View Full Version : 8*10 lens for 4*5 shooting

25-Mar-1999, 23:18
dear large format experts, i have a question! suppose a person got the idea to u se a very large lens mounted in a very large shutter (made for 8*10 of course) o n a 4*5 camera, is there any reason this would not work? are there any issues re lated to aperture or exstension that i'm not aware of which would make this idea a photographic impossibility? it seems to me that the larger circle of illumina tion would provide unlimited circle of illumination for effects??? thanks.

Charles Matter
25-Mar-1999, 23:59
Unlimited..no much larger , for sure..and, of course...the longer the focal length, the larger the image circle and the greater range of camera movements available.. Where you might run into problems is in how closr e the lens will focus..The only other restriction I can think of would be the physical size (and perhaps weight ) of the lens. If you can get your board drilled to fit it try it. a 90mm on a 4x5 produces a round image...very pleasing effect showing the fall-off towards the edges. Look at Emmet Gowin's work.

Ellis Vener
26-Mar-1999, 01:40
I think C.Matter means try using a 90mm lens on 8x10 not on 4x5.

26-Mar-1999, 08:33
One problem I see would be the shutter being to big for the lens board on the 4X5. An Ilex 5 is to large for a 4" board, otherwise if you have the bellows for them they will work fine on a 4X5.

Charles Matter
26-Mar-1999, 09:52
Yes, (thank you) C Matter did mean using a 90mm on an 8x10. f8 is f8 regardless of the focal length of the lens

26-Mar-1999, 13:06
thank you all

26-Mar-1999, 15:39
The projected image diameter of any lens must be adequatly large to cover the diagonal corners of the film at an absolute minimum; and additionally larger to allow for shifts and tilts of the lens and film standards. Given any focal length, the optical desgn may be adequate for 4x5 but the image circle inadequate for 8x10. However, a lens designed for use with 8x10 film will work with any smaller film size. The design of modern large format camera standards and bellows allows this flexibility. But one must understand the relationship between film size (format) and the performance of lenses of different focal lenses. Consider that a 150mm lens on a 4x5 format is a "normal" lens, while when it is used with 8x10 format this lens is a "short", or so called "wide" lens. Further, the normal 300mm lens for 8x10 format would be considered a "long" lens for the smaller 4x5 format. If the photographer works in both formats, some lenses will perform in both formats and the photographer enjoys that flexibility,providing that the image circle is satisfactory for the largest format to used. The downside: usually, the larger the image circle of the optics the greater expense of acquisition. As a point of interest, Sinar has a film standard mount so that a 35mm Nikon or a medium format Hasselblad can be mounted to utilize the large format lenses with those formats, and with excellent results. Incidently, I am retired and will be selling all my Sinar P2 4x5 and 8x10 equipment, studio strobe lighting, dark room, etc. at 50% of new prices.

David Grandy
26-Mar-1999, 21:39
The concerns that you might have in choosing an 8X10 lens for 4X5 use might be bellows extension, size & weight, and expense.

If the lens is shorter than 300mm I think that I'd save a lot of money and buy a Schneider 210 APO-Symmar rather than the 210 Super HM. The Super HM is really a wide angle for 8X10 so if you don't need a huge image circle (& the APO's is pretty big to begin with) why spend twice the money and have more than twice the weight?

If the lens is a 300 or longer do you have enough bellows to focus on something in this county? And have you just purchased a donkey named Larry to help you carry these lenses up the mountain? Size does count, as your aching back will tell you.

Last year I almost bought a Rodenstock 300mm F5.6, but my concern was number two, weight and size. I planed on using the lens on an older Toyo Field camera which has 16" bellows but has smallish Graphflex lens boards. So I wasn't even sure the 5.6 would fit on the camera; I knew that he joy of carrying it around would wear off pretty quickly; and I have no money for Larry.

I just bought, but haven't yet received (sigh) a Nikkor 300 f9 M. From all my reading it should be sharp and small. The 300 M weighs about 280gm or so, and the Nikkor (similar to the Rodenstock) 300mm 5.6 weighs 1.2 kg! The image circle for the M is smaller than the 5.6, but still covers 8X10- and since I have no plans for an 8X10 (especially if my wife is looking!)- the coverage issue is moot. Meanwhile this gives me tons of coverage for 4X5.

Gary Frost
27-Mar-1999, 13:55
Just thought I would point out here that a lens does not have to be big and heavy to cover 8X10. My Fuji 240mm f/9 apo covers 8X10, is in a copal 0 shutter, and is no bigger/heavier than a 150mm f/5.6