View Full Version : wider angle than 90mm question

8-Feb-2002, 13:56
hi over the past few months i have asked some questions about various lenses with a focal length below 90mm. i was wondering if there is a database or website &c, that basicly list some of the non -schneider, non-rodenstock lenses that are wide - 75 or 65mm - and will cover a 4x5 negative. as you can probably tell i am looking for something more like a volkswagon rather than a rolls royce ... ( maybe something like an ilex - if it ever existed in that focal lenght .. ) as always, thanks for your help .. - john

Todd Caudle
8-Feb-2002, 17:29
There's lots of info on this very site about modern and classic lenses for 4x5. Have you checked those resources? Scroll down to "Lenses" on the opening page.

Erik Ryberg
8-Feb-2002, 17:47

I think you are pretty much stuck with the f18 protars (hmm, did they make an f18 protar wider than 90 mm? Maybe not) and the, um, hmm, well, non-Schneider? Was there a goerz wide-angle dagor wider than 4 inches? Your cheapest bet is going to be the 65 mm Schneider Super-Angulon, which actually isn't that much on ebay, but only barely covers 4x5 and some say is too soft on the edges. Mine was fine on the edges, but I gave up trying to focus a lens that wide at f8 on a puny little 4x5 camera. The regular f6.8 angulon 65mm might cover 6x12, I don't know.

Otherwise it is going to be the newer offerings from any of the modern lensmakers. If what you really care about is going wide and you don't want to spend thousands to do it, you can go up in format with a cheap 8x10 camera, shoot two 4x10s on each sheet of film, and use a protar or angulon. The "6x8" f18 protar is about 140 mm and it (barely) covers an 8x10 plate at infinity. Not bad for a lens designed in the late 1800s, and they're available under a hundred bucks from time to time. Have fun focusing that puppy though! I can only use mine on really sunny days after eating a bag of carrots.

If you want to go wider than 90 mm on a 4x5 camera, I think you pretty much have to use modern or at least semi-modern glass.

Terence McDonagh
8-Feb-2002, 23:27
I know Wollensak made a 65mm Raptar, but I can't remember if it covered all of a 4x5, or just 6x9.

Bag of carrots . . . hehehe. Have to remember that one.

9-Feb-2002, 16:29
hi again - before i posted the question i scoured the lens topics ( 700+ threads) to see if i could find the answer to my question without posting the question ... i guess i will have to save my 1?'s and get a super angulon ... :)

thanks again for your suggestions. -john

Darin Cozine
5-Mar-2004, 11:01
J, Ilex did make a few 65m lenses for 4x5. I have a 65mm wide field paragon that covers nicely. Someone else told me they had an ilex acu-wide that covered. Also, there are some 65mm caltars which cover 4x5. However all of these lenses are hard to find. so my suggestion is to go for the SA or grandagon and dont look back. -Oh, I think wollensak also made an extreme wide angle raptar, but it was f12 or something.

Dan Fromm
5-Mar-2004, 12:01
Darin, what do you mean by "covers nicely?" IIRC, the 65/8 Ilex covers 153 mm, about the same as the 65/8 Super Angulon. "Barely covers" 4x5 seems more appropriate.



Kerry L. Thalmann
5-Mar-2004, 12:07

There are a few older single coated wide angle lenses in the 65mm - 75mm range that will cover 4x5. As mentioned, the 65mm f8 Super Angulon just barely covers (Schneider specs the image circle at 155mm). These can generally be had for $250- $300 depending on age and condition. The 65mm f8 Caltar WII is a Super Angulon in Caltar clothing. It has the advantage of being later production in a Copal shutter and with lighter weight aluminum barrels, but still single coated (late 65mm f8 SAs are also available in this style, but they are harder to find and usually command a higher price). Another one to look for is the 65mm f8 Fujinon SW. Similar specs to the 65mm f8 SA.

For a little more coverage, the 75mm focal length would be a better choice. Again, the same two lenses f8 Super Angulon and f8 Fujinon SW would be good economical choices. The SA is more plentiful. If you can find one, and the price is right, try to get a later sample in a Copal shutter with the black aluminum front barrel. Prices range from about $250 - $350 depending on age and condition. While not as common, the 75mm F8 Fujinon SW is lighter and more compact, but usually commands higher prices. Both lenses have image circles in the 180 - 181mm range. Another 75mm to consider is the 75mm f6.3 Komura Super Wide. It's a HUGE lens, but fairly cheap. And, it's a retrofocus design which makes it a better choice for cameras that can't use a bag bellows or have other difficulties using lenses this wide.

Finally, if you can afford to spend a little bit more, I recommend the 75mm f6.8 Grandagon-N/Caltar II-N twins. These are multicoated, have a tad more coverage (187mm image circle) and come in modern, reliable Copal shutters. They are also fairly plentiful on the used market. While asking prices vary on used samples, and can be as much as $600, if you shop around and are patient, these can be had for as little as $450. The Caltar generally goes for a little less than the Rodenstock (they are the SAME lens). This is the wide angle lens I usually recommend to people one a limited budget. Althoug it lacks the coverage of other current 75s, in addition to being more affordable, it is also smaller and lighter - which makes it a good match for a lightweight field camera.

One other thing to consider... If you shoot color transparency film with lenses this wide on 4x5, you may also find a center filter indispensible. That can add considerably to the cost. One nice thing about these older, slower wide angles is that they take smaller filters, which means the center filters are usually less expensive. The problem is finding them in some of these small sizes. In addition to the manufacturers' own brand center filters, Heliopan also makes them in sizes down to at least 52mm, perhaps smaller.