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Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 06:42
170431915256

Dan Fromm
21-Jan-2010, 07:05
Eh? Wot? Why do you think it might be a fake?

Who would bother to fake such a common pedestrian lens?

Oren Grad
21-Jan-2010, 07:21
Why do you think it might be a fake?

For one thing, because the labeling on the lens doesn't match the Schneider house style for any generation of any Symmar type.

And the late-model blackface Copal is not contemporaneous for a plain Symmar (though the cells could have been transplanted).

And the front cell looks oddly proportioned, too (although that could partly be a result of photographing it too close with too short a focal length).

I wonder what it is...

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 07:27
For one thing, because the labeling on the lens doesn't match the Schneider house style for any generation of any Symmar type.

And the late-model blackface Copal is not contemporaneous for a plain Symmar (though the cells could have been transplanted).

And the front cell looks oddly proportioned, too (although that could partly be a result of photographing it too close with too short a focal length).

I wonder what it is...
I have seen a similar lens on Chinese forum. It was believed to be a Korean knock off. If you look carefully on the first image. The letter printed on the barrel is NOT "lens made in Germany" which is how Schneider would print.

Oren Grad
21-Jan-2010, 07:30
If you look carefully on the first image. The letter printed on the barrel is NOT "lens made in Germany" which is how Schneider would print.

That's right. That part is out of focus, so it's hard to make out exactly what it says, but it clearly doesn't match the Schneider standard. On my 135 Apo-Symmar, that part of the labeling says "LENS MADE IN GERMANY" on the top line, and the serial number below that.

BarryS
21-Jan-2010, 07:45
The lens also has a "multicoating" label. I don't believe Schneider introduced multicoating until a few years into the Symmar-S line. The early Symmar-S lenses were single coated, so how would a straight Symmar lens have a factory multicoating?

Oren Grad
21-Jan-2010, 07:53
The lens also has a "multicoating" label. I don't believe Schneider introduced multicoating until a few years into the Symmar-S line. The early Symmar-S lenses were single coated, so how would a straight Symmar lens have a factory multicoating?

That's right too. The whole thing is wrong - wrong wording in several ways, wrong (non-contemporaneous - a couple of decades off) typeface for a plain Symmar, wrong shutter, weird-looking front cell...

Lee Christopher
21-Jan-2010, 08:12
'LENS BY GERMANY' should be a dead give-away!

It apparently sold for US$355!

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 08:31
'LENS BY GERMANY' should be a dead give-away!

It apparently sold for US$355!

Very weird. Under the "Lens by Germany" line there is another one starting with "Product by.." and the last part is not legible. This seems to imply they bought lenses from Schneider and they were then assembled in Korea ?!

It still doesn't make sense to me to copy, counterfeit, or fake a) specifically a large format lens with a decidedly small market and not much collecting going on, at least compared to, say, 35mm Leitz and Zeiss glass, and b) a lens as common as a Symmar! A Biogon 75mm or an Apo-Lanthar fake would have made a bit more sense.

David McNiven
21-Jan-2010, 09:01
Credit where credit is due though - damn good job of faking the Schneideritis...

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 09:05
Credit where credit is due though - damn good job of faking the Schneideritis...

:D :D :D :D

Lee Christopher
21-Jan-2010, 10:16
Very weird. Under the "Lens by Germany" line there is another one starting with "Product by.." and the last part is not legible. This seems to imply they bought lenses from Schneider and they were then assembled in Korea ?!

It still doesn't make sense to me to copy, counterfeit, or fake a) specifically a large format lens with a decidedly small market and not much collecting going on, at least compared to, say, 35mm Leitz and Zeiss glass, and b) a lens as common as a Symmar! A Biogon 75mm or an Apo-Lanthar fake would have made a bit more sense.

Perhaps it was by someone who loves the idea of LF or LF gear, or just a specialist 'entrepreneur' looking at untapped markets? :D

Lee Christopher
21-Jan-2010, 10:17
Credit where credit is due though - damn good job of faking the Schneideritis...

