 300mm f/8.5 Fujinon-C that is still available.

3-Sep-2008, 04:50
Steve, thank you! I'll continue looking for info on the one I have with these distinctions in mind... I appreciate your taking the time.

Ken Lee
3-Sep-2008, 05:03
I got one of these lenses, on Ted's recommendation, and it's superb. The filter size, incidentally, is 55mm.

I discuss it a little, with some sample images, on this page (http://www.kenleegallery.com/html/tech/index.html#300A).

3-Sep-2008, 05:16
Thanks, Ken, very helpful! Now that I know what I'm really dealing with, I can evaluate offers for the lens and even answer a few questions about it!

3-Sep-2008, 10:59
Just as a minor side note....
All of the modern Copal shutters in which I have seen Fuji lenses monted have simply been marked "Copal". None of the Fuji-Copal shutters have been marked with the more common generic "Copal 1", "Copal 3", etc...

I was surprised to see the Fuji 300mm A series lens dropped from the product list at Badger Graphic...they still list the 180mm and 240mm lenses in the A series but the 30mm is gone. Perhaps, it was loosing ground to the 300mm Fujinon-C?

Darren Kruger
3-Sep-2008, 11:10
I was surprised to see the Fuji 300mm A series lens dropped from the product list at Badger Graphic...they still list the 180mm and 240mm lenses in the A series but the 30mm is gone. Perhaps, it was loosing ground to the 300mm Fujinon-C?

Didn't Fuji stop production of the 300A back in the 90s? I think the 180A and 240A are still being made.


3-Sep-2008, 11:33
Didn't Fuji stop production of the 300A back in the 90s? I think the 180A and 240A are still being made.


Could be. I really don't know. Frankly, the whole Fuji lens product line fascinates me. I have owned and still own several Fujinon lenses and they are in my experience superior to most everything else out there and yet, they seem to pass under the radar....

Fuji, in typical Japanese style, continuously improve in small increments. They employ innovative designs and modern manufacturing processes and materials. Their marketing is understated and intelligent. Just a real class act. I kinda feel that way about Nikon too though.

I'm just speculating but, since the 300mm Fujino-A has six elements in four groups and the 300mm Fujinon-C has four elements in four groups, and since they are roughly the same size and nearly identical max aperature, I suspect that it simply wasn't practical to continue to produce both. Perhaps, the 6-4 design cost more to manufacture and was therefore a natural choice to be discontinued....

Sure is a sweet little lens. I am sorely tempted....but, the bathroom remodel is underway and my accountant has clamped down on all discretionary spending for a couple more months. :)

Ken Lee
3-Sep-2008, 11:39
Another nice thing about the Fujinon A series: they have very nice blur, or bokeh, when shot wide open.

This image (http://www.kenleegallery.com/images/portraits/9.jpg) was made with the 300, at f/9.

Eric Leppanen
3-Sep-2008, 11:55
Here is some additional information from Kerry's web site (the last link is the datasheet for the Fuji AS (same as the A) series, including the 300mm version):


The Fuji 300A and 360A were discontinued years ago. The 180A and 240A are still available new.

Don Hutton
3-Sep-2008, 12:01
Price wise, $1750 and $900 would be accurate going rates for close to pristine multicoated examples of the 360 and 300 respectively. The 300s are much more common than the 360s. Unlike the 180 and 240, the 300 and 360 were expensive lenses when they were produced. All are excellent performers with large image circles for their focal lengh, in addition to being lightweight and compact.

3-Sep-2008, 14:09
This could really be the work of a lifetime... it utterly reinforces my awe of all of you who get this information under control as you do.

I think it would be very interesting to try to look at whether there's really a strike-point between quality and price that wavers up and down in economically different times, like most products, or whether there's so much passion about lenses (and a few other items that seem to make for a very complex market) that sellers do what they want and just wait for the right ecstatic zealot to come along?

In any event, thank you all again for my latest crash course. Next come the Nikons and the Schneiders! :)

5-Sep-2008, 05:52
let's not forget about the grandparents of the fujinon "A" family, the 600mm A and the 1200mm(!) A lenses! should any of you have a picture of the 1200mm please share! :)