View Full Version : Are all 8x10 lenses going to be this BIG?

Robert Vigurs
6-May-2010, 18:59
I am new to 8x10. I purchased Symmar-S 360 elements for use in a Copal #3. My God, this thing is humungous! Are all the lenses for 8x10 going to be this massive? I like to backpack the 4x5, but I can see problems hiking with a 4lb lens here. I am amazed at the size of this! Is all this glass worth it? Does all this glass make a succinct image? Is this a lens worth hauling around? I can't believe the size. OK, I'm over it now. Robert

Frank Petronio
6-May-2010, 19:18
That's about the largest lens in its class and it is very good. But for example, even a large 14" Commercial Ektar (same focal length) is about half that size. And if you don't mind going to f/9 maximum aperture there are several other smaller 360mm lenses.

Don Dudenbostel
6-May-2010, 19:44
The new Schneider Apo Tele Xenar is very small and in a copal 1. I find the coverage exceeds Schneiders specs by a good bit and is exceptionally sharp and contrasty. The tradeoff for small size is slow speed at f11.

J Ney
6-May-2010, 21:19
It is a wider lens, but if backpacking is your objective then I would strongly suggest the fujinon 240mm A (f/9). It's a in a copal 0 and weighs about 1/2 lb.

My nikon-M 450mm in copal 3 isn't too bad either. Both are fairly light.

Michael Wynd
6-May-2010, 21:35
I have a Nikkor 300mm F9 lens for my 8x10, but a friend of mine with a 360mm put that on my camera just for me to see if I could carry it. The size difference is huge and it's only 60mm bigger. The fact that it's F5.6 as against F9 is not that big an issue for me, it's more the weight since I carry the camera anything up to 10 kilometres away from the car in rugged bush to get my photos.

6-May-2010, 23:02
Ditto what J Ney said: the 240 f/9 is the only lens I use for 8x10.

Armin Seeholzer
7-May-2010, 02:38
I use the APO Ronars 360 + 480mm on 8x10 and the 240 G - Glaron is also in my bag!

tim loose
7-May-2010, 04:12
Look at the Schneider G-claron 305, it is a nice, sharp, small lens.

Walter Calahan
7-May-2010, 04:30
My Rodenstock 360 mm is the largest lens in my kit, too. Not to worry.

Ken Lee
7-May-2010, 05:01
If you don't need a shutter-mounted lens, a 360mm APO Nikkor is very small. Takes 67mm filters. I have one of those, and it's razor sharp at all distances.

If you can find one, the 360m Fujinon A is also comparatively small. It takes only 58mm filters. And it's shutter mounted.

Or you can get a 300mm Fujinon A, which is shutter-mounted, has big coverage, takes only 55mm filters. You can simply crop a little. I have one of those, and it's really sharp.

From what I can tell, the Fujinon A lenses are some kind of modified process design: smaller and with less coverage than plasmats, but larger and with greater coverage, than dialytes. The sacrifice is that they open only to f/9, but the reward is that they deliver good coverage and excellent performance, in a rather small footprint.

7-May-2010, 05:17
For 8x10 there's not much in the 360mm focal length that is small - as Ken said the 360a fujinon is probably the smallest, although they are quite expensive - every one that I have seen has gone for 1200-1600$ lately. I have a 14" red dot artar f9 in an acme 4 shutter which is the largest lens in my 8x10 set, but it is considerably smaller than the 5.6 plasmats. Some other very compact lenses you may consider - 159mm wollensak, 240a fujinon, 300 f9 nikkor, and 450c fujinon - this is what rounds out my kit and all 5 lenses on 4" lensboards fit in a padded zippered case thats about 12x5x5.
You might also visit Kerry Thalmann's page here:

Len Middleton
7-May-2010, 06:34
Another relatively small and compact lens that covers 8x10 is the 355 f9 Repro-Claron. Much smaller even than the 305 G-Claron that I have.

Both are in shutters, the 355 being factory mounted in a Compur 2, while the 305 has been removed from its barrel and screwed into a Polaroid Prontor size 1. Might find it much cheaper than the cost of buying a Copal 3 shutter for the big Symmar.

BTW, Symmar's are nice lenses with lots of coverage and sharp images, just many times bigger and heavier than some of the alternates...

Hope that helps,


Jim Ewins
7-May-2010, 19:26
My Nikkor 300M f9 works a charm.

John Kasaian
7-May-2010, 22:15
G Clarons are compact and lightwieght---and very sharp! Dagors and Artars aren't overly large or heavy IMHO, and the Wollensak 159mm WA and EWAs are incredible small for being so wide. :)