Err ... maybe that WAS real? :D :D :D

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 10:33
Err ... maybe that WAS real? :D :D :D
maybe..lets spin this a bit further - assume some Korean company bought a bunch of coated and edge painted lens elements from Schneider, likely leftover lenses when they switched from the Symmar-S to the Apo-Symmar and assembled them in their own mounts just for sale on the home market? That would explain the Schneideritis (the edge painting that lifts off in spots) as this would have been done by Schneider; if they were Symmar-S lens elements that would explain the MC label and look and the black Copal since now we are talking later 1980's. Why is not named Symmar-S? Maybe Schneider did not allow it, to keep them from selling it elsewhere? This is all pure speculation of course...

walter23
21-Jan-2010, 11:07
I have seen a similar lens on Chinese forum. It was believed to be a Korean knock off. If you look carefully on the first image. The letter printed on the barrel is NOT "lens made in Germany" which is how Schneider would print.

But it has schneideritis!

Mike1234
21-Jan-2010, 11:29
No... that's chinaritis!!

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 12:55
Back home now, I pulled out the Symmar, Symmar-S, and Apo-Symmar lenses in my collection (210mm, not 150 though) and had another long look at those pictures in the ebay ad. The mounting style of the lens elements and the retainer rings in the cell, the taper of the back cell, the size relation of the front and back cells and the coating colors definitely make me think this is a rebadged multicoated Symmar-S, it all fits perfectly - plus the fact that I can't get my head around the notion of forging a lens like this, it does not make any sense to me. My Symmar-S also has the very same Schneideritis specks shown in the pictures, whereas both my Symmar and Apo-Symmar don't show it. Given the mounting similarities I suspect that Schneider at some point sold unlabeled Symmar-S lens cells (not just elements as I mentioned above) to some company that then relabeled them in clumsy English: the double labeling of "Lens by Germany" and "Product by ..." would corroborate that.

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 13:19
Back home now, I pulled out the Symmar, Symmar-S, and Apo-Symmar lenses in my collection (210mm, not 150 though) and had another long look at those pictures in the ebay ad. The mounting style of the lens elements and the retainer rings in the cell, the taper of the back cell, the size relation of the front and back cells and the coating colors definitely make me think this is a rebadged multicoated Symmar-S, it all fits perfectly - plus the fact that I can't get my head around the notion of forging a lens like this, it does not make any sense to me. My Symmar-S also has the very same Schneideritis specks shown in the pictures, whereas both my Symmar and Apo-Symmar don't show it. Given the mounting similarities I suspect that Schneider at some point sold unlabeled Symmar-S lens cells (not just elements as I mentioned above) to some company that then relabeled them in clumsy English: the double labeling of "Lens by Germany" and "Product by ..." would corroborate that.
Arne,
If Schneider won't allow them use the label Symmar-S, why would they allow them use Symmar? I mean they can use Symar, Symmer, Summer, whatever they like to use.

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 13:31
Arne,
If Schneider won't allow them use the label Symmar-S, why would they allow them use Symmar? I mean they can use Symar, Symmer, Summer, whatever they like to use.
The plain Symmar name was maybe not as problematic in competing with Schneider-badged lenses when Schneider themselves were selling the Symmar-S or the Apo-Symmar? Or they used it without permission after they already had the cells? I don't know. Does anybody know if Schneider lenses were officialy sold in S. Korea in the late 1970's/early 1980's?

Obviously all of this is speculation...

rdenney
21-Jan-2010, 13:36
Is it possible that this is an older Symmar that was recoated (maybe only the front element) and with the barrel painted and engraved? I can picture the barrel as being chrome, making it an early Symmar. If they removed the retaining ring on the front cell (which is where the label resides on Symmar-Convertible-era lenses) and replaced it with a generic ring after applying a colorful coating to the front element, and then painted the outer barrel black, they would be able to engrave through the paint the label we see. It would be a real Symmar, with real Schneideritis, and a way for a small optical shop that might make, say, cheapie binoculars to make a quality camera lens with very little investment.

I have a 180mm Symmar Convertible and I ought to look at it to compare the barrel shape.

