View Full Version : Computar Symmetrigon 180mm f6.3

Craig Tuffin
11-Dec-2008, 01:01
I have the opportunity to purchase a "new" , still boxed (believe it or not) Computar Symmetrigon 180mm f6.3 lens. The box is a bit ratty from sitting on a shelf but it's definitely in pristine condition with no fungus etc.

I've read the threads on this forum and have soaked up the hype about the image circle of these lenses but before I purchase, I was wondering how much it would be worth today (I can get it for $250US) and should I purchase it or go for one of the newer multicoated lenses for image quality...or does the room for movements 'win out'?
(mind you I'm working with 4x5 not 8x10 remember)



11-Dec-2008, 01:22
My experience is with the Computar Symmetrigon 210mm f6.3 (used on 5x7 -- does not have the coverage for 8x10). The Symmetrigons have a coverage of 72 degrees and are made of four air spaced, multicoated, elements. My 210mm was very sharp and the dedicated metal lens shade was nice. If the 180mm is anything like my 210, you will be very happy with it. I usually use my lenses stopped down for depth of field, and the Symmetrigons performed excellent there. Symmetrigons are a "newer multicoated lens" (early 1970's)-- but the image circle of the Symmetrigons are ordinary -- not spectacular like the non-Symmetrigon Computar lenses. My guess is that the 180mm Symmetrigon would cover 5x7 with limited movements...but be an excellent 4x5 lens.

The 210mm was in a Copal 1...what is the 180mm in? These days, a new Copal shutter alone would be worth about the $250. It sounds to be a good price for an unused 180mm Symmetrigon. I have a late FujiW 300mm, Red Dot Artars, Rodenstock 150mm/f5.6, and a couple other lenses. The contact prints from the 210mm Symmetrigon are sharper than any of the others.


Craig Tuffin
11-Dec-2008, 02:44
Thanks Vaughn,

This lens has the copal 1 as well....seems the same from the 150mm to the 210mm. I like the sound of "the contact prints are sharper than any of my other lenses"...I think I'll grab it :)


Thierry Schreiner
11-Dec-2008, 05:09

I love the Computar Symmetrigons. I use the 150 and 210mm Symmetrigons and they are absolutely great. Sharp as hell. The price is ok, too. Just grab it, you won't regret it.

Funny, as I posted a thread 3 days ago as I am looking to get the 180mm.

So if you have the possibility to get 2 of them, let me know, i'll take it. :rolleyes:

Best regards


Craig Tuffin
11-Dec-2008, 06:16
Will do Thierry. Maybe he's got another hidden away :-)



11-Dec-2008, 12:58
They were once a relatively unknown and unappreciated lens...and were more in the $150 range on ebay. I would not be surprised if people were buying them just for the shutters.

I got mine with a kit...a brand new Raja 4x5 (exact knock-off of a Deardorf Special from India), and a new 210mm Symmetrigon. This was bought at a San Diego camera store in 1980...for $525 if I remember right. The Raja 4x5 camera back ended up being junk, but with a Deardorf 5x7 back, it became a very nice set-up.