View Full Version : 65 mm/5.6 SA sharp enough at f8 or f11?

Henry Carter
13-Jan-2010, 19:20
I have acquired a 4x5 Linhof Technar (similar to a Sinar Handy) with a 65 mm 5.6 Super Angulon lens.

It is basically a simple 4x5 camera with a grip built around a wide angle lens on a focus-mount on a cone shaped lens board. There are no bellows, and no movements. You can either compose and focus on the ground-glass, or guestimate the focus and compose in the top mounted viewfinder.

It is a camera that begs to be used for hand-held reportage, and so my question is how wide can you go with the 65 mm/5.6 SA lens and still achieve decent enough focus? I know that it will be fine at f16 or f22, but what about f11 or even f 8?

Thanks for your input.

Peter K
14-Jan-2010, 01:25
The Technar is intended as hand-held camera. With the 65mm lens for use with a 2 1/4 x 2 3/4" Super-Rollex RF film-holder. Also at f/5.6 the SA is a sharp lens but the DOF is small. So set the lens with it's helical focusing mount on the hyperfocal distance (http://www.dofmaster.com/custom.html) for the f-stop in use. The helical focusing mount has a DOF indicator.

Have fun


Bob Salomon
14-Jan-2010, 04:35
We never had any complaints regarding the performance of this combination on 4x5. But you will probably want the center filter for the lens. Do you have the version with the solenoid release or the cable release?

14-Jan-2010, 05:36
I wasn't acquainted with this camera, so I did a search-
and was rewarded with this entertaining thread from the archives...


I use this lens on a DIY P&S-
unfortunately, as soon as I made the final version,
the Compur shutter broke, and it's now been back for repair three times-

So I don't have as many pictures from it as I'd like,
and I missed all of Christmas, and a visit to the UK-

It might need a centre filter if you're shooting chromes,
but for neg film I find it unnecessary-

I've got to admit to not using it wide open, I usually stop it down to /16 minimum-
as much for the increase in dof as for the increased resolution-

I've seen reports of a test of this lens, where 30 lp/mm was the result at /16 or 22, can't remember-
not overly impressive- but I reckon that my sample does a little better than that,
though that's not on the basis of any kind of scientific testing-

Here's a recent one, and a detail- the detail is 3200 Epson DPI on a V750 on Fomapan 200.
A long exposure, nighttime, I think around 40 sec @ /11



And while we're at it, here's my Flintstones version of the camera,
for the sake of completeness...
though I have shown it here before, so, sorry about that-


Henry Carter
14-Jan-2010, 06:10
Outstanding Joseph!

The focusing mount does indeed have a focus scale, making guestimating on the fly very easy. Thank-you for the link to the Hyperfocal Chart, it is excellent!

The lens has a cable release, not a solenoid, and I was able to order 6x9 and 6x12 viewfinder masks (for 65 mm) to use with my roll-film backs (I have a Linhof Master Technika with lots of goodies).

One nice thing about the Technar is that it forces you to go out with one camera and one lens and shoot in a new way. It is compact, portable, light, and the viewfinder accurately depicts what you would see on the ground glass.

Many thanks again to this Forum for rapid, comprehensive, and credible responses.

14-Jan-2010, 06:12
Joseph, isn't that in fact a f/8 65mm rather than the f/5.6 65mm?

14-Jan-2010, 06:28
Dave, of course, you're right-
sorry about that-

Still, at least it looked like a credible response, even though it wasn't...

Henry Carter
14-Jan-2010, 06:36
I remember the 2004 Technar fiasco well that jb7 alluded to above. I find it hard to believe that over 5 years have flown bye. One thing is clear, Linhof will probably never produce the Technar again, so I am glad that I finally have one.

The closest current production camera to the Technar is the ALPA 12, but it is a MF camera, not a 4x5. It is however a wonderfully engineered gem!

Long live the Technar! Long live hand-held 4x5 photography!