What I can't figure is why the price went so high.

Rick "who paid less than half that for the 180" Denney

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 13:43
OK, OK, I did some research... And Arne, this is for you :D :D
More puzzle...

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 13:46
It has NO serial number!

Oren Grad
21-Jan-2010, 13:56
Very interesting! If you google Symmar-Krishna, a bunch of links to Chinese and Korean pages come up.

There are other focal lengths. Look at this one, a 210 in a Copal Press:

http://new.sy916.net/details.php?image_id=42836&sessionid=eec4d77ca136945fa9232c4588832661

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 13:58
Is it possible that this is an older Symmar that was recoated (maybe only the front element) and with the barrel painted and engraved? I can picture the barrel as being chrome, making it an early Symmar. If they removed the retaining ring on the front cell (which is where the label resides on Symmar-Convertible-era lenses) and replaced it with a generic ring after applying a colorful coating to the front element, and then painted the outer barrel black, they would be able to engrave through the paint the label we see. It would be a real Symmar, with real Schneideritis, and a way for a small optical shop that might make, say, cheapie binoculars to make a quality camera lens with very little investment.

I have a 180mm Symmar Convertible and I ought to look at it to compare the barrel shape.

What I can't figure is why the price went so high.

Rick "who paid less than half that for the 180" Denney

Rick, the shape of the back cell doesn't fit a plain Symmar, the 150mm convertible Symmar (not the 210) had a straight cylindrical barrel as the back cell.

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 14:08
Songyun, thanks! That is great! So now its clear that they were "produced" in S. Korea. I don't think a forger would put that on there?! And after seeing the 210, I am sure, if its a fake they at least based it on the Symmar-S, not the plain Symmar.
But I still think it might be the South Korean equivalent of a "Caltar-S II".
The script for the standard "Symmar" and the "Multicoating" as well as the focal length is very similar to the Schneider one, although the slash between 5.6 and 210 or 150 has a different angle. Of course the Krishna-Symmar script is very different.

Songyun
21-Jan-2010, 14:15
Songyun, thanks! That is great! So now its clear that they were "produced" in S. Korea. I don't think a forger would put that on there?! And after seeing the 210, I am sure, if its a fake they at least based it on the Symmar-S, not the plain Symmar.
But I still think it might be the South Korean equivalent of a "Caltar-S II".
The script for the standard "Symmar" and the "Multicoating" as well as the focal length is very similar to the Schneider one, although the slash between 5.6 and 210 or 150 has a different angle. Of course the Krishna-Symmar script is very different.
I was also thinking about the Caltar-S II. It doesn't have serial numbers. However, it does have the "lens made in germany" sign.

rdenney
21-Jan-2010, 14:21
Rick, the shape of the back cell doesn't fit a plain Symmar, the 150mm convertible Symmar (not the 210) had a straight cylindrical barrel as the back cell.

My theory was already undermined by the pictures of the Symmar-Krishna.

Rick "shutting up now" Denney

Arne Croell
21-Jan-2010, 14:23
I was also thinking about the Caltar-S II. It doesn't have serial numbers. However, it does have the "lens made in germany" sign.

I assume Calumet bought complete lenses off the Schneider assembly line incl. the shutter. If we put any value on the "Product by "R.O.K." line, I interpret it such that the lens cells were put into the shutter in Korea, and probably some of the screen printing on the lens barrel was done there, too.

Lee Christopher
21-Jan-2010, 20:10
This is getting too weird for me ...

Kind of remind me (rather obliquely though) of the ironical situation in China or Korea where manufacturers of imitation goods were peeved that their imitations were being imitated and threatened to take the imitators of the imitated imitation goods to court!

Robert Hughes
21-Jan-2010, 20:17
If this is pushed too much, we'd put the entire Far East out of business... weren't the early Nikons blatant, part-for-part ripoffs of western designs?

Paul Ewins
21-Jan-2010, 22:37
I'm guessing that there was some sort of tariff/tax situation that made it viable to assemble (i.e. screw the cells into the shutter) in Korea rather than just buy complete units. The same person has sold a number of "Penta" brand Toyo clones and there was another brand as well, bot made in Korea, so it seems like there was some sort of Korean LF activity.

What I am surprised about is the final price, it does seem rather a lot for a Symmar-S.

lokomotiva
6-Mar-2010, 03:35
I bought one of these "Krishna Symmar" lenses from a Korean site on E-bay. It was sold as "Schneider Symmar Multicoating" and the displayed photos showed neither Krishna nor Schneider. Was surprised with a rather low winning bid of $255. Then I got the lens.
The lens looks clean, barrel has no scratches and the Copal0 shutter appears to be relatively new, although clearly slower at all speeds. On the outer side of the front element it is written: Symmar-KRISHNA 5.6/150 SYMMAR MULTICOATING, then in small letters: Lens by Germany / Product by R.O.K. Upon inquiry, the seller sent me this explanation:
"This afternoon I've advised by a Schneider's licensed lens dealer in my domestic.
Yes, You're right . It's a family version of SCHNEIDER KREUZNACH , made for Asian market -To Japan, Korea, China etc.

Sorry if you've confused with it. But I want to let you know, We Korean do value a Krishna as a Kreuznach because both are from Schneider's brand. And it makes a good image, not easily comparable to both of the output, many Korean commersial photo guys do shoot with Krishina version ( Krishina is a little cheaper than Kreusnach version) . Symmar is a brand as Caltar, Sinaron, But Kriahina Kreuznach are name of province of manufacturer - So they also call it as "a version".

Amazingly Lots of Schneider's lenses are made in a plant in Korea today, most photo guys know it's from Germany. No ! lots are from Korea !!"
I decided to return the lens. Not that I have anything against Korean products, but I would still rather go for German Schneider if I am sold one (even though it might have been made in Korea anyway...). I wonder what Schneider has to say about this?
Hope this helps.
p.s. I did not try the lens - I wish I could. Probably was o.k. Any experiences out there?

Arne Croell
6-Mar-2010, 08:30
I bought one of these "Krishna Symmar" lenses from a Korean site on E-bay. It was sold as "Schneider Symmar Multicoating" and the displayed photos showed neither Krishna nor Schneider. Was surprised with a rather low winning bid of $255. Then I got the lens.
The lens looks clean, barrel has no scratches and the Copal0 shutter appears to be relatively new, although clearly slower at all speeds. On the outer side of the front element it is written: Symmar-KRISHNA 5.6/150 SYMMAR MULTICOATING, then in small letters: Lens by Germany / Product by R.O.K. Upon inquiry, the seller sent me this explanation:
"This afternoon I've advised by a Schneider's licensed lens dealer in my domestic.
Yes, You're right . It's a family version of SCHNEIDER KREUZNACH , made for Asian market -To Japan, Korea, China etc.

Sorry if you've confused with it. But I want to let you know, We Korean do value a Krishna as a Kreuznach because both are from Schneider's brand. And it makes a good image, not easily comparable to both of the output, many Korean commersial photo guys do shoot with Krishina version ( Krishina is a little cheaper than Kreusnach version) . Symmar is a brand as Caltar, Sinaron, But Kriahina Kreuznach are name of province of manufacturer - So they also call it as "a version".

Amazingly Lots of Schneider's lenses are made in a plant in Korea today, most photo guys know it's from Germany. No ! lots are from Korea !!"
I decided to return the lens. Not that I have anything against Korean products, but I would still rather go for German Schneider if I am sold one (even though it might have been made in Korea anyway...). I wonder what Schneider has to say about this?
Hope this helps.
p.s. I did not try the lens - I wish I could. Probably was o.k. Any experiences out there?
The part about the Korean made Schneider lenses refers to the lenses on Samsung digital compact cameras which are made under license from Schneider - similar to the "Leica" lenses on Panasonic digital compacts being made in Japan. The lens cells of the one you had, however, would have been made by Schneider in Kreuznach, just screwed into a shutter in Korea - thats what "Lens by Germany / Product by R.O.K" means, I